VanBenschoten has appeared in 26 major league games with the Pittsburgh Pirates after being a first round draft pick (8th overall) of Pittsburgh in 2001 out of Kent State University where he was a first baseman and a closer. At KSU, VanBenschoten batted .440 and led all of NCAA Division I with 31 homers as a junior, being named a First Team All-American and the MAC Player of the Year.
VanBenschoten pitched in the 2003 All-Star Futures Game, and was named the Pirates' top prospect by Baseball America in 2003 and 2004. He made his major league debut in 2004, and also pitched for the Pirates in 2007 and 2008.
VanBenschoten spent the 2009 season at Triple-A in the White Sox organization, and pitched in the Yankees farm system last season.
He is 56-46 with a 3.71 in his minor league career.