Pirates trade Jose Veras to Brewers for Casey McGehee

The Pirates and Brewers swapped 2 non-tender candidates this evening when reliever Jose Veras was shipped out to Milwaukee for 3B Casey McGehee.

Jose Veras served as the club’s 8th inning man for most of the year last year as he posted a 3.80 ERA in 71 innings. He struck out 79 and walked 34. Veras was eligible for arbitration and was set to make around $2.5 million.

Casey McGehee just finished up his 3rd full season as the third baseman for the Brewers. His first two seasons he posted an OPS of .859 and .801, but his production plummeted last year with a .629 OPS over 600 plate appearances. He will be entering his first season of arbitration and should make around $3 million.

McGehee will serve as the Pirates’ main backup plan for if 2012 Pedro Alvarez looks like 2011 Pedro Alvarez. McGehee can also serve as a right handed platoon option for Garrett Jones at 1B or Alvarez at third.

It’s hard to get too excited about this trade. But McGehee is just one year removed from being a solid ML hitter and is young enough that last year could have just been a fluke. The Pirates were unlikely to bring Veras back, so getting at least something that could be useful in return is ok in my book.