After two straight 19 home run seasons with the Marlins, and representing the team in the 2011 All-Star Game, Gaby Sanchez had off-season knee surgery and never fully recovered.
Heading into the weekend, most of the Pirates regulars are not among the leaders in plate appearances, but that is about to change.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle had said that veteran Brandon Inge is “close” playing a position in Grapefruit League games and that’d be fine with Inge, who is recovered from shoulder surgery last September – well, almost.
Outfielder Travis Snider didn’t pay immediate dividends, in fact he didn’t do much at all after coming to the Pirates from Toronto last season.
James McDonald allowed just one hit over 4 shutout innings, but his teammates were shut out for the first 8 innings in a 4-2 loss to Tampa Bay at a sundrenched but chilly and windswept McKechnie Field Thursday afternoon.
Native New Englander Jeff Locke made up for a disappointing outing in a 16-6 loss to the Boston Red Sox last Friday by lasting his scheduled 4 innings, allowing 1 run on 3 hits and 2 walks as the Pirates beat up on the Boston bullpen, 9-3, in Fort Myers.
It was only against Team Spain (a collection of low-level minor-leaguers – if that), but Gerrit Cole flashed the stuff you’d expect to see from a number one overall draft pick by striking out the first six batters he faced before giving up a couple of seeing-eye singles in his third inning.
Pirates’ prized pitching prospect Gerrit Cole had little trouble with Spain’s entry into the World Baseball Classic. He struck out first 6 batters he faced.
Veteran Jeff Karstens was shut down early last season with a shoulder injury and, after returning from that, was hampered by late-season soreness in his hip.
Too many walks and not enough hits were the two problems for the Pirates as they dropped a 5-0 decision to the Phillies at McKechnie Field.
Pedro Alvarez is coming off a breakthrough season in which he hit 30 home runs with 85 RBIs.However, he also struck out 180 times – once every 3.3 plate appearances.
The Pirates snapped a six-game Grapefruit League losing streak with an 8-6 win over their former divisional rivals, the Houston Astros at frosty McKechnie Field.
Rob Pratte hosted Black and Gold Sunday from Kuhn’s Market with Bob Dvorchak, Jeff Cohen and Frank Augustine.
Newcomer Mike Zagurski may be a longshot to make the Pirates’ 25-man roster, but he’s yet to give up a hit in Spring Training.
It was tough enough for Pittsburgh fans to watch the Baltimore Ravens win the Super Bowl with Ray Lewis front and center; but with Pittsburgh playing the Tigers in Lakeland, Fla., on Saturday, it was Ray Lewis Day for the Lakeland native at Joker Marchant Stadium.