Results tagged ‘ tony watson ’
Right-hander Mike Crotta has quietly had himself a great spring. In eight appearances (10.1 innings), Crotta has not allowed an earned run. He’s held the opponents to just four hits (.114 opp avg) with one walk and three strikeouts.
So just who is Michael Crotta? You may, or may not have heard of the 6’6″ righty.
The 26-year-old spent the 2010 season with both Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis where he went 7-10 with a 4.42 ERA in 28 starts (156.2 innings) combined.
Manager Clint Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com after just two appearances this spring, “He’s definitely got the attention of some people. He’s pitching with purpose.”
Crotta still remains with the big league club but will most likely start the season back at Triple-A.
His future with the Pirates is an interesting one. Crotta is on the 40-man roster, but he will be competing this season with some of the Bucs best starting pitching prospects; Bryan Morris, Rudy Owens, Justin Wilson and Jeff Locke are all either slated to start in Triple-A, or they are not too far behind. Let’s not forget about Aaron Thompson and Tony Watson who can also start. Brad Lincoln, Brian Burres and Daniel McCutchen could all wind up in Indianapolis too.
While he’s not a prospect to keep an eye on (a career 4.61 ERA in five minor league seasons), I’d say his spring stats are more than worthy of some attention.
*Photo credit: Derick Hingle
The Pirates cut 10 players from camp on Monday Morning: Andrew Lambo, Brian Friday, Chase D’Arnaud, Aaron Thompson, Ramon Aguero, Jeff Locke, Tony Watson, Gorkys Hernandez, Alex Presley and Daniel Moskos.
Lambo was reassigned to minor league camp. Expect him to play a corner infield (with first base as a fall back option) with the Triple-A Indians this year. Lambo was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 4th round of the 2007 draft (He was acquired in the Octavio Dotel trade last July). In 26 games with the Altoona Curve, Lambo batted .275 with two homeruns and10 RBI.
Friday was reassigned to minor league camp. He should spent the most of his playing time at second base. Friday was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2007 draft by the Pirates. In 93 games with the Triple-A Indians, the 25-year-old batted .257 with two home runs and 28 RBI.
D’Arnaud was reassigned to minor league camp. He will spend the season playing short, but General Manager Neal Huntington said he will also play some time at third base. D’Arnaud was drafted in the 4th round of the 2008 draft by the Pirates. In 132 games with the Altoona Curve, the 24-year-old batted .247 with 33 doubles, nine triples, six home runs and 48 RBI.
Thompson was optioned to Double-A Altoona. Although he was optioned to the Curve, he could start the season at Triple-A, depending on how the pitching shakes out. Thompson was drafted in the 1st round (22nd overall) by the Florida Marlins in the 2005 draft. The Pirates claimed the lefty off waivers from the Washington Nationals. Last year, combined with Double-A and Triple-A for the Nats, the 24-year-old went 5-13 with a 5.64 ERA in 141.2 innings.
Aguero was optioned to Double-A Altoona. Aguero had an injury plagued 2010 season (elbow soreness and back stiffness) and only pitched in 25 games. He had a 6.14 ERA combined with the High-A Bradenton and Double-A Altoona.
Locke was optioned to Double-A Altoona, but like Thompson could start the season with Triple-A. Locke was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 2nd round of the 2006 draft (He was acquired in the Nate McLouth trade). The 23-year-old went 12-5 with a 3.56 ERA combined with High-A Bradenton and Double-A Altoona last year. He also struck out 139 batters in 144 innings.
Watson was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. The organization is still undecided on if he will be used as a starter or a reliever. Watson was drafted by the Pirates in the 9th round of the 2007 draft. The 25-year-old went 6-4 with a 2.67 ERA in 34 games (nine starts) with Double-A Altoona in 2010.
Hernandez was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis and will be the Indians primary center fielder. Hernandez batted .266 with 11 doubles, two homers, 26 RBI and 10 stolen bases with Double-A Altoona.
Alex Presley was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. Presley will bounce around in the outfield with Hernandez being the teams primary center fielder. Presley was drafted in the 8th round of the 2006 draft. In 136 games (combined with Double-A and Triple-A) last season, the 25-year-old batted .320 with 28 doubles, 13 triples, 12 home runs 85 RBI and 13 stolen bases. Presley also made his major league debut with the Bucs where he batted .261 in 19 games.
Daniel Moskos was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. Although he and Watson were two lefty candidates for the Bucs bullpen, the organization believes they could use more seasoning in the minors before making their debuts. Moskos was drafted in the 1st round (4th overall) of the 2007 draft. He had a 4.14 ERA in 56 games (1.52 ERA with Double-A Altoona) with 61 strikeouts over 58.2 innings. Moskos also picked up 22 saves.
44 players remain at big league camp.
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
- The Pirates travel to Dunedin today to face the Toronto Blue Jays at 1:05.
You can watch the game live for free on MLB.com here
- Injury updates:
Evan Meek is scheduled to throw a bullpen on Friday. Meek has been sidelined with a tight right calf.
Scott Olsen is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday. Olsen has been sidelined with a left hamstring strain.
Joe Beimel will test his arm this am by throwing soft toss at 8:30 am. Beimel’s MRI showed no acute injury on his left forearm.
- Lyle Overbay will be facing his former team (Toronto Blue Jays) for the first time since the Pirates signed him this offseason. Overbay spent five seasons with the Jays.
- The Pirates have been focusing a lot this spring on pick off’s at first base and cutting down on runners stealing bases.
I’ve noticed that most of the pitchers have been throwing to first, trying to keep the runner close and unable to steal –something the Pirates were not so great at last season.
“We have all been working on that stuff a lot down here [at spring training],” Pirates right-handed reliever Chris Resop said of the shorter, quicker delivery to the plate when a runner is on base. “We have to give our catchers a chance. We don’t want to be known as a pitching staff you can run on. Nobody wants that.”
“I think if you look at it, it can get embarrassing,” said left-hander Paul Maholm, who cut down from 15 players stealing off him in 2009 to eight in ’10. “Everyone on the staff, it doesn’t matter if you are a righty or a lefty, you need to do what you can to stop it. You need to just realize that this is something that is important if we want to win ballgames.”
- Pirates President Frank Coonelly chatted with fans on Wednesday. You can read the entire chat transcript here.
If the injury to Joe Beimel is more than what it seems, and Scott Olsen is already not doing all baseball-related activities, are you comfortable with Daniel Moskos and whomever in the lefthanded reliever position?
Coonelly: “We do not believe the injury to Joe will keep him from competing this spring. Scott Olsen is performing baseball activities and has already thrown several bullpens. Scott seems to be well on his way to pitching in games, possibly as early as next week. Daniel Moskos and Tony Watson are two young exciting left hand arms who are in camp and competing for a spot in the bullpen. It’s early, but both have looked strong. Brian Burres is also a veteran lefthander who can pitch out of the pen if he is not in the starting rotation.”
Pitchers: Morton (two or three innings), Lincoln (two), Yates (one), Locke (one or two) and Valdez (one).
Lineup: McCutchen CF, Pearce 1B, Diaz LF, Alvarez DH, Jones RF, Atkins 3B, Cedeno SS, Friday 2B, Jaramillo C
Pitchers: Cecil (Three innings) Followed by Rauch, Villanueva, Richmond, Ray
Lineup: Davis CF, Thames LF, Bautista 3B, Lind DH, Rivera RF, Cooper 1B, Mcdonald SS, Budde C, Diaz 2B
- The Pirates will face the Minnesota Twins at 1:05 today at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Fl.
Ross Ohlendorf will be starting for the Bucs. He will also be making his Grapefruit League debut.
Tony Watson (two innings), Joel Hanrahan (1), Jose Veras (1), Mike Crotta (1) and Chris Leroux (1) will follow.
- The Twins will send left-hander Brian Duensing to the mound. Former Bucco Matt Capps is scheduled to make an appearance.
- Scott Olsen is scheduled to throw on Wednesday. Olsen made a few comments to the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette on Tuesday that had several bloggers and fans mad.
