BRADENTON (93-7 The Fan) – Pirates pitching coach Ray Searage sat down with “The Fan Morning Show” at Spring Training in Bradenton this week to discuss getting his staff ready for the 2015 season.
Searage said A.J. Burnett has an “outstanding” attitude this year, and explained the change in role from his last stint in Pittsburgh.
“He had a great attitude before [this year], too,” Searage said. “But, he always brought an edge. He still has that edge, but now the burden of the leader doesn’t have to weigh on A.J. alone. It’s on [Francisco] Liriano. It’s on [Charlie] Morton. It’s on even [Gerrit] Cole at certain times – and he can lead by his actions out there on the bump, Gerrit can.”
Searage thinks Burnett can benefit from having less pressure on him to lead.
“It’s going to make A.J. a better pitcher because now he doesn’t have to handle every situation that happens now. They’ve got a slew of guys that can handle it. You’ve got [Chris Stewart] in there too, in the locker room, and with Corey Hart, there’s a quiet leader right there. What a class act he is. Those guys are outstanding. Outstanding. And they’re going to take control of that locker room,” he said.
“The Fan Morning Show” will be broadcasting live from Bradenton all week long.
The interview can be heard here: