Pittsburgh Pirates’ Gregory Polanco waits his turn to hit against live pitching during the team’s baseball spring training workout in Bradenton, Fla., Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) – Outfielder Gregory Polanco, considered the Pittsburgh Pirates’ top prospect, was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis on Friday along with right-handed reliever Duke Welker.
Polanco hit .273 (6-for-22) with two doubles and one home run this spring. Last season, he batted a combined .285 with 12 homers and 38 stolen bases in 127 games with Indianapolis, Double-A Altoona and Class A Bradenton.
Welker struggled throughout the exhibition season, giving up six runs and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings for a 10.13 ERA. He walked five and struck out four. He made his major league debut last season with a pair of relief appearances.