OF, Pittsburgh Pirates
New York Mets vs Florida Marlins in New York
Age: 31
Born: October 14, 1978
Height: 6′ 1″
Weight: 190
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
Drafted: 14th Round, 426th Overall, 2000
How Acquired: Free Agent
College: University of Nevada
Agent: Jeff Borris


Church was designated for assignment by Atlanta when Rafael Soriano accepted arbitration, thus forcing Atlanta to clear a roster spot. He cleared waivers, then was non-tendered a few days later. The Pirates went with Church as an alternative over Rick Ankiel, since Church was willing to accept the role the Pirates were offering.

Church has suffered with some injury issues over the years. He missed some time in 2009 with a hamstring issue. He missed time in 2008 with a concussion. One alarming aspect with Church is his slugging percentage. It has gone down four years in a row now. In 2006 he had a .526 percentage. In 2007 he had a .464 percentage. In 2008 he had a .439 percentage. In 2009 he had a .384 percentage, split between the Washington Nationals (.375) and the Atlanta Braves (.402).

Church does play strong defense in the corner outfield positions. He has a 3.7 UZR/150 in his career in left field, and a 14.2 UZR/150 in his career in right field. He can play center field, but has a career -3.5 UZR/150 at the position. That might not be much of a factor since he will likely be brought in to play mostly in right field.

Church will provide great insurance for the Pirates.  If Jeff Clement doesn’t work at first base, the Pirates can move Garrett Jones to first and start Church in right field until Jose Tabata is ready.  If Jose Tabata isn’t ready in 2010, Church can stay in right field until Tabata is ready.  If Garrett Jones or Lastings Milledge struggle, Church can provide insurance in either case.  Church also has a year of arbitration remaining, so the Pirates can retain him in 2011 if they like what they see.



<p><p><p><p><br /> Report Created on <a href=”http://bbref.com/”>Baseball-Reference.com</a><br /> </p></p></p></p>


<p><p><p><p><br /> Report Created on <a href=”http://bbref.com/”>Baseball-Reference.com</a><br /> </p></p></p></p>

2005: $316,000
2006: League Minimum
2007: $395,000
2008: $2,000,000

Other Details:

  • Performance bonuses: $50,000 for 450 plate appearances, $40,000 for 535 plate appearances, $30,000 for 550 plate appearances. Only reached 359 plate appearances.

2009: $2,800,000

Other Details:

  • Performance bonuses: $50,000 for 400 plate appearances, $30,000 each for 450, 535 plate appearances, $40,000 for 550 plate appearances. Only reached 399 plate appearances.

2010: $1,500,000

Other Details:
  • Performance Bonuses: $75,000 each for 350, 375, 400 plate appearances. $125,000 each for 425, 450, 475 plate appearances. $180,000 each for 500, 550, 575, 600 plate appearances.
2011: Arbitration Eligible
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2000
MLB Debut: 8/21/2004
MLB FA Eligible: 2012
Added to 40-Man: 11/20/2002
Options Remaining: 0 (USED: 2003, 2004, 2006)
MLB Service Time: 4.152
2000: Big West Conference All-Star OF
2004: Expos Minor League Player of the Year
2004: Pacific League All-Star OF
Baseball America

2005: #3 WAS

June 5, 2000: Drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 14th round, 426th overall pick.
June 7, 2000: Signed by the Cleveland Indians to a minor league contract.
November 20, 2002: Contract purchased by the Cleveland Indians.
January 5, 2004: Acquired by the Montreal Expos from the Cleveland Indians along with Macier Izturis in exchange for Scott Stewart.
November 30, 2007: Acquired by the New York Mets from the Washington Nationals along with Brian Schneider in exchange for Lastings Milledge.
July 10, 2009: Acquired by the
Atlanta Braves from the New York Mets in exchange for Jeff Francoeur.
January 13, 2010: Signed as a free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
July 31, 2010: Acquired by the Arizona Diamondbacks from the Pittsburgh Pirates along with D.J. Carrasco and Bobby Crosby in exchange for Chris Snyder, Pedro Ciriaco, and $3 M.