Results tagged ‘ steve pearce ’
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
Tuffy Gosewisch, a non-roster invite by the Phillies, hit a walk-off single that scored Erik Kratz for the 3-2 win at Bright house Stadium in Clearwater, Fla., In front of record attendance –10, 828.
Right-hander Chris Leroux entered the ninth inning with a 2-1 lead. He allowed two runs on three hits, picking up the blown save and loss.
Brad Lincoln was pulled after pitching 2.2 innings (he was scheduled to pitch four) after getting hit on the right arm by a line drive hit by Jimmy Rollins (For more on Lincoln’s injury update, read here). Unfortunate timing for the right-hander who is trying to earn the 5th spot in the rotation.
Lincoln, despite only allowing one run on one hit, he did walk two batters –both were lead off walks in the first and third innings.
Brad Lincoln told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “The control issue was a factor today. I never really did get in a groove. My arm felt great; it was just I couldn’t find it out there on the mound. I just battled out there today.”
The Pirates starting lineup today was made up of those fighting to make the club. There wont be many opportunities left to prove themselves, as there are 44 men at big league camp with just two weeks until opening day.
Corey Wimberly went 0-for-4 with a RBI, John Bowker 1-for-4 with a RBI and a double, Steve Pearce went 1-for-3 with a walk. Garrett Atkins and Josh Fields went hitless. Pedro Ciriaco and Andy Marte both went 1-for-3.
Manager Clint Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I think we’re evaluating internally and we’ll keep it internal. We’ll let people know as we do that. Obviously at this point in time, we’re close to having another round-them-up meeting to decide what we’re going to do with our personnel. I like the way everybody has gone about their work. I like that we have been able to move those guys fighting for the bench positions around.”
- During the first inning, Ryan Howard hit a double up the first base line. Jimmy Rollins, who was on second, tried to score home but the relay from Steve Pearce (right) to Pedro Ciriaco (second) to Ryan Doumit was on target. Doumit missed the tag, Rollins missed the plate but Doumit recovered and Rollins was tagged out –that’s a play to see.
- Mike Crotta pitched yet another scoreless inning. He has not allowed a run this spring –8.1 innings and counting.
- Ryan Doumit (strained oblique) caught five innings and went 0-for-2 today. It was reported that he felt fine afterwards.
- MLB Network announced it will air the Pirates version of 30 clubs in 30 days on Tuesday at 11 PM/ET.
- The Pirates claimed Left-hander Garrett Olson from the Seattle Mariners. To make room for him on the 40-man roster, Kevin Hart (shoulder surgery) was placed on the 60-day disabled list (more on Olson here).
- The Pirates will face the Boston Red Sox at McKechnie Field on Saturday. Kevin Correia is scheduled to throw six innings. Josh Beckett will start for the Red Sox. The game will be aired on FSN Pittsburgh.
The Pirates will face the Philadelphia Phillies at 1:05 today in Clearwater, Fla. Brad Lincoln will start and is scheduled to throw four innings against Roy Oswalt.
You can listen to the game on a free webcast on MLB.com, The Pirates radio network (104.7) or 970 ESPN in Pittsburgh.
- Lefty Scott Olsen has not made a great impression so far this spring. After being sidelined for several weeks (left hamstring strain), he has made just two starts –and they were not pretty. Through 2.1 innings, Olsen has allowed four runs (two homers) on five hits with three walks. Opponents are batting .417 against him.
With just two weeks until opening day, what is Olsen focused on?
Scott Olsen told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “There are no goals; it’s all about health. That is the goal. I can’t have any goals unless I’m healthy. After two frustrating years in a row, that’s all I want.”
- Pedro Ciriaco, who’s natural position is at shortstop, started at center field on Thursday. Other than batting practice, Ciriaco didn’t have much time to even prep for it. He even had to use Outfielder Gorkys Hernandez glove.
Ciriaco is competing for a utility job and proving that he could play in Center in a pinch, could really help him land a job with the club.
Pedro Ciriaco told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “I feel pretty good. It was fun. You’ve got to adjust to whatever position you play. In the infield, everything is quicker. In the outfield, I think you’ve got a little bit more time to read the ball. I got one fly ball and one line drive, so it was easy today.”
- Charlie from BucsDugout chatted with Farm Director Kyle Stark while in Bradenton, Fla. For spring training. You can read part one of the interview here.
