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User Blog

...and the Pirates somehow find a way to disappoint me

I didn't think it was possible after how amazing last night felt, but they did it. First some back story: I've been a 20 game season ticket holder for 3 years. I guess I was lucky enough that I...


The Rays Trade Model

I was recently discussing the Tampa Bay Rays as the sort of model for smart baseball teams with lower revenue streams with a friend, and it led me to an interesting thought about all of this...

Jerry Meals Strikes Again!


This time he blew a call at first base that would have tied the game between the Yankees and the Orioles. After the game Mark Teixeira accused him of doing it because he just wanted to get out of there earlier. I'd buy that theory.

AFL Rosters


The Pirates will be sending players to the Scottsdale Scorpions this time around. Not a real standout prospect to follow this year, but we've got this group: RHP Brandon Cumpton RHP Tyler Waldron IF Matt Curry IF Gift Ngoepe OF Adalberto Santos

Tony Sanchez broke his jaw (again)


Seems like he's all healed up now, but Rob Biertempfel has a story up saying that Sanchez rebroke his jaw during instructional league while involved in a "bar brawl". Neal Huntington and Kyle Stark both declined comment.

Neil Walker, Ronny Cedeno nominated for Gold Gloves


They switched things up with the Gold Glove Awards this year, turning it into a TV production and nominating three players per league at each position. They've also broken the outfield down into three separate spots. Somehow Neil Walker is in the running for NL 2B. I single him out only because he's a Pirate. There are plenty of other strange selections out there.

Tony LaRussa retires


Doesn't seem like many sites have picked it up yet, but LaRussa is holding the press conference right now. The Cardinals Twitter page confirms it is to announce his retirement.

Gerrit Cole Likely To Pitch In Arizona Fall League


Piecing this together from all over the place: The initial rosters listed only two Pirates: Brock Holt and Robbie Grossman. It was then announced that the Pirates would send one more position player and four pitchers. Today the AFL Twitter (linked above) reported that the Pirates will also be sending Nate Baker, Mike Colla, and Phil Irwin. Kristy Robinson then reported that Jarek Cunningham was the third position player. Rob Biertempfel took the pitcher announcement to mean that Gerrit Cole would not be going, but Robinson mentioned that the Instructional League roster has a note saying Gerrit Cole will only be in instructs for two weeks before heading to the AFL. Biertempfel then corrected himself and noted that there is still one more spot for a Pirates pitcher that hasn't been announced. So in the end it looks like: OF Robbie Grossman IF Brock Holt IF Jarek Cunningham RHP Phil Irwin RHP Michael Colla LHP Nate Baker RHP Gerrit Cole*

Pirates games heading to The Fan


Smizik seems to think it's basically a done deal.

Jeff Locke, Jared Hughes To Be Promoted


It was probably a mistake on the part of Daniel Moskos to break the news before the team does, but it looks like Jeff Locke and Jared Hughes will be heading to the big leagues for the first time. Hughes will require a 40-man move. I assume others (Moskos and Pedro Alvarez, at least) will be joining them as well, but there has been no official confirmation on any moves.

Robbie Grossman, Brock Holt To Play In AFL


This links to the Mesa roster, which features the Pirates players. You can check the other rosters through the "teams" section at the top. For whatever reason, the Pirates have only announced Robbie Grossman and Brock Holt so far. I believe every other major league team has announced at least four players. The Mesa team is also really short on the roster compared to other teams, with only 10 pitchers and 12 position players. Every other team has at least 13 pitchers and 13 position players. Expect more Pirates players, especially pitchers, to be added soon. I expect Gerrit Cole to be one of them, but that's still up in the air.

New Minor League Splits site

4 Thought some people would definitely be interested in checking it out. Only has numbers for 2011 right now, but hopefully it will stay up for future years as well.

Ohlendorf activated, optioned


Not a huge surprise. If I had to guess I'd say someone's getting non-tendered this winter. In other news, Presley and d'Arnaud both had their rehab assignments moved to Indy.

LARS!!!! NO!!!!!


Kevin Goldstein reports that The Great Lars Anderson will be dealt to the A's for Rich Harden! WE MISSED OUR CHANCE!!!!!

Another National Broadcast August 20


Saturday August 20 vs. the Reds on Fox This is the first one of three announced so far that will actually be in Pittsburgh. This game, as well as the August 13 game at Milwaukee, has been moved from 7:05 to 4:10 PM. This one has Fox kind of banking on the Pirates actually being in the race a full month from now. It also led to the cancellation of a fireworks night, which I'm sure they sold a bunch of tickets for. That could be interesting.

Remember Matt Walbeck?


I hate to pile on the guy when he loses his job, but remember what a big deal some people were trying to make of the Pirates letting him go? UPDATE: Cory Giger writes that the Braves are saying Walbeck was dismissed because of "philosophical differences." That sounds familiar.


Minor League Mystery: Who is Carlos Mesa?

At some point today the name Carlos Mesa mysteriously showed up on the State College Spikes website.  He's grouped in with the pitchers and listed at 6'2, 210, and born February 10, 1988.  I wasn't...