General Manager Neal Huntington said on Sunday that if Olsen (or any of the other pitchers) do not make the 5th starter role, they would be moved to the bullpen –something apparently he believes he is too good for.
“He hasn’t told me that, I don’t know anything about the bullpen, I’m a starter,” Olsen told the Post-Gazette Tuesday.”
They didn’t bring me in here to be a bullpen guy,” Olsen said. “They want to do that, we are going to have to have a conversation about it, and we haven’t had one about it.”
Huntington addressed Olsen’s comments on Tuesday saying, “During our recruitment of Scott, it was our clear belief and his clear belief that he would be given every opportunity to compete for the fifth starter spot. We feel like, not just with him, but for some other pitchers, if they don’t win that spot, the next logical step could be a bullpen role.”
Olsen has a very bad past. Read this post by Rumbunter.
- Joe Beimel had an MRI on Tuesday but the results have not been made available. Beimel was shutdown on Tuesday after suffering tightness in his forearm after a 10 pitch session.
- Today is Pirates Jim Negrych‘s 26th birthday.
- Charlie Morton will pitch the first three innings Thursday against the Blue Jays in Dunedin. Brad Lincoln will pitch two innings, followed by Tyler Yates (one), Jeff Locke (one or two) and Jose Valdez (one).
Revere CF, Plouffe SS, Kubel DH, Valencia 3B, Hughes 2B, Bailey 1B, Dinkelman LF, Holm C, Repko RF
Pitchers: Duensing, Capps, Neshek, Dumatrait, Manship, Hughes
Tabata LF, Wimberly SS, A. McCutchen CF, Alvarez 3B, Walker 2B, Overbay 1B, Pearce DH, Doumit C, Lambo RF
Pitchers: Tony Watson, Joel Hanrahan, Jose Veras, Mike Crotta and Chris Leroux.
Joe Beimel threw his bullpen session on Tuesday, and it did go as well as expected. The Pirates have decided to shut Beimel down after he experienced discomfort in his left forearm after throwing about 10 pitches.
Beimel is expected to have a MRI at 4pm today.
“Things didn’t go great today,” Beimel said. “It’s definitely getting better. I would have liked to have thrown a little more today and I started to feel it so I shut it down. They just want to go and see if there is anything in there. Just talking to the doctors and things like that, they said it shouldn’t be a big deal and that it’s more muscular than anything else. Want to get the MRI to make sure.”
Beimel, who was signed to a minor league contract, was favored to be the late inning lefty reliever from the ‘pen. The Pirates other options of left-handed help would be: Scott Olsen (if healthy and doesn’t make the 5th spot in the rotation). Daniel Moskos and Tony Watson, both of them has no major league experience. Brian Burres and Justin Wilson are both lefty’s, but neither are on the 40-man roster.
“It’s something we’ll address when and if it happens,” Huntington said. “We’re optimistic that it’s going to be just a short shutdown and as a reliever that he can get back out there pretty quickly. He’s in tremendous shape. It’s not really something necessary to talk about right now.”
- Joe Beimel’s will resume throwing on Tuesday after feeling pain near his elbow.
“Since [Sunday], it’s becoming less and less to the point where now I really don’t even feel it,” said Beimel, who received treatment on his arm Monday morning. “I don’t really have to build myself back up because I’ve been throwing for quite a while. It shouldn’t be a problem.”
- Evan Meek and Joe Beimel are scheduled to throw bullpen sessions today. Although there is no time table, neither are expected to be out much longer.
- The Bucs will face the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday at McKechenie Field. Ross Ohlendorf will start for the Pirates followed by Tony Watson, Joel Hanrahan, Jose Veras, Mike Crotta and Chris Leroux.
- Scott Olsen threw a bullpen session on Monday and is scheduled to throw another on Wednesday.
“My leg feels fine,” Olsen said. “No pain at all.”
Gardner lf, Swisher rf, Granderson cf, Posada dh, Chavez 3b, Montero c, Nunez ss, Laird 1b, Pena 2b, Hughes p
Presley cf, Bowker lf, Diaz rf, Jones dh, Atkins 1b, Marte 3b, Snyder c, Rodriguez 2b, Ciriaco ss, McDonald p
James McDonald will start for the Pirates followed by Aaron Thompson, Daniel McCutchen, Chris Resop, Daniel Moskos and Ramon Aguero .
