Pirates deal reliever Morris to Marlins for Draft pick
Pittsburgh receives No. 39 overall selection; righty Sadler promoted from Triple-A
LOS ANGELES -- The Pirates made an interesting move Sunday morning to fortify their position in Thursday's First-Year Player Draft.
Morris' spot on the 25-man roster was filled by Casey Sadler, who was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis, where he'd been 6-1 in eight starts with a 2.66 ERA.
Clearly, general manager Neal Huntington prioritized a stronger Draft presence with the deal. The acquired pick becomes the team's second-highest overall; the Pirates' regular first-round choice, at No. 24, originally was not going to be repeated until No. 64.
"We feel this trade will have a positive impact on our organization in the short, moderate and long term," said Huntington. "In the short term, this trade will add a quality prospect to our system that will enhance our ability to make additional prospect-for-Major League-player-type deals while helping us to better sustain crucial prospect depth.
"Additionally, we feel we have made this move from a position of strength, as we have kept our core bullpen intact. In the moderate and long term, we add an additional first-round talent that we project to play a significant role on future Pirates teams."
Morris was a significant member of the Pirates' "Vulture Club" bullpen, with a record of 4-0 in 21 appearances. He had been scored on in half of his past eight appearances, raising his ERA from 2.51 to 3.80.
Sadler made a cameo appearance with the Bucs earlier this season. Recalled from Indianapolis on April 27, he made his Major League debut on May 2 with two shutout innings against Toronto. He notched two more shutout innings against the Blue Jays two days later, then was optioned back to Indianapolis.