Results tagged ‘ lyle overbay ’
A ninth inning rally by the Pirates broke open a 2-2 ballgame, who went on to beat the Minnesota Twins 5-2 at Hammond Stadium on Tuesday.
Pedro Ciriaco hit a sac fly and Andrew Lambo hit a two-run single giving the Bucs the edge.
Brian Burres pitched two perfect innings against the Twins on Tuesday, extending his no run streak to six innings so far this spring. In his three appearances he has allowed just three hits, no walks with four strike outs.
“He’s staying in competition,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “Everything we’ve asked him to do, he’s done. He’s a flexible guy, a versatile guy, but we still want to take looks at him, stretch him out a little bit. I’m anticipating that next time.”
Burres, 29, can benefit the Pirates both as a starter or a reliever. Last season with the Bucs he went 4-5 with a 4.99 ERA in 20 appearances (13 starts).
“Any time you can offer multiple roles for yourself, it’s an asset to you,” Burres said. “Obviously, coming out of the bullpen you’re short on warm up throws, but you kind of try to approach it the same way. Honestly, whatever role they need me to be, I’m perfectly happy doing it. I prefer pitching in the big leagues.”
Carl Pavano pitched four innings allowing just two hits and striking two.
The game remained scoreless until a sacrifice fly by Ryan Doumit in the fifth inning gave the Bucs a 1-0 lead. Luke Hughe hit a sac fly of his own in the sixth, tying the game at one. The Twins then took the lead after a RBI double by Matthew Down. Lyle Overbay tied the game back up at 2 in the seventh.
Brad Lincoln started the “B” game against the Twins, which was located on the back field. But that didn’t change Lincoln’s attitude on the mound.
After a 30 pitch first inning, loading the bases and down 3-0 in the count, he managed to get out of the inning allowing no runs. He only needed six pitches for a perfect second inning.
“It’s still a baseball game, you still got everybody watching you, you got all the coaches over there looking,” said Lincoln, who went two innings in a shortened game the Twins won, 4-2. “You don’t want a lackadaisical hang-your-head-because-you’re-pitching-in-a-’B'-game-type attitude.”
Lincoln is battling Charlie Morton and Scott Olsen (hamstring) for the 5th spot in the rotation. “There’s not a whole lot of talk going on right now about what their plans are with anybody, but right now, I’m still competing for the job,” he said. “They still want me to work on some things, but I have to compete at the same time. I have to put those two together.”
- Andy Marte hit a solo home run in game “B” against the Twins.
- Steve Pearce made his spring debut at third base today (he only has five career appearances at third) and he even made a pretty good play at the hot corner.
“He made a [heckuva] play,” said right-hander Brad Lincoln, who was on the hill and having a rough inning. “It probably did save me a run.”
Pearce, who has been with the Pirates organization since being drafted in 2005, knows the team well and would love the shot at being the Bucs corner-utility fielder (He is also battling Josh Fields, Garrett Atkins and Andy Marte for that one open spot).
“We brought guys in, and we brought four or five guys in and they’re all competing for that one spot,” Pearce said. “Of course, we know it’s out there, but you want to control how you play. You can’t control what other people think. You just give your best and hopefully you open some eyes.”
- Brian Friday was hit in the hand by a pitch in game “B” today. The x-rays were negative and he is listed as day-to-day.
- Joe Beimel pitched a successful bullpen session today.
- The Pirates will face the New York Yankees on Wednesday –the first night game of the spring. Kevin Correia will start for the Bucs, pitching four innings and the Yankees will send Bartolo Colon. The game will start at 7:05 in Tampa, FLA.
On Tuesday morning I arrived at Pirate City just after 9:30 am. It was drizzling throughout the practices and workouts but luckily cleared up in time for the game at 1:05 against the Yankees (I’m hoping for better weather tomorrow so I can get better coverage).
A friend told me that during batting practice, Pedro Alvarez was hitting bombs out of the field –hitting several palm trees. Lyle Overbay joked saying it was “too high” as the ball sailed over his head (major league joke).
Luis Heredia (front), Stetson Allie, Jameson Taillon and other pitchers taking part in some drills.
