Pirates send reliever, infielders to minor leagues

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BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Pirates optioned right-handed reliever Bryan Morris to Class AAA Indianapolis and reassigned infielders Ivan DeJesus Jr. and Jared Goedert to minor league camp this morning.

Morris, 25, had a 5.14 ERA in seven appearances this spring and had burned up his third and final option last season. But the Pirates applied for and were granted a fourth option year for Morris, which allowed the club to send him to Indianapolis without fear of losing him to another team.

Morris made his major league debut last year, posting a 1.80 ERA in five appearances.

The Pirates acquired DeJesus, once considered a top prospect, in a six-player trade that sent Joel Hanrahan to the Boston Red Sox this offseason. In 20 games this spring, DeJesus, 25, hit .387 with one home run and two RBIs.

But the Pirates acquired veteran infielder John McDonald this week to back up shortstop Clint Barmes, making DeJesus's path to the opening day roster a bit more difficult.

Goedert, 27, hit .214 in 19 spring training games.

With Chase d'Arnaud on the disabled list and Charlie Morton, Francisco Liriano and Jose Contreras recovering from injuries, the Pirates have 37 players in major league camp still in competition for the opening-day roster -- 17 pitchers and 20 position players.

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Michael Sanserino: msanserino@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1722 or on Twitter @msanserino.


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