Results tagged ‘ spring training ’
The Pirates won their final game at McKechnie Field this season on Sunday in walk-off fashion against the Tampa Bay Rays, 5-4.
Rays’ Daniel Mayora’s throwing error in the bottom of the ninth allowed infielder Josh Rodriguez to score the game winning run.
Left-hander Paul Maholm started his final game of the spring against fellow Southpaw David Price.
Maholm allowed three runs on five hits with one walk and five strikeouts over five innings. Maholm has allowed just five walks this spring while striking out 18 over 25 innings.
Maholm told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I felt a lot more comfortable pitching in. I think as far as pitch counts go, I got to 96 [mph] last time, and I’d say I threw about 70-75 [mph] today. I feel good. I’m just ready go into the cold stuff and see what we can do.”
Kelly Shoppach homered off Maholm in the 2nd inning to the give the Tampa Bay Rays a 1-0 lead.
The Bucs tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the third when Andrew McCutchen grounded out to short, scoring second baseman Neil Walker.
Maholm gave up his second home run of the game in the 5th, a left field solo shot by Ben Zobrist. Reid Brignac singled to right field to tack on another run, giving the Rays a 3-1 lead.
Jose Tabata hit his first home run of the spring in the bottom of the 5th to the pull the Bucs within one run.
The Pirates took the lead in the 6th inning. Ryan Doumit hit a single scoring Matt Diaz and Pedro Alvarez.
Chris Leroux, who is fighting for one of the final spots in the bullpen, allowed the game tying run in the 9th, a solo home run to John Jaso.
Josh Rodriguez drew a walk and advanced to second on Jose Tabata’s fielders choice. Rodriguez came in to score the walk-off run after Mayora threw wide to first base.
- Joel Hanrahan pitched two perfect innings while striking out three. It marked the first time this spring that the Bucs closer pitched multiple innings.
- The Pirates will face the Minnesota Twins on Monday for the final game of the spring. Right-hander Jeff Karstens will start for the Pirates against Left-hander Francisco Liriano.
- Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that the entire club will travel for the road game and fly into Philly afterwards. The Pirates face the Phillies for two exhibition games before the season kicks off in Chicago on April 1st.
- Chris Snyder said he back is feeling better and expects to be the starting catcher for opening day.
Snyder told Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, “I could play today if I had to. “I’ve been through way worse with my back in 2009.”
General Manager Neal Huntington told Biertempfel of the Tribune, If he’s not ready to catch back-to-back games, we’re either going to carry a third catcher as protection or we’re going to look at the (disabled list).
- Biertempfel of the Tribune also reports that left-hander Joe Beimel threw 30 pitches off a mound on Sunday and was pain free. Biemel (elbow) is expect to be with the team sometime in April.
The Pirates will face the Tampa Bay Rays in Bradenton, Fla., today at 1:05 pm. It is the last game at McKechnie Field this spring.
Left-hander Paul Maholm will start for the Bucs against the Rays David Price.
- Steve Pearce, who will be on the Pirates opening day roster for the first time in his career, is “humbled” to make the team. Pearce told Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, “I’ve been humbled. In ’08, I really struggled. I tried to repeat that (previous) year. When things weren’t going my way, it was very frustrating. I’ve been humbled and it’s made me work a lot harder. Even though my numbers haven’t been as (good) as they were in ’07, I think I’ve developed as a baseball player. I feel like I’m a better hitter. I’ve learned how to drive the ball the other way. I’m taking pitches, walking and improving my on-base percentage.”
- Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that Catcher Chris Snyder was feeling better on Sunday (He was scratched prior to yesterday’s game).
Snyder received treatment today and additional exercises in the whirlpool.
- Right-hander Jeff Karstens will pitch against the Minnesota Twins on Monday, the final spring game of the season.
Lineup: Tabata LF, Walker 2B, McCutchen CF, Overbay 1B, Diaz RF, Alvarez 3B, Doumit C, Cedeno SS, Maholm LHP
Pitchers: Maholm, Hanrahan, Leroux
Lineup: Upton CF, Damon LF, Longoria 3B, Shoppach C, Zobrist RF, Rodriguez 2B, Johnson 1B, Johnson DH, Brignac SS
Pack your bags: The Pirates equipment truck departs today for Pittsburgh.
*Photo credit: @BucsInsider
Despite allowing a two-run home run to Third baseman Alex Rodriguez in the 1st inning, right-hander Kevin Correia was solid in the Pirates 4-2 loss to the New York Yankees in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday afternoon.
