Results tagged ‘ john russell ’
Miles Durham’s late inning two run bomb brought the Pirates within two runs of the Orioles on Monday afternoon, but Ryan Doumit struck out to end the rally as the Bucs lost 6-4.
Paul Maholm started for the Pirates. He allowed two runs (one solo home run) on four hits, with two strike outs through two innings of work.
“I didn’t get ahead of as many hitters as I wanted, but for the most part it felt good,” Maholm said. “I went after guys. I was a little jumpy and left some over the plate, but that’s the first outing of spring. It happens.”
All those pick off drills being worked at camp Hurdle are paying off. Maholm picked off Craig Tatum in the second inning.
Paul Maholm warming up before the Bucs battled the Baltimore Orioles.
Jeff Karstens also pitched two innings on Monday. He allowed two hits, no runs and walked one.
Tyler Yates (Tommy John surgery) pitched one inning allowing one hit and struck out one. It was nice to see Yates back on the mound again. He’s a great story, and definitely a player you want to root for to succeed.
Tyler Yates on the mound, battling for a bullpen spot this year.
Justin Wilson had a horrible outing. Manager Clint Hurdle pulled him after just pitching .2 innings. He allowed three runs on one hit, with three walks. He also allowed a double steal against him.
The Pirates invited three players from Minor League camp — Miles Durham, Mel Rojas Jr. and Jim Negrych to play against the Orioles.
Rojas Jr and Negrych both were o’ffers, but Durham hit a two run homer in the ninth and drew a walk in the 7th inning.
- After the game ended, I noticed former Manager John Russell walk towards the Bucs dugout to talk to some of the players. Ryan Doumit was the only one that walked over to Russell, giving him a hug.
- Hurdle is very much different from Russell. Throughout the game, Hurdle would yell words of encouragement to the players during tough at-bats, etc.
- Pedro Alvarez, who still wants to prove he can stay at third base, missed several balls that could have been playable.
“All I know is that I am a third baseman and that’s what I’m working for,” Alvarez said. “That’s where I am working to stay for the rest of my career. I play to get better.”
“Can he play third base? I’m going to say yes,” Leyva said. “I’ve been around for a long time and I’ve seen a lot of infielders that people think maybe someone can’t. It’s my job that he can when it’s all over. Pedro is a good athlete. We’ve got to take that into consideration when we start working with him. I’m not going to ask him to do some things that he is not capable of doing. If so, I’m not doing my job.”
Added Hurdle: “He’s working hard. He knows the value of a good third baseman. He knows what he’s capable of doing. He’s had some very good defensive stretches. He’s had some stretches that weren’t Major League quality, and he knows that. He’s out to become the best third baseman he can be.”
Jose Tabata on deck and leading off for the Pirates.
- The Pirates have a split squad on Monday. Both games will have a 1:05 pm start.
- At McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Paul Maholm will start for the Bucs against the Baltimore Orioles, pitching two innings. He will be followed by Jeff Karstens who will also pitch two innings of work.
Tyler Yates, Jeff Locke, Mike Crotta, Justin Wilson and Cesar Valdez will all pitch one inning a piece
- At Charlotte Sports Park, Bryan Morris will start for the Bucs against the Rays, followed by Fernando Nieve. They will both pitch two innings of work.
Sean Gallaher, Aaron Thompson, Kyle McPherson will pitch one inning.
Jeff Neiman will start for the Rays.
- This will be the first meeting of the Pirates and former Skipper John Russell on Monday since he was fired over the offseason. Russell was hired by the O’s as a third base coach.
Russell finished his tenure with a 186-299 record.
- Lefty Scott Olsen is scheduled to throw his third side session on Monday. Olsen is recovering from a left hamstring strain.
- Joe Beimel said he woke up experiencing pain in a muscle near the elbow, but it isn’t anything serious.
“It’s not too big of a deal,” Beimel said. “When I was playing catch, I over-extended on one (throw) and it got a little sore. I was a little worried because it’s something I never felt before. They’ve done all the tests and there’s nothing (wrong) with the ligament. It’s one of those things where I can move it, like, 10 times and on the 11th it will hurt. Since (Sunday), it’s become less and less (painful), to the point now that I don’t really feel it.”
