Has Charlie Morton Won the 5th Starter Job?

Coming in to the Spring, the Pittsburgh Pirates had a battle for the 5th starter role between Charlie Morton, Scott Olsen, and Brad Lincoln.  The battle was largely seen to be between Morton and Olsen, with Lincoln destined to return to AAA to work on his changeup. About a month ago, Scott Olsen went down with a hamstring injury, and while he’s currently rehabbing, he has yet to pitch an inning in Spring Training.  Meanwhile,...

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Huntington on Doumit, Olsen, Rodriguez

Rob Biertempfel has some updates from General Manager Neal Huntington: -Trade talks for Ryan Doumit have died down, according to Huntington.  He did mention that things usually pick back up the first few weeks of the season.  I think it’s pretty much a guarantee that Doumit will open the season with the team.  As for his trade value, I don’t think that’s going to increase in a bench role.  Unless we see a ton of...

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2011 Spring Training Battles: Bullpen

Yesterday I reviewed the battle for the fifth starter spot, noting that I saw it as a battle between Charlie Morton and Scott Olsen.  As reader “BLZR” pointed out in the comments, that’s pretty much the approach the Pirates will be taking this Spring, according to pitching coach Ray Searage.  My guess is that the loser of the battle between Morton and Olsen will take one of the open bullpen spots.  But what about the...

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2011 Spring Training Battles: 5th Starter Spot

It seems strange to start an article about the 5th starter battle with this statement, but here goes: far too much is made about the 5th starter out of Spring Training. For one, how many teams use just five starters in a season?  Last year the Pirates had seven starters making ten starts or more, and two more starters making nine starts.  In 2009 they had seven starters making double digit starts.  In 2008 they only had five starters...

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The 2011 Bullpen

A year ago at this time, the 2010 bullpen was largely incomplete, consisting only of Joel Hanrahan, Evan Meek, Javier Lopez, and a few minor signings competing for spots, such as Wilfredo Ledezma, Vinnie Chulk, Jack Taschner, and Brian Burres.  In the following weeks, the Pirates added D.J. Carrasco, Brendan Donnelly, and Octavio Dotel, giving the bullpen a major boost to start the 2010 season, and leading to one of the few strong...

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