BRADENTON, FL – With Major League Baseball’s Opening Day just over a week away, the Pittsburgh Pirates are beginning to seriously trim their roster down.
It was announced on Monday that the Bucs are cutting 11 players, optioning three to the Triple-A Indianapolis Indians and reassigning the remaining eight to minor league camp. Right-hander Nick Kingham, infielder Max Moroff and utility man Chris Bostick will be starting the 2018 regular season in Indianapolis.
Among the notable names reassigned to minor league camp are infielders Eric Wood and Erich Weiss and righty Casey Sadler.
Kingham, who went 9-6 with a 4.13 ERA in 20 games (19 starts) with the Tribe in 2017, did not have the prettiest spring. After two innings of scoreless ball in his preseason debut, the right-hander did not post a shutout appearance the rest of the way. Kingham surrendered 14 runs (12 earned) on 21 hits in 12.1 innings of work (five appearances). His final work of spring training came on March 19, where he gave up six runs on eight hits in 3.2 frames pitched.
Moroff played in 51 games with the Indians last season, hitting .254 with 13 home runs. He hit just eight homers in 133 Triple-A games in 2016. As a result, the 24-year-old played in 56 games with the Pirates in 2017, collecting 24 hits in 120 at-bats (.200). This spring, Moroff homered once and recorded a batting average of .214 (6-for-28).
Bostick did it all in 2017 for Indianapolis. The utility man led the club in average (.294), doubles (33), runs scored (75) and at-bats (488). He was rewarded for his play with a promotion to Pittsburgh, where he played in 20 games and hit .296 (8-for-27).
The Pirates how have 37 players remaining in major league camp. 20 pitchers, four catchers, eight infielders and five outfielders make up that group.
Pittsburgh opens the 2018 regular season at Comerica Park on March 29 versus the Detroit Tigers. The Indians begin their 2018 campaign at Victory Field on April 6 against the Columbus Clippers.