The career of Gregory Polanco as a Pittsburgh Pirate is officially over with.
After a weeks worth of headlines, the team announced on Saturday that Polanco has been released and will be replaced on the roster by Cole Tucker.
Pirates General Manager Ben Cherrington released this statement following the decision to cut ties with Polanco.
“Gregory has been a true professional throughout his entire Pirates career, including in our conversation with him regrading today’s roster move. He has been a great teammate who always handled himself with class and took a great deal of pride in representing the Pirates and the city of Pittsburgh. We wish him nothing but success moving forward.”
A great teammate, friend and someone who always greets you with a smile.
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) August 28, 2021
This move comes just a couple days after Polanco expressed his frustration about the treatment he’s received this season from Pirate fans and after manager Derek Shelton defended his decision to continually starting Polanco despite his year long struggles.
For the season, the 29-year old batted .208, 12 doubles, 2 triples, 11 home runs, 36 RBI and 14 stolen bases in 107 games. Polanco ended his eight year career in Pittsburgh batting .241 with 156 doubles, 19 triples, 96 home runs, 362 RBI and 98 stolen bases in 823 games.
This will be Tucker’s third time with the Pirates in 2021. In 61 games at AAA, the former first round pick hit just .223 (49-220) with 11 doubles, two triples, six home runs and 20 RBI. Shelton will no doubt take advantage of his versatility as Tucker has played shortstop, second base, right field and left field this season at Indianapolis.