The Pirates released Bastardo after designating him for assignment Saturday, Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. The left-hander has allowed 15 earned runs in nine innings and has experienced a precipitous dropoff from his past years of success. Given his career 3.75 ERA, 1.26 WHIP and 10.8 K/9 through 393 big-league innings, Bastardo seems likely to get another chance with a team in need of bullpen depth.
Bastardo was designated for assignment by the Pirates on Saturday, Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. Bastardo was recently reinstated from the DL with a quad strain, but allowed two earned runs in one inning against the Cubs on Friday. The left-hander has been having the worst season of his career, giving up 15 earned runs over nine innings. He was a solid option out of the bullpen two years ago, and could latch on with a contender if anyone if willing to take a chance on the 31-year-old. In a corresponding move, Phil Gosselin was recalled prior to Saturday's game.
Bastardo (quadriceps) was activated from the disabled list Tuesday. Bastardo is finally healthy enough to rejoin the Pirates' bullpen after nearly a two-month stay on the disabled list. He held a 16.20 ERA and 5:7 K:BB in 6.2 innings of relief before landing on the DL, so he'll likely start out working lower-leverage innings. Jacob Stallings was optioned to Triple-A in a corresponding move.
Bastardo was placed on the 10-day disabled list Tuesday with a left quad strain, Adam Berry of MLB.com reports. Bastardo was off to a brutal start to the season, allowing an earned run in each of his first six appearances (6.2 innings) to bring his ERA up to 16.20 for the season. Johnny Barbato was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis to replace Bastardo on the roster in a corresponding move, and will likely head to the bullpen in his place. A firmer timetable for his return should be available in the coming days. Given his early struggles, it remains unclear if Bastardo will resume his place in the bullpen upon activation.
Bastardo gave up one run on three hits and a walk in two innings Monday, striking out a pair of Cincinnati batters. He extended his streak to three games for surrendering an opponent home run, this time getting tagged by Scooter Gennett. Bastardo is likely living on borrowed time in the Pittsburgh bullpen. He's allowed six hits, three walks and five runs in 3.1 innings. The Pirates are paying half of his $6 million-plus salary, but his ineffectiveness could lead the team to release him without improvement.
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