Pittsburgh Pirates 2012 Off-Season Contract Issues and Projections

The Pirates are going to have an interesting arbitration class this offseason. Several players — Garrett Jones, James McDonald, Neil Walker — could all stand to get pretty heavy pay raises, while pitchers Joel Hanrahan and Jeff Karstens, both third time eligible, could serve as off-season trade chips. The Pirates also have an option on veteran catcher Rod Barajas, who which could be exercised to return as their backup....

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McDonald Steps Away From Game to Get on Track

James McDonald has made just one appearance out of the bullpen after he was replaced  in the rotation with Kyle McPherson on Sept 16, two days after his final start of the season against the Chicago Cubs. The move was not only to for the organization to get a look at the rookie McPherson, but to give McDonald a chance to get back on track after a rough second half of the season. McDonald didn’t retire a batter in his first...

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First Pitch: McDonald and Karstens Should Be Locks For the 2013 Rotation

Looking ahead to the 2013 season, there has been some talk and speculation that Pirates starters James McDonald and Jeff Karstens might not be locks for the 2013 rotation. If you ask me, both pitchers should be locks for the rotation next year. The knock against McDonald right now is that he’s faded in the second half. The right-hander posted a 7.52 ERA in 61 innings in the second half, and was eventually removed from the...

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McDonald Pulled From Rotation, McPherson Replaces Him

Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle announced on Sunday that James McDonald has been removed from the rotation, and rookie Kyle McPherson will replace him in the five-man staff, getting his first Major League start on Wednesday in Pittsburgh against Milwaukee. As the season continues to wind down, and each game continues to get more important as the Pirates are just two games out of the second spot in the Wild Card, the club had to do what...

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Pirates Notebook: Bucs Snap Skid; Is McDonald’s Spot Safe?

The Pittsburgh Pirates took the field in Chicago on Saturday afternoon just one game over .500 and three games back of St. Louis for the second spot in the Wild Card race. Looking to snap their seven-game skid and turn things around, the club needed the offense to spark and the pitching to hold the club in the game, while making solid defensive plays. The Pirates were able to put it all together and end their losing streak by beating...

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