This Date in Pittsburgh Pirates History: August 26th, The Giles/Bay Trade

We have four former Pittsburgh Pirates born on this date. We also have one trade of note and a Game Rewind article from the 1926 season.

The Trade

On this date in 2003, the Pirates traded All-Star outfielder Brian Giles to the San Diego Padres for outfielder Jason Bay, pitcher Oliver Perez and minor league pitcher Corey Stewart, who was a player to be named later in the deal. The 32-year-old Giles had played five seasons with the Pirates, hitting .308 with 165 homers, 501 runs scored, 519 walks and 506 RBIs in 715 games. At the time of the deal, he was hitting .299 with 16 homers and a .951 OPS. Perez and Bay each had minimal Major League experience at the time. Bay, at age 24, had played just three games for the Padres. He was in Triple-A, batting .303 with 20 homers and 23 stolen bases in 91 games. Perez had an 8-12, 4.51 record in two years with the Padres and he had just turned 22 years old. Stewart didn’t come over until October. He was a 23-year-old lefty, who spent the 2003 season in Double-A.

After the deal, the Pirates got two minor league seasons out of Stewart, who never made it to the majors. Perez paid off huge his first full season (12 wins, 2.98 ERA, 239 K’s), then went downhill quickly, having three poor seasons before the Pirates traded him to the New York Mets in the Xavier Nady deal. Bay ended up being the key to the deal, hitting .281 with 139 homers and 452 RBIs over his six seasons (four full years) in Pittsburgh. Giles played seven years in San Diego, and while he was still a strong hitter, his numbers fell way off from his Pirates days, especially the power numbers playing in his new spacious ballpark. He hit .279 with 83 homers in 833 games for the Padres.

The Players

Jayson Nix, utility player for the 2014 Pirates. Nix had a brief stay in Pittsburgh as part of his seven-year career that saw him play for eight different teams. He was already in his seventh season when the Pirates acquired him as a free agent, just days after being released by the Tampa Bay Rays. He began the year with the Philadelphia Phillies, who let him go in mid-May. Nix joined the Pirates in early August and batted .111 in 16 games, while seeing time at second base, third base and right field. The Pirates placed him on waivers in late August and he signed with the Kansas City Royals, where he finished his big league career that season. Nix was a .212 hitter in 466 big league games.

Eric Fryer, catcher for the 2011-12 and 2016 Pirates. He was a tenth round pick of the Milwaukee Brewers in the 2007 draft. He was traded to the New York Yankees in February of 2009, and got dealt to the Pirates for Eric Hinske in June of 2009. Fryer debuted in the majors in June of 2011. He  was up for approximately five weeks, and he batted .269 in ten games. Fryer got into six games total of 2012 for the Pirates, seeing big league time in July and September. All six of his appearances were off of the bench, and he didn’t do any catching. He was let go after the season and then played the next three seasons with the Minnesota Twins. Fryer signed with the St Louis Cardinals in 2006, but the Pirates were able to pick him up off of waivers in July. He played 36 games for the Pirates, hitting .218 with eight RBIs. Fryer finished his big league career with the Cardinals in 2017. He played a total of 159 games over his seven seasons in the majors.

Jeff Richardson, infielder for the 1991 Pirates. He was originally a seventh round draft pick in 1986 of the Cincinnati Reds. Richardson made it to the majors in July of 1989 and saw plenty of time over the rest of the season. In 53 games, he hit .168 with two homers and 11 RBIs, seeing most of his time at shortstop in place of the injured Barry Larkin. On April 3, 1990, the Pirates traded outfielder Billy Hatcher to get Richardson and pitcher Mike Roesler. Nearly his entire time with the Pirates, from 1990-93, was spent with Triple-A Buffalo, but he did make a brief appearance in the majors during the 1991 season. When Jeff King went on the disabled list in mid-May, the Pirates called up Richardson and got him into six games. He batted four times, collecting a single and striking out the other three times. When King returned after 15 days, Richardson was sent down, ending his Major League time with the Pirates. Almost exactly three years to the day they acquired him, the Pirates dealt Richardson to the Boston Red Sox for pitcher Daryl Irvine. He hit .208 in 15 games for Boston in 1993, missing most of the year with back problems. In 1994, Richardson spent the entire year in the minors while playing in the St Louis Cardinals system. He then finished his playing career in 1995 with a brief stay at Triple-A for the Pirates. He managed the next three seasons (1996-98) in the Pirates farm system.

Sparky Adams, infielder for the 1928-29 Pirates. He came to the Pirates on November 28, 1927, as the main return in the deal for Hall of Fame outfielder Kiki Cuyler. Adams got a late start in his pro career, not playing his first minor league game until age 24. He didn’t make the majors until weeks after his 28th birthday. He spent his first six years with the Cubs, where he hit .292 with 401 runs scored and 201 RBIs in 672 games. He saw plenty of time at shortstop, third and second base during his career, playing at least 297 games at each position. In the three years prior to the Pirates acquiring him, Adams led the league in at-bats every single year. He also scored between 95 and 100 runs each season. With the Pirates in 1928, Sparky (first name was Earl) got most of his playing time at shortstop, making 105 starts there. He batted second to begin the year, then moved to the lead-off spot in early July. Adams hit .276 with 64 walks, 38 RBIs and 91 runs scored in 135 games. In 1929, he was being used more in a utility role, seeing time at all three infield positions and being used off the bench. It was a down year for Adams, who hit .260 with 11 RBIs and 37 runs scored in 74 games. After the season, he was sold to the St Louis Cardinals. He immediately had two strong seasons in St Louis, hitting .314 his first year there, then finishing ninth in the NL MVP voting the following year. Adams had three more average years in the majors, before finishing his career off in 1935 in the minors. He was a .286 career hitter in 1,424 games, with 844 runs scored and 1,588 hits.

The Game

On this date in 1926, the Pittsburgh Pirates won 15-7 over the New York Giants, which gave them a tie for first place with the St Louis Cardinals. Rookie right fielder Paul Waner had a 6-for-6 day, with two doubles and a triple. It was the only six-hit game of his career. The game included a total of eight future Hall of Famers in the lineup. You can find a game recap here, which has a link to the boxscore and play-by-play.