PITTSBURGH - JUNE 01: Aki Iwamura #3 of the Pittsburgh Pirates sits in the dugout during the game against the Chicago Cubs on June 1, 2010 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Pirates Promote Pedro Alvarez, Designate Akinori Iwamura For Assignment

The emergences of Pedro Alvarez and Neil Walker could move the struggling Andy LaRoche into a bench role.

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Pirates Designate Akinori Iwamura For Assignment

To make way for Alvarez on the 25-man roster, the Pirates have designated Akinori Iwamura for assignment, meaning he’s very unlikely to be back with the Pirates this year. This was a no-brainer, as the Bucs had to get rid of an infielder and Iwamura has hit .182 this year and has no future with the team.

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Pirates Promote Alvarez

The Pirates have promoted Pedro Alvarez, Colin Dunlap reports, and he should join the team Wednesday. As I mentioned in the Bucs Dugout post yesterday, Alvarez isn’t a complete player yet—he still strikes out too much, and he probably won’t hit for a high average, at least not at first, but it will be exciting to see him begin to deliver on his amazing power potential. Andy LaRoche will almost certainly see less playing time as a result of Alvarez’s arrival.

Alvarez is the latest in a string of young players arriving from Indianapolis--Jose Tabata and Brad Lincoln joined the team just a few days ago, and Neil Walker came only a few days before that.

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