3:33pm: The Pirates have announced both the Fryer claim and right-handed reliever Rob Scahill’s designation for assignment. Scahill threw 16 1/3 innings for the Pirates this year prior to the designation and recorded a 4.41 ERA, 7.16 K/9, 3.31 BB/9 and 58 percent ground-ball rate. In 104 big league innings, the 29-year-old owns a 3.89 ERA, 6.23 K/9, 3.72 BB/9 and 52.7 percent grounder rate.
[RELATED: Updated Pirates depth chart]
1:32pm: The Pirates have claimed catcher Eric Fryer off waivers from the division-rival Cardinals, reports Chris Cotillo of SB Nation (Twitter link). The 30-year-old became available when the Redbirds designated him for assignment Tuesday, though they were hoping he’d sneak through waivers and remain in the organization.
This will be the second stint in Pittsburgh for Fryer, who was previously with the Bucs from 2010-12. He looks poised to take the place of Chris Stewart – who could head to the disabled list, Adam Berry of MLB.com tweets. Stewart would then join starting backstop Francisco Cervelli as the second Bucs catcher on the DL, leaving the position to Fryer and Erik Kratz.
In parts of six major league seasons, Fryer has totaled 199 trips to the plate and hit .270/.347/.354. Forty-one of those PAs came this year in St. Louis, with which Fryer slashed an outstanding .368/.415/.421. Those numbers are vastly superior to the .237/.328/.328 line Fryer has compiled in 935 Triple-A plate appearances, so regression is clearly on the way. Defensively, Fryer has graded respectably as a pitch framer and thrown out 29 percent of base stealers during his minor league career.