The Pirates are interested in trading for Phillies outfielder Ben Revere, according to Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (on Twitter). The Bucs also have interest in Jeff Francoeur, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter). Pittsburgh is also looking into other bench and platoon bats in its search for depth at the deadline, Morosi tweets.
Revere struggled at the plate early in the season and at one point it appeared that he would be relegated to the bench once Cody Asche and Domonic Brown returned to full health. However, he has turned things around as of late and his ongoing hitting streak – now at nine games – has elevated his slash line to .294/.335/.377. The 27-year-old has also stolen 21 bases on the year and he could be a solid leadoff option for Pittsburgh while Josh Harrison is sidelined.
Revere was connected to both the Mariners and Angels this summer. Recently, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reported that in June the Phillies and Angels came close on a trade that would’ve sent Revere to Anaheim for right-hander Trevor Gott. The Phils thought the deal was done but the Halos “pulled out of the deal at the last minute and tried to redirect the Phillies toward a starting pitching prospect.”
Francoeur, who inked a minor league deal with Philly in November, will be a free agent after the 2015 season. The 31-year-old has slashed .246/.278/.410 with six homers in 194 plate appearances this year. Those numbers won’t get him to Cincinnati later this week, but that does mark an uptick from the last few years: between 2012 and 2014, the veteran hit just .222/.269/.346 for the Royals, Giants, and Padres. The veteran has also had success against righties this year with a slash line of .269/.304/.481 across 115 plate appearances. It wouldn’t take much for the Pirates to get Francoeur, Biertempfel tweets, and he suggests that a Double-A pitcher like Steven Brault could get the job done.
Harrison is set to miss seven weeks with a torn UCL in his thumb and, recently, Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said that could lead to the Bucs being “aggressive with early opportunity to add” this month. The Bucs have a capable replacement in Jung-Ho Kang taking over for Harrison at third base, but the loss of the versatile Kang leaves the Pirates with an underwhelming bench of Chris Stewart, Sean Rodriguez, Steve Lombardozzi, Gorkys Hernandez and Travis Ishikawa.