Pirates catchers and pitchers have already arrived to Bradenton and a number of position players have arrived early including 2008 1st round draft Pedro Alvarez. Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus released his top 100 minor league prospects with Pedro Alvarez coming in as Goldstein‚Äôs #4 prospect. Orioles catcher Matt Wieters is rated as the top minor league prospect in the majors. Two other Pirates prospects received some recognition. Centerfielder Andrew McCutchen came in at #25 and outfielder Jose Tabata #91. Alvarez who showed up to minicamp 20 lbs over his normal playing weight (235) is in good shape as the official start of training camp begins on Tuesday. Alvarez has been running the base pads well and his bat speed is impressive for a power hitter.¬†The Pirates seem very excited to see how Alvarez performs in Spring Training games which begin on February 25th. It is very early but theRead More »
Jon Heyman of CNNSI reports, The Angels, Braves, Pirates, Reds and Mets are among teams considering star free-agent outfielder Bobby Abreu. The changing market has brought the Pirates into the Abreu sweepstakes. Abreu, 34, hit 20 home runs – 100 RBI’s while batting .296 for the New York Yankees last season. ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick reported today that the Angels have “strong interest” in the free agent outfielder.
The Pittsburgh Pirates and free-agent infielder/outfielder Eric Hinske are on the verge of a one year contract worth $1.8 million (plus incentives). Hinske, 31, hit .247 with 20 homers and 60 RBIs last season for the Tampa Bay Rays. Hinske was the American League Rookie of the Year for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2002 and has reached the World Series the past two seasons (07 Red Sox, 08 Rays) Hinske can play both infield corner positions and will likely be used as an outfielder/infielder with the Pirates. Hinske was also being pursued by the Padres and Nationals.
MLB.com reports, The Pirates have their sights set on free agent outfielder Eric Hinske as the team searches for a fourth outfielder and bench option. An agreement could be close between the two sides. The deal is believed to be a one year deal worth $1.8MM with incentives 1:30 p.m. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Pirates are pursuing free-agent outfielder Luis Gonzalez. Gonzalez, 41 batted batted .261 with eight home runs and 47 RBIs in 341 at-bats with the Florida Marlins last season. Source: Post-Gazette Sources tell Inside Pittsburgh Sports, The Pirates have also reached out to outfielder
The Pirates claimed pitcher Virgil Vasquez off waivers from the San Diego Padres today. The 26 year old, went 12-12 with a 4.81 ERA, 115 strikeouts and 37 walks in 27 starts for the Detroit Tigers AAA affiliate (Toledo) last season. Vasquez pitched in five games with the Tigers in 2007, going 0-1 with a 8.64 ERA. Arbitration dates set: Major League Baseball has announced the dates for arbitration hearings for outfielder Nate McLouth and Paul Maholm. McLouth’s case will be heard on February 17th and Maholm’s case will be heard on February 10th.
Adam Laroche ($7.05 million per season) making more money than Xavier Nady ($6.65 million per season) in 09 won‚Äôt sit well with Pirates fans. The good news is the Pirates will not open contract talks with Laroche about an long-term extension this winter. Last off-season the Pirates entertained the idea. Baseball‚Äôs salary system is truly rigged when Zach Duke made $400,000 last season while going 5-14 with a 4.82 ERA and signs a one year deal worth $2.2 million, the following season. Nate McLouth has submitted $3.8 million which is a fair submission. The Pirates are offering $2.75 million. The Pirates are offering a player who hit 26 home runs and won a gold glove, only 555,000 more than the contract they gave to a 5-14 pitcher. The Pirates were 67-95 last season with Jason Bay, Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte on their opening day roster. Over/Under on 100 lossesRead More »
The Pittsburgh Pirates and first baseman Adam LaRoche have agreed to a one year deal worth $7.05 million. Laroche 29, made $5 million last season while batting .270 with 25 home runs and 85 RBIs. The Pirates now have five arbitration-eligible players — outfielder Nate McLouth and pitchers John Grabow, Zach Duke, Tyler Yates and Paul Maholm Sources tell Inside Pittsburgh Sports, the Pirates are close to reaching deals (if they haven’t already)
Sources indicate the Pittsburgh Pirates are picking up their pursuit of pitcher Daniel Cabrera. Cabrera, 27, was not tendered a contract by the Orioles on Friday. He was 8-10 with a 5.25 ERA while making $2,875,000 this past season, with 90 walks and 95 strikeouts in 180 innings. Cabrera has received interest from over 10 teams and already has a multi year offer on the table. It‚Äôs being speculated that the Rangers are the team that made the early multi year offer. The Pirates are prepared to make a two year offer with incentives and Cabrera is currently the Pirates top target on the pitching market. Ty Wigginton may to be out of the Pirates price range. Reports have indicated that Wigginton is seeking more than what Casey Blake received ( three-year, $17.5 million deal). Pirartes are willing to go as high as two years at $5.5 million per season.Read More »
The Pirates¬†have made a offer to¬†free-agent reliever Chris Bootcheck according to reports. Bootcheck, 30, is a 6-foot-5, 210-pound right-hander who spent parts of the past five seasons with the Los Angeles Angels and posted a 6.04 ERA in 77 appearances, including a 10.13 ERA in 10 appearances this past season.