-- The "super-two" arbitration cutoff this season was at two years, 141 days, of MLB time. Guys with three years plus of service time are eligible for arbitration, along with the top sixth (17%) of the second-year player class. That's why teams are cautious about bringing up pups before June or so, as the Pirates did with Andrew McCutchen.
This year's lucky Bucco winner is Jeff Karstens, who with his two years, 144 days of service, becomes arbitration eligible for four years instead of the standard three.
-- RHP Chris Bootcheck has opted for free agency after being outrighted to Indy. RHPs Denny Bautista and Craig Hansen were also sent down, but elected to stay with the organization for now.
The housecleaning begins. The Bucs have to protect some guys on the 40-man roster in November, notably Brad Lincoln, Gorkys Hernandez, and Byran Morris.
The 40-man is now at 38, with three players on the 60-day DL: Jose Ascanio, Evan Meek, and Tyler Yates. Meek and Ascanio will surely end up on it, but we doubt that Yates, who had TJ surgery, makes the cut.
-- One of GW's work buds said he heard a radio report that claimed the Bucs are talking with Florida about a Dan Uggla for Paul Maholm/Gorkys Hernandez deal. Uggla is in his second arb year, and is supposedly fishing for $8M next season.
Maholm is in the second year of a three year contract, and due to make $4.5M in 2010, while Hernandez still hasn't accrued any big league time. We haven't seen this on any print sites, so it may have just been pure speculation. Any thoughts?
-- Jen Langosch has all the Buccos playing winter ball rostered on her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch.
-- Rick Peterson, the old Oakland and Yankee pitching coach, has signed on with the Brewers. You may recall that he was reportedly on the Pirates' short list before they reeled in Joe Kerrigan.