- Ryan Doumit will be starting today against the Phillies. Doumit (oblique strain) has not played in a spring training game since March 8th. He did go 3-for-4 with a double and a home run during a minor league game on Thursday at Pirate City.
- According to Pat Gallen of Phillies nation, former Bucco Brandon Moss has been cut from big league camp. Moss, who signed a minor league deal with the Phillies this offseason, batted just .167 (3-for-18) with seven strikeouts.
Lineup: Wimberly CF, Bowker LF, Pearce RF, Doumit C, Atkins 3B, Marte 1B, Rodriguez 2B, Ciriaco SS, Lincoln RHP
Pitchers: Lincoln, Resop, Veras, Crotta, Leroux
*As Rob Biertempfel of the Trib pointed out, perhaps a last chance for these players to show Hurdle what they got? Another round of cuts should be happening soon. Doumit is the only “regular” in the lineup and Biertempfel even calls it a “trade showcase”
Lineup: Rollins SS, Victorino CF, Ibanez LF, Howard 1B, Gload RF, Orr 3B, Ruiz C, Martinez 2B, Oswalt RHP
Pitchers: Oswalt, Baez, Romero, Contreras, Madson
The Baltimore Orioles offense pounded the Pirates on Thursday afternoon in Bradenton, Fla., as they combined for 20 hits in the 13-3 loss by the Bucs at McKechnie Field.
Ross Ohlendorf was scheduled to pitch five innings but he outing was cut short due to his high pitch count (he only threw three innings). Ohlendorf allowed six runs on eight hits with two strikeouts. His sinker was effective in the first inning (enduced a double play) and had a 1-2-3 second.
Ohlendorf ran into trouble in the third. He allowed two runs to score before Jose Tabata misplayed a routine fly ball in the sun –It should have been the third out. From there, the O’s rallied. Matt Weiters hit a two-RBI single and Jake Fox hit a two-run homer.
Ross Ohlendorf told Colin Dunlap of the Post Gazette, I feel like I kept the ball down. The results really weren’t that indicative of that. I would have preferred to have thrown more [innings] but I think I should be OK.”
“I would like the results to be good, but I am much more concerned with how I am throwing. … I feel like I made good pitches for the most part.”
Scott Olsen and Joe Beimel (in their second spring appearance) also took a beating.
Olsen allowed three runs on three hits with three walks and a strikeout. Olsen was scheduled to throw two innings but was pulled after 1.1. He issued back-to-back walks and at one point threw six straight balls. Olsen also allowed Jake Fox to homer, his second of the game.
Is there still time for Olsen to be stretched out to be considered for the fifth spot in the rotation? Manager Clint Hurdle told Rob Biertempfel of the Trib, “I don’t know. He very well may be. I can’t say no. I’ll leave the speculation out there for people who want to speculate. We’ll give him the ball again and see where he takes it.”
Beimel allowed three runs on three hits with one walk and one strikeout in the eighth inning.
- Andrew McCutchen has reached base safely in 10 straight games.
- Jason Jaramillo went 1-for-2 with a RBI and a walk. He is 9-for-16 with four doubles, five RBI and three walks (.529 avg).
- Brian Burres pitched four shutout innings in the Pirates ultrasquad game at Pirate City today. He allowed two hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
Brian Burres told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “There are a couple things that I still want to continue to do. But as far as where I am now, I think I’ve done a pretty decent job this spring trying to do the things that I’ve wanted to do.”
Burres has yet to give up a run this spring over nine innings and the opponents are batting just .179 against him.
- Jeff Karstens threw three scoreless innings with six strikeouts and no walks.
- Evan Meek and Fernando Nieve threw scoreless frames as well.
- So far, Paul Maholm and Kevin Correia are the only pitchers to have thrown five-inning starts. The others: Brad Lincoln (four innings scheduled tomorrow), Charlie Morton (four), Ohlendorf (three) and James McDonald (three).
Manager Clint Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “We’ve got work to do. We’re not throwing enough strikes. We don’t have good enough command right now. I have no idea what our pitch count was today, but we threw way too many pitches today. We’d like to see our starters lengthen things out. There is work to be done. That’s what Spring Training is for. That’s why you have the amount of games that you have, and that’s why these starters have to keep building up their pitch counts.”
- Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune reports that Ryan Doumit is scheduled to play against the Phillies on Friday. Doumit (strained oblique) has been sidelined since March 8th.