Chris Leroux throwing in the bullpen.
A group of pitchers (Charlie Morton, Justin Wilson, Brad Lincoln, Mike Crotta, etc.) took part in bunting drills and throws to second base during workouts. They also worked on tagging out the runner at first base.
I took a video of Brad Lincoln and Charlie Morton during drills. You can watch it here.
Be sure to follow me on twitter:(@kristpie) for live game updates and more pictures and info throughout the day.
The Pirates will face the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday at 1:05 PM.
Charlie Morton will be taking the mound against David Price in Port Charlotte in the Grapefruit league opener. Morton will pitch two innings, followed by Brad Lincoln who will also pitch two innings.
This gives the staff a good look at both starters who are in the running for the 5th spot in the rotation.
So what is pitching coach Ray Searage looking for? “All I’m looking for right now is the aggressive approach, first-pitch strikes and attacking the bottom of the zone.”
They will be followed by Chris Resop, Daniel Moskos, Daniel McCutchen and Justin Thomas and Cesar Valdez, who will all pitch one inning each.
Here is the Pirates starting lineup:
Jose Tabata 7
Neil Walker 4
Andrew McCutchen 8
Pedro Alvarez 5
Matt Diaz 9
Lyle Overbay 3
Ryan Doumit DH
Chris Snyder 2
Ronny Cedeno 6
Charlie Morton 1
The Rays starting lineup:
John Jaso 2
Johnny Damon 7
Evan Longoria 5
Manny Ramirez DH
Ben Zobrist 9
BJ Upton 8
Dan Johnson 3
Sean Rodriguez 4
Reid Brignac 6
David Price 1
The Pirates will be facing Ace David Price of the Rays. He went 19-6 with a 2.72 ERA last season.
“The guy on the mound tomorrow can spin it a little bit, he’s got some plus [velocity],” manager Clint Hurdle said on Friday. “We could be behind a little bit. So you just got to wait and show up and find out what’s going to happen.”
The starters will most likely play five innings, two at-bats each.
- Steve Pearce has been getting workouts at third base this year. During the 2010 season, Pearce played five games at third with the Triple-A Indians –the only time he’s played that position since college.
Pearce has been working out at third, right field and first base to become a more utility guy in hopes of making the Pirates roster.
“It definitely is a boost because they see it,” Pearce said. “They see how hard I work. They see I have good hands and footwork. For me, being a guy who’s been in Triple-A in parts of the past four years, this gives me a better chance to stick in the big leagues.”
“It’s been an easy transition because I played (third) in college,” Pearce said. “I’m comfortable over there. I just have to get my reps so it becomes a little bit easier getting reads on hops and stuff like that.”
- Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated and MLB Network reports that the Pirates offered Carl Pavano two years/ $13 million this offseason before he decided to re-sign with the Minnesota Twins.
Charlie Morton will be starting on Saturday against the Tampa Bay Rays David Price in Port Charlotte in the Grapefruit league opener. Morton will pitch two innings, followed by Brad Lincoln who will also pitch two innings.
This gives the staff a good look at both starters who are in the running for the 5th spot in the rotation.
They will be followed by Chris Resop, Daniel Moskos, Daniel McCutchen and Justin Thomas/Cesar Valdez
- Kevin Correia will start at McKechnie Field on Sunday against James Shields.
- On Monday it is a split squad; Bryan Morris will start for the Pirates against the Rays in Port Charlotte. The Bucs will face the Baltimore Orioles in Bradenton but the starters have not yet been announced.
- Jose Ascanio missed workouts again on Wednesday with tightness in his right elbow. He’s listed as day-to-day.
- Scott Olsen threw on flat ground. He is still sidelined with a left hamstring strain.
- Thursday will be the last workout held at Pirate City. Camp will be relocated to McKechnie Field.
“We still have much work to do,” Hurdle said. “But at this point, we’ve covered what we wanted to cover.” Hurdle said more team fundamentals and specialty defenses will be added to the mix in the next few days. We’ll be ready to roll on Saturday.”
