Pirates Designate Iwamura, Send Him To Minors

TUESDAY, 9:07pm: Langosch tweets that the Bucs weren't able to find a trade partner for Iwamura, and thus the infielder will be optioned to Triple-A.

5:27pm: ESPN's Buster Olney tweets that the Pirates are in fact willing to eat a lot of the money owed to Iwamura in order to trade him.

4:50pm: The Associated Press reports (via ESPN) that the Pirates will actively try to trade Iwamura. They would presumably pay most of the $2.5MM remaining on his salary in any deal.

WEDNESDAY, 2:43pm: The Pirates have designated Akinori Iwamura for assignment, according to MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch (via Twitter).

With top prospect Pedro Alvarez joining the team today and Andy LaRoche sliding into a utility role, there was no room left on the roster for the underachieving Iwamura. The Pirates acquired the 31-year-old infielder from the Rays in the offseason, making him their highest-paid player. However, in 193 plate appearances for Pittsburgh this season, Iwamura hit just .182/.292/.267.

The Pirates will be on the hook for the rest of Iwamura's $4.85MM salary, less the pro-rated portion of the major league minimum if he catches on with another club.

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