|Born: December 2, 1982
Height: 6′ 6″
Drafted: 24th Round, 707th Overall, 2004
How Acquired: Minor League FA
College: Virginia Tech
WTM’S PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES
|The Indians drafted Toregas in a late round, but he performed well enough to rank as high as 20th on Baseball America’s list of the Indians’ top prospects (after the 2006 season). He has strong catch-and-throw skills that have allowed him sometimes, although not always, to post high CS percentages. He signed as a minor league free agent with the Pirates after the 2010 season, then again after 2011.
Had a strong debut in the New York-Penn League in 2004. He had an impressive 48 RBIs in 59 games.
Toregas moved up to low A and struggled. He had an uncharacteristic 28 passed balls–he never had more than seven in any subsequent season–but threw out 40% of opposing base stealers.
Toregas hammered the ball in high A, earning a mid-season promotion. He held his own in AA. Between the two levels he caught 43% of base stealers.
Toregas was hampered by back and elbow problems, but still had a passable season. The injuries didn’t hurt his throwing, as he cut down 52% of base stealers. The Indians added him to their 40-man roster after the season.
Toregas struggled in AAA, hitting 219/301/310 and getting demoted at mid-season. He hit extremely well back in AA, posting a .945 OPS and hitting 12 HRs in just 47 games. He threw out 41% of base stealers overall.
Back in AAA, Toregas had a solid season. His CS % dropped to 31%, which is still decent. He got called up at the end of July when the Indians traded Victor Martinez and played in 19 games in the majors.
Toregas failed to win a big-league job due to Lou Marson, whom Indians acquired in Cliff Lee deal, and Mike Redmond, whom the Indians signed as a free agent. This led to some friction between Toregas and the team. They outrighted him to AA in April, then assigned him to the NYPL in May, which means he was sent to extended spring training. I haven’t found any indication that he was hurt, so whatever was going on between him and the team may have led to the assignment. Toregas moved up to AAA in August, but suffered a groin pull that ended his season early. He played in only 38 games.
The Pirates invited Toregas to major league camp in March, but he was sent to Indianapolis. He played sparingly there initially because the Indians had Dusty Brown and Jason Jaramillo. Then the injuries hit. With Ryan Doumit, Chris Snyder and Jaramillo all getting hurt within a few days of one another, the Pirates called up first Brown and then Toregas. They weren’t satisfied with that combination, though, and replaced them with Mike McKenry and Eric Fryer. Toregas was designated for assignment, cleared waivers and accepted assignment back to Indianapolis. With Brown, Jaramillo and Fryer all ending up back in AAA, though, Toregas spent most of his time on the inactive list. He got only 60 ABs in the minors all year.
Toregas became a free agent in the off-season, but re-signed with the Pirates in November. He’s expected to serve as a coach rather than as a player, but if the Pirates go through anywhere near as many catchers as they did in 2011, he could be pressed into service.
|2012: Minor League Contract
2011: Minor League Contract
|Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2004
MLB Debut: 8/1/2009
MiLB FA Eligible: Eligible
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 1 (USED: 2008, 2009)
MLB Service Time: 0.073
|June 7, 2004: Drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 24th round, 707th overall; signed on June 13.
November 19, 2007: Contract purchased by the Cleveland Indians.
April 3, 2010: Designated for assignment by the Cleveland Indians.
November 6, 2010: Became a free agent.
January 18, 2011: Signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a minor league free agent.
June 9, 2011: Contract purchased by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
June 13, 2011: Designated for assignment by the Pittsburgh Pirates; cleared waivers and assigned to AAA on June 15.
November 7, 2011: Signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a minor league free agent.