Correia allowed three runs on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts. It was the first time this spring he pitched into the sixth inning. Correia threw 92 pitches (59 for strikes).
Correia told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I thought it was definitely my best outing in spring. I felt strong the whole time. You want your last Spring Training outing to be good. You don’t want to go into the season thinking about how you didn’t pitch well the time before. I felt pretty good about this one.”
Manager Clint Hurdle told Langosch of MLB.com, “I thought he got stronger as he went on. He expects a lot of himself. He never shuts himself down on an inning or an outing. He takes a lot of pride in getting the ball and pitching deep and getting as many innings as he can get. I thought it was a very good way for him to finish up.”
Correia is set to be the opening day starter on April 1st against the Cubs in Chicago.
The Pirates put one run on the board in the 2nd inning after a two out double by Jason Jaramillo which scored Pedro Alvarez.
Chris Dickerson extended the Yankees lead to 3-1 after singling to center field, scoring Outfielder Nick Swisher.
The Bucs brought the game to within one run after second baseman Neil Walker hit a sac fly to score Jose Tabata.
In the 8th inning, Mike Crotta gave up his first earned run this spring, a RBI single by Austin Krum giving the Yankees a 4-2 lead. Crotta’s scoreless inning streak lasted 10.1 innings.
Hurdle told Biertempfel of the Tribune, “He’s pitching out of the bullpen now and that’s not something he did last year. He’s a big guy (6-feet-6, 235 pounds), he repeats his delivery pretty well, he’s got good downhill plane. It’s hard sink, mid-90s mph sink and he’s added a complementary breaking ball. And he’s pounded the strike zone. Those things are always going to work. We’ll see how he finishes it off, but he has done everything he could possibly do to build his confidence and let us know that maybe we should give him an opportunity, and possibly sooner than later.”
- Manager Clint Hurdle announced earlier today that Andrew McCutchen will bat third in the lineup this year. Jose Tabata will lead off for the Bucs with Pedro Alvarez batting fifth (read more here).
- James McDonald (left side) threw a successful three inning game against the Yankees Triple-A team today. He reported to feel fine afterwards (read more here).
- Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune reports that Pirates No. 1 prospect, Jameson Taillon threw three scoreless innings allowing three hits against the Yankees High-A team.
- The Pirates have lost five games in a row. Are the losses in spring training really important, or does it effect the team?
Hurdle told Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, “We play every game to win. But if we don’t, we don’t. When we start the season, we’re not going to have any. We just haven’t played complete games for the last 10-11 games. You’ve got to throw a complete package out there. I’ll be more concerned when we’re running our regular team out there. We’ve been trying to take a very good inventory of all our players this spring and challenging guys in different situations. Winning’s always the intent, but the focus will shift to a higher degree of that once the season starts.”
Right-hander James McDonald pitched three innings against the New York Yankees Triple-A team on Saturday.
McDonald threw 44 pitches (28 for strikes) allowing one run on four hits with three strikeouts.
This marked the first time McDonald threw since March 11th. He has been sidelined with left side soreness.
McDonald reported afterwards that he felt fine.
McDonald told Jenifer Langosh of MLB.com, “I still need to build a little more stamina. It’s not fair for me to go three innings and leave the bullpen hanging.”
McDonald is scheduled to stay in Florida when the team travels to Philadelphia for two exhibition games and pitch in a minor league game on March 31st. He will extend himself out to five innings, or 80 pitches.
*Photo credit: CBS Pittsburgh
Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle announced on Saturday that Andrew McCutchen will bat third this season with Jose Tabata leading off.
Saturday’s lineup against the Yankees is close to what you will expect to see this season.
Neil Walker will bat second, Lyle Overbay will bat in cleanup with Pedro Alvarez batting fifth. Matt Diaz/Garrett Jones (depending on righty/lefty pitcher) will bat sixth and Ronny Cedeno hitting seventh. The catcher batting eight with the pitcher hitting ninth.
Many expected Alvarez to bat fourth this year, but Manager Clint Hurdle explained his reasoning. Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I think right now it just sets us up best. Pedro has a lot on his plate right now, and I think Overbay — at least with the spring he’s had — his confidence is good. We’ll start that way and see where it takes us.”
Expect Alvarez to be bumped up eventually. In just his first full season, batting him fifth takes a lot of pressure off of him.
What may shock most fans is that McCutchen, who swiped 33 bags last year, will be batting third, not leadoff.
