This Date in Pittsburgh Pirates History: April 28th, Red Lucas and David Freese Headline a Busy Day

Nine former Pittsburgh Pirates players born on this date and one trade of note.

The Players

Kyle Keller, pitcher for the 2021 Pirates. He was selected in the 18th round of the 2015 draft by the Miami Marlins, taken out of Southeastern Louisiana University. He played for three teams during his draft year, though he pitched just 27.1 innings total. He started with Batavia of the short-season New York-Penn League, where he had a 5.19 ERA in 17.1 innings over ten games. He moved up to Greensboro of the Low-A South Atlantic League, where he posted a 9.35 ERA in 8.2 innings over six games. He finished up with one scoreless appearance for Jupiter of the High-A Florida State League. Between all three stops, he went 0-3, 6.26, with 34 strikeouts and a 1.72 WHIP. Keller spent the 2016-17 seasons with Greensboro. He went 3-2, 3.35 in 29 appearances during the 2016 season, with 57 strikeouts and a 1.16 WHIP in 45.2 innings. He had a 2-0, 2.28 record over 36 appearances (two starts) in 2017, with eight saves, 86 strikeouts and a 1.06 WHIP in 67 innings. The 2018 season saw him return to Jupiter for the first time in three years. He then shot through Jacksonville of the Double-A Southern League, moving up to New Orleans of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League for five games by the end of the season. Keller went 2-4, 3.08 in 52.2 innings over 44 appearances between all three stops. He had nine saves, a 1.10 WHIP and 78 strikeouts. He went to the Arizona Fall League after the season, where he had a 4.76 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 11.1 innings.

Keller made his big league debut in August of 2019. He pitched ten games that year for the Marlins, posting a 3.38 ERA in 10.2 innings. He spent the rest of the season in New Orleans (with two games in Jacksonville), where he had a 4.50 ERA, ten saves, 73 strikeouts and a 1.20 WHIP in 54 innings. He was traded to the Los Angeles Angels in January of 2020. He played just two games during the shortened 2020 season, allowing two runs in 2.1 innings. Keller was sold to the Pirates on April 5, 2021. He pitched 32 games in the majors that year, as well as 13 games for Triple-A Indianapolis. He had a 1.96 ERA and an 0.87 WHIP in 18.1 innings for Indianapolis. He put up a 1-1, 6.48 record in 33.1 innings for the Pirates, with 36 strikeouts and a 1.56 WHIP. He became a free agent after the season, then signed to play in Japan for the 2022 season. He went 3-3, 2.72 in 49.2 innings over 52 appearances for Hanshin, finishing with five saves, 64 strikeouts and a 1.05 WHIP. He returned to Hanshin for the 2023 season. Keller has a 1-1, 5.83 record in 44 big league games, with 48 strikeouts and a 1.51 WHIP over 46.1 innings.

David Freese, third baseman for the 2016-18 Pirates. He was a ninth round pick by the San Diego Padres in 2006 out of the University of South Alabama. He lasted just over one full year in their system before he was traded to the St Louis Cardinals in an even up deal for Jim Edmonds. He started with Eugene of the short-season Northwest League, where he hit .379/.465/.766 in 18 games, with 19 runs, eight doubles, five homers and 26 RBIs. He then moved up to Fort Wayne of the Low-A Midwest League to finish the year. He hit .299 in 53 games, with 27 runs, 13 doubles, eight homers, 44 RBIs and an .844 OPS. Freese spent the 2007 season in High-A, playing with Lake Elsinore of the high offense California League. He hit .302 that year, with 104 runs, 31 doubles, 17 homers, 96 RBIs, 69 walks and an .889 OPS in 128 games. The Cardinals skipped him right to Triple-A for 2008, where he batted .306 in 131 games for Memphis of the Pacific Coast League, finishing with 83 runs, 29 doubles, 26 homers, 91 RBIs and a .910 OPS. He struggled a bit in winter ball in Venezuela, batting .235/.273/.451 in 14 games, with three homers and a high strikeout rate. Freese then spent most of the 2009 season in the minors, though he also missed some time due to injury. He made the Cardinals Opening Day roster, but lasted just three weeks before being sent down with a .158 average. A month into his stint in Memphis, Freese had to have surgery on his left ankle, which was injured in a car accident over the winter. He returned to action in mid-July, then eventually finished the season back in the majors, where he went 7-for-12 in six late season games. He put up a .931 OPS in 64 minor league games that year (including lower level rehab games), while hitting .323/.353/.484 in 17 games for the Cardinals.

Freese spent the 2010 season with the Cardinals, hitting .296 in 70 games, with 28 runs, 17 extra-base hits, 36 RBIs and a .765 OPS. He missed time with a right ankle injury that year, then missed more time in 2011 with a broken hamate bone. He hit .297 for the 2011 Cardinals, finishing with 41 runs, 16 doubles, ten homers, 55 RBIs and a .791 OPS in 97 games. He then helped St Louis to a World Series title by winning the MVP award in both the NLCS and the World Series. That postseason he had eight doubles, five homers and 21 RBIs in 18 games. Freese finally put in a full season in 2012, when he made his only All-Star appearance. He hit .293 in 144 games, with 70 runs, 25 doubles, 20 homers, 79 RBIs and 57 walks. His .839 OPS was his highest career mark over a season in which he had more than 200 plate appearances. He was slowed by a back strain in 2013. He saw his production drop significantly, putting up a .721 OPS in 138 games. He hit .262 that year, with 53 runs, 26 doubles, nine homers and 60 RBIs. Freese was traded in the off-season to the Los Angeles Angels, where he put up average results over two season. He had a .260 average, 53 runs, 36 extra-base hits, 55 RBIs and a .704 OPS in 134 games in 2014. He then put up a .257 average in 2015, with a career high 27 doubles, to go along with 53 runs, 14 homers, 56 RBIs and a .743 OPS in 121 games. He became a free agent after the season, then stayed on the market for quite some time before signing.