Orioles: J.J. Hardy SS
Felix Pie RF
Mark Reynolds 3B
Vladimir Guerrero DH
Adam Jones CF
Nolan Reimold LF
Brandon Snyder 1B
Craig Tatum C
Cesar Izturis 2B
RHP Brad Bergesen
Jose Tabata LF
Josh Rodriguez SS
Andrew McCutchen CF
Pedro Alvarez 3B
Lyle Overbay 1B
Garrett Jones 1B
Ryan Doumit DH
Chase d’Arnaud 2B
Jason Jaramillo C
LHP Paul Maholm
Former Bucs Manager John Russell spent six years in Pittsburgh . He endured some of the worst seasons in Pirates history, including a 105-loss 2010 season. He made coaching gaffe’s that sometimes made you scratch your head. He was often criticized for his lack of emotions both on the field and with the players. But despite the blowouts and the base running mistakes, Russell has no regrets.
“I’ll never forget my (six) years in Pittsburgh as a coach and manager. It’s a great city with great fans. I’ll never regret it. I wish I could still be there as a manager. But I’m very happy where I am now. I’m looking forward to this season and what the future holds for me.”
“I thought the last quarter of the (2010) season we played pretty good baseball,” Russell said. “Guys started to come on a little bit. I thought it was very much headed the right way. But you can’t negate the losses.”
Just three weeks after being fired by the Pirates, Russell was hired by the Baltimore Orioles as their third base coach and catching instructor.
The Bucs and Orioles face each other five times during spring training, as well as a interleague series this season.
“People say to me, ‘Oh, you probably don’t want to go back there,’ ” Russell said. “It doesn’t affect me. It was a part of my career that I’ll always remember and cherish. I have a lot of friends over there.”
Russell also believes the Pirates can turn thing around and end those consecutive losing seasons.
“There’s hope for any franchise,” Russell said. “The biggest thing is patience, and that’s tough in Pittsburgh because of the number of years they haven’t won.”
If he could do it all over again, would he second guess anything?
“You can always second-guess,” he said. “But you have to believe in what you do. That’s the way I tried to approach it every day in Pittsburgh. I tried to do what’s right not only for the players but for the organization to make sure we stayed on track with the major plan. We knew it was going to be tough. We knew we were going to have to be patient to make it work. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out for me.”
- Manager Clint Hurdle has the players working on “slug” bunting this year –something John Russell didn’t teach.
Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com explains further what “slug” bunting is, if your not familiar with the technique.
This type of bunt is executed by showing bunt, drawing the bat back and then trying to chop the ball hard at a defender who is expecting a normal slow-rolling bunt.
A successful “slug” bunt has an element of surprise. And it can be particularly effective when the defense imposes a wheel play, which is when the corner fielders charge toward home while the middle infielders run to cover first and third.
- With less than six weeks away until opening day Manager Clint Hurdle is still mum about a possible lineup for the Bucs.
“We’ve had talks about lineups for a month and running,” he said. “I’m thinking about it, but no pens have been (used). All pencil work, so far.”
In the past, I’ve tried to have the best hitter on the team hit third,” Hurdle said. “We’ve got a number of guys we’re talking about for that. And you don’t want to be a slave to a guy’s comfort level, but some guys have a history of performing better in some places than in others. So, it’s all taken into account.”
- The Pirates minor league camp begins on February 28. The Pirates invited about 30 pitchers and 30 position players to report early. The camp will start in full on March 7.
- Sean Gallagher is a candidate for the Bucs ‘pen, but the club isn’t ruling out using him as a starter –most likely at Triple-A to begin the year.
- The following pitchers threw their second side session on Thursday: Charlie Morton, Brian Burres, Fernando Nieve, Chris Resop, Sean Gallagher, Tony Watson, Cesar Valdez, Tyler Yates, Jeff Karstens, Justin Thomas, Brad Lincoln, Chris Leroux, Daniel McCutchen, Ramon Aguero, Daniel Moskos and Bryan Morris.
