by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of mlb.com.
The Pittsburgh Pirates' season officially flipped from trying to compete for a wildcard spot to “sellers” as the team traded 37-year-old veteran first baseman Carlos Santana to the Milwaukee Brewers for 18-year-old shortstop prospect Jhonny Severino.
Santana was acquired by the Pittsburgh Pirates this off-season to be a veteran presence and to add a good switch-hitting bat to the middle of the lineup. Santana started slow this season but came on toward the end of his stint in Pittsburgh, hitting .235 with 12 home runs and 35 RBI at the time of the trade.
Santana is one of the league's best fielding first basemen, continuously saving errors with his ability to scoop balls thrown in the dirt, and will be missed by the Pirates' young infielders.
With Santana moving on, the Pirates will likely replace him in the field with a platoon of Ji-Man Choi, Henry Davis and Endy Rodriguez.
Jhonny Severino is an 18-year-old shortstop the Milwaukee Brewers signed for $1.2 million as an international free agent last season. He is considered a rising international player and is a switch-hitter with above average power. Severino’s strong arm makes it easy to project that he will stay at short when he is Major League ready.
With the Pirates appearing to be sellers as the trade deadline looms, other possible assets that they will likely receive calls on are LHP Rich Hill, RHP Colin Holderman or OF/1B Ji-Man Choi. Rumors persist that the Bucs may have already received interest on pitchers Mitch Keller and David Bednar, but teams will need to overpay for either of their services.