Freese signed a free agent deal with the Pirates in early March of 2016. He was their starting third baseman that year, while also seeing time at first base. He hit .270 in 141 games, with 63 runs, 23 doubles, 13 homers, 55 RBIs and a .764 OPS. He followed that up with a .263 average in 2017, collecting 44 runs, 16 doubles, ten homers and 52 RBIs in 130 games. He drew 58 walks, which was his career high. He started the 2018 season with the Pirates, before finishing the year with the Los Angeles Dodgers after an August 31st trade for minor league infielder Jesus Valdez. Freese had an excellent 2018 season, combining to hit .296 between both stops, with 38 runs, 12 doubles, 11 homers and 51 RBIs in 113 games. His .830 OPS was just nine points off of his career high. He finished his career with a strong season for the 2019 Dodgers, though he landed on the injured list twice due to hamstring issues. He appeared off of the bench in 40 of his 79 games. In 186 plate appearances, he had a .315 average, 35 runs, 13 doubles, 11 homers, 29 RBIs and a 1.002 OPS. Freese played 1,184 games over 11 seasons in the majors, putting up a .277 average, with 481 runs, 197 doubles, 113 homers, 535 RBIs and a .775 OPS. He hit .270 for the Pirates, with 136 runs, 49 doubles, 32 homers and 149 RBIs in 365 games. He stole eight bases in his career in 19 attempts, and he hit just seven triples. He was an average defensive player during his career, finishing with a 0.4 dWAR. He hit .299 in 69 postseason games, with ten homers and 36 RBIs.

Daniel Moskos, pitcher for the Pirates in 2011. Moskos was a first round pick (fourth overall pick) in the 2007 draft out of Clemson University. He was a reliever during his first season of pro ball, putting up a 3.45 ERA, 16 strikeouts and a 1.85 WHIP in 15.2 innings over 13 appearances. He made a brief stop in the rookie Gulf Coast League, where he had two scoreless appearances. He then pitched 12.2 innings with State College of the short-season New York-Penn League. The Pirates placed him in High-A with Lynchburg of the Carolina League in 2008, where they gave him a starting role for most of the season. He made 20 starts and nine relief appearances, going 7-7, 5.95, with 78 strikeouts and a 1.51 WHIP in 110.1 innings. He made 25 starts and two relief appearances for Altoona of the Double-A Eastern League in 2009, going 11-10, 3.74 in 149 innings, with a 1.46 WHIP. Despite seeing an increase of 39 innings over the previous season, Moskos had a total of 77 strikeouts in 2009, falling just short of his 2008 mark. He pitched in relief in the Arizona Fall League after the 2009 season, posting a 5.28 ERA and a 1.96 WHIP in 15.1 innings. He was moved to the bullpen in 2010, where he dominated in Altoona, then got roughed up badly with Indianapolis of the Triple-A International League. He had a 1.52 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP in 41.1 innings with Altoona. He had a 10.38 ERA and a 2.56 WHIP in 17.1 innings in Indianapolis, giving up the same amount of hits (26) in each spot, while walking more batters in Triple-A.

Even though he struggled mightily in Triple-A in 2010, Moskos was there for less than a month in 2011 before he got his first chance in the majors. He made his big league debut on April 30, 2011. He had three stints with the Pirates that season, posting a 2.96 ERA in 24.1 innings over 31 appearances. While the ERA looked good, he had a 1.56 WHIP and 11 strikeouts. It ended up being his only season in the majors. He pitched another seven seasons after 2011, though he was with the Pirates for just a short time after putting up that solid ERA as a rookie. Moskos lasted until April 3, 2012 in the battle for an Opening Day bullpen spot, losing out right before the season started. He pitched 14 games that season at Indianapolis before being designated for assignment on June 26th. He had a 3.86 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP over 14 innings at the time. He was lost on waivers to the Chicago White Sox, then spent the rest of the season with Charlotte of the International League. He made 16 more appearances to wind out the season, finishing with a 4.19 ERA and a 1.78 WHIP in 34.1 innings between both stops. He remained with the White Sox at Charlotte in 2013, though he was limited to 22 appearances before he was released, finishing the year with a 4.97 ERA, a 1.55 WHIP and 28 strikeouts in 29 innings. The Los Angeles Dodgers signed him as a free agent for 2014, but they gave up on him after a month at Albuquerque of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League, where he had a 6.52 ERA and a 1.55 WHIP in nine games.

Moskos pitched independent ball in 2015 with Lancaster of the Atlantic League, where he went 2-0, 3.04 in 23.2 innings, with a 1.56 WHIP and 19 strikeouts. He then spent the winter playing in Mexico, where he had a 3.20 ERA in 25.1 innings. He signed with the San Diego Padres in 2016, then remained in Triple-A for the entire season, posting a 3.39 ERA, a 1.52 WHIP and 47 strikeouts in 61 innings over 53 appearances with El Paso of the Pacific Coast League. He signed a minor league deal with the Chicago Cubs after the season, but never pitched in their system due to a failed physical, though he wasn’t injured at the time and didn’t miss any time. He played with Lancaster again in 2017, going 6-3, 3.27 in 52.1 innings, with a 1.24 WHIP and 50 strikeouts. He then finished his career in Mexico, first player another season of winter ball, followed by his final 44 pro games in 2018 with Tijuana. Moskos did incredible work in the winter of 2017-18, putting up an 0.86 ERA, 16 saves, 30 strikeouts and a 1.15 WHIP in 31.1 innings. He had a 1.24 ERA, 43 strikeouts and an 0.85 WHIP in 43.2 innings during his final season. He had tryouts for teams in 2019, but when that didn’t work out, he took up coaching. He landed a minor league job for two years with the New York Yankees, before becoming the assistant pitching coach in the majors with the Cubs for the 2022 season.

