Prospect Watching: Chris Jakubauskas and Kevin Hart

Kevin Hart came to the Pirates from the Cubs in the trade that sent Tom Gorzelanny and John Grabow to Chicago. �The 27-year-old right-hander was drafted by the Orioles in the 11th round of the 2004 draft, then traded to the Cubs at the end of 2006. �He split the 2007 season between the Cubs’ AA and AAA levels, then split 2008 between AAA Iowa and Chicago. �Hart began 2009 with AAA Iowa, where he made 6 starts and 16 relief appearances, for 52.1 innings. �He earned a 3-3 record and a 3.10 ERA, and allowed 18 earned runs on 39 hits with 20 walks and 57 strikeouts. �The Cubs recalled Hart to the major league club on June 21st, and he made 4 starts and 4 relief appearances for Chicago. �In those 27.2 innings, Hart posted a 3-1 record and a 2.60 ERA, though he gave up relatively more hits: �8 runs on 23 hits. �He gave up walks and nearly twice the rate as he had in Iowa (18), and struck less than half as many batters (13). �After coming over to the Pirates in July, Hart struggled immensely. �He had trouble with control and consistency, and in 10 starts, he earned a 1-8 record and a 6.92 ERA. �He threw 53.1 innings, and allowed 41 earned runs on an amazing 74 hits and 26 walks, including 8 home runs. �The troubles did not go away over the winter, unfortunately. �Hart struggled again in Grapefruit League play, allowing a total of 8 earned runs in 4.2 innings in three games– 2 runs in one inning, 5 runs in 2 innings, and one run in 1.2 innings. �With one more option remaining, the Pirates assigned Hart to Indianapolis, with the idea that he would be able to work on his mechanics and consistency, and get in a lot of innings in the Indians’ starting rotation. �Then, he’d be ready later in the season to move back up to Pittsburgh when needed.

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