Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Pirates-Red Sox Hanrahan Deal Complete

It's taken several days to become official, but the Pirates and Red Sox have completed a six player deal that sends Pirates' closer Joel Hanrahan to the Red Sox.

In return the Pirates will receive prospects Jerry Sands (1B), Stolmy Pimentel (P), infielder Ivan DeJesus (had been acquired in the trade deadline mega deal with the Dodgers) and reliever Mark Melancon.

Boston will also receive minor league second baseman Brock Holt.

Hanrahan is expected to take over the closer role for Boston, with Andrew Bailey either moved to a set up role or traded away. Hanrahan spent parts of three unremarkable seasons with the Washington Nationals before he was dealt with Lastings Milledge to the Pirates for Sean Burnett and Nyjer Morgan during the 2009 season.

Hanrahan's career took off as a set up man in 2010 and he became the team's full-time closer a year later. The right-hander averaged 38 saves and nine strikeouts per nine innings in 133 total apperances. Hanrahan earned $4.1MM last season and is in his second year of arbitration eligibility. He can become a free agent after this coming season.

Melancon will have a chance to compete for the Pirates' closer role after one undistinguished season in Boston. He had a break out 2011 season when he saved 20 games in 71 appearances for the Houston Astros. Melancon was then dealt to Boston last December for shortstop Jed Lowrie and prospect Kyle Weiland.

As a set up man to Al Aceves, Melancon struggled with his control and finished the season with an ERA over 6. He also had a stint in the minor leagues in attempt to straighten out his pitching issues.

Sands is a slugging first baseman that was part of the same deal (as a player to be named later) that brought DeJesus to Boston last year. After Sands slugged 35 home runs in the minor leagues in 2010, he appeared in 61 games for the Dodgers in 2011, but hit just four home runs in 227 plate appearances. Last season he played in just nine Major Leagues games and was 4-23 with no home runs.

Pilmentel has been in the Red Sox organization since he was a 17-year old in 2007. Thus far his production has been mediocre, but still just 22-years old, the Pirates hope that he can find his 'A' game.

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