The Mets have long liked pitcher Vic Black. Now it they're getting a second chance at him.
Black is the player to be named later coming from the Pirates to complete the Marlon Byrd/John Buck trade, it was announced Thursday afternoon. The Mets also received second base prospect Dilson Herrera in the deal. For more on Herrera, see our prospect profile.
Black tweeted from his verified account after news of the trade broke:
The 25-year-old righty has appeared in three games in the majors with Pittsburgh this season, giving up six hits and two walks in four innings, striking out three.
In five minor league seasons, Black was 11-9 with a 3.08 ERA and 217 strikeouts in 178.1 innings. He's nailed down 30 saves since the start of the 2012 season.
The Mets selected Black in the 41st round of the 2006 draft out of Amarillo High School in Texas. Black opted to attend Dallas Baptist University and was later taken by the Pirates during the first round (49th overall) of the 2009 draft.
He struggled during his first three seasons in the minors, allowing 66 hits and 40 walks in 71.2 innings pitched (1.47 WHIP), and striking out 69.
But after a promotion to Double-A Altoona to begin the 2012 season, Black's stuff started to click. Since the start of last year, Black has permitted 68 hits and 50 walks in 106.2 innings, striking out 148, spread over Double and Triple-A. The strikeout numbers are eye-catching, though the walks are troublesome.
Here's how the Minor League Baseball Analyst described Black heading into 2013:
"Strong armed hurler pitches off a 92-94 mph sinking FB that tops out at 97 mph. Also has a SL and an average CU. Uses a low 3/4 arm slot to get movement, but inconsistent mechanics results in poor control. Was finally healthy and move to relief worked. Struck out 85 in 60 IP and posted a 1.65 ERA."