In what seems to be a growing trend, the Pittsburgh Pirates have added to their collection of corner outfielders when they came to terms with Brad Hawpe on a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training.
Hawpe has eight years of MLB experience and was an all-star when he was in the Colorado Rockies organization, where he hit 20 or more homers in four consecutive seasons from 2006-09.
Since then Hawpe has struggled, last playing in the majors in 2011 with the San Diego Padres, where he posted a line of only .235/.301/.645. Last season, Hawpe was with the Texas’ Double-A affiliate, posting a .260/.382/.382 batting line in 152 plate appearances.
In all likelihood, the Hawpe signing is nothing of significance. If he has a great spring training there is a chance for him to earn a bench spot, but with the cluster of corner outfielders the Pirates have, the odds are against that.
Hawpe would have been a nice signing six years ago.
In addition, the Pirates also signed catcher Lucas May to a minor-league deal with an invitation to spring training.
May played 12 games in 2010 with the Kansas City Royals and spent last season with the Mets’ top affiliate, posting a .215/.245/.348 batting line in 269 plate appearances.