Minor Moves: Hughston Returns to West Virginia, Roth Sent to Morgantown

The Pittsburgh Pirates made some minor league moves on Thursday afternoon for their two clubs in West Virginia. Casey Hughston returned to the Power after a stint in Extended Spring Training. Logan Sendelbach was added to the roster as well. Julio Vivas and Billy Roth were assigned to Morgantown to make room for the two players.

Hughston was in a horrible slump during his time in West Virginia earlier this season. In 34 games, he had a .147/.225/.240 slash line, with 51 strikeouts in 129 at-bats. The 2015 third round pick went down to Extended Spring Training (EST) to work on his swing in a more controlled environment.

Sendelbach was assigned to EST after his last start, though that was just a paper move and he never left the Power. He was activated in time to make his next start tomorrow.

Billy Roth has been pitching out of the bullpen for the Power, after serving as a starter since the Pirates drafted him in 2013. He can hit mid-90s with his fastball, but he had major control issues this season, walking 20 batters in 17 innings. Last year, he had 23 walks in 54.1 innings.

Vivas had two separate stints with the Power, posting a 7.71 ERA over 16.1 innings. He split last year between Bradenton and West Virginia, posting a 2.85 ERA and a .196 BAA in 66.1 innings. Plus he has pitched the last two season in the Venezuelan Winter League against much older competition, so his struggles this season at a low level are hard to explain. He throws low-90s with some deception and usually has decent control, though he’s walked ten batters in his short time this season.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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I can never remember which team is higher in classification….Morgantown or W Va.

They need to move one of them…lol.


Don’t they only call it Morgantown on the site to distinguish the two, also? They’re both West Virginia. “The Pirates have promoted a player from West Virginia to West Virginia.”

john fluharty

Yep. West Virginia Black Bears. I have the shirt on right now. Bought it at Walmart. 🙂


Is there any word on how Hughston looked in EST, and if he seemed to be making the adjustments he needed to make?

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