Winter Leagues Recap: Ford Likely Done

In Winter League action yesterday, Darren Ford likely played his last game of the off-season. If he did, he went out in a big way. Ford hit a fourth inning grand slam during Leones del Caracas 7-5 win. According to El Universal(link is in Spanish), the original plan for Ford was to take two weeks off, then return to the team in mid-December. He states in the article that he wants to spend time with family and doesn’t have a set return date, hinting that he likely won’t return.

Ford went 1-for-4, with his first home run of the DWL season. He also scored two runs and stole his tenth base. Assuming he is done, he finishes with a .282/.356/.382 line in 31 games. Ford went 10-for-13 in stolen base attempts. In news related to Ford, the Pirates signed Felix Pie yesterday to a minor league deal. Pie has spent most of his time in pro ball playing center field just like Ford. Both players will almost certainly be in the same outfield for Indianapolis this upcoming year.

The only other Pirates player in action yesterday was Anderson Hernandez. He went 1-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout. Mondays are usually either an off-day or a very light day on the Winter League schedule and Hernandez’s team only played due to a previous rain out.

All the leagues return to a full schedule today with the exception of the Pirates affiliate in the Australian League. Adelaide returns to action on Thursday, playing four games over a three day span. The Bite have forty games left in their schedule, which runs through the end of January. The team never plays Monday-Wednesday during the season, playing a four game series each weekend from here on out.

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John Dreker

John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.

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