Originally written on Pirates Prospects  |  Last updated 11/6/14
The Pittsburgh Pirates today exercised the $700,000 option for third baseman Pedro Alvarez for the 2013 season, while declining catcher Rod Barajas’ $3.5 M option (no buyout) for next year. Alvarez’s $700,000 option was expected, as it was a part of his original contract when drafted by Pittsburgh in the first round of 2008. Alvarez blasted a career-high 30 home runs during the 2012 season, surpassing his previous mark of 16 set his rookie season in 2010. The 25-year-old third baseman finished with a .244 average. Barajas’ hit a career-low .206 average with the Pirates, with 11 home runs over 104 games. His 98 starts behind the plate were the most since 2009 with Toronto when he caught 110. Barajas’ threw out just 5% of base runners this season (4-of-80). But while his offense struggled for most of the season (he hit .302 in May), the pitching staff including A.J. Burnett, who was his battery mate for the season, along with James McDonald and several other young arms, spoke highly about Barajas’ game calling and leadership skills behind the plate. Barajas’ $3.5 M option for the 2013 season was declined by Pittsburgh, but the veteran catcher could still return to the Pirates for next year at a lower price and as the club’s No. 2 behind the plate. Manager Clint Hurdle said during the final homestand at PNC Park in October that he had a candid conversation with Barajas about that role. The club also released reliever Hisanori Takahashi, who was set to become a free agent at the end of the week.    
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rajon Rondo after trade: My love for Celtics fans is 'unmatched'

Report: Athletics trade Derek Norris to Padres

Dodgers not happy with Padres GM over Matt Kemp trade

Mario Balotelli banned match for offensive Instagram post

Marc Trestman: Benching Jay Cutler could revive QB's career

Rob Gronkowski jokes about Tom Brady saying he's grown up

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Rajon Rondo traded to Mavs for three players, picks

Washington Post has perfect description for Titans-Jaguars

Wilbon angry at DC for not supporting Wizards

Urban Meyer says Tim Tebow still wants to play in the NFL

Keenan Lewis: Saints preparing 'funeral' for Falcons

Chris Christie defends being a Cowboys fan

Five most underpaid NFL players of 2014 season

Extremely rare set of Air Jordan 7s selling for $45,000

Five reasons why Alabama will win College Football Playoff

Hugh Freeze proud of Ole Miss’ record 2.57 team GPA

Youngstown St. addresses Bo Pelini's profanity-laced rant

It's been almost 40 years since NFL's last untelevised game

The NHL has finally fined a player for diving

Ben Roethlisberger: Le’Veon Bell is having an MVP season

Jim Harbaugh comments on the reported offer from Michigan

Michael Jordan's college Converse shoes sell for $33,387

Week 16 NFL game watchability rankings

Game of the week: Indianapolis Colts vs. Dallas Cowboys

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Most underpaid NFL players in 2014

Gronk jokes about Brady compliment

In Matt Kemp, did the Dodgers find a pigeon in Padres?

Why the Saints are legit playoff threat

Impact of U.S.-Cuba relations on MLB

Andrew Hawkins, other athletes gain support for social statement attire

NBA's most underrated players

Michael Vick nearly debt-free

Dolphins CB rips Brady's career plans

Biggest winners of the MLB offseason

Brian Billick owns Browns fan

Pelini has profane words for Nebraska AD

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.