Romulo Sanchez, pitcher for the 2007-08 Pirates. He signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers just before his 18th birthday as an international amateur free agent out of Venezuela in 2002. Sanchez joined the Pirates as a free agent two years later, after the Dodgers released him in March of 2004. He didn’t pitch a regular season game while in the Dodgers system. He pitched for the Pirates in the Venezuelan Summer League in 2004 (no stats available), then went from the rookie level Gulf Coast League, all the way up to Double-A as a starter during his first year stateside with the Pirates in 2005. It was quite a jump considering that he had a 4.70 ERA, a 1.45 WHIP and 24 strikeouts in 53.2 innings over ten starts that year with Hickory of the Low-A South Atlantic League. Not only that, he skipped over the short-season New York-Penn League to get to Hickory, then jumped High-A ball to end up in Double-A by the end of the season. Sanchez gave up four runs over ten innings in his two starts with Altoona of the Eastern League that season. Combined on the year, he went 5-3, 4.15 in 73.2 innings, with 36 strikeouts and a 1.41 WHIP. He switched to relief in 2006, while starting his season back at Hickory. He pitched at three levels again that year, including a second stint in Altoona, though he didn’t skip Lynchburg of the High-A Carolina League that year. He had a combined record of 0-3, 5.86 in 58.1 innings over 37 games in 2006, with 30 walks, 39 strikeouts and a 1.65 WHIP. His best results that year came in Lynchburg, where he allowed one run over eight relief appearances. He pitched that winter in Venezuela for the first time, posting a 4.66 ERA over ten appearances.

Sanchez spent the 2007 season pitching for Altoona. He had a 2.81 ERA, 52 strikeouts and a 1.04 WHIP in 57.2 innings over 40 appearances. He was called up to the majors for the first time in late August. He pitched 16 times for the 2007 Pirates, putting up a 5.00 ERA, a 1.33 WHIP and 11 strikeouts in 18 innings. Sanchez spent most of 2008 in the minors. He had five appearances with the Pirates prior to September, and then five more once the minor league season ended. He had a 5-1, 3.46 record, a 1.26 WHIP, 32 strikeouts and four saves in 54.2 innings over 33 appearances with Indianapolis of the Triple-A International League that year. He had a 4.05 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP in 13.1 innings that season in the majors, putting up a 6:3 BB/SO ratio during that brief time. The Pirates traded him in May of 2009 to the New York Yankees for pitcher Eric Hacker. At the time of the trade, Sanchez had a 4.38 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP in ten appearances with Indianapolis. After putting up a less than mediocre strikeout rate in 2008, he had 15 strikeouts in 12.1 innings before the deal. He spent all of 2009 in the minors, getting some time as a starting pitcher after joining the Yankees. For Scranton/Wilkes-Barre of the International League, he went 5-5, 4.04 in 64.2 innings over 13 starts and six relief appearances. Combined on the year, he had 79 strikeouts in 77 innings. He played two games in the majors for the Yankees in 2010, one in May and one in late September, throwing 4.1 scoreless innings. The rest of the year was with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he went 10-8, 3.97 in 104.1 innings over 14 starts and 17 relief appearances. He had a 1.41 WHIP and 96 strikeouts.

After pitching poorly in Venezuela during the 2010-11 off-season, Sanchez spent the 2011 season in Japan. He went 3-4, 2.70 in 60 innings that year, with 70 strikeouts and a 1.13 WHIP for Rakuten. He spent the 2012 season in Triple-A for the Tampa Bay Rays, where he had a 6.31 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP in 51.1 innings for Durham of the International League. Sanchez played the 2013 season in Mexico, though he was limited to 7.1 innings with Tabasco due to poor results. He was playing in China during the 2014 season, going 1-3, 2.00, with a 1.22 WHIP and 21 strikeouts over 27 innings for Chinatrust. He spent 2015 in Italy, which was his last season of summer ball. He had a 5.59 ERA over limited time that year with San Marino. Despite last pitching in the majors in 2010, he was still active in winter ball up until the 2021-22 off-season at 37 years old. He played 15 seasons of winter ball in Venezuela, where he made a total of 338 appearances. Sanchez did well during the 2016-17 off-season, posting a 2.70 ERA over 26.2 innings, while making 28 appearances. His 2017-18 winter saw him put up a 4.19 ERA and a 1.71 WHIP in 19.1 innings over 26 appearances. He didn’t play during the 2018-19 winter, but returned to winter ball in Venezuela for the next three off-seasons. Sanchez had a 4.73 ERA and a 2.10 WHIP in 13.1 innings over 24 games in 2019-20. He followed that up with a a 1.72 ERA in 16 games in 2020-21, before finishing with a 5.79 ERA and a 2.09 WHIP in 18.2 innings over 26 games in 2021-22. He managed to walk more batters than he struck out in each of his final three winters, combining for a 38:18 BB/SO ratio in 47.2 innings. In parts of three big league seasons, Sanchez put up a 1-0, 4.04 record and one save in 35.2 innings over 28 appearances.

