PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — A Pirates’ fan favorite is now headed to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
The Pirates say they have traded closer Jason Grilli to the Angels for pitcher Ernesto Frieri.
The 37-year-old Grilli struggled with his command this season, and was 0-2 with a 4.87 ERA and 11 saves in 22 appearances. But he was pivotal to the Pirates’ resurgence last year, when he piled up 33 saves and had a 2.70 ERA in helping the club to a 94-68 record.
The former Pirates’ closer lost his job to Mark Melancon last week after blowing 4 of his 15 save opportunities. He also missed some time due to injuries since making last year’s All-Star Game.
Grilli saved 47 games since coming to the Pirates in 2011 with 33 last season.
He is expected to join the Angels in Kansas City on Saturday.
Frieri had a career-best 37 saves for Los Angeles last year, but the 28-year-old right-hander is just 0-3 with 6.39 ERA and 11 saves in 34 appearances this season.
Before this season though, Frieri was a solid bullpen arm.
The Pirates say Frieri has recorded a career record of 9-12 with 71 saves, a 3.19 ERA, 353 strikeouts and a .201 batting average against (192-for-956) in 262 relief appearances with San Diego from 2009 to 2012 and Los Angeles from 2012 to 2014 since breaking into the big leagues in 2009.
In a press release, Pirates General Manager Neal Huntingdon said:
“We are appreciative of all that Jason has done for the Pirates and in our community. We believe that adding Ernesto Frieri was a good move for our bullpen. He has been an effective late inning reliever who, despite his struggles to date this season, has solid indicators that cause us to believe he will be a quality addition to our bullpen this season and potentially beyond.”
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