Here’s the latest from PNC Park…
- The Pirates are looking for bullpen help, GM Neal Huntington told reporters (including MLB.com’s Adam Berry and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Chris Adamski), though Huntington noted that the pickings have been slim for buyers. The Bucs will “scour the Minor Leagues to see if there’s another Jason Grilli-type situation out there,” Huntington said, as in a possible buy-low veteran who’s recovering from injuries or a drop in form. The GM didn’t totally rule out the idea of calling up top pitching prospects Tyler Glasnow or Jameson Taillon as relievers, though “on a case-by-case basis, there are some things we are still accomplishing with our young minor-league starters…before we start trying to shove them in the bullpen,” Huntington said. With the Pirates’ rotation also lacking in depth, Glasnow and/or Taillon are much more likely to start when they’re called up, as noted earlier today.
- Matt Joyce may be the latest veteran to enjoy a career revival after joining the Pirates, Paul Zeise of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes, something manager Clint Hurdle attributes to the franchise’s ability to scout and identify players who have the right attitude about overcoming their struggles. In Joyce’s case, his winter stint in the Dominican Republic impressed the Bucs. “To go play 50 or 60 games in a different country and do some things on and off the field that, in a crazy kind of way, might help you find your way back? I thought it was outstanding. It polarized the whole story of [Joyce] for me. I know that level of commitment,” Hurdle said.
- Francisco Cervelli’s three-year extension not only keeps a key player behind the plate for the Pirates, it also serves as another sign of the franchise’s growth, the Post-Gazette’s Bill Brink writes. While the Bucs have inked several young players to extensions, Cervelli signed his multi-year deal with free agency beckoning this winter, as opposed to other veterans who have left Pittsburgh for richer deals after rebuilding their value with the club.