by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of MLB.com.
The Pittsburgh Pirates have traded veterans Rich Hill and Ji-Man Choi to the San Diego Padres for left handed starting pitcher Jackson Wolf, outfielder Estuar Suero and first baseman Alfonso Rivas.
Rich Hill, the oldest player in the major leagues, has proven himself to be a reliable left handed starter, and one that is still capable of eating up innings for a team. Hill owns a 4.76 ERA and his 119 innings pitched are the second most thrown by a Pirates pitcher this year. Hill, brought on as a veteran presence to help mentor the young pitchers, has struggled of late, and had a 5.70 ERA in July, going six innings only one time.
Ji-Man Choi has spent more time on the injured list than he has on the field for the Pirates. Choi sustained a left achilles injury and missed a large chunk of the year before he returned in July. He has hit 4 homeruns since his return and has a .930 OPS. With Choi traded, the Pirates will have to find themselves a new first baseman—and that could be Alfonso Rivas, who was acquired in this deal.
Jackson Wolf is a 6’7” starting pitcher who pitched locally at West Virginia. He throws with a unique extension and has good control to work inside and outside. He has made one major league start this season, getting a victory while giving up 3 runs in 5 innings. Wolf could join the Pirates' rotation right away.
Estuar Suero is a 17-year-old, 6’5” switch-hitting outfielder who the Padres signed as an International free agent. He has plus power and is still growing into his body. In the rookie league, he is hitting .216 with 4 homeruns. This move will add some much needed depth to the organization's outfield pool.
Alfonso Rivas is a 26-year old first baseman who has played in the majors for both the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres. In 310 career at bats, Rivas has a .245 average and 4-homeruns. He can play both first base or the outfield and should be plugged in at first base for the Pirates, who have now traded both Carlos Santana and Ji-Man Choi.