Doumit went 3-for-4 (double and a homer) in a minor league game today. Manager Clint Hurdle told Biertempfel, “We just needed him to see pitches and make sure he’s getting his swing off with no hesitation.”
- Corey Wimberly, John Bowker, Steve Pearce, Andy Marte, Ryan Doumit, Garrett Atkins, Josh Rodriguez and Pedro Ciriaco will start tomorrow against Philly. The positions have not yet been announced. As Biertempfel points out (Doumit excluded), perhaps a last chance before to show Hurdle what they got? Another round of cuts should be happening soon.
Brad Lincoln (four innings) will get the start against Roy Oswalt. Chris Resop, Jose Veras, Mike Crotta and Chris Leroux will follow.
The Pirates will face the Baltimore Orioles today at 1:05 at McKechnie Field. You can listen to the game on MLB.com
- Ross Ohlendorf is scheduled to pitch five innings against the Baltimore Orioles. Joe Beimel and Scott Olsen will make their second appearances of the spring. Daniel McCutchen and Sean Gallagher will also throw.
- Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune reports that Pedro Ciriaco will start in Center Field at Pirate City in an intrasquad game at 10 am. Steve Pearce will be starting at third base. Jeff Karstens is also now scheduled to start and pitch four innings. Brian Burres was originally scheduled to start. No word as to why he was scratched. Tyler Yates, Fernando Nieve and Evan Meek will follow.
- Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that Steve Pearce has eliminated his leg kick from his swing. Pearce is hoping this adjustment (less movement during at-bats) helps earn him a bench spot.
Steve Pearce told Langosch, “I’ve felt amazing. If I had more at-bats during the season, a leg kick might have been beneficial, because it worked for me last year. But with limited at-bats, I need to limit my movement.”
Pearce is seeing immediate results. Since losing the leg kick last week, he has reached base in six of his last nine at-bats.
Hitting Coach Greg Ritchie told Langosch, “You don’t want to take away what’s natural but you definitely want to be simplified, so things can be maintained very easily. There is a magnitude of things that it’s going to accomplish. He is seeing the ball bigger, eliminating the strikeouts, putting the ball in play and hitting the ball on the money.”
The following pitchers are scheduled to throw on Friday: Brad Lincoln, Chris Resop, Jose Veras, Michael Crotta, Chris Leroux.
Charlie from Bucs Dugout was at Pirate City on Wednesday and he posted this great article of what he saw from the prospects and games. Be sure to check it out.
- Both Jameson Taillon (first round pick in 2010) and Luis Heredia are huge a huge part of the Pirates future. Taillon, although it hasn’t been formally announced, said at Pirate City that he will be starting the season for the West Virginia Power. It hasn’t been announced where Heredia will start the season, but when I spoke to President Frank Coonelly he didn’t rule out the Gulf Coast League.
- Biertempfel also reports that Ryan Doumit (strained oblique) will lead off of every inning in a minor league game this afternoon.
Lineup: Tabata LF, Walker 2B, A. McCutchen CF, Alvarez 3B, Overbay 1B, Diaz RF, Cedeno SS, Jaramillo C, Ohlendorf RHP
Pitchers: Ohlendorf, Beimel, Olsen, D. McCutchen, Gallagher
Lineup: Pie CF, Hardy SS, Reimold LF, Wieters DH, Fox C, Winn RF, Harris 2B, Bell 3B, Snyder 1B
Pitchers: Tillman, Rupe, Accardo
The Pirates will be wearing green hats today in honor of St. Patty’s day. The bases will also be green.
*Photo credit: @BucsInsider
Left-handers Joe Beimel (left forearm soreness) and Scott Olsen (left hamstring strain) finally made their spring debuts on Monday afternoon, each allowing an earned run in the 8-2 loss to the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota, Fla.
Beimel’s outing went well, despite the numbers in the box score. He did allow Jake Fox to hit a solo-home run off his very first pitch (fastball over the plate) but that was his only earned run of the inning. Three runs did score, but two were unearned and he struck out two.
Reliever Joe Beimel told Rob Biertempfel of the Trib, “That was messed up. First pitch of spring and he swings and hits a homer off me. I wasn’t too happy about that.”
It felt amazing,” Beimel said. “It really did. It might not have looked like it but I felt like everything was coming out pretty good. I was missing up a little bit, but for the first outing, I was actually pretty excited about it.”
