CM – With the trade deadline approaching, Pirates’ Ben Cherington hopes to uncover « meaningful opportunities ».


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Ben Cherington gave no specifics on Sunday when he appeared on his radio show on 93.7 FM and after the imminent close of trading was asked.

But the general manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates pointed out that trades are an important component in rebuilding the team.

« We need to keep our focus on attracting talent and young players who have a chance to grow with us and help us win, » he said. « My hope is that we will find opportunities that make sense for us … players who have a chance to be with us for a while. »

But Cherington softened his remarks by saying, “We don’t have to make a deal to make a deal. You just have to assess each situation as it comes. We don’t have to force it.  »

In the meantime, he promised that the people in his office would be busy from 4pm. The deadline for Friday is getting closer.

« We have a great team of people in baseball operations who work around the clock, » he said. « All hands on deck. It will be an exciting week. »

Cherington said there is no schedule for Mitch Keller to return to the Pirates from Triple-A Indianapolis, but he is confident he will « earn back ».

« We know how talented he is, » said Cherington. “We really appreciate that he returned to Indy with a great attitude. He will earn his way back.

“There is no schedule for that. We will see. We’ll be convinced of that at some point. We need lots of good pitches to get where we want to go and very confident that Mitch will be part of that group.  »

Keller, 25, was the Pirates’ second round draft in 2014, but he’s 5-13 with an ERA of 6.31 in 28 major league starts. He was sent to Indianapolis on June 12th. In Triple-A he is 1-1 with 3.21 ERA, 38 strikeouts and 13 walks in 28 innings.

The Kyle Crick auxiliary pitcher was designated for use on July 19, and Cherington noted a lack of « consistency regarding executions and strikes. »

« Kyle is a talented guy. People know about the slider and how well it rotates. That’s something not many guys can do, ”said Cherington.

« He’s a guy who isn’t a length-type pitcher. He’s the type of guy who comes in and gets into a difficult situation or the heart of order. If he’s right in lever situations, he’ll get right-handed out.

« He’s been good at it in the past. He just wasn’t that consistent and some of those leverage opportunities went to other guys. We thought it would be best for him to start over somewhere else. I hope he does and I wish him all the best.  »

Jerry DiPaola is a contributor to Tribune Review. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or on Twitter.

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