The Pirates have claimed right-hander Sean Poppen off waivers from the Twins, Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic tweets. Pittsburgh designated infielder/outfielder JT Riddle for assignment in a corresponding move.
Poppen, whom the Twins designated earlier this week, saw brief action with the team in each of the past two seasons, but the 26-year-old Harvard alumnus struggled along the way. He’ll join the Pirates with a 6.19 ERA (but a far better 3.33 FIP), 10.69 K/9, 5.06 BB/9 and a 48.8 percent groundball rate over 16 big league innings. Poppen was effective during his Triple-A debut a year ago, though, as he threw 61 innings of 3.84 ERA/3.92 FIP ball, notched 10.03 K/9 against 3.98 BB/9, and posted an excellent 56.9 GB percentage.
Riddle joined the Pirates on an $850K deal last offseason after logging significant at-bats with the Marlins from 2017-19. The 28-year-old recorded a woeful line with the Bucs, hitting .149/.174/.224 with one home run and a 4 wRC+ in 69 plate appearances. Overall, Riddle has batted .222/.261/.355 with 19 HRs through 787 PA in the majors.