Tony Sanchez Twitter Drama

Interesting times we live in. First Ozzie Guillen is suspended for tweeting following an ejection, which probably didn't surprise anyone. Now it sounds like Tony Sanchez might be next. Last night S...

Ramon Aguero DFA


After claiming him from the Pirates in April, Texas DFAed Aguero today to make room for Cuban defector Leonys Martin. During his month with the Rangers Aguero threw 5.2 innings between AA and AAA. He only allowed one hit, but walked 9 and hit a batter. He also spent 9 days on the DL with a shoulder issue.

Taillon Not Starting Season In West Virginia


An article on the Pirates website reports that Jameson Taillon will be sent to extended spring training to begin the year. They have a plan mapped out for when Taillon will be moving up to West Virginia. The idea is that they want to avoid hitting his strict inning limit before the season ends. Stetson Allie will also start in extended, though that's not much of a surprise.

Cesar Lopez Signing Official


Ben Badler reported a few weeks ago that the Pirates made this signing in September, but had to wait for him to get his visa. I assume Langosch reporting it now means it's gone through. UPDATE by Charlie: Vlad did some digging on this last month. Lopez was apparently signed for $600,000, so this is a fairly major signing.

Ronald Belisario Update


Crazy story here. Belisario has been one of the strangest ex-Pirates to follow. Here's the basic rundown: 2009: Belisario shows up two weeks late to Dodgers spring training and is sent to minor league camp. He turns so many heads that they send him back to major league camp and he makes the 25 man out of spring. He goes on to put up a 2.04 ERA in 70 2/3 innings. He has a mid-season arrest for DUI, but pleads down to a lesser charge. 2010: Belisario shows up about 6 weeks late to Dodgers spring training and spends time on the restricted list. He doesn't come off until about 3 weeks into the regular season. He struggles that last week of April and through May before a strong June. He then spends over a month back on the restricted list with substance abuse issues that the team was very reluctant to talk about. He eventually returned and finished the season with a 5.04 ERA in 55 1/3 innings. 2011: Belisario again doesn't show up on time for camp. A reporter asked him what the situation was and he said he lost his passport and was working to get a new one. Word got back to Belisario's agent who correct him by saying that Belisario's passport was revoked and he's unlikely to be allowed into the US and will likely miss the entire season.

RIP Chuck Tanner


Sad news in the Pirates world. It's being reported all over the place, but this is the first place I saw it. There's ome confusion on his age, as this article (and others) says 82 and other sites list his birthday as July 4, 1929. Top 50 prospects


One Pirate makes the list, Jameson Taillon at 18. Video on Taillon here. The Royals lead the way with 6 players followed by the Rays with 4. In the division Cincinnati has 3 (6. Aroldis Chapman, 45. Devin Mesoraco, and 49. Yonder Alonso), the Cubs have 1 (46. Brett Jackson), the Cardinals have 1 (20. Shelby Miller), the Astros have 1 (Jordan Lyles), and the Brewers have 0. The Brewers and Cubs each traded a top 50 prospect (37. Jake Odorizzi and 47. Chris Archer) in the last few weeks. No NL Central players appear in the 51-60 list either (though Miguel Sano does).


Spring Training Invites recently put up their list of 15 players here.  Rob Biertempfel reports that five more players have been invited (Tony Sanchez, Andrew Lambo, Chase d"Arnaud, Brian Friday, and Eric...

CarGo extension / Boras


Another young player signed a long term extension before entering his arb years today. The deal is for 7 years and $80 million. That will cover one pre-arb year, 3 years of arbitration, and 3 free agent years. Possibly the most noteworthy thing about this extension is that CarGo's agent is Scott Boras. For all the talk about Boras being completely unwilling to give away FA years I think this deal really emphasizes the point that it's all up to the player in the end.

Bill Hall to the Astros


Looks like Bill Hall did end up getting that starting 2B job in the NL Central, but it will be with the Astros. That reporter out of Boston may have just mixed up the rumors he was hearing.

Throw away your Alvarez jerseys


Or does this mean that you keep them as a collector's item? Either way, Alvarez isn't wearing 17 anymore. With Delwyn Young out of the picture he's taking his minor league number 24 back. If you have an old Brian Giles jersey laying around all you have to do is change the name (and add sleeves).

Lastings Milledge: Brawling in Venezuela


Linked is video of our old friend Lastings Milledge in the middle of a bench clearing incident in Venezuela today. This will likely be added to the list to show that Milledge is that problem child we never saw in Pittsburgh. Here (in MP4 format I believe) is video of the previous AB that apparently caused the other team to hit him. Reportedly they were upset about Milledge's little mock grenade toss celebration directed at his own dugout (seen at the tail end of the video). Next time up Milledge got hit by a pitch, took second uncontested on the next pitch, and players from the other team took exception. Is Milledge in the wrong here?


New Rule 5 name: Elvin Ramirez

Dejan had a quick note on his  blog today listing Elvin Ramirez as a name to watch for the Pirates in the Rule 5.  There was also this Twitter post from Adam Rubin of ESPN New York: Hearing Mets...

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