Yoslan Herrera, pitcher for the 2008 Pirates. Herrera was born in Cuba, where he played at the highest level  for four seasons (2001-04). His stats are available from three of those seasons with Pinar del Rio, including the partial 2001-02 campaign in which he had an 8.83 ERA in 17.1 innings. The next year saw him go 7-2, 3.14 in 80.1 innings, with a 1.43 WHIP and 50 strikeouts. He went 5-3, 3.45 in 2003-04, with 49 strikeouts and a 1.32 WHIP in 94 innings. He defected from Cuba in June of 2005. The Pirates signed him as an amateur free agent at 25 years old on December 18, 2006, giving him a three-year deal worth $1.92 M. He was said to have a fastball that reached 92 MPH, along with command of a five-pitch mix. The Pirates initially said that he would begin the 2007 season with Indianapolis of the Triple-A International League, but he spent his first year pitching for Altoona of the Double-A Eastern League, where he made 25 starts, going 6-9, 4.69 in 128.2 innings, with 70 strikeouts and a 1.47 WHIP. He began the 2008 season at Altoona as well, where he had a 6-9 record again, though this time it came with a much better 3.46 ERA. He threw 114.1 innings over 21 starts, finishing with 69 strikeouts and a 1.31 WHIP. Herrera made a spot start for Indianapolis in late June, in which he gave up two runs over seven innings. The Pirates returned him to Altoona, but then two weeks later he made his Major League debut on July 12, 2008. In five starts with the Pirates over the next month, he went 1-1, 9.82, giving up 20 runs and 48 base runners in 18.1 innings. He was sent back to Altoona for the rest of the season after his start on August 4th. Herrera returned to Altoona for 2009, going 11-1, 3.23 in 97.2 innings over 23 outings (15 starts), finishing with 65 strikeouts and a 1.34 WHIP. He also made two brief stops in Indianapolis, one in April and another in September, putting together a 2.30 ERA in 15.2 innings. The Pirates released him on October 30, 2009. He went on to pitch winter ball in Venezuela that off-season, though he was done after allowing five runs over 6.2 innings in his two starts.

For a time it appeared like Herrera finished his career during the 2010 season with the Minnesota Twins. He played for Rochester of Triple-A International League that year, where he had a 6.08 ERA and a 1.80 WHIP in 26.2 innings over six starts. However, Herrera returned after two seasons off to play independent ball in 2013 for Lancaster of the Atlantic League. He was signed after a tryout that was recommended by Hall of Famer Tony Oliva. Herrera was throwing 92-93 MPH, while displaying above average breaking balls, which earned his a job. He went 2-1, 3.74 in 59 games for Lancaster, with 11 saves, a 1.19 WHIP and 54 strikeouts in 53 innings. He then pitched winter ball in Mexico during the 2013-14 off-season, putting up a 2.72 ERA, a 1.21 WHIP, 14 saves and 42 strikeouts in 36.1 innings. He returned to affiliated ball when he signed with the Los Angeles Angels for the 2014 season. Herrera had a 2.52 ERA, a 1.34 WHIP and 47 strikeouts in 50 innings over 41 appearances with Salt Lake City (a very hitter-friendly park) of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League. He made 20 appearances for the Angels, posting a 2.70 ERA in 16.2 innings. The first called him up when the bullpen needed fresh arms in April. He responded with a 4.50 ERA in six appearances. He returned in late August, allowing two runs in his first appearance, before throwing shutout ball over his final 13 games. Despite that strong ERA, he had a 1.86 WHIP that season. He signed to play in Japan in 2015, where he did well in his first season, posting a 2.96 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP in 51.2 innings over 52 games. However, his career in pro ball was done after just two games in Japan in 2016. He gave up six runs in 1.1 innings during that last season. His big league career amounted to a 2-2, 6.43 record over 35 innings, with 23 strikeouts and a 2.23 WHIP.

Pedro Ramos, pitcher for the 1969 Pirates. Ramos originally signed with the Washington Senators in 1953 out of Cuba when he was 18 years old. He debuted in Class-D ball with Morristown of the Mountain States League, where he went 7-6, 6.26 in 138 innings, with 63 strikeouts and a 1.73 WHIP. He was in the same league the next year, though it was reclassified as Class-C. He pitched for both Morristown and Kingsport, while also seeing time with Hagerstown of the Class-B Piedmont League. His full stats aren’t available for that year, though he’s credited with a 19-6 record, 108 strikeouts and 210 innings pitched. Despite being four levels from the majors at his peak in 1954, Ramos was with the Senators for all of 1955. He went 5-11, 3.88, with a 1.23 WHIP and five saves in 130 innings, making nine starts and 36 relief appearances. He had just 34 strikeouts all season, though he limited the opposition to 39 walks. He had a lot of support on offense in 1956, which was almost never the case during his time with the Washington/Minnesota Twins franchise. He posted a 5.27 ERA in 152 innings that year for a team with a 59-95 record, yet he somehow ended up with a 12-10 record. The Senators went 9-9 in his 18 starts, plus he pitched 19 times in relief. He improved to 54 strikeouts, though his WHIP rose to a 1.67 mark.

Ramos made 30 starts and 13 relief appearances in 1957, while throwing a total of 231 innings. He went 12-16, 4.79 that year, with 91 strikeouts and a 1.39 WHIP. He led the league with 43 homers allowed, which stood as an American League record for 30 years. The previous record was 33 allowed by his teammate Camilo Pascual one year earlier. The 1958-61 stretch saw Ramos put in an average of 259 innings per year, and he led the American League in losses each season. His team’s best finish during that stretch was 73-81 in 1960, the year before the team transferred to Minnesota. Ramos went 14-18, 4.23 in 259.1 innings in 1958, with a 1.37 WHIP and 132 strikeouts. He led the league in hits allowed, earned runs and homers allowed. Despite all of those negative stats, he set a career high with four shutouts, while also picking up three saves. He had a 13-19, 4.13 record, 95 strikeouts and a 1.22 WHIP over 233.2 innings in 1959, finishing with 11 complete games in his 35 starts. Ramos made his only All-Star appearance that year due to a nice start to the season. He had a 10-8, 4.14 record on July 14th, but he picked up the loss in his next six appearances, with his ERA only going up to 4.28 during that time. He was 11-18 in 1960, despite a 3.45 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP in 274 innings. He led the league with 36 starts, while also pitching seven more times in relief. Ramos set a career high with 14 complete games, while also setting a temporary high with 160 strikeouts, which ranked second in the league.

The first year in Minnesota was just as rough for Ramos. He went 11-20, 3.95 in 264.1 innings, while posting a 1.30 WHIP. He led the league in hits and homers allowed, while setting a career high with 174 strikeouts, which was good for sixth most in the league. Ramos was traded to the Cleveland Indians prior to the 1962 season. He went 10-12, 3.71 in 201.1 innings during his first season with the Indians, making 27 starts and ten relief appearances. It was his sixth straight season with 200+ innings, though it was also the final time he eclipsed that mark. He dropped down to 96 strikeouts that year, while posting a 1.36 WHIP. Ramos had a 9-8, 3.12 record and a 1.07 WHIP in 184.2 innings over 22 starts and 14 relief appearances during the 1963 season. He finished ninth in the league with 169 strikeouts, though his strikeout rate of 8.24 per nine innings was the second best mark in the league. He had a rough 1964 season that ended on a high note. He was 7-10, 5.14 in 133 innings in a swing-man role for the Indians (19 starts and 17 relief appearances), before being traded to the New York Yankees on September 5th. He pitched out of their bullpen over that last month and posted a 1.25 ERA in 21.2 innings. He finished the year with 119 strikeouts and a 1.18 WHIP in 154.1 innings. He became the closer for the Yankees during the 1965-66 seasons, though the role back then wasn’t defined as a closer, and the save didn’t become an official stat until he was in Pittsburgh. Ramos went 5-5, 2.92 in 1965, with 68 strikeouts, a 1.16 WHIP and 18 saves in 92.1 innings over 65 appearances. He was 3-9, 3.61 in 89.2 innings over 52 games (one start) in 1966, picking up 13 saves, to go along with 58 strikeouts and a 1.29 WHIP.

Ramos was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies after the 1966 season, but his stay there was short. He was released in early June of 1967, after allowing eight runs in eight innings over six appearances. He pitched two games in the minors that year, but he pitched just 15 innings total that season. He signed with the Pirates as a free agent prior to the 1968 season, then spent the entire year at Triple-A with Columbus of the International League, where he had a 5.09 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP in 76 innings over 29 appearances. Ramos began the 1969 season back in Columbus, before earning a promotion to Pittsburgh one month into the season. He had a 1.17 ERA and an 0.74 WHIP over 23 innings at the time of his promotion. He pitched five games in relief for the Pirates, allowing four runs in six innings. Pittsburgh released him on June 5th, then he signed with the Cincinnati Reds less than a week later. He finished the season by putting up a 5.16 ERA in 66.1 innings over 38 appearances, while also seeing some more Triple-A time with Indianapolis of the American Association.

Ramos played briefly with the Senators (now Texas Rangers) in 1970, pitching four times in relief in early April, before finishing the rest of the season in Mexico. He gave up seven runs over 8.1 innings during his final big league stint. He then returned to the minors, where he played for three different teams during the 1971-72 seasons. He had a 1.29 ERA over 28 innings with Richmond of the International League in 1971, but fell to a 4.41 ERA over 49 innings with Savannah of the Double-A Dixie Association. He gave up one earned run over 19 innings with Tidewater of the International League in 1972, which was the Triple-A affiliate of the New York Mets. He then returned to Mexico for part of 1972, followed by three more years in Mexico before he retired. He went 14-10, 4.06 in 195 innings for Puebla in the Mexican League in 1972. He had a 14-4, 2.36 record in 149 innings for Mexico City during the 1973 season. He remained there in 1974, when he had a 10-13, 3.91 record over 191 innings. Ramos finished up with a 1-5 record over 38 innings for Mexico City and Tabasco in 1975. He had a career record of 117-160, 4.08 in 582 major league games (268 starts). He threw 2,355.2 innings, finishing with 1,305 strikeouts, a 1.31 WHIP, 73 complete games, 13 shutouts and he picked up 54 saves.

