This time, it's really happening. The Pittsburgh Pirates are promoting top prospect Gregory Polanco to the major leagues on Tuesday. The outfielder announced the move on his Twitter account this evening:
The wait is over.... My dream has officially come true ⚾️ Pittsburgh, see you mañana!!— Gregory Polanco ☕️ (@El_Coffee) June 10, 2014
Pirates fans, thanks for being patient with me, you guys are awesome!!!— Gregory Polanco ☕️ (@El_Coffee) June 10, 2014
Thank you God, this is all yours— Gregory Polanco ☕️ (@El_Coffee) June 10, 2014
Polanco, 22, gets the call to the majors after a hot start with Triple-A Indianapolis, with whom he hit .347 with 7 HR and 49 RBI in 62 games on the season. Calls for his promotion have gotten very loud in recent days, especially after multiple sources told many reporters (including this one) that Polanco would be promoted last Friday. Pirates' officials denied those reports to multiple beat reporters, and Polanco was kept in Triple-A until today. While no reason was given for the delay, a working theory throughout baseball is that the Pirates were upset with the media leak of the news and decided that they wanted to release the news on their own terms. Polanco tweeted the news before any reporters caught wind, meaning that a tight seal was kept around today's proceedings.
Although Polanco is primarily a centerfielder, Andrew McCutchen's superstar status in Pittsburgh means that Polanco will shift to right field, where Josh Harrison has played so far this season. Polanco is known for his excellent defense in the outfield, and will join McCutchen and Starling Marte to form one of the most electric outfield units in the game today.
Before the season, Polanco was ranked by Baseball America as the tenth best prospect in baseball, behind current major leaguers Xander Bogaerts, Oscar Taveras and Masahiro Tanaka. His torrid start at Triple-A only raised his stock as a prospect, and the Pirates hope that his arrival will help ignite a below-.500 team that currently sits in third place in the NL Central.