- The Pirates will face the Tampa Bay Rays again on Sunday. This time, however, they will play at McKechnie Field.
Kevin Correia will start for the Bucs followed by Brian Burres, who will pitch two innings as well. Joel Hanrahan, Joe Beimel, Jose Veras, Tony Watson and Chris Leroux will all pitch one inning.
- Manager Clint Hurdle’s top of the order on Saturday was: Jose Tabata, Neil Walker, Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez, but it could be one of the many possible lineups this season.
It’s one of many,” Hurdle said. “It’s the one we threw out there today. We all pretty much understand what Andrew can do at the top of the lineup. We need to look at what we can do to stretch out lineup, to become more diverse and dynamic. We need to score more runs than we did last year. I do believe he has the skill to hit third. We’ll see how it plays out.”
- Reliever Daniel Moskos has learned a lot from last season and says he’s ready to play in the big leagues.
“I’m a way better pitcher now, having had the two years of starting experience,” Moskos said. “I had to work through some kinks. I had to deal with a downgrade in stuff, and learn how to pitch and develop a third pitch. Those are weapons and things I’m going to take forward that can’t be replaced. I had to go through that.”
“I’ve matured and learned a lot over the past three seasons — last year, especially,” Moskos said. “I’ve had to grow up and mature a lot. It doesn’t always work out the way you plan. I feel ready.”
- Pirates owner Bob Nutting arrived in Bradenton, Fl. On Saturday night and was spotted at Pirate City On Sunday. He will be in town for two weeks.
- Sunday was photo day for the players. The pictures are used for baseball cards to media outlets. You can see a lot of pictures here at Yahoo! Sports
- The players worked on run down drills on Sunday. The outfielders played as baserunners and the pitchers joined the infielders to mimic pickoffs and rundowns.
They also worked on baserunning drills –a huge emphasis during Camp Hurdle.
The Pitchers worked on bunting and slug bunting.
- Group two of the Pirates pitching threw live batting practice on Sunday. They included: Charlie Morton, Tony Watson, Jeff Karstens, Chris Resop, Brad Lincoln, Chris Leroux, Brian Burres, Daniel McCutchen, Sean Gallagher, Cesar Valdez, Daniel Moskos, Tyler Yates, Justin Thomas, Ramon Aguero, Fernando Nieve and Bryan Morris.
- Manager Clint Hurdle spent time after practice talking about outfielder Corey Wimberly who will be fighting for a bench spot.
“This could be Corey’s time. That’s why we went out and got him. We had talked him in a couple different avenues over the winter and then we were able to make a trade for him. To his credit, delay doesn’t mean denial. He has persevered. He hasn’t taken feeling being passed over on the field with him. He’s continued to go out and do what he needs to do to make himself attractive to whatever organization has him.”
- Jeff Karstens will be filling many different roles for the Pirates this season. Although he won’t be competing for the 5th spot in the rotation, Karstens is the favorite to be called upon for long relief or to spot start.
“He matured greatly last year, and I hope he continues to do that this year because he has a good instinct when he’s out there on the mound,” pitching coach Ray Searage said. “The beauty of Jeff is he can do multiple roles and he knows what those roles entail.”
- In the last several months Tyler Yates has rediscovered his changeup, a pitch he lost when he moved from starter to reliever (only needing the two best pitches).
“I think I’ve learned by watching other pitchers with less stuff than I have get people out and I’m like, ‘How do they do it?’ ” Yates said. “You start watching them and you see that they sink the ball a little bit more, cut the ball a little bit more, change speeds better. It’s something that I’d like to add to my repertoire, so I won’t have to throw the ball 96 mph every time out there.”
Yates is also looking to add a cutter to his repertoire, which would give him five pitches (fastball, sinker and slider are the others).
“If I can add (the change and cutter), it would give me longevity in my career,” he said. “At 33 years old, I’m trying to get everything I can out of it.”
A shot of a beautiful day in Bradenton (photo via @Colin_Dunlap)
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