The Pirates are placing third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes on the 10-day injured list due to left wrist inflammation, Rob Biertempfel of the Athletic and Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette were among those to relay. Infielder Wilmer Difo will be added to the active roster. Difo is not yet on the 40-man roster, so his contract will need to be formally selected. The Pirates’ 40-man is full, so a corresponding move to clear space for Difo is forthcoming.
Hayes left yesterday’s game after injuring his wrist diving into a bag on a pickoff attempt. X-rays came back negative and an MRI revealed the inflammation. Hayes had issues squeezing his glove this morning, though, so the Pirates elected to shut him down for the time being. There’s no indication at this point Hayes’ absence is expected to last especially long.
There’s plenty reason for the rebuilding Pirates to play things cautiously. There’s arguably no more important player in the organization than Hayes, a top prospect who tore the cover off the ball in his brief MLB debut in 2020. Wrist injuries, in particular, can sometimes have a lingering impact on players’ power potential.
In Hayes’ absence, Erik González and Difo could pick up some extra playing time at third base. Difo was once a frequently-used utility player for the Nationals, but his struggles at the plate caused his playing time to dwindle and ultimately led Washington to cut him loose. The 29-year-old signed a minor league deal with Pittsburgh over the winter.