Spring Training Game 1: Pittsburgh vs. Manatee CC

The day we’ve been (sort of) waiting for has arrived; the Pittsburgh Pirates will play a (sort of) meaningful baseball game after an excruciatingly long winter. At 12:05, the pre-season officially gets underway as the annual beatdown of Manatee Community College takes place at McKechnie Field.
According to Dejan in the Post-Gazette, “most of the 12 pitchers and 20 position players used in the scrimmage [yesterday] will play again today.” Pitching for the Bucs: “Yoslan Herrera will start, followed by Josh Shortslef, Kip Bouknight, Dave Davidson, Juan Perez, Jesse Chavez and Franquelis Osoria.” I don’t care much about Bouknight, but I’d like to see the rest of those guys perform. All could earn time in Pittsburgh by September. They’re long shots to make the team out of camp.
As far as bats go, we’ll be lucky to hear from Ryan Doumit, Brad Eldred, Luis Matos, Andrew McCutchen, Nate McLouth and Neil Walker. Most of the bigger names will make their debuts tomorrow against Cincinnati or Friday against Atlanta.
I’m particularly interested in seeing how Herrera performs in game competition and how Walker fields at third base. I’m assuming that the Manatee squad will be using metal bats, so Neil could be forced to make a reaction play or two.
I’ll be live blogging tomorrow’s game, but seeing as how today’s contest isn’t available online or on the radio, we’ll have to rely on the traditional media for our coverage.
EDIT:
Sounds like the Baby Bucs looked good today. Yoslan Herrera threw two perfect innings and Neil Walker had a two-run double. Kip Bouknight gave up a homer to a community college kid. You can find Dejan’s recap at the Post-Gazette: Pirates rout Manatee College, 8-1, in exhibition opener.

Author: Randy Linville

Randy is currently living and thriving in suburban Dayton, OH with his wife and two kids. He was raised in Cincinnati, OH and attended Anderson High School. He went to Miami University (Ohio) and received a degree in Paper Science Engineering from MU. He is a devout Christian and a pop culture buff. He coaches his son’s baseball and basketball teams and his daughters softball and basketball teams. Randy has been a Pirates fan since the late 1970s and has fond memories of the 1979 World Series team. He began blogging for Most Valuable Network in 5/2004 after stumbling across a help-wanted sign for a Pirates blogger. He wrote for Pittsburgh Lumber Co. until the site merged with Pirates Prospects in 2/2011.

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