Saturday, April 19, 2014

Pittsburgh Pirates - Ike's role in Pittsburgh

The Pittsburgh Pirates needed an upgrade at first base and Ike Davis needed a change of scenery. The two sides finally came together Friday night when the Bucs acquired Davis from the New York Mets for or pitcher Zack Thornton and a player to be named.

According to Bill Brink of the Post-Gazette, the addition of the lefty-swinging Davis "provides a complement" to right-hander Gaby Sanchez and adds at least the potential of more power to the roster.

The Bucs experimented with minor leaguer Andrew Lambo at first base during spring training before deciding on non-roster invitee Travis Ishikawa. Ishikawa, hitting just .206 in 15 games, now figures to be the odd man out when Davis is added to the roster.

The big question will be whether manager Clint Hurdle uses a straight platoon or simply plays the hot hand. "The word platoon gets thrown around a lot," GM Neal Huntington told "I think this will be where Clint Hurdle uses his judgment.”

Davis has seen his numbers fall off drastically since hitting 32 homers for the Mets in 2012, but his splits suggest he could fit in well in a straight platoon system. His career slugging percentage is .471 against righthanders compared to a .331 mark against southpaws.

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