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The Pirates Trade Zach Thompson to the Toronto Blue Jays for Outfielder Chavez Young

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The Pittsburgh Pirates announced on Tuesday afternoon that they have acquired 25-year-old outfielder Chavez Young from the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for right-handed pitcher Zach Thompson. After the Pirates signed left-handed pitcher Rich Hill last Thursday, Thompson was designated for assignment.

Young spent 2022 with Buffalo of the Triple-A International League, where he hit .234/.331/.351 over 65 games, with 13 extra-base hits and 20 steals in 21 attempts. He spent the start and the end of the season on the injured list. He has played winter ball in Puerto Rico this off-season to make up for some of the missed time. Young did well in his limited time during the regular season, posting a .289 average and an .807 OPS in 13 games. He is currently still playing in the league’s playoffs.

Young was a 2016 draft pick, who was born in the Bahamas. He’s a switch-hitter, who has been rated as having the best arm in the Blue Jays system for the last four years. He’s a career .266/.341/.406 hitter, with 119 stolen bases in 437 games. He has also played winter ball each of the last three years. He’s a non-roster invite to big league camp next month.

Thompson went 3-10, 5.18 last year in 22 starts and seven relief appearances, with a 1.51 WHIP, a 4.87 FIP and a 90:46 SO/BB ratio in 121.2 innings. That was a significant drop-off from the numbers he put up with the Miami Marlins as a rookie in 2021, before he was acquired by the Pirates in the Jacob Stallings deal. Thompson had a 3.24 ERA, a 3.69 FIP, and a 1.21 WHIP, with 66 strikeouts in 75 innings in 2021. He turned 29 years old in October.

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John Dreker
John Dreker
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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