McCutchen says his approach at the plate will be no different where in the lineup he bats.
McCutchen told Langosch of MLB.com, “It’s not like I’m an Albert Pujols that was a leadoff guy. That would be a big deal. I’m a guy that can do a lot. I can bring a lot to the plate. I can hit first. I can hit third. It’s not really a big deal.
“The sky is the limit from here. Run production should go up, and hopefully everything else will be able to go up as well. It really doesn’t matter where I’m hitting at. I’m going to be comfortable hitting there.”
Tabata is looking forward to leading off for the Bucs this year.
Tabata told Langosch of MLB.com, “I love it,” Tabata said of the opportunity to lead off. “I can walk. I can score more runs. I can steal more bases. I can do more things.”
*Photo credit: Pittsburgh-Post Gazette
The Pirates will face the New York Yankees in Tampa, Fla., at 1:05 pm. The game will broadcast on FSN Pittsburgh (for the last time before it transitions into ROOT Sports).
Right-hand pitcher Kevin Corriea will face left-hander Manny Bauelos.
- Chris Snyder was scratched from the lineup today with a stiff back. Snyder missed two weeks due to the injury. He caught against the Orioles on Thursday night for the first time since being sidelined and it was reported that he was sore on Saturday.
Snyder told Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, “Maybe I did a little too much, too soon. We’re going to have to see (about the severity), come next week. I couldn’t tell you right now.”
Just two spring training games remain, and two exhibition games in Philadelphia before the season starts on April 1st. Snyder being out could change the pitching plans.
Manager Clint Hurdle told Biertempfel of the Tribune, “It could have an impact on our catching situation. We need to re-evaluate and revisit what the issues are. For it to happen again after just catching a night game … we’ll see. It definitely could jeopardize what we do with the roster and who goes with us.”
Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that if Snyder is out for the beginning of the year, Ryan Doumit will be the opening day catcher with Jason Jaramillo as the backup.
Jaramillo will replace Snyder in the lineup this afternoon.
- Earlier this morning, the Pirates cut four players from camp: Left-hander Brian Burres, Infielder Andy Marte, Catcher Dusty Brown and Infielder/Outfielder Corey Wimberley (read more here).
With Marte cut from big league camp, Steve Pearce makes the Pirates opening day roster for the first time in his career (read more here).
- James McDonald is scheduled to pitch in a minor league game today in Tampa against the Yankees Triple-A team. This marks McDonald’s first outing since March 11th. The Pirates would like him to throw about 50 pitches.
Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that If for some reason McDonald is not ready to start on April 6th, Jeff Karstens would be asked to spot start in the rotation. If not, Karstens will remain as the long inning relief pitcher in the ‘pen.
- Three relievers remain for two final spots in the bullpen. Lefty Garrett Olson and Right-handers Mike Crotta and Chris Leroux.
- On Friday’s edition of Baseball tonight, Buster Olney discussed what must go right and what could go wrong for all 30 major league teams. Here is what he had to say about the Bucs:
Olney: “For the Pittsburgh Pirates. What must go right? The rising group of talent, positions players. Andrew McCutchen, Pedro Alvarez, Jose Tabata must continue to grow. You know what? Scouts really like the high ceiling players they’re putting together.
Now, what could go wrong for the Pirates? The rotation appears to be thin again. This torpedo, the Pirates went 57-105 last season. Neal Huntington, their General Manager, is in the last year of his contract. They are not committed to him long term.”
Lineup: Tabata LF, Walker 2B, McCutchen CF, Overbay 1B, Alvarez 3B, Jones RF, Cedeno SS, Jaramillo C, Correia RHP
Pitchers: Correia, Crotta, Veras
Lineup: Gardner CF, Jeter SS, Teixeira 1B, Rodriguez 3B, Swisher RF, Posada DH, Dickerson LF, Nunez 2B, Romine C
Pitchers: Bauelos, TBA
The Pirates reassign Infielders Andy Marte and Corey Wimberly, Left-hand pitcher Brian Burres and Catcher Dusty Brown to minor league camp on Saturday morning.
Marte signed a minor league contract with the Pirates this offseason. Once a highly regarded prospect, he was ranked by Baseball America as one of the top 15 from 2004-2006.
Marte, 27, hit .229 with five home runs and 19 RBI in 170 at-bats with the Cleveland Indians in 2010.
This spring Marte batted .364 with six doubles, five RBI, five walks and six runs scored.