- Left-hand pitcher Scott Olsen left workouts early on Thursday due to a left hamstring strain.
Olsen doesn’t believe it’s anything serious and says it’s because of dehydration.
“I don’t foresee it being anything serious,” he said.
Pirates spring training camp: catchers drills (photo via @RobBiertempfel)
ST camp: pitchers fielding drills (photo via @RobBiertempfel)
Young Bucs: Neil Walker and Andrew McCutchen waiting to take some swings in batting practice (photo via @BucsInsider)
- Pirates pitcher Paul Maholm has already arrived at Bradenton, FL. For spring training. He shared a picture on twitter: “It all starts here Monday.”
- Manager Clint Hurdle kicks off his first spring training workout on Monday at noon (Pitchers and catchers are to report on Sunday).
- This year, there are 63 players reporting to big league camp (40-man roster, plus 23 non-roster invites). Those invited include:
40-man: Ramon Aguero, Jose Ascanio, Kevin Correia, Michael Crotta, Joel Hanrahan, Kevin Hart, Jeff Karstens, Chris Leroux, Brad Lincoln, Jeff Locke, Paul Maholm, Daniel McCutchen, James McDonald, Kyle McPherson, Evan Meek, Bryan Morris, Charlie Morton, Daniel Moskos, Ross Ohlendorf, Scott Olsen, Chris Resop, Tony Watson, Aaron Thompson, Ryan Doumit, Chris Snyder, Jason Jaramillo, Pedro Alvarez, Pedro Ciriaco, Steve Pearce, Neil Walker, Ronny Cedeno, Lyle Overbay, Josh Rodriguez, John Bowker, Gorkys Hernandez, Andrew McCutchen, Alex Presley, Matt Diaz, Garrett Jones, Jose Tabata
Non roster invites: Andrew Lambo, Justin Thomas, Fernando Nieve, Josh Fields, Dusty Brown, Eric Fryer, Chase D’Arnaud, Sean Gallagher, Donnie Veal, Andy Marte, Cesar Valdez, Tony Sanchez, Brian Friday, Jose Veras, Joe Beimel, Tyler Yates, Jeff Clement, Rudy Owens, Justin Wilson, Garrett Atkins, Corey Wimberly, Brian Burres, Wyatt Toregas
- According to Jenifer Langosch, beat reporter of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Hurdle’s camp will be much different than John Russell’s. Hurdle specifically noted that there would be an increased focus on shoring up fundamentals and honing pitchers’ pickoff moves.
- During spring training, Hurdle will choose a closer for the Pirates (Joel Hanrahan or Evan Meek) as well as a fifth starter (options include: Charlie Morton, Scott Olsen). Bench players and bullpen will be determined as well.
- Spring training runs through February 24th. The Pirates will kick off spring training games against State College of Florida at 12:05 p.m. ET at McKechnie Field.
- The Pirates will host games against the Tampa Bay Rays, Baltimore Orioles, New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins, Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue Jays, Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros (click here for the full schedule).
On Tuesday’s edition of Hot Stove on MLB Network, they showcased the Pittsburgh Pirates in part of the 30 Clubs in 30 Recaps.
Here is what the analysts had to say:
“1992 was the last season in which Pittsburgh finished with a winning record. For a once proud franchise the Buccos have become somewhat of a forgotten team in their own city. It also doesn’t help the Penguins won a Stanley cup two years ago, and Sunday, the Steelers can win their third super bowl in six years. We look back at the 2010 Pittsburgh Pirates.”
*Video clips through out the season were showed. Garrett Jones two run homerun on opening day, Evan Meek’s first career save (against the Dodgers), Andrew McCutchen’s hot month of May (.327 avg), the rookie debuts of Neil Walker, Jose Tabata and Pedro Alvarez, the 12 straight losses, Alvarez’s walk-off three run homer against the Rockies, notching the 18th consecutive losing season, John Russell getting fired, and the hiring of Clint Hurdle.
