Adam LaRoche traded to Boston for two Minor Leaguers

The Pirates have traded first baseman Adam LaRoche to the Red Sox in exchange for Double-A shortstop Argenis Diaz and Single-A right-hander Hunter Strickland, Boston radio station WEEI has reported.

Pittsburgh was known to be looking for a suitor for LaRoche, who is earning $7.05 million this season and will be a first-time free agent next season. The Pirates were not expected to make a strong attempt to resign him in the offseason.

Speculation that LaRoche was on his way out surfaced on Wednesday morning when the Pirates did not post their lineup until less than one hour before the 12:35 pm scheduled first pitch.

Diaz, who was signed as a non-drafted free agent out of Venezuela in 2003, is hitting .253 with 24 RBIs in 76 Double-A games this season. Diaz, 22, split last season between Single-A and Double-A. He’s a defensively-minded guy, with a questionable bat.

Strickland, an 18th-round pick in 2007, is 5-4 with a 3.35 ERA in 18 appearances (12 starts) at the low Single-A level. He has 51 strikeouts and 13 walks in 83 1/3 innings.

LaRoche was hitting .247 with a team-best 12 homers and 40 RBIs this season. LaRoche likely would have been a Type B free agent this offseason at best, meaning the Pirates would have gotten one compensation pick in next year’s Draft if they had held onto him for the final two months of the season.

By the way, LaRoche was just shown on the television as being in the dugout and in uniform. That likely means nothing will be announced until after this game.

Follow me on Twitter: @LangoschMLB

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