- Pitchers threw a session of live batting practice to the players on Wednesday. They included: Jeff Karstens, Charlie Morton, Daniel Moskos, Sean Gallagher, Brad Lincoln and Brian Burres.
- Manager Clint Hurdle is very happy with what he’s seen so far from the Pirates four locked starters Kevin Correia, Ross Ohlendorf, James McDonald and Paul Maholm.
“I’m seeing the things that I want to see out of the guys that we already have lined up in the starting rotation,” Hurdle said. “There are a number of other guys who are throwing well through this period. They are all working extremely hard. That’s the thing I’m most optimistic about.”
Baseball America released its list of Top 100 prospects on Wednesday. Three Pirates made the list: Jameson Taillon (No. 11), Tony Sanchez (No. 46) and Stetson Allie (No. 79) .
Lyle Overbay takes part in the annual sliding drill (photo BucsInsider)
Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington chatted with Jim Duquette and Jody McDonald of MLB Network radio’s Baseball Today on Sunday. He discussed: Clint Hurdle’s energy, the impact by the new Veterans, the closers role, young prospects who could make their debuts, and a possible long term extension with Andrew McCutchen.
On Clint Hurdle’s energy: “It’s great to know that we got Clint leading this group and the excitement, the enthusiasm, knowledge, the passion, and the intensity he brings, it’s going to be different for our players. We felt like we needed a new voice, new direction and not only with Clint but with our staff. We got a great staff in place. Our guys are excited. They are looking forward to this year. Looking forward to surprising some people.”
On the reason Huntington sough out Veterans Matt Daiz and Lyle Overbay: “Obviously, coming off a tough season, we wanted to get better. We knew we needed to upgrade our rotation, try to upgrade our bullpen, wanted some offensive ability. We wanted to improve our defense. When you win 57 games you pretty much need to improve everywhere. We had a lot of great young players who we’re excited about. This group of 25 and under both at the major league level and through our system is going to be the foundation of our future success. We are hoping we can have some current success. Guys like [Kevin] Correia, [Scott] Olsen, can add some veteran presence to our rotation. We got some guys that are competing to make our bullpen whether, it’s [Joe] Beimel or [Jose] Veras, that can help out [Joel] Hanrahan and [Evan] Meek, who were so good for us last year. Overbay, we upgrade defensively at first base with Garrett Jones in a platoon situation in right field…We put Garret in a position to be successful. Then we added Matt Diaz and all of a sudden we have a very productive right field…You talk to the people that were around that Atlanta [Braves] club, whether it’s front office people, people in the dugout, people around that club, Matt was one of their leaders last year. Lyle is a constant professional. And we needed to help Neil Walker and Jose Tabata and Andrew McCutchen, take some of the pressure off them. Let them go play and provide some of that veteran leadership to help them mature both on the field and off.”
On what Huntington is looking for this spring, compared to last: “I think our guys believe that we’re ready to start taking a huge step forward. In the past we hoped. And we kind of looked around and wondered who the guy was, that was going to put the team on his back and carry it. Now, we got a handful of guys that are capable of doing that…Talking with our guys, reading their quotes in the papers, they believe we can take a huge step forward this year. Clint’s only going to foster that. Our staff is only going to help that. There’s no question; we need to take a big step forward this year.”
On if there is an open competition between Hanrahan and Meek for the closers role at spring training: “We are going to go with one guy. We have not announced it publicly first. We honestly spent more time trying to see if there was a veteran closer, as we have with Octavio Dotel last year. That would come in here and close out some games, and allow Clint to use meek and Hanrahan anywhere through the sixth through the eighth. That worked out really well for us…We weren’t able to do that. Our energy and our focus has been on preparing for spring training. It’s been on trying to recruit some guys to try to come in here and step forward. We will meet as a staff, Clint, and Ray Searage and I will sit down and we will identify who is going to be our closer. No it won’t be an open competition at spring training. It’s too tough…It’s not like we got a bad choice. Whichever guy we go with, we believe can close games at the major league level and believe will do a nice job for us…We will commit to somebody and over an extended period of time and they will get the opportunity to show us that they can hold the job. The other guy is going to be getting big outs for us in the seventh or the eighth inning.”