“I just have to fine-tune things from here,” Beimel said. “I think stuff-wise, I felt like the ball was coming out pretty good. That’s usually what you have to build up to. I think I’m right on track.”
Olsen needed just 11 pitches to get through the eighth inning. He retired the first two batters, then allowed a solo home run to Nick Green. After the homer, Broadcaster Bob Walk said, “That was the furthest ball we’ve seen hit this afternoon. It cleared everything.”
Olsen allowed a triple to Josh Bell before getting out of the inning.
Kevin Correia started for the Pirates. Through five innings he allowed four runs on seven hits with a strikeout. After three great innings, Correia ran into trouble in the fourth. He allowed a RBI single by Markakis, as sac fly hit by Vladi Guerrero and a RBI single by Mark Reynolds. He also even threw a wild pitch.
Starter Kevin Correia told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “The command was good. Everything was pretty good except one inning, when I kind of got a little quick to the plate trying to keep the running game down. I know that’s something that I tend to do when guys get on base, so I need to work on it before the season starts.”
“I’d say I’m two starts away from being ready for a regular-season game,” Correia said. “My pitch count was better today. I threw one less pitch than I did last outing and I went one more inning. The runs are one thing, but I want to stay out there as long as possible. So to get the pitch count down today was one of my main goals.”
- James McDonald will skip a turn in the starting rotation this week. McDonald injured his side while throwing a pitch in the third inning of Friday’s game. The Pirates have not announced the exact injury or the severity of it.
The Bucs did issue a statement on saying that McDonald is feeling better, but they did not say whether he may be at risk to miss any additional starts.
- Charlie Morton today threw four innings (63 pitches) in a minor league camp game at Pirate City. He allowed three runs –all off a home run. Otherwise, it was reported that he was sharp.
- It was a good day for Steve Pearce who hit 2 doubles, 2 runs scored and Jason Jaramillo who had a double and a RBI.
- Evan Meek had a nice bounce back inning of work. He allowed just one hit with no runs or walks with one strikeout.
- Andrew McCutchen proved today that there are no limits to his talent. After Randy Winn hit a solo-home run to center, McCutchen who jumped to try to catch the ball, lost his glove over the wall. With no one around to retrieve it, he took the matter into his own hands and leaped over the wall to get it himself.
Manager Clint Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “He’s got six tools. We saw the sixth tool today.”
- Pedro Ciriaco made an outstanding throw to Alvarez to get Nick Markakis at third base (he was trying to stretch a double into a triple).
He’s got a gun,” Hurdle said. “The arm strength is there. It’s a big arm. And it took a big arm to make that play. That’s one thing we’ve seen from Pedro.”
- The Pirates have an off day on Tuesday. Wednesday Paul Maholm will start against the Toronto Blue Jays. Jeff Karstens, Joel Hanrahan are scheduled to pitch.
Kyle Drabek (son of former Bucco Doug Drabek) will be pitching for the Jays. Former Pirate closer Octavio Dotel is also scheduled to throw.
- The Pirates will face the Baltimore Orioles at 1:05 in Sarasota, Fla. You can watch the game on MLB TV, or listen on MLB.com.
- Kevin Correia will start for the Bucs (pitching five innings) against the O’s Jake Arrieta.
- The Pirates cut 10 players from big league camp this am. You can read more here.
- It was reported that Ryan Doumit (right oblique) was taking dry swings this morning. That’s a good sign for the catcher who has been sidelined since last week. The Pirates will update Doumit’s status on Wednesday.
- Joe Beimel and Scott Olsen will be making their spring debuts today. Each will pitch one inning.
- John Bowker is back in the lineup today. He will be debuting at first base. The Pirates want him to be versatile in case he needs to step in to play there this season. Bowker is having himself a hot spring –batting .333 in 16 at-bats with a double, two homers and four RBI.
Josh Rodriguez was selected by the Pirates first overall in the Rule 5 draft. The infielder is looking to not only make an impression, but for spot on the 25-man with the Bucs.
I was hoping that with the season I put up, I’d opened up some eyes out there,” said Rodriguez, a career .266 hitter with a .356 on-base percentage and .426 slugging percentage in five minor-league seasons. “I think the most surprising part was just being taken No. 1 overall. The Rule 5 draft you usually see a bunch of pitchers go, but not too many position players. So to be taken No. 1 overall was definitely a surprise and definitely made me feel good.”