Tom Sturdivant, pitcher for the 1961-63 Pirates. He spent ten seasons in the majors (1955-64), playing for seven different teams along the way. Sturdivant signed with the New York Yankees in 1948 at 18 years old out of Capitol Hill HS in Oklahoma City, OK. He was an infielder during his first three seasons of pro ball (1948-50), spending most of that time with Quincy of the Class-B Three-I League. His records show him pitching one game during that time. He hit .276/.289/.299 over 57 games in 1948, splitting his time between Quincy and Norfolk of the Class-B Piedmont League. He hit .256 over 109 games for Quincy in 1949, with 41 runs, 29 extra-base hits, 38 RBIs and a .646 OPS. Sturdivant batted .246 in 1950, with 19 extra-base hits in 68 games for Quincy. He lost the entire 1951 season and part of 1952 serving in the military. He was a pitcher full-time when he returned to the minors in 1952. Sturdivant had a 3-3, 3.56 record and a 1.53 WHIP over 86 innings in 1952, while playing with Beaumont in the Double-A Texas League. He was with Birmingham of the Double-A Southern Association in 1953, where he went 10-7, 2.98 in 139 innings, with 104 strikeouts and a 1.37 WHIP. He pitched mostly in relief during his first two seasons as a full-time pitcher, then switched to a starting role with Kansas City of the Triple-A American Association in 1954. Sturdivant was 8-9, 3.57 in 169 innings that year, with 133 strikeouts and a 1.26 WHIP. He made the Yankees on Opening Day in 1955 as a reliever. He had 33 appearances as a rookie, posting a 3.16 ERA in 68.1 innings, with 48 strikeouts and a 1.32 WHIP. The Yankees made the World Series that year, where he had two appearances in the series loss to the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Sturdivant won 32 games for the Yankees between the 1956-57 seasons, winning 16 games each year. He had a 16-8, 3.30 record in 1956, with 110 strikeouts and a 1.17 WHIP in 158.1 innings pitched. He made 17 starts, 15 relief appearances, finishing with two shutouts and five saves. He pitched twice (one start) in the World Series that year, giving up three runs in 9.2 innings. He went 16-6, 2.54 over 201.2 innings in 1957, with a 1.24 WHIP and a career high 118 strikeouts. All 28 of his appearances that year were as a starter. He had one relief appearance and one start in that World Series, allowing four runs in six innings. Despite those strong back-to-back seasons, he won just 26 more games in his career, and never reached double figures again. Sturdivant saw limited time in 1958, making ten starts and five relief appearances. He went 3-6, 4.20 in 70.2 innings, with 41 strikeouts and a 1.63 WHIP. He pitched at least once in every month that year, but a poor start to the year led to sporadic work. He split the 1959 season between the Yankees and Kansas City Athletics, who acquired him in a five-player deal on May 26th. Combined between both clubs that year, he went 2-8, 4.73 in 97 innings over six starts and 37 relief appearances, with 73 strikeouts and a 1.37 WHIP. He was traded to the Boston Red Sox on December 3, 1959. Sturdivant posted a 4.97 ERA, 67 strikeouts and a 1.49 WHIP in 101.1 innings over 40 appearances (three starts) during the 1960 season. He was taken by the Washington Senators (current day Texas Rangers) in the expansion draft on December 14, 1960. The Pirates acquired him from the Senators in exchange for pitcher Tom Cheney on June 29, 1961. Sturdivant had a 2-6, 4.61 record, 39 strikeouts and a 1.34 WHIP in 80 innings prior to the trade.

Sturdivant went 5-2. 2.84 in 85.2 innings for the 1961 Pirates, making 11 starts and two relief appearances. He combined that season for a 7-8, 3.69 record in 165.2 innings, with 84 strikeouts and a 1.24 WHIP. He made 12 starts and 37 relief appearances for the 1962 Pirates, finishing with an overall record of 9-5, 3.73 in 125.1 innings, with 76 strikeouts and a 1.27 WHIP. The Pirates sold him to the Detroit Tigers less than a month into the 1963 season, after just three relief outings in which he allowed six runs in 8.1 innings. He had a 3.76 ERA in 55 innings over 28 games with the Tigers. Sturdivant finished the 1963 season with the Kansas City Athletics, who purchased his contract on July 23rd. He compiled a 3.95 ERA over 116.1 innings with his three teams that season, with 68 strikeouts and a 1.23 WHIP. He then split his final year in the big leagues between the A’s and New York Mets, posting a 6.40 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP in 32.1 innings over 19 appearances. The A’s released him on May 10th of that season, then he signed that same day with the Mets. New York released him on June 27th. He finished the season and his career with Oklahoma City of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League, where he went 6-3, 3.89 in 74 innings. He finished his ten-year big league career with a 59-51, 3.74 record in 1,137 innings over 335 games, with 101 of those coming as a starter. He had 704 strikeouts, a 1.30 WHIP, 22 complete games, seven shutouts and 17 saves. He went 14-7, 3.49 in 219.1 innings over 23 starts and 42 relief appearances with the Pirates.

Red Lucas, pitcher for the 1934-38 Pirates. Before joining the Pirates, Lucas had 11 seasons of big league experience already, spending the last eight years with the Cincinnati Reds. He went 109-99, 3.64 in 257 games (202 starts) during his time in Cincinnati. He led the National League in complete games three times from 1929 until 1932, and he received MVP votes four times from 1927 to 1933 . Lucas debuted in pro ball in 1920 at 18 years old, playing for Rome of the Class-D Georgia State League (no stats available). He won 16 games and pitched 230 innings the next season while playing with three different clubs, including two teams (Jackson and Greenwood) in the Class-D Mississippi State League. He also saw brief time in Class-A with Nashville of the Southern Association. He played the 1922 season for Nashville, where he went 20-18, 4.63, with a 1.49 WHIP in 282 innings. Lucas made the New York Giants out of Spring Training in 1923, but he lasted just three relief appearances before finishing the season with San Antonio of the Class-A Texas League, where he had an 18-9, 4.05 record and a 1.40 WHIP in 211 innings. He gave up five runs in 5.1 innings with the Giants, but they were all unearned. He spent the entire 1924 season with the Boston Braves, mostly pitching in relief. Lucas went 1-4, 5.16 in 81.2 innings over 27 games, with four starts. He batted .333/.353/.364 in limited at-bats.

