Pittsburgh Pirates potential free agent target profile – Boone Logan

Boone Logan had an injury riddled 2017 campaign due to back issues. His bad luck continued when on the field as he finished the season with a 4.71 ERA and 3.11 xFIP. He had 28 strikeouts and nine walks in 21 innings with the Cleveland Indians last season. Could he be a realistic free agent target for the Pittsburgh Pirates?

The Pittsburgh Pirates may want to take a shot at Logan this offseason.  As of right now, Felipe Rivero is the team’s only left handed option out of the bullpen and he is cemented into the closers role.  The Pirates will need to acquire at least one left handed bullpen option this offseason.  Logan could be a great buy-low option.

The book on Boone

Logan has a great ability to miss bats.  For six straight seasons, the 33 year old lefty has registered at least 11 strikeouts per nine innings.  On the other hand, Logan gives up his fair share of free passes.  He has walked at least 3.5 batters per nine innings every year since 2012.

Here’s a snapshot look at his career to date:

h/t Baseball Reference

In terms of contact given up, Logan has had pretty adequate numbers.  In 2017, Logan gave up soft contact 17 percent of the time and hard contact at a rate of 28.3 percent.  For his career, Logan has a soft contact rate of 19.2 percent and hard contact rate of 28.2 percent.  Over the past ten seasons, the highest rate for hard contact given up is 37.1 percent by Robbie Ray.  The highest rate of soft contact given up in that same span is Mariano Rivera at 31.1 percent.  Logan gets a lot of medium contact.  His rates of both hard and soft contact are not really near the extremes.

Another aspect the Pittsburgh Pirates may find intriguing is Logan’s ability to get ground balls.  He is a sinker/slider pitcher.  Over his career, Logan has forced grounders at a rate of 46.5 percent.  Last year, that mark sat at 50 percent.

Being that he is a left handed specialist, Logan has done a tremendous job against left handed hitters.  Over his career, lefties have hit .229/.311/.361 against Logan.  Since 2015, Logan has a 1.60 ERA against left handed hitters.

Should the Pittsburgh Pirates pounce?

Logan has a little bit of Francisco Liriano in him.  He gets strikeouts.  Walks are often a problem.  He owns lefties.  He gets ground balls.  They are both sinker/slider guys.  Having a guy like this in your bullpen would be useful for sure.

In terms of price,  I really don’t see Logan getting more than one a one year deal, and likely no more than two million dollars.  Last season, Logan signed a one year deal with the Indians for $5.5 million.  This came after a 2016 season in which he pitched 46.1 innings with an ERA of 3.69.  He pitched 21 innings in 2017.  His ERA was a full run higher. He is coming off of an injury. Chances are that teams will want to see Logan hold up for a full year, especially given his age.

but, his profile fits the Pittsburgh Pirates.  He will be extremely cheap and has had success in the past.  He gets ground balls and strikeouts.  Why not toss him an offer?  The Pirates need a lefty.  He would provide a perfect fit with the club with little to no risk in terms of dollars allocated.  If he works out and stays healthy, great.  If that is not the case, the Pirates are not handcuffed by any means.

Image credit – Flickr creative commons

Nathan Hursh

Nathan is a graduate of Duquesne University with a degree in journalism. He has been a lifelong Pirates fans and loves watching baseball. Along with baseball, Nathan also has a passion for watching football and basketball. When he is not sitting on his couch indulging in sports, Nathan likes to be active outside. Along with Twitter, he can also be found on Instagram at nathan_hursh.