On what young prospects could make their debuts this year: “Any of that rotation that was in Double-A last year that led that club to the Eastern League Championship. Whether it’s Rudy Owens, Justin Wilson, or Bryan Morris, Jeff Locke, there may be some of the guys out of the bullpen that get here quicker. Danny Moskos has great stuff from the left side, we just got to build that confidence that allows him to feel like his stuff can compete. There may be a couple guys that kind of surprise some people. Position player wise, there are some guys moving up from that group. Gorkys Hernandez, Andrew Lambo that are probably a little ways away. There is a good wave of talent coming through…If those guys don’t show up instantaneously, it’s not Sidney Crosby or Lebron James, that show up at the highest level on the day that they sign. It takes years. For Pedro Alvarez to get here in essentially in two calendar years is quick decent. We are looking forward to that next group of guys from the ’08 draft and ’08 signing class getting here.”
On Chris Snyder’s key to getting back to past years: “We traded for Chris to help our pitching staff. To stabilize the game calling, to stabilize our young starters, to help them get through tough innings, to help them get through tough outings. Whether it was the pitching coach change or Chris Synder traded for in late July, it did that. Our starting pitchers really threw the ball much better in August and September…He’s excited to get a full offseason of workouts. He’s coming, from what we’ve been told, in very good shape….In last offseason, his offseason was impacted by the back surgery and this is his first real healthy offseason in a while. He’s fired up to come in and help us.”
On potentially doing a long term deal with Andrew McCutchen: “They key to any of those situations is; One: the club wants it to happen, and we do. Two: the player wanting it to happen and that doesn’t always happen. Contracts take a willingness to share a risk of these type of situations. In some cases the club isn’t willing to take on that risk and other cases the player isn’t willing to compromise his potential future earnings value. He’s not interested in the security, he’d rather go out and see how much he can make year in and year out. Or, he doesn’t feel it’s the right time…It is something we absolutely intend to do. But the only way these deals get done is if two sides are interested in it.”
On what starter needs to step up this year: “…We need a multitude of guys to step forward. We need Paul Maholm to do what Paul Maholm did, whether it’s in ’08 or at least in ’09 and not what he did in ’10…Kevin Correia, we are looking forward for him to bounce back two what he was in ’09 given a very tough 2010 season both on and off the field. Charlie Morton has got tremendous stuff, yeah we need Charlie to take a step up. We need Ross Ohlendorf to stay healthy the whole year. We need to give him some run support. James McDonald. Can he do what he did for us the last two months of the season? Can he do that over the course of the season? Scott Olsen. Can we get that stuff to play on a consistent basis and get him back healthy. Can we get Brad Lincoln back to where he was? The nice part is, here comes that Owens, Wilson, Locke, Morris group that if we have some struggles, we’ve got some depth. Jeff Karstens did a nice job through five innings, as pretty much as anybody in baseball, just seemed to hit a wall in that sixth and seventh inning. The reality is, there isn’t just one person that needs to step forward for us to go where we believe we can go. We are going to need a couple guys to step up.”
ESPN writer Jayson Stark graded the National League Central on Tuesday and gave the Pirates a C+. Here is his thoughts on the Bucs offseason moves.
BIGGEST ADDITIONS: Lyle Overbay, Matt Diaz, Kevin Correia, Scott Olsen, Garrett Atkins, Joe Beimel, manager Clint Hurdle.
BIGGEST SUBTRACTIONS: Zach Duke, Lastings Milledge, Chan Ho Park, manager John Russell.
The task of making the Pirates respectable now falls to Clint Hurdle.
Look, it’s all relative. You don’t evaluate a Pirates offseason by the same standards you use to evaluate, say, a Yankees offseason, just the way a good year for Joe’s Computer Repair Shop isn’t quite the same thing as a good year for, say, Microsoft. So judged against what the Pirates were attempting to do, they did OK.
Jorge De la Rosa and Carl Pavano — both of whom they chased — would have been better rotation upgrades than Correia and Olsen. But Overbay, while he’s not exactly Adrian Gonzalez, should be an improvement over last year’s first-base hodgepodge. Diaz is a career .301/.350/.456 hitter. And there are potential bargains in their nonroster free-agent crop (Beimel, Atkins, Jose Veras, Fernando Nieve, Josh Fields).
