The Pittsburgh Pirates have completed the Matt Diaz trade, acquiring right handed pitcher Eliecer Cardenas from the Atlanta Braves as the player to be named later.
The 23-year-old Dominican native went 4-3 with seven saves and a 2.11 ERA in 45 minor league games this season, striking out 76 batters in 59.2 innings. Cardenas finished the season with Lynchburg in the Carolina League where he posted a 0.79 ERA in 56.2 innings, with an 11.9 K/9 and a 4.6 BB/9 ratio, along with a 1.06 WHIP. He made the jump to the US in 2009 after three years in the Dominican Summer League.
Cardenas was selected by the Braves last year in the AAA phase of the Rule 5 draft, taken from the Minnesota Twins. He profiles more as an organizational pitcher, although the high strikeout rates are definitely intriguing.
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.
Get another good year of peripherals out of him at a higher level and at the very least he becomes 4th player in a trade. Not a bad outcome.