The Pirates have made two moves to shore up their beleaguered bullpen, adding two right-handers from Indianapolis. They’ve selected the contract of Richard Rodriguez and recalled Kyle Crick. To make room, they’ve optioned lefty Josh Smoker and righty Clay Holmes.
Crick was, of course, obtained for Andrew McCutchen. He’d appeared in three games for Indianapolis, allowing six hits and a run in four innings, with no walks and five strikeouts. Rodriguez signed a minor league deal with the Pirates for this year. He’d appeared in just two games with the Indians, with good results: no runs, one hit and two walks in five innings, with nine strikeouts. His only major league experience was five and two-thirds innings last September with Baltimore, which didn’t go terribly well. In 144 AAA games, Rodriguez has 2.90 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 8.9 K/9. No offsetting 40-man roster move was necessary.
Smoker has struggled in the Pirates’ bullpen, which overall ranks ahead of only Cincinnati in ERA in the majors. He’s allowed nine hits and two walks in four innings, with no strikeouts. His xFIP is 7.42. Holmes was added as long relief insurance when Joe Musgrove went on the disabled list. With the Pirates’ starters going at least five innings in every game, Holmes saw little action. In his one appearance, which was also his major league debut, he allowed a run in two innings.