In a news blurb that came as a surprise to nobody, the Pirates have released 37-year old catcher Rod Barajas. Barajas, who hit for a measly .283 on-base average this past season, was set to make $3.5 million in the 2013 campaign. He will receive no buyout. Reliever Hisanori Takahashi has also been released by the club. He was claimed off waivers in August from the Los Angeles Angels and had an 8.64 ERA in just nine appearances in a Pirates uniform. Takahashi was already headed for free agency, so this move was slightly unnecessary.
Pedro Alvarez’s option was exercised, so he will make $700,000 this upcoming season. His .784 OPS was good enough for the third-highest OPS on the Pirates in 2012, behind only Andrew McCutchen and Garrett Jones. He also smoked a whopping 30 home runs, good for tenth in the National League, including this mammoth shot, and was third in OBA.