Greg Amsinger: “Another rough season in 2010 for the Pirates. Hence all of these changes:”
Pirates Notable transactions this offseason by MLB Network:
RP Joe Beimel
SP Kevin Correia
OF Matt Diaz
3B Josh Fields
SP Scott Olsen
1B Lyle Overbay
SS Cesar Valdez
SP Zach Duke
SP Dana Eveland
RP Chan Ho Park
3B Andy LaRoche
RP Joe Martinez
OF Lastings Milledge
Amsinger: “Zach Duke is gone. He’s not going to be in that rotation. Andy LaRoche is not going to be at third base. Lastings Milledge is still a free agent so who knows where he’ll go. But you see all the additions. The biggest addition though, is the skipper of this club, Clint Hurdle.”
Todd Zeile: “I agree with you 100 percent. Clint, you heard him in the press conference say, ‘It’s got to turn eventually. We’re not going to back down to anybody.’ That’s the kind of mentality Clint Hurdle has. I think he truly believes in it. I think he instills that kind of confidence in his players –especially young players. In 2002, Clint took over for Buddy Bell, when Buddy Bell was fired. We were on the ropes. We had a bunch of veteran guys that he just let play. But at the same time, we had a guy named Juan Uribe, who we saw in the world series last year, this guy was as raw and unfettered as you could find. Clint found a way to get him to hone in his skills, but still let him play and didn’t destroy his confidence. He made sure he knew every time he walked out there, Clint believed in him. I think he’s got that same kind of capability. Look, realistically, they are looking to the future. While they got a lot of kids on that team that have a lot of potential in the future, including Pedro Alvarez. You showed the highlight of him, Alvarez had a really rough start but finished really strong. A guy like Clint I think can help take him to the next level.”
Al Lieter: “I agree. I love Clint. You mentioned about Alvarez, Greg Smith their scouting director, whole new deal there. Neal Huntington a whole lot different from Dave Littlefield, cleaning up the mess. You have a $40 million payroll. I think about all the additions and what is important. I think what is important is your starting rotation. No question about it. I go to what the Padres did last year. You have really nice quality pitchers like the Padres did in [Clayton] Richard, [Mat] Latos, and [Wade] LeBlanc. You have to get something out of your guys and look for the future. You got James McDonald, nice pickup with the Dodgers. Paul Maholm, making a lot of money right now for what he’s bringing in. Ross Ohlendorf was 1-11. You bring in a guy with some innings, that you can bring in a Kevin Correia that can maybe hold over for the future. This is about draft picks, this is about your player development. Everything that goes on from the bottom up, to eventually find that diamond. That’s what I would be sitting on and I look to the Padres. Last year, two teams under $40 million dollars in payroll: both the Pirates and the Padres. It starts with pitching.”
Harold Reynolds: “It does. It actually starts with draft also. I love what Clint Hurdle can bring to the table. You got to be positive with the young guys. You heard me say, ‘You got to play the young talent’. Some of the guys they are bringing in, the draft they had last year. They had two top picks, you get [Jameson] Taillon and you also get [Stetson] Allie, who should have been a number one pick as well. So they get those two guys to get it going in the minor leagues. It starts with pitching. You can move pitching and you can add players with having good pitching. But I love the fact that guys they have in the big leagues already. With [Andrew] McCutchen, I love [Neil] Walker the second baseman, and you look at Alvarez. Those three guys are a great core to start with and you go from there. The Pirates are on up!
Amsinger: “It’s a great sports city. They love the penguins, of course they love the Steelers, if they can get a winning product there for the Pirates they will come fill the most beautiful ball park in the game.”
Pirates Projected Rotation (According to MLB Network)
Neil Walker and Joel Hanrahan have met with new Manager Clint Hurdle since he was hired by the Pirates. And now, several other Pirates players are looking forward to working with him in the future.
Chris Snyder has the most experience watching Hurdle interact with his players. Snyder –before he was traded to the Pirates spent seven seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks and faced the Rockies 19 games each year.–
Synder saw the steady progression of the young Rockies under Hurdle’s watch.
“It was a steady progression for all those guys, each year they continually got better and better,” said Snyder, who came to the Pirates in a trade with the Diamondbacks July 31.
The Diamondbacks and Rockies shared the same spring training facility in Arizona and Snyder said he saw Hurdle throw batting practice, shag fly balls and interact with his players during warm-ups before games.
