Friday, February 22, 2013

Bucs Get After It Today

The Bucs kick off their spring with a 5-1/2 inning game today at noon in a Black-Gold scrimmage.

The lineups:

Gold: Starling Marte LF, Jose Tabata CF, Matt Hague 3B, Gaby Sanchez 1B, Brad Hawpe DH, Jordy Mercer SS, Tony Sanchez C, Ivan DeJesus 2B. Darren Ford CF, Jameson Taillon RHP. Also set to toss an inning are RHPs Kyle Waldrop, Hunter Strickland and Erik Cordier.

Black: Alex Presley CF, Chase d'Arnaud SS, Jerry Sands RF, Clint Robinson 1b, Brandon Inge DH, Jared Goedert 3B, Josh Harrison 2B, Mike McKenry C, Felix Pie LF, Gerrit Cole RHP. The other pitchers slated to see action are LHP Kris Johnson and RHP Vic Black who get the last two frames.

Interesting match-up to open camp: Gerrit Cole takes on Jameson Taillon in an audition of future top-enders, and they're scheduled to work a pair of innings. Also, as to be expected, the guys that form the core - Cutch, The Kid, Pedro, Russell Martin, Garrett Jones and Clint Barmes - will be cheerleaders today. The game highlights will be broadcast, we assume, by the Twitter gang at McKechnie Field.

(POST GAME EDIT - Cole, 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 1K; Taillon, 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 3K. Vic Black walked three guys, not helping his darkhorse chances. Robinson didn't help his cause either with three whiffs. Marte had a two run blast off Waldron, DeJesus tripled, Presley had a couple of hits, and Pie turned a walk into a smallball run thanks to steal and sac fly in the 2-2 tie.)

  • Clint Hurdle has his weekend rotation set. Saturday's exhibition opener, on the road against the Rays, will feature LHP Jeff Locke, RHP Chris Leroux, RHP Bryan Morris, LHP Mike Zagurski, RHP Duke Welker, RHP Vin Mazzaro and RHP Brooks Brown, with RHP Ryan Reid in reserve. RHP Roberto Hernandez, aka Fausto Carmona, will start for the Rays.
  • For Sunday's home opener against Atlanta, RHP James McDonald, LHP Jonathan Sanchez, RHP Jason Grilli, RHP Mark Melancon, LHP Tony Watson, RHP Jared Hughes and LHP Justin Wilson will take the bump. RHP Julio Teheran will start for the Braves. Both games start at 1:05 PM and will be broadcast on KDKA (Saturday on 93.7, Sunday on 1020).
  • Ivan DeJesus has bowed out of the WBC and will work on winning a roster spot in Florida.
  • As we're sure you've heard, Hurdle confirmed that AJ Burnett will get the Opening Day start on April 1st against the Cubs, with Wandy Rodriguez next.


WilliamJPellas said...

I'm not sure that Ivan DeJesus Jr. wouldn't have been better off playing in the WBC. Either he or his agent must think he has a good shot at breaking camp with the Pirates. I would think that a strong showing against good international competition would count for more than if he scorches the ball in a bunch of "B" games. I get the fact that clubs are reluctant to let their pitchers play in the WBC. But I don't know why they wouldn't be in favor of position players going. The competition, I would think, has got to be better than what you see in most major league training camps---in the early going, anyway. As you get closer to the regular season, of course, the big league camps get more, well, "big league". Again, though, I'd think the WBC would be a great place for a fringe position player like DeJesus to make some noise, if he is able.

Ron Ieraci said...

Disagree there, Will. It makes perfect sense for a fringe guy to want to be in camp, where the coaches can evaluate him against the competition; I think Leroux should be in Florida, too.

It's different for guys that have a spot set in stone. Games are a good thing, but out of sight, out of mind for the borderline guys.

WilliamJPellas said...

Okay, but the WBC is televised internationally. If DeJesus was a hero and got the big hit in a game or two or made a couple of highlight reel defensive plays, you don't think that might be an attention-getter?

Ron Ieraci said...

Not as much as making those plays in camp in front of the coaches. Winter ball might help, but not the WBC because of the timing.