Lucas was the Opening Day second baseman for the 1925 Braves, but that experiment lasted just six games. He was sent to the minors a short time after his final start. He spent the rest of the 1925 season pitching in the Double-A Pacific Coast League with Seattle, posting a 9-5, 2.83 record and a 1.26 WHIP in 121 innings. He then returned to the majors with the Reds in 1926, where he would quickly become a star. Lucas had an 8-5, 3.68 record and a 1.24 WHIP over 154 innings in 1926, making 11 starts and 28 relief appearances. He also put up an .844 OPS in 91 plate appearances. He took more of a starter role in his second season in Cincinnati, going 18-11, 3.38, with a 1.13 WHIP over 239.2 innings in 1927, while putting up a .313 average and 28 RBIs. He completed 19 of his 23 starts, including four shutouts. He pitched in relief 14 times, pinch-hit 38 times, and played a handful of games in the field as well. He finished 11th in the National League MVP voting. He had a 13-9, 3.39 record and a 1.23 WHIP in 167.1 innings during the 1928 season. He started 19 games, pitched eight times in relief, and led the league with four shutouts. He also batted .315 in 73 at-bats. Lucas finished sixth in the MVP voting in 1929, thanks to a 19-12, 3.60 record in a career high 270 innings. He completed 28 of 32 starts, and his 1.20 WHIP was the best in the league. He was never much of a strikeout pitcher, but his 72 strikeouts that season were his career high. He had a .293 average in 140 at-bats.

The 1930 season was a huge year for offense in baseball, which hurt a lot of good pitchers. Lucas had a 5.38 ERA over 210.2 innings, which wasn’t that much above league average 4.97 ERA. He had a 14-16 record, to go along with a 1.49 WHIP. He also managed to hit .336 that season in 113 at-bats, with 17 walks and four strikeouts. Offense settled down in 1931 from that one-year peak. Lucas went 14-13, 3.59 in 238 innings, with 56 strikeouts and a 1.26 WHIP. He led the league with 24 complete games. That led to a 14th place finish in the MVP voting. He had a 2.94 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP over 269.1 innings in 1932. He had a league leading 28 complete games in 31 starts. The Reds finished with a 60-94 record that year, and it showed up in his 13-17 record. He hit .287 that year, with a career high 11 doubles, along with 18 RBIs. He went 10-16, 3.40 in 1933, with a 1.21 WHIP in 219.2 innings pitched. He completed 21 of his 29 starts. He received MVP support for the fourth (and final) time in his career, finishing 21st in the voting. The Reds traded Lucas and outfielder Wally Roettger to the Pirates on November 17, 1933, in exchange for second baseman Tony Piet and outfielder Adam Comorosky.

Lucas pitched over 200 innings in a season six times with the Reds, but he never topped the 175 mark for the Pirates. He was still a valuable pitcher for the team, four times finishing with a record over .500 on the season, and twice winning in double figures. He went 10-9, 4.38, with a 1.38 WHIP over 172.2 innings in 1934, making 22 starts and seven relief appearances. Lucas had an 8-6, 3.44 record and a 1.27 WHIP over 125.2 innings in 1935, making 19 starts and one relief appearance. He batted .318 that year, while finishing with an .801 OPS. His best season with the Pirates came in 1936, when he went 15-4, 3.18, with a 1.16 WHIP in 175.2 innings over 22 starts and five relief appearances. After losing the team’s fourth game of the season, Lucas didn’t pick up another loss until over three months later. That second loss was a 1-0 game. He was 8-10, 4.27 in 126.1 innings over 20 starts in 1937, finishing with nine complete games and a 1.37 WHIP. The Pirates released him after the 1938 season, when he went 6-3, 3.54 in 84 innings pitched over 13 starts. That ended his big league career, but he played five more seasons in the minors before retiring as a player, including two years as a player-manager.

Lucas had a 7-10, 4.67 record over 162 innings for Chattanooga of the Class-A Southern Association in 1939. He saw limited hitting time during his final five seasons, but he managed to hit .287 in 1939, followed by a .300 average over 36 games with Montreal of the Double-A International League in 1940. He went 2-1, 2.30 in 47 innings for Montreal. He played for Newport of the Class-D Appalachian League in 1942 (no stats available). He returned to the Southern Association during the 1944-45 seasons with Nashville, where he had a .784 OPS over 42 games in 1944, followed by a 1.104 OPS in 49 plate appearances/48 games in 1945. Lucas had a 4.50 ERA over 44 innings in 1944, then finished off his career with a 2.37 ERA over 19 innings in 1945. He finished his Major League career with a 157-135, 3.72 record in 2,542 innings over 396 games. He made 302 starts in his career and threw 204 complete games, including 22 shutouts. Lucas had a 47-32, 3.77 mark in 684.1 innings while with Pittsburgh. He was a strong fielding pitcher, committing just 12 errors while on the mound (he made four while playing other positions). He occasionally played in the field on his off-days early in his career. Lucas was a great hitter for a pitcher, putting up a .281 average and 190 RBIs in his career. He hit over .300 in six of his 14 full seasons. He was used nearly 500 times as a pinch-hitter. He pinch-hit 67 times during the 1931 season. His actual first name was Charles.

Walt Woods, pitcher for the Pirates on April 27, 1900. He spent 20 seasons in pro ball from 1895-1914, playing all nine positions over the years. Woods began his career as an outfielder/pitcher, played middle infield frequently early on, then spent a long stretch as a third baseman, before finishing his career as a catcher. He played just three seasons in the majors, and during one of those seasons, he played just one game before going down to the minors. He debuted in pro ball at 20 years old, splitting the 1895 season between Portland of the Class-B New England League and Haverhill of the New England Association. No stats are available for that year, but we know that he had a .293 average, 46 runs, 22 extra-base hits and two steals in 70 games for Portland in 1896, while going 5-10, 3.56, with a 1.49 WHIP and 42 strikeouts in 134 innings over 15 starts, completing all 15 games. He moved up to Springfield of the Class-A Eastern League in 1897, which was the highest level of the minors at the time. He went 17-11, 2.34 in 250 innings, with 58 strikeouts, a 1.46 WHIP and 26 complete games in 29 starts. He did even better at the plate, putting up a .366 average, 50 runs, 20 doubles and ten steals in 70 games. That led to his first big league opportunity.

