The Pirates will sign Yoshi Tsutsugo, according to Yuki Yamada of Sankei Sports. Tsutsugo had been designated by the Dodgers in July and accepted an outright assignment to Triple-A Oklahoma, but was released yesterday. The Pirates have a full 40-man roster and will need to make a corresponding move of some kind.
Pittsburgh will be Tsutsugo’s third big league team this season. He started off the year with the Rays for the second season of the two-year contract he signed in December of 2019. In the first half of the deal, he put up a line of .197/.314/.395, production just slightly below average, evidenced by wRC+ of 98. However, his 2021 season got off to a miserable start, slashing .167/.244/.218 with Tampa, a wRC+ of 36 and enough for them to cut him loose, designating him for assignment in May.
The Dodgers were intrigued enough to send cash considerations to the Rays and give him a shot. Unfortunately, his stint in Hollywood wasn’t much better, as he produced a line of .120/.290/.120, a wRC+ of 38.
However, since accepted that Triple-A assignment, he has shown much better form, hitting .257/.361/.507, a wRC+ of 108 over 180 plate appearances in Oklahoma City. This bounceback appears to have intrigued the Pirates enough to give him a roster spot. There will be no financial risk for the team, as the Rays are on the hook for the majority of his remaining salary, as was agreed upon in their trade with the Dodgers.