“We got him for a reason,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “There are people who think highly of him who saw him in the minor-league system last year and as we look to fill that utility spot he’s someone we want to take a long look at. We still have two weeks to evaluate him.”
A great article on why the players and Manager love pitching coach Ray Searage –Pittsburgh Tribune
Lineup: Ciriaco 2B, Bowker 1B, McCutchen CF, Alvarez 3B, Diaz LF, Pearce RF, Rodriguez SS, Jaramillo C, Correia RHP
Pitchers: Correia, Meek, Olsen, Beimel, Crotta
Lineup: Winn, LF, Pie CF, Markakis RF, Guerrero DH, Scott 1B, Reynolds 3B, Wieters C, Andino 2B, Izturis SS
Pitchers: Arrieta, Berken
If Sunday’s 13 strikeouts weren’t bad enough, the Pirates managed to top it on Wednesday night –fanning 16 times in a 4-2 loss to the New York Yankees in Tampa, Fla.
The Pirates have struck out 106 times through 13 spring training games so far but Manager Clint Hurdle isn’t worried.
“I’m not worried,” Hurdle said. “Worried wouldn’t be an appropriate word. I think one of the things you look at is how we’re getting to two strikes. I think we’re getting balls early to hit in the count and we’re not hitting on them.”
“Nobody likes to strike out 16 times,” Hurdle said. “That’s the challenge in front of our guys which has been presented since the beginning of Spring Training. It’s something they’ve got to continue to work at.”
As it was pointed out, The Arizona Diamondbacks have struck out 102 times in 15 games but no other team in the Arizona or Florida Leagues have struck out more than 87 times this spring.
Kevin Correia made his third appearance this spring, allowing three runs on six hits through four innings (65 pitches). He walked three and struck out four.
“I threw a couple of pitches I didn’t really like, but I feel like I’m getting a ground ball when I need to and a strikeout when I need to,” Correia said. “They hit the one ball hard in the first, and everything else, I kind of made a pitch that I wanted, and they got a hit. I think I’m real close. Obviously, there is a lot of work to be done, but we are in early Spring Training. I feel pretty good about where I’m at right now.”
Yankees’ Bartolo Colon struck out the side in the first inning on just 12 pitches (10 for strikes) and allowed two runs on four hits with seven strikeouts through four innings.
Charlie Morton pitched three strong innings –and is really having himself a nice spring. In eight innings he has allowed just two runs.
Pirates beat reporter, Jenifer Langosch said, “Actually, I think it’s fair to call him the favorite [for the 5th spot in the rotation] at this point — both because of what he has done and what Scott Olsen has not been able to do.”
Morton allowed just one run (Andrew Jones homer in the 5th) on two hits with two strikeouts.
“Very aggressive with all of his pitches,” Hurdle said. “I think the comfort is picking up. You’re watching him get on the mound, get set over the mound, get a sign and deliver. There’s not a lot of fidgeting. He’s very confident out there. He’s been very, very aggressive.”
“For the most part I felt pretty aggressive,” Morton said. “I fell behind in some counts, but I managed to stay in those counts and not allow a bunch of baserunners. That’s good. There are some things that I’m working on, but I feel fine. I’m just glad to get out there and compete instead of hanging out in Bradenton like I was all winter.”
Russell Martin hit a solo home run off of Correia in the first inning to take a 1-0 lead early. Steve Pearce hit a sac fly (scoring Matt Diaz) and Chris Snyder hit a RBI single (scoring Garrett Jones) to tie the game at two in the 2nd. The Yankees added two more runs in the third inning. Derek Jeter tripled, Alex Rodriguez singled and Robinson Cano had an RBI single.
- Daniel Moskos, is one of the players most likely moving from Double-A Altoona to Triple-A Indy this year. Pitchers Bryan Morris, Jeff Locke, Tony Watson, Rudy Owens and Michael Crotta; Position players Chase d’Arnaud, Andrew Lambo and Gorkys Hernandez are in the mix to make the jump as well.
“The team last year in Altoona was really good,” said Daniel Moskos, a former first-round pick and Altoona’s closer for most of 2010. “I think it’s almost to the point where there are so many good ballplayers that I don’t know where they are going to put them all. There is a lot of young talent, and it’s really good baseball talent.
“It’s starting to be exciting. You’ve heard management talk about how the focus was on the Minor League system initially, and now the focus is on the Major League team. They’re right, because they’ve got a lot of talent.”
