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Joel Hanrahan trade: Pirates' GM explains Mark Melancon addition

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Neil Huntington believes that Mark Melancon can rebound in 2013.

Mark L. Baer-US PRESSWIRE

Pittsburgh Pirates' general manager Neal Huntington stated that the team wanted to acquire relief pitcher Mark Melancon because the organization believes that he will be able to improve the team's bullpen.

Included as one of four pieces received in the Joel Hanrahan trade with the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday afternoon, Melancon struggled in 2012 registering an 0-2 record with a 6.20 ERA in 45 innings pitched over 41 appearances.

Despite his less-than-stellar numbers last season, Huntington and the Pirates' scouting staff believe that the 27-year-old right-handed reliever has a strong enough package of pitches to rebound in 2013, via Kristy Robinson:

"Mark Melancon has been a quality major league reliever with closing experience who displays key subjective and objective indicators as a candidate to bounce back from a challenging 2012 season. Similar to when we acquired Joel Hanrahan, our scouts saw a quality pitch package that was not accurately reflected by his present level of performance. Mark will be a solid addition to our bullpen."

Melancon was originally selected in the ninth round of the 2006 amateur draft by the New York Yankees. Making his major league debut in 2009, Melancon appeared in 15 games over two years in New York before being traded to the Houston Astros as a piece in the Lance Berkman trade.

In two seasons with Houston, Melancon registered a 10-4 record with 20 saves and a 2.85 ERA in 91 appearances.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.