Saturday, March 10, 2007

exhibition: Yankees at Pirates

Maholm was not sharp in his first inning of the spring. 3-0 Yankees, now top of the second.

Good news in camp

Surfing the Post-Gazette coverage this morning, I see good news.

Shane Youman makes good red beans and rice. This is a staple around here. And it's also great that Youman has been pitching well. The team cannot have too many starting pitchers.

In the notebook we see that Wilson is working on his OBP, Eldred is working out in the outfield, Duke has command, Paulino showed some power, and Kuwata throws a bit faster than advertised.

There's also a long piece by Dejan Kovacevic on Eldred's rising stock. If he makes the team, there will be plenty of at-bats for him. It's not likely that LaRoche could play every inning of every game. This is no disrespect to LaRoche. Very few players manage 650 PA in a season. Until a player does that, I do not expect that. If he gets 500-600 PA, that still leaves 150-250 PA of first-base time for another player to take.

Eldred's competition, obviously, is LaRoche. Less obviously, I think his competition is Ryan Doumit. And Jose Hernandez.

Players visit Steelers

They sign some guys one of these days.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Now playing RF, Brad Eldred

Eldred shags flies, reports Dejan Kovacevic.

What's the over/under for the duration of the Eldred Outfield Experiment?

Now batting second, Jack Wilson

In his last Q+A for two weeks, Dejan thinks Tracy will bat Jack Wilson second, no matter what.

PPR #21

New Pirates Roundtable has five answers to each of two questions. The first on which would be better: Cuban/DL or Nutting/Melvin, and the second on which Pirate has opened eyes or disappointed in the first week of Spring Training.

Tracy's plan works (if you do it right)

Mike Bauman of interviewed Tracy four days ago, generating some instantly classic Tracy quotes. On how Jim cured the Pirates in July of the losing culture mindset:

"It was going to take more time than I wanted it to take. To get everybody on board, to get everybody to join in, at first they're looking at it and they're not sure: 'What direction is this guy going?' Then, slowly, but surely, you found more people coming on board, accepting the fact that, hey, this is pretty good, this works if you do it right."
(link via Bucs Dugout)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Gerut cut, Eldred to try OF

... the Post-Gazette reports. Still unable to run, Gerut gets 1/6th of his $850K to slowly limp away. If I did the math right, that means the Bucs paid Gerut $1,016,670 for 18 ABs, or about $56,000 per AB. In those 18 ABs, Gerut hit 3 singles and one 2B, so that'd be ~$203,000 per base. In hindsight, obviously not one of DL's better moves. Anyway, we wish Jody and his knee the best of luck. Watching Eldred lumber around the OF should be interesting.

...(12:30 AM): Dejan gets the math right:

Counting the $1.12 million the Pirates picked up of Lawton's salary in the trade, they spent a total of $2,255,493 on Gerut.
So $125K an AB, $564K a base.

exhibition: D'Rays at Pirates

1pm. Will we face Wiggy?

... speaking of the D-Rays, looks like they have signed Manny Stiles.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Bucs win

Finally. Armas, McLeary, Kolb, Marte, and Sharpless combine for a four-hitter in today's 5-2 win. Eldred was jackless.

Eldred in the outfield?

He says he can do it in today's notebook from you guessed it, Dejan Kovacevic.

Home runs are very good things. If he continues to have good at-bats all spring, he has to make the team.

Should Sanchez play second?

Dejan Kovacevic presents both sides.

I vote yes.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Now pinch-hitting, Brad Eldred?

Interesting Q+A from Dejan today.

In response to Wilbur's question about whether the team really needs a bench utility infielder in addition to Bautista/Castillo, Dejan unveils his bench: Bautista, McLouth, Matos, Doumit, and ... Eldred. Dejan says Eldred "surely" will be traded and a bench spot would showcase his moon shot skills, which he's already established at AAA. Would Eldred be more likely to increase his already low trade value by playing everyday at AAA to try to develop better plate discipline and/or learn how to hit off speed stuff better, or by playing off the bench in the bigs, hitting moon shots into the river every now and then?

Nady, Castillo OK

Dejan Kovacevic reports the great news for Nady's GI tract (viral infection not chronic disorder) and Castillo's ankle/foot (feels fine, apparently won't require expensive X-ray technology).

Also from Dejan, Kuwata dazzles, Tracy says Kuwata "exemplified everything we've been talking about," Chacon's arthritic knee feels good, not great, and Burnett rebounded in the B-game.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Reid Nichols turns around the Brewers farm system

I don't have the patience to read this long interview with the guy who turned around the Brewers' farm system, but I'd say the Pirates could probably learn a thing or two from it.

Exhibition: Reds at Pirates

Just dialed up the Lanny. Game is in the second. Someone got touched for two runs in the top of the first.

... Lanny says that David Littlefield said Castillo's ankle looks much better today.

... Jose Hernandez just had a nice at-bat against Homer Bailey, who could not locate his breaking stuff and wound up grooving fastballs. End result: double, two RBIs.

... Yoslan Herrera cannot get an out in the fifth. Next Alan Simpson cannot find the plate.

Defensive dissertation

Dejan Kovacevic obviously put a lot of work into this one.

They tear down moldy buildings

Robert Dvorchak returns to the PG Pirates page with this epic.