Pirates to re-sign free agent 1B/OF

Yoshi Tsutsugo hit 8 home runs in 43 games as a Pirate
Yoshi Tsutsugo excited
Photo credit David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – Pirates are retaining a free agent from this past season. OF/1B Yoshi Tsutsugo will return for one year, $4 million as first reported by Jason Mackey of the Post-Gazette and confirmed by Audacy MLB Insider Jon Heyman.

The former Japanese star signed with the Pirates in mid-August after earlier opportunities with the Rays and Dodgers.  The left-hand hitter played in 43 games with 144 at bats with 8 home runs, 25 RBI, 8 doubles and a .347 on-base percentage with the Bucs.

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Tsutsugo would have a chance to win the starting right-field job and/or battle with Colin Moran for reps at first base.

Overall in the majors, the 29-year-old Tsutsugo is a .209 hitter in 447 plate appearances.  In 2016 in Japan, Tsutsugo hit 45 home runs with 111 RBI.  His next three seasons in the JPCL, Tsutsugo hit 28, 38 and 29 home runs respectively.