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Pirates make big move with powerful bat after series loss to Blue Jays

The Pittsburgh Pirates fell 5-4 to the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday, ultimately losing the three-game series on the road. The Pirates fall to 27-32 on the year and are just one game ahead of the Cincinnati Reds for the cellar spot in the National League Central.

After the series loss, the Pirates decided to redraw Henry Davis, according to Jason Mackey of The Post-Gazette.

“The impressive results Henry Davis has had with Triple-A Indianapolis will soon be put to the test as the catcher is expected to return to Pittsburgh this week, starting with a series against the Dodgers starting Tuesday, a source told the Post-Gazette. Sunday.”

Davis was the first overall pick in the 2021 MLB Draft and was expected to play a role with the Pirates in the 2024 season. However, Davis was sent to Triple-A Indianapolis in early May to get some more work.

So a month later, the Pirates brought him back to the big league club. Grant Koch, who recently made his MLB debut, is expected to be sent to Triple-A, although Pittsburgh has not made an official move.

Henry Davis’ hitting in Triple-A is good news for Pirates

Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher David Bednar (51) celebrates with catcher Henry Davis (right) after beating the San Francisco Giants at Oracle Park.
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

After Davis went to Triple-A in May, he caught fire with the bat and showed noticeable improvement. Davis hit .296 with seven home runs, 17 RBIs and a whopping 1.078 OPS in 81 at-bats at the Triple-A level.

Davis struggled mightily in the MLB to start the year, hitting just .162 with 29 strikeouts in 83 at-bats, so they’re hoping he can get more comfortable at the plate and provide an offensive spark for the Pirates.

The Pirates signed Yasmani Grandal in the offseason and then traded for Joey Bart after his time with the San Franciso Giants ran out. However, Bart was recently placed on the injured list and will be out for some time, prompting Davis to come in and perhaps earn more playing time. Bart played well, hitting .267 with four home runs and 12 RBIs, including a grand slam against his former team, the Giants, on May 23.

Grandal has also struggled with the bat, hitting just .179 with a pair of home runs and 11 RBIs, so the Pirates are looking to add more offense from the catcher position. Grant Koch went hitless in seven at-bats in his first MLB appearance.

The Pirates begin a six-game homestand between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins on Tuesday, so it will remain to be seen whether Henry Davis will take the catcher position on Tuesday. If Henry Davis ends up playing well, he could lock down the starting role behind the plate.