On Sunday, Jayson Stark of ESPN reported a potential trade target for the Pirates:
On the flip side, the platoon of Garrett Jones and Gaby Sanchez is slowing down at first base. Jones is hitting .192 (10-for-52) in his last 16 games; Sanchez is hitting just .103 (3-for-29) in his last 14 games. As Stark said, the Pirates may seriously want a strong bat for the middle-of-the order.
Morales would eliminate the platoon since he’s a switch-hitter, taking over the first base role. He’s not known for his defense – he’s played about 70% of his games this season as the designated hitter – but his real impact comes on offense.
Here are the career stats for the 30-year-old Cuba native:
You’ll notice that there’s a gap between 2010 and 2012 on the stat sheet – that’s the year Morales missed after he broke his leg celebrating a walk-off homer:
All but two of his home runs this season would have made it out of PNC Park (via Hit Tracker Online):
Morales is making $5.25 million with the Mariners this year. He’s a free agent after the season, essentially making him a rental player.
He seems like a reasonable fit and could come at a good price. We’ll see if any other trade rumors develop with Kendrys Morales and the Pirates.