Wimberly was acquired by the Oakland Athletics’ in exchange for right-handed pitcher Ryan Kelly in late December.
Wimberly, 27, hit .284 with three home runs, 57 RBI in 135 games for the A’s Triple-A team in 2010. Wimberly stole 56 bases last season, 259 bags in 563 career games.
This spring he hit .212 with two RBI, six walks and stole four bases in 21 games.
Burres signed a minor league contract this offseason with the Pirates.
Burres went 4-5 with a 4.99 ERA in 13 starts (20 appearances) with the Pirates last season. In his final seven games, Burres had a 1.89 ERA.
This spring Burres had a nine scoreless inning streak. He allowed six runs on 15 hits over 14.0 innings with five walks and seven strikeouts.
Brown signed a minor league contract this offseason with the Pirates.
Brown, 28, spent the majority of the last three seasons catching with the Red Sox’s Triple-A team. During 2010, he batted .218 with 19 doubles and seven homers.
This spring Brown batted .321 with one double, four RBI in 28 at-bats.
Steve Pearce has won the backup corner infielder position according to Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune.
Pearce recently eliminated his leg kick from his swing in hopes it would help him earn him a bench spot. Looks like the adjustment payed off.
This spring Pearce batted .283 with five doubles and three RBI in 46 at-bats.
Pearce told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I’ve surprised myself a little bit, honestly. Going over to third after not having played for so long, it came naturally. In the outfield, I’m moving a lot better. I’ve felt good everywhere they’ve moved me. I think I have exceeded expectations.”
Although the Pirates have not yet made anything official, just one man stands in for the job. Garrett Atkins (released), Andy Marte and Josh Fields (reassigned to minor league camp) were battling for the backup corner infielder position.
Pearce also has the ability to play the corner outfield positions as well. This will mark the first time in his career he has made the opening day roster.
With Burres cut from camp, you would assume that Garrett Olson will be in the Pirates bullpen, he is the only lefty remaining.
That leaves Right-handers Chris Leroux and Mike Crotta fighting for the final spot in the ‘pen.
The Pirates still have not determined whether they will keep a third catcher this season. It all depends on the future of Ryan Doumit (will he be traded or will he be used just as a bench guy). Jason Jaramillo and John Bowker are final two competing for a bench spot.
The are 32 players left at camp.
*Photo credit: Derick Hingle
Charlie Morton had his first bad outing of the spring in the Bucs 9-5 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday in Port Charlotte, Fla.
Morton allowed five runs on five hits with three walks and two strikeouts over five innings. His 1.29 ERA is no more, as it jumped to 3.32.
Morton told Rob Biertempfel of the tribune, “Walks and hit batters,” Morton said with a frown.
“What’s troubling about today is I kept missing with my sinker in and wasn’t making adjustments. I just couldn’t get a good feel for it. Instead of concentrating between the knees, trying to get it down there over the plate, I was trying to pick with it in, trying to get him to ground out to third.”
Pedro Ciriaco showed off his speed in the first, with a lead off single off of Jeff Neimann. He then quickly swiped second base. Ryan Doumit hit his fourth double of the spring to give the Pirates a 1-0 lead.
The Rays defense struggled in the 2nd. A bad throw by Dan Johnson advanced Matt Diaz to third base and then scored on a wild pitch by Neimann. Andy Marte doubled and was driven home by Charlie Morton, who hit a soft fly ball to left, putting the Bucs up 3-0.
Morton ran into trouble in the bottom of the 2nd. Morton hit Kelly Shoppach to load the bases with no outs. Sam Fuld drove in two with a double and Ben Zobrist hit a sac fly to tie the game at 3.
The Bucs battled back in the 4th, putting two runs on the board off of a single by Josh Rodriguez.
There was more trouble in the 5th for right-hander Charlie Morton as he had the bases loaded with no outs for the second time in the game. Morton escaped the inning with just two runs scoring –an Evan Longoria hit by pitch and a walk to Manny Ramirez — which tied the game at 5.
Joel Hanrahan allowed back-to-back walks and Justin Ruggiano took advantage of it by hitting a single to give the Rays a 7-5 edge.
The Rays tacked on two more runs off of Chris Resop in the 8th for a 9-5 lead, and went on to win by that score.
- Andy Marte, who is battling for a corner infield position, went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and a double.
- The Pirates stole four bases today. They have 25 steals this spring –last year they had just 16. The San Diego Padres lead the leagues with 36.
- Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that James McDonald (left side) is scheduled to pitch in a Minor League game at Pirate City on Saturday. He will throw about 50 pitches in the outing.
Brad Lincoln (right arm contusion) is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday. Lincoln threw from 120 feet today and felt fine afterwards.
- Biertempfel of the Trib reports, Right-hander Jose Ascanio threw 24 pitches in one inning of work today during a minor league game at Pirate City.
- The Pirates will face the New York Yankees in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday at 1:05. The game will be broadcasted on FSN Pittsburgh. Kevin Correia will start for the Bucs.
As it was reported earlier, Joe Beimel will not start the season with the club. Beimel (left elbow) threw a bullpen session on Thursday without issue and is scheduled to throw again on Sunday. He says he is 100 percent healthy but needs time to get into game shape.
Beimel told Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, “I started looking at the calendar and realized it was going to be pretty hard to do,” Beimel said. “I’m not going to go out there if all my stuff isn’t working. I don’t want to have to rush to get ready for a date that doesn’t really mean anything. It is Opening Day, but I’m looking to be healthy for the entire season. I think this will work out to be best for myself and for the team.”
Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that Beimel will remain in Florida when the team heads to Philadelphia for two exhibition games. He will continue to get work in minor league games. If Beimel is not ready by April 7th, when the minor league season starts, he could join one of the Pirates minor league affiliates to get work there.
Although the team has not officially announced who will make the ‘pen, Manager Clint Hurdle said there are some relievers who are “definitively in.”
Joel Hanrahan has been named the closer and Evan Meek was named the set-up man. Long reliever Jeff Karstens, Chris Resop and Veteran Jose Veras are most certainty in the bullpen as well.
With Beimel out of the mix, Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports the following relievers are in the mix for the two open bullpen spots: Left-handers Garrett Olson and Brian Burres, Chris Leroux and Rookie Mike Crotta.
Olson has made two appearances with the Pirates since being acquired from Seattle. He’s allowed three runs on three hits over two innings with two walks and one strike out.
Burres has made five appearances this spring (two starts). He’s allowed six runs on 15 hits over 14 innings with five walks and seven strikeouts.
Leroux has allowed four runs on 10 hits over 8.2 innings with three walks and two strikeouts.
Crotta has not allowed an earned run this spring (10.1 innings). He’s allowed just four hits with one walk and three strikeouts.
The Pirates will face the Tampa Bay Rays in Port Charlotte today at 1:05. You can listen to the free webcast here.
Charlie Morton will start for the Pirates and throw about 80 pitches. He will face right-hand pitcher Jeff Neimann. Joel Hanrahan and Jose Veras are also scheduled to pitch.
- Morton, who was named into the Bucs rotation on Thursday, told Langosch of MLB.com, “I feel different from last year in the sense that I feel more confident going into the season,” Morton said. “I think there were some questions last year in my mind going into the season, but I think getting beat up last year kind of taught me a lot of things. I’m really looking forward to getting on the mound. I’m really excited.”
- Earlier this morning, the Pirates cut five players from camp: pitchers Sean Gallagher, Daniel McCutchen and Tyler Yates, Infielder Josh Fields and Catcher Wyatt Torregas (read more here).
- The Pirates also announced that left-hander Joe Beimel will not be ready to start the season with the club. He’s been struggling to get healthy due to left elbow soreness. General Manager Neal Huntington told Colin Dunlap of the Post Gazette, “The goal is to have Joe healthy for not just the start of the season, but for a large portion of the season for us. As it stands now, the best way for that to happen is to approach things this way.
Biemel is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Sunday.
- Brad Lincoln threw from 120 feet today and it was reported that he felt fine afterwards. Lincoln is sidelined due to a right forearm contusion (line drive by Jimmy Rollins).
- Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune tweeted some interesting information today. Pirates source tells me team will NOT release Doumit ($5.1M this yr) if trade cannot be worked out. “He still has offensive value to us.”
Lineup: Ciriaco CF, Rodriguez SS, Bowker LF, Doumit C, Pearce 3B, Diaz RF, Marte 1B, Wimberly 2B, Morton RHP
Pitchers: Morton, Hanrahan, Veras
Lineup: Zobrist RF, Johnson 2B, Longoria 3B, Ramirez DH, Johnson 1B, Upton CF, Shoppach C, Brignac SS, Fuld LF
Pitchers: Neiman, Cruz, Farnsworth, Peralta