The Chicago Colts (Cubs) selected Woods in the Rule 5 draft in September of 1897. As a rookie with the Chicago Orphans (name changed in 1898 after manager Cap Anson left), he went 9-13, with a 3.14 ERA in 215 innings over 22 starts and five relief appearances. He tossed 18 complete games and three were shutouts. He did not do well at the plate, putting up a .383 OPS in 162 plate appearances. He pitched for the Louisville Colonels of the National League in 1899, going 9-13, 3.28 in 186.1 innings over 21 starts and five relief appearances. He had a 1.36 WHIP that year, while somehow managing to have success while striking out just 21 batters all season. He tossed 17 complete games that season. His batting average dropped to .151, though his .412 OPS in 142 plate appearances was slightly higher than the previous season. He came into his time in Pittsburgh with a decent amount of big league experience. However, Woods never played in the majors again after his debut with the Pirates. Woods was part of the infamous Honus Wagner trade that turned the Pirates into a powerhouse during the 1901-03 seasons. When Barney Dreyfuss became owner of the Pirates in December of 1899 and the Louisville team (eventually) folded, Woods was one of 13 players to join the Pirates that day. Six players and cash went to Louisville (it’s sometimes referred to as a 12-for-4 deal, but it was originally 19 players). The Pirates ended up with much more of the deal when Louisville folded early in 1900.

The Pirates were playing their eighth game of the season on April 27, 1900, facing the Cincinnati Reds that day. Jesse Tannehill was on the mound for Pittsburgh. He won a combined 49 games over the previous two seasons, but on this day he gave up eight runs in the first two innings before Woods replaced him on the mound. Woods lasted three innings, giving up seven runs in the fifth inning before being pulled. On May 12th, he was released to Springfield on option. On Christmas Day in 1900, it was announced that Woods was one of three players sent to Syracuse of the Eastern League in exchange for pitcher Lewis “Snake” Wiltse. Woods played another fourteen years in the minors before he finished his career with the Troy Trojans of the New York State League as a 39-year-old catcher in 1914. He posted an 11-17 record and batted .212 in 88 games for Syracuse/Brockton of the Eastern League. He then had an 8-4 record and a .231 average in 92 games for Jersey City of the Eastern League in 1902. He became strictly a position player after the 1902 season. He spent the 1902-09 seasons with Jersey City, where he had just one season in which he batted over a .231 mark (1903 when he hit .268). While some stats are missing, he had just one season in which he collected more than 20 extra-base hits (25 in 1903).

After his solid season in 1903, Woods hit .222 in 122 games during the 1904 season, finishing with 20 extra-base hits. He posted a .209 average and 15 extra-base hits over 127 games in 1905. His 1906 season saw him bat .226 in 75 games, with 12 extra-base hits to his credit. He hit .210 in 1907, where more available stats show that he had 29 runs, nine extra-base hits and seven steals in 89 games. He batted .216 in 1908, with 17 runs, ten extra-base hits and four steals in 82 games.  The 1909 season was split between Jersey City and Buffalo of the Eastern League. He had a .203 average and nine extra-base hits over 98 games that year. Woods hit .191 over 73 games with Buffalo in 1910, collecting three doubles, two triples and no homers. He moved on to Troy of the Class-B New York State League in 1911, which was two steps below the majors in 1911, then three steps below the majors once Double-A was created in 1912. With limited stats available, we know that he hit .222 over 103 games in 1911. That was followed by a .236 average in 77 games during the 1912 season, then a .246 average over 68 games in 1913. He final season in 1914 also saw him spend time with Binghamton of the New York State League. He batted .177 in 51 games, with 12 runs and 11 walks.

There was an interesting note from Woods’ time in Louisville under manager Fred Clarke, who was also his manager in Pittsburgh. Woods was feeling sick after one particular game and seemed weak, so Clarke advised him to drink beer to help him replenish his system. Drinking beer in season was against team rules, so Woods initially wouldn’t follow his instructions. Once Clarke assured him that it was okay, Woods put some liquor in his system. He then started pitching much better immediately afterwards, leading them to believe the two things were connected.

The Trade

On this date in 1910, the Pirates traded pitcher Sam Frock and first baseman Bud Sharpe to the Boston Doves for pitcher Kirby White. Sharpe played for Boston in 1905, but he was sent to the minors by mid-season that year, then stayed there up until that 1910 season. The Pirates had acquired the 28-year-old Sharpe as a Rule 5 draft pick in September of 1909. Frock was 27 years old, and he previously played with Boston too, making his debut in the majors with the 1907 Doves. He pitched 36.1 innings for the World Series winning 1909 Pirates, posting a 2.48 ERA. White was 26 years old at the time of the trade. He had a 7-15, 2.94 record in 174.1 innings with Boston between the 1909-10 seasons. He had already made three starts in 1910. Despite picking up two losses, he had a 1.38 ERA.

After the trade, White pitched 153.1 innings for the 1910 Pirates, going 10-9 with a 3.46 ERA. He threw three shutouts and had a streak of 32 consecutive scoreless innings during the second half of the season. He wasn’t healthy in 1911 when he reported to the team. He was sent to the minors after a poor outing in late May, and then never returned to the big leagues. Frock suffered nearly the same fate as White. He was used very often by Boston after the trade, going 12-19, 3.21 in 255.1 innings over 29 starts and 17 relief appearances. He didn’t even last a month in the majors in 1911, before his contract was sold to a minor league team. Just like White, he too never returned to the majors. Sharpe was Boston’s everyday first baseman after the trade, hitting .239 in 115 games, with no homers and 29 RBIs. His contract was sold to a minor league team before the 1911 started, putting all three players out of the majors before June of 1911.