-- 2B Neil Walker was named to the 2010 Topps Rookie team today. It's the second consecutive season a Pirate prospect has gotten that recognition; Andrew McCutchen was on last year's squad.
Walker said today in his fan chat that "The personal accolades are great, but I would definitely trade all of them in for a World Series and...I'm really looking forward to getting going this spring and into the 2011 season."
And hey, who woulda thought in the spring that the Pittsburgh Kid would be on that team and Pedro Alvarez and Jose Tabata wouldn't be?
-- The Pirates went to the Down Under well again, signing LHP Jackson Lodge, 17, of the Adelaide Bite. He joins bro Aussies Mitchell Fienemann, Jarryd Sullivan, Dylan Child, and Wilson Lee as Bucco prospects. He just turned 17, so he may spend another year at the Australia Baseball Academy before coming stateside to the GCL.
-- Lance Berkman told Richard Justice of the Houston Chronicle that the Pirates were one of a "bunch" of teams "tire-kicking" his availability.
-- Andy LaRoche and Delwyn Young opted for free agency today after clearing waivers. We wish them both well and hope a change of scenery perks up their careers.
-- LHP Dana Eveland signed a minor league deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers last week. The Bucs sent RHP Ron Uviedo to the Blue Jays for him during the season. Eveland made three appearances with the Pirates, including a start, and he posted an 0-1 record with an 8.38 ERA. He finished the year at Indy, where he was 0-2 with a 7.96 ERA.
-- Dave "The Cobra" Parker, Bert Blyleven and Raul Mondesi are on this year's Hall of Fame ballots.
Mondesi, you may remember, signed in 2004 as a free agent with Pittsburgh only to take a powder back to the Dominican Republic for "personal issues" - he wanted out of his deal - in late May, getting his contract voided by MLB. He would end up being released by the Angels and Braves within a year.
This should be the year the Dutchman gets his bust in Cooperstown, but it's the last hurrah for the Cobra, who is on the ballot for the final time and not looking very HoF-ish.