Friday, March 29, 2013

Travel Day Bucco Bits

A couple of items while the Bucs bring it home:

  • The Pirates don't have any time frame for Jeff Karstens' recovery. He'll start the season on the DL with right shoulder inflammation and won't hit the mound until it's cleared up. So far, no MRI, but one could be in his future. JK will join hurlers Francisco Liriano, Jose Contreras and Charlie Morton on the rehab circuit, along with IFs Brandon Inge and Chase d'Arnaud.
  • The news isn't all bad. Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune Review reports that “There's been no health issues for Neil (Walker),” (Clint) Hurdle said. “No setbacks. There's nothing he hasn't been able to do on the field.”
  • Quite a matchup at Altoona tomorrow - James McDonald takes on Jason Grilli! The teams will mix and match rosters during the Bucs last tune-up. The 2:05 game at PNG Field is sold out and a crowd of over 10,000 is expected.
  • Tom Singer of has the Bucs expected Opening Day lineup: LF: Starling Marte, C: Russell Martin, CF: Andrew McCutchen, 3B: Pedro Alvarez, 2B: Neil Walker, 1B: Gaby Sanchez, RF: Travis Snider, SS: Clint Barmes and RHP: A.J. Burnett.
  • Matt Gagne of Sports Illustrated has his 2013 preview of the Pirates. He has the club finishing in fourth place with 76 wins.
  • David Manel of Bucs Dugout breaks down the PECOTA numbers to take a look at the projected performance of the 2013 Bucco club and the division.
  • Mike Sanserino of the Post Gazette has his NL Central preview.
  • Mike Oz of Yahoo Sports "Big League Stew" blog also has his NL Central preview.
  • CBS Sports blog "Eye on Baseball" has its 2013 MLB championship/playoff/award picks. The Bucs are conspicuously absent, except for Travis Snider, who was chosen by Dayne Perry as the surprise player of the year in the NL.
  • Mike Waterloo of the Yinzers Pittsburgh Sporting News notes that "The Pirates rank 27th out of 30 teams in payroll this year at $66,289,524." Looks like up to us...
  • If you've got tickets to the Opener - and we understand that just some scattered singles are left - come hungry.
  • Wonder why the Bucs are worried about Gerrit Cole's clock starting too soon? Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander has agreed to a multi-year contract extension that could earn him $202 million over the next eight seasons, the richest contract ever for a pitcher. Just saying...
  • So much for sneaking Clint Robinson through waivers. He was claimed by the Toronto Blue Jays.
  • A couple of excellent veteran pitchers going the opposite way: Adam Wainwright of the Cards signed a 5 year, $97.5M contract extension, while the Mets two-time Cy Young winner Johann Santana has a career-threatening tear in his labrum and will miss at least the season.

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