BURNETT RETURNING TO PIRATES? Philadelphia Phillies starter A.J. Burnett prefers to join the Pirates as his next club, Ken Rosenthal reports. Burnett would be welcomed back into the clubhouse as players are said to be lobbying for Burnett to return, per Rosenthal. However, is Pirates management on board with a return?
The Pittsburgh Pirates have been operating with the mindset that A.J. Burnett won’t be back and the Pirates have intensified their pursuit of Josh Johnson who emerged out of last weeks GM meetings at the top of their wishlist. Expectations are Johnson will pick a team this week and his Agent Matt Sosnick confirmed to the Tribune-Review Tuesday that the Pirates are on Johnson’s shortlist and among three to four teams he is considering. Word is if the Pirates and Johnson strike a deal, it will come in around $8.5 million per season. The buzz, though, is that Johnson is likely headed to the San Diego Padres.
LATEST PIRATES RUMORS Eyeing potential bounce back candidates on one to two year deals, Free Agent starter Josh Johnson is among the pitchers the Pirates checked in on at the GM Meetings, a team source says. In fact, Johnson is at the top of the Pirates wishlist, the source said. When reached for comment, Johnson’s agent Matt Sosnick told Inside Pittsburgh Sports.com that no “specifics” have been discussed with the Pirates at this point, though, Sosnick confirmed interest between the two sides.