NL Notes: Taveras, Stutes, Flores, Cervelli

One of the keys to success for last year's Pirates ballclub was its ability both to generate ground balls and convert them into outs. It all started with a pitching staff that had far and away the highest ground-ball rate (52.5%) in the big leagues. Featuring prominently in the repertoire of several Bucs hurlers, of course, was the sinker. As Tim Williams of found when he investigated, those sinkers come in many different varieties. He provides a fascinating breakdown of the pitch from the perspective of Pirates players and coaches (including many staff members and catcher Russell Martin). Here's more from the National League:

  • With just two weeks left in camp and top outfield prospect Oscar Taveras still working his way back, there is now little chance that he'll come north with the Cardinals for Opening Day, writes Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Of course, that was the likely outcome from the get-go, as St. Louis has a keen interest in delaying his service clock to gain another season of control and minimize the likelihood of a Super Two qualification. 
  • The Phillies outrighted righty Michael Stutes off of the club's 40-man roster to begin making room for non-roster invites, reports Todd Zolecki of Struggling to regain velocity after a series of shoulder issues, Stutes had to clear waivers to be stashed in the minors.
  • Though it may yet be a longshot, the Mets have begun working out Wilmer Flores at short, reports Anthony DiComo of With continuing uncertainty as to whether Ruben Tejada can be relied on as an everyday option, DiComo says the team is "overturning every stone on their 40-man roster" to find a solution. Of course, that does not mean that Flores is a serious possibility to man the job for the coming season, but he could be a more attractive big league piece if he could spend some time at short.  
  • As I recently noted in the club's offseason review, the Diamondbacks have not conclusively addressed their backup catching situation. They are among the teams taking a hard look at Francisco Cervelli of the Yankees, reports George A. King III of the New York Post

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9 Comments on "NL Notes: Taveras, Stutes, Flores, Cervelli"

1 year 5 months ago

St. Louis media been super critical of Taveras. He might want to stay away for a while until they renew their Matt Holliday hate.

1 year 5 months ago

Garcia’s probably down for the year, so they needed a new target to fill their “headcase” quota.

1 year 5 months ago

I would be very happy if the Dbacks could gets Cervelli for a price that isn’t too high. His on base percentage and fielding ability would give them depth.

Daniel Morairity
1 year 5 months ago

i dont know about crvelli going to arizona i mean who will the yankess get from the dbacks gerrado parra??

1 year 5 months ago

Perhaps Cervelli would be included in a package for Chris Owings or Didi Gregorius?

1 year 5 months ago

Mets either need to sign Drew or get serious about trading for Nick Franklin – whatever they’re been willing to offer Drew OR offer to Seattle isn’t good enough and the season is getting near. …

1 year 5 months ago

Flores has looked decent at SS so far this spring, Honestly, if he isn’t a total disaster, he should be the starter. Better than overpaying for mediocrity from Drew or trading Montero for Franklin. If the team across town can live with one of the worst fielding SS of all time for two decades, I think the Mets should be happy with Flores.

1 year 5 months ago

After they brought Taveras back too early TWICE last year, now the media is questioning why he is taking his time and making sure he is 100%? He rushed back last year and ended up having surgery. There’s no immediate need for him. Get healed up and get ome AB’s in Memphis.

Drew M
1 year 5 months ago

Thats what I was thinking. IMO he never had a real shot at making the opening day roster. Now it is basically official that he starts out in Memphis. Its best to let him take his time then hopefully call him up in June.