The Pittsburgh Pirates will give up a low tier prospect for Baltimore Orioles first baseman Derrek Lee.
Pending Major League Baseball signing off (updated: Deal is offical just after 11:50 p.m.), the two teams have agreed on a deal that will involve the Baltimore Orioles sending Lee to Pittsburgh in-exchange for Class-A prospect Aaron Barker. A 23 year old first baseman playing in High-A Bradenton, who was an 11th round pick in 2009.
Baker is not considered one of the Pirates top-30 prospects. He is hitting .285 with 15 home runs and 72 RBI’s for Class-A Bradenton.
Baker turns 24 in September.
Cash will also be involved in the deal with a low amount ($250,000 – $400,000) coming the Pirates way. Lee is due $2.6 million for the remainder of the season.
The Pirates are looking for Lee to bolster the first base position where the team has got nothing from Lyle Overbay.
Overbay who is batting .227 on the season, has just 1 RBI in his last 66 at-bats. By comparison, Lee has driven in 19 runs in his last 72 at-bats.
Lee is hitting .321 since the All-Star break and has 6 homers in his last 24 games.
Overall, Lee is batting .246 with 12 home runs and 41 RBI’s on the season. He is a career .281 hitter with 324 home runs – 1,060 RBI’s.
Since 2008, Lee is hitting .241 (27-for-112) at PNC Park with 3 home runs and 16 RBI’s.
A two-time National League All-Star (2005 and 2007) and three-time Gold Glove winner (2003, 2005, 2007), Lee has gone 17-for-57 (.298) with three home runs and 13 RBIs in 15 games with the Orioles since the All-Star break.
“We are pleased to add a quality veteran player like Derrek Lee to our ballclub,” said Pirates GM Neal Huntington. “He is an experienced, productive right-handed hitter and solid defender who should add to our team on the field and in the clubhouse.”
The acquisition of Lee is Neal Huntington’s first trade as a buyer at the deadline. The Pirates GM is still looking for relief, starting rotation help and have their eyes on a possible outfield addition with Jason Kubel remaining their primary target.
The Pirates dropped their second game in row to the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday night, falling to 54-51 on the season. The Pirates are 3.5 games out of first place.
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