Pirates Notebook: The Bats of Alvarez, Tabata Are Taking Big Steps Forward

PITTSBURGH, Pa. — Third baseman Pedro Alvarez has been putting in early work in the cages, working on his swing with hitting coach Gregg Ritchie. And over the past several games it looks like the hard work is starting to pay off. The Pirates faced a lot of criticism for starting Alvarez in the Majors, despite a rough spring training, instead of sending him to Triple-A to get work in. Although it’s a small sample size...

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Pirates Notebook: Presley, Tabata to Share Leadoff Spot

Throughout Grapefruit League action, Alex Presley got the majority of the starts batting leadoff. Jose Tabata followed in the two spot. The trend continued into the regular season with Presley hitting first for the first three games. But on game four of the season, Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle decided to switch the lineup up, inserting Tabata into the leadoff spot, allowing Presley to hit second. Hurdle said he will pick and choose...

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Pittsburgh Pirates 2012 Season Preview: Starting Lineup

The Pittsburgh Pirates finished with a .244 batting average during the 2011 season — .247 average in the 1st half, .241 in the 2nd half. Over the offseason, the Pirates signed shortstop Clint Barmes to a two-year deal, and catcher Rod Barajas to a one-year contract with an option for 2013. The Pirates entered Grapefruit League action on Sunday with a team .278 batting average this spring. The club has seven active players that...

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Tabata Feeling Comfort in Right Field

BRADENTON, Fla. — At just five years old, outfielder Jose Tabata’s father told him stories of Roberto Clemente. He showed him videos, articles in the paper, everything. But the young Tabata was unaware of who he was. As Tabata got older, his father told him, ‘one day, I want to see you play with the Pittsburgh Pirates’. “I said, ‘Who is the Pittsburgh Pirates? Because I [didn’t] know, I was five years...

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The Pirates Can’t Trade Jose Tabata

I’ve always believed that the best approach for small market teams is to build a farm system that constantly provides replacements for the players in the majors.  When a star player is ready to leave, the system will ideally have a guy ready to take over and provide the same production.  The system will also allow the team to trade guys away as they get in to their expensive years, while replacing them with an internal option...

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