“Every time I looked up, I think I saw he had a glove on,” Snyder said.
Zach Duke and Jeff Karstens have not yet met Hurdle but have heard about his intensity.
“They said he’s a very upbeat guy, a very intense guy,” said Zach Duke. “He cares a lot about his players.”
“I’ve heard he’s an intense manager,” Jeff Karstens said, “which I think will be good. I could see him wanting to have fun but knowing when to really crack down on people.”
Neil Walker met his new skipper at the Steelers game on Sunday says the Pirates’ need a lot of guidance. (Something they obviously were not getting from John Russell)
You’re talking about two straight losing seasons of 100-plus [loss] baseball,” he said. “We all can do our job a little better, from pitching to defense to offense to managing to front office. Having a new mentality or having a different way of looking at the game is maybe something that he’s going to try to implement.”
“Us younger guys on the team,” Walker said, “we need a lot of guidance.
“Sometimes, when a manager knows to get on you or leave you alone and back off, or give you some encouraging words of confidence, I think that’s important.
“That’s the kind of thing he prides himself in.”
Former Pirates Manager John Russell was hired by the Baltimore Orioles on Monday according to industry sources.
Russell will the Orioles bench coach. He will also serve as a catching instructor.
Russell is a former major league catcher who caught one of Nolan Ryan’s no-hitters. He finished with a record of 186-299 while serving as manager for the Bucs.
Former Pirates Manager John Russell interviewed with the Baltimore Orioles on Friday by Buck Showalter for two vacant positions: first base coach or third base coach. Showalter is also looking for the position to serve as a catching instructor. (Russell is a former major-league catcher).
John Russell was fired by the Pirates on October 4th after compiling a 186-299 record.
In honor of JR (The picture was taken on the last home game of the 2009 season):
After days of rumors swirling that John Russell was going to be fired after three seasons with the Pirates, it became official on Monday afternoon.
“John was incredibly committed to making good things happen,” general manager Neal Huntington said in a conference call with the media on Monday afternoon. “A valid argument could be made that he deserved a better fate.”
“This was a very difficult announcement and a very difficult decision. This isn’t about looking backward or finding fault. That lies mostly with myself and the baseball operations department. It’s about what’s in the best interest of the organization moving forward and finding a manager to move this team in the desired direction.”
Russell was the 38th manager in Pirates history –the fourth since 2000. He finishes with a 186-299 record. (95 losses in ’08, 99 in ’09 and 105 in ’10).
How did Russell take the news?
“Disappointed, but with extreme professionalism,” Huntington said. “He was looking forward to the challenge of year four, and was looking forward to meeting those challenges. He’s disappointed he won’t get to meet those.”
Well-respected in the Pirates’ clubhouse –it was quite the opposite outside. The fan base never seemed to like him.
“The media attention is like none we’ve ever seen before,” Huntington said. “The manager becomes the focal point. The reality of where we are, sometimes managers take the fall. At times, they get too much of the credit, and at times, they get too much of the public blame. This isn’t about a fall guy. It’s about moving forward and deciding a change was better for the organization.”
Despite the 105-loss season, General Manager Neal Huntington does not blame the losses on John Russell.
“I’ve been open [about the fact that] we did not anticipate a 105-loss season as we came out of the chute,” Huntington said when asked about the disappointment of the 2010 season. “Now, we have to focus on moving forward, on how to accentuate the positive and minimize the negative.
“We’re doing things in scouting and player development. and we’re looking forward to having that impact at the Major League level that will result in [more wins]. We have a much deeper farm system to move in a solid direction. That’s one of the bigger frustrations for someone like J.R. We’ve gone through a lot in three years, and he [won't] reap the rewards of that.”
So who exactly will take over as the new Pirates manager? Some options could be: Eric Wedge, Ken Macha? I asked some twitter followers who they would like to see. Some of the names were: John Farrell, Ryne Sandberg, Jay Bell, Jeff Bannister, Tim Wallach and Joey Cora.
I’ll keep posting as interviews are being held. Until then, here is one final shot on John Russell on the final game in 2010 at PNC Park: