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Pirates acquire Bautista from Tigers

Pirates/MLB Videos

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Making a low-risk move for a player with potentially high upside, the Pirates on Wednesday traded for hard-throwing right-hander Denny Bautista.

To complete the deal, minor-league reliever Kyle Pearson was sent to the Detroit Tigers.

To clear space on the 40-man roster, outfielder Kevin Thompson was given his unconditional release from Triple-A Indianapolis. Thompson had season-ending hand surgery on Tuesday.

When Bautista joins the team today, the Pirates will make a move on their 25-man roster, likely sending right-hander T.J. Beam back to Indy.

Although Bautista has started 21 games in the majors, he will not make a spot start either Friday or Saturday in place of injured pitchers Phil Dumatrait (shoulder) and Ian Snell (elbow).

The Pirates have mapped out their pitching plans for this weekend, but general manager Neal Huntington will not begin revealing them -- and the corresponding roster moves -- until after tonight's game.

"We'll announce them step by step," Huntington said.

Huntington said John Van Benschoten, who threw four innings Tuesday for Indianapolis, remains an option to start Saturday against Tampa Bay.

Bautista, 27, was designated for assignment Friday by Detroit. He began the season with the Tigers and went 0-1 with a 3.32 ERA in 16 relief appearances.

"He's a big, physical right-hander with plus arm strength," Huntington said. "His struggle has been with consistency of strikes. If we can help him throw more strikes, we may have a guy who can earn his way from pitching in the middle (innings) to pitching in the back end of games."




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