Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Notes: Hot Stove, Minor Leagues, and More...

The off season shuffle...

  • The Pirates are one of eight teams to check in on free agent SS Rafael Furcal, according to his agent and Travis Sawchik of the Tribune Review.
  • Another rumored Pittsburgh target, RHP Dan Haren, inked a one-year, $10M deal with the Dodgers with a $10M option for 2015 if he reaches 180 innings. He's another guy that may have left some money on the table so that he could play closer to his West Coast home, ala Josh Johnson.
  • Eno Sarris of Fangraphs writes "Now there’s a stable of solutions in right field (for the Bucs after the Jaff Decker deal), and some short-term opportunity for those guys to step forward. And if any of them do so successfully, there’s even a chance they continue to play when Polanco is up…" 
  • The Pirates have signed C Nevin Ashley and RHP Cody Eppley to minor league contracts with spring training invites. Ashley, 29, has a lifetime .258 BA and a 23% throw-'em-out rate over the past two years with the Rays and Reds AAA clubs. Eppley, 28, is a 6' 5" reliever who has tossed 56-2/3 IP for Texas and the Yankees, going 2-3/4.61 ERA. The sidewinder throws, of course, a sinker and according to Fangraphs is an extreme ground ball pitcher with a 59.9% rate.
  • When Ben Badler of Baseball America was asked who he thought might be the first pick of the Rule 5 draft, he guessed Pirate minor league RHP Zack Thornton.
  • Thomas Belmont of Baseball Instinct takes a look at the Pirates Top 21 Prospects going into the 2013 season and how they progressed.
  • The Seattle Mariners new manager, Lloyd McClendon, added a pair of former Buccos to his staff:  Andy Van Slyke as his first base coach and Trent Jewett  as his bench coach.

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