-- Baseball America released John Perrotto's Top 30 Prospect list for the Bucs and named their toolsiest players, 2013 projected lineup, etc..
-- Jen Langosch of MLB.com has a pair of tales: the Bucs are looking for catching help, somewhat a surprise after letting Robby Diaz go. Maybe there is a market for Ryan Doumit.
She also reports on the feel-good Arizona Winter League seasons of Chase d'Arnaud and Donnie Veal, plumping up their prospect resumes.
-- JJ Cooper of Baseball America put the gun on the 2009 Arizona League pitchers and their game-day heat. The Pirates: Donnie Veal (92.4 avg/94.6 max); Danny Moskos (90.5 avg/93.3 max); and Tony Watson (88.9 avg/91.3 max).
A couple of other guys you may be familiar with: Tanner Scheppers, who Pittsburgh drafted in 2008 but didn't sign. He instead inked with the Rangers in 2009 (95.9 avg/98.2 max) and Eric Krebs, now in the LA Dodger system as the PTBNL in the Delwyn Young deal (92.8 avg/96.1 max).
-- Chris Bahr of The Sporting News has these potential first-base FA match-ups for the Pirates:
"Hank Blalock, Rangers. Low-cost option for Pirates, Orioles.
Aubrey Huff, Tigers. Another option for Pittsburgh."
-- Bryan Bullington just keeps rolling along. After being bounced from the Pirates to the Indians to the Blue Jays, the KC Royals have just picked up BB, the first overall selection in 2002, signing him to a minor-league deal, according to Dick Kaegel of MLB.com.
The 29 year-old is 0-5 with a 5.08 ERA in the show, but 53-26 with a 3.82 ERA in the minors.
-- There was some hubbub a few days back when Scott Boras, citing a couple of articles, claimed the low-income clubs were taking home $80M from the MLB revenue sharing, luxury tax, and Central Fund before a game was played.
The Biz of Baseball's Maury Brown sharpened his pencil, and figured that the Marlins were the poster child for this season's po' boys, and probably will take home $73M. Now it's all a guess; MLB hasn't released their figures since 2005.
Still, the have-nots are pocketing a nice hunk of change. It'd be interesting to see the books. The payroll is the big kahuna, but there are hefty expenses in covering the minors, inking draft picks and international free agents, and shelling out for support staff both on the field and in the back room, travel, insurance, etc.
There's only one way that we can think of to clear the smoke - open the books. If you're spending the money on the organization and maybe paying down some debt, cool. If you're tooling around in a Lamborghini instead of a Caddy, you have some explaining to do.
Hey, if we can build you a spiffy new stadium, at very least you can show us what you're doing with it.