Now Is the Time for Pittsburgh Pirates to Call Up Gregory Polanco

Ryan GauleCorrespondent IApril 28, 2014

Feb 27, 2014; Tampa, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Gregory Polanco (62) smiles after he hit a solo home run during the first inning against the New York Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

With a current record of 10-16, the 2014 Pittsburgh Pirates are desperately searching for any kind of production from their players. 

Missing out on the playoffs would be a huge disappointment for a team that won 94 games last season and made it to the postseason for the first time since 1992. 

Pittsburgh owns a team batting average of .221, which is third worst in Major League Baseball.  Starling Marte and Travis Snider simply aren't getting the done right now, as they are both batting under .230 in 2014. 

There is one guy who is lighting up the minor leagues, and as the Pirates continue to lose games, more and more people are crying for the call-up of Pirates top prospect Gregory Polanco. 

Gene J. Puskar

The 22-year-old outfielder from the Dominican Republic has gotten off to an absolutely incredible start in 2014 with the Indianapolis Indians, Pittsburgh's Triple-A affiliate. 

Polanco is batting .400 in 23 games with six doubles, two triples and four home runs.  He has also walked nine times, giving him an on-base percentage of .460. 

The Pirates are spiraling downward in the standings after losing 12 of their last 16 games.  They have been held to three or fewer runs in 11 of those games, as the offense has almost disappeared. 

A player like Polanco can give the Pirates the spark they need to wake up and get back to .500, before ultimately making another playoff push. 

The beautiful thing about Polanco is that he can hurt an opposing team in multiple ways.  He is a five-tool player, showing the ability to do anything well on the diamond. 

Over his last two seasons in the minors (2012 and 2013), Polanco has stolen a combined 78 bases, while scoring 150 runs during that 243-game span. 

According to Paul Zeise of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, pitcher Jeff Locke was asked if he felt Polanco was as good as advertised, and he replied "Absolutely.  Trust me, he has more than what it takes."

The Pirates offense simply does not have what it takes to win games right now, and while we do not know if he will be great right away, Polanco's presence in the lineup would help a Pirates team that is searching for wins. 

Gregory Polanco will be a great major league player, and while he is still young, giving him playing time in the near future could only help the team. 


*Statistics Courtesy of Baseball-Reference