The Pittsburgh Pirates have made a splash acquiring right fielder Marlon Byrd and catcher John Buck from the New York Mets in exchange for Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later.
Byrd, 35, is hitting .285/.330/.518 with 21 home runs and 71 RBIs. He signed a minor league deal in February and is making just $700,000.
Byrd has feasted off left handed pitchers this season, hitting .345 with 7 home runs. Byrd provides a huge upgrade in right field over Jose Tabata.
Byrd’s surprise season has come out of nowhere but when healthy he’s always been a productive player, though his power numbers have spiked some this season. Byrd has not been streaky in the power department as he has consistently hit for power since May 1, hitting 5 home runs in May, 6 home runs in June, 5 home runs in July and 4 home runs in August so far.
Buck, 33, is also a free agent at seasons end. He’s making $6 million this season and has some pop, hitting 15 home runs and 60 RBIs. The Mets will be picking up some of Buck’s remaining salary.
These two moves improve the Pirates a lot going into the stretch run.
Pittsburgh begins a three game set with the Brewers today.