- Andy Marte doubled in his pinch-hit at-bat. Three of his four hits this spring have been doubles.
- Manager Clint Hurdle could have used a designated hitter in the 4-2 loss to the Yankees on Wednesday night, but wants to work the pitchers at the plate –and improve last year’s results (pitchers batted just .089).
If anybody watched our club last year you saw the lack of execution we had from our pitchers,” said Hurdle, who hasn’t used a designated hitter since Saturday. “It was worse than a soft spot in our lineup. So we’ve put the pitcher in play much earlier in the season than they did last year just so they can get acclimated walking up there, digging in, putting down a bunt or swinging the bat, running down the baseline then having to go out and pitch.”
Hitting coach Gregg Ritchie said, Ritchie said. “It’s going to run that pitcher’s pitch count up. It’s going to move a baserunner 90 feet. Every 90 feet we’re one step closer to scoring a run. So if that pitcher can always get in there and move the runner ahead of him 90 feet no matter how he does it — whether it’s a sacrifice bunt, putting the ball in play, drawing a walk — that’s going to give our offense a better opportunity to score runs.”
- Pittsburgh will face the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday at McKechnie Field. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. ET. If you are in the Pittsburgh area, the game will be televised on FSN Pittsburgh.
Paul Maholm will start, (four innings) followed by Joel Hanrahan, Evan Meek, Chris Resop, Jeff Karstens and Tony Watson.
The Pirates will face the New York Yankees tonight at 7:05 in Tampa, FLA. Kevin Correia will start for the Bucs against Bartolo Colon. You can listen to the game here.
- McKechnie Field served as the backdrop for an ESPN and Gillette commercial which was filmed this afternoon with the Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria and ESPN’s Kenny Mayne.
- Steve Pearce, Andy Marte, Josh Fields and Garrett Atkins are all fighting for the one bench spot on the roster. Expect the roster to start dwindling down, one of the four could be getting home soon.
- Former Bucco Brendan Donnelly has decided to retire. He told MLB.com on Tuesday, “I’m pretty grateful for the career I’ve had,” Donnelly says. “I’ve done about everything in baseball that a player can do. I got to the big leagues, won World Series, made an All-Star team, and made a lot of friends along the way.”
Donnelly, 39, was released by the Pirates on July 29 after posting a 5.58 ERA and allowing 26 walks in 30.2 innings.
Donnelly retires with a 32-10 record, 3.22 ERA with 369 strikeouts in 385 1/3 innings.
- Catcher Chris Synder has been working hard this offseason and spring, on both aspects of his game. Snyder batted just .207 combined with both the Diamondbacks and Pirates and committed three errors after being acquired by the Bucs.
“You work on everything in the spring,” Snyder said, “but one thing for me I want to improve on is being a little bit of a more all-around hitter. The last couple years, it’s been kind of all-or-nothing. I’ve hit the ball and driven in some runs, but the average has gone down and the strikeouts have gone up.
“And I’m working on everything behind the plate. Receiving and calling the game, being a little bit more vocal and throwing to the bases more.”
- Speaking of catchers, Ryan Doumit’s fate with the ball club is still up in the air. The Pirates have been actively trying to trade him, and his role with the Pirates is still not determined. There has been speculation that the Bucs may want to have a third catcher (Jason Jaramillo or Dusty Brown).
“We keep trying to puzzle the bench together and we have to figure out how they’re all going to fit,” Huntington said. “… In an ideal world, you probably don’t want to carry a third catcher.”
- The Pirates will face the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday. Paul Maholm will start for the Bucs (four innings), followed by Joel Hanrahan, Evan Meek, Chris Resop, Jeff Karstens and Tony Watson.
- John Bowker did travel with the team to Tampa for tonight’s game but he won’t be swinging the bat until tomorrow. Bowker (sore wrist) should be game ready by Friday.
Pitchers: Correia (4 innings), Morton (3 innings), D. McCutchen, Veras
Lineup: McCutchen CF, D’Arnaud 2B, Alvarez 2B, Diaz LF, Jones RF, Pearce 1B, Snyder C, Ciriaco SS, Correia P
Pitchers: Colon, Banuelos, Soriano, Feliciano, Turpen, Ayala
Lineup: Jeter SS, Martin C, Teixeira 1B, Rodriguez DH, Cano 2B, Jones LF, Chavez 3B, Maxwell RF, Mesa CF
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.