Then there’s Hurdle, who will represent about as dramatic a change in the manager’s office, when you compare him with the soft-spoken Russell, as this team could have hired. So while it would be a monumental upset if this turns into the year the Buccos climb above Mount .500, they at least inched northward.
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)
- President Frank Coonelly spoke out on the success of Piratefest, which set a new record in attendance –16,839.
“Coming off an extremely successful caravan, the fan enthusiasm for Pirates baseball all weekend long has been tremendous,” Pirates president Frank Coonelly said. “The excitement for the addition of Clint Hurdle and our young core of players was evident with the record turnout. With two weeks before pitchers and catchers report, our players are eager to get the season underway. The entire organization is energized by the incredible passion expressed by our fans over the last week and we are determined to reward that passion with the way we play the game in 2011.”
- Single game tickets went on sale Saturday. The 2011 home opener on April 7th against the Colorado Rockies as well as the interleague series against the Boston Red Sox are limited to single seats and standing room only.
- Charlie Morton will no longer be wearing No. 37, that number will be worn by first baseman Lyle Overbay. Morton was wearing his new No. 50 jersey this weekend at Piratefest.
- Ross Ohlendorf is ready for spring training and to bounce back from last season.
“I am fully recovered and feeling great,” Ohlendorf said. “My throwing, right now, is significantly better than it was a year ago at this time.
“I didn’t have a very good spring training [last year] and I feel like I will be much stronger out of the gate [this season].”
- Kevin Correia explains his decision on why he signed with the Pirates.
“I liked the opportunity to go somewhere where I felt like I could make a difference,” he said. “I was looking for a certain situation. I wanted to be excited about baseball, I wanted to be a part of something that I knew was going in the right direction and I could be a big part of that.”
- 14 days until Pitchers and Catchers report for spring training in Bradenton, FL.
- The Pirates have not yet officially announced the deal with left-hander Joe Beimel. General Manager Neal Huntington said, “We’re still working through some things.” But sources claim the contract is a minor league deal with a spring training invite.
Beimel was reported to have offers from several clubs, including a two-year deal, but turned them down to play in Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania native) and to work with Manager Clint Hurdle.
- Owner Bob Nutting is happy with the moves so far this offseason and especially the work from Manager Clint Hurdle.
“We addressed clear needs on the field and a clear need in the clubhouse,” Nutting said. “We were able to strategically put in pieces of talent — there’s certainly an upgrade at first base [with Lyle Overbay] and an opportunity for Garrett [Jones] in right field. But the real impact we’re going to see is a cultural change in the clubhouse. We’re simply not going to accept anything less than a top performance and a focus on winning. More than anything else, that’s what this offseason demonstrated. There were tangible steps taken toward improving this organization through leadership and talent.”
- The Pirates will be holding a 5K race on Saturday April 9th that will take place on the North Shore.
The run will start on Federal street with PNC Park’s home plate being the finish line.
To register and/or for more details, click here.
Garrett Jones has a different role going into the 2011 season. After starting 106 games at first base, 46 in right field for the Bucs last season, he will be platooning in right field with Matt Diaz.
“I guess you can say it is kind of a demotion for me, not being in the lineup every day,” Jones said. “It is just going to be who is hitting, and maybe, for now, there isn’t an everyday guy out there, but it is my goal to make my way back into being that everyday guy. The way you do that is that you hit and you make them put you in there. That’s the ultimate challenge for me and, really, it is up to me to have it not be a choice for them. The way I do that is hit.”
“I’m going to try to work my way into being in there every day,” Jones said. “All I can do is do my part and play hard. All I can worry about is doing my job, helping this team win. If that is a lefty-righty thing, that is what it is.”
Despite getting less playing time this season, Jones work ethic has not changed.
“Garrett said he is willing to do whatever he needs to do because he wants to play,” Pirates general manager Neal Huntington said. “He knows, right now, he is going to be our right fielder against right-handed pitching, that is his role. But, there is always a chance to be more depending on how some other things go.”