Pirates Notebook: McKenry Taking Advantage of Opportunities

During the 2011 offseason, Michael McKenry went down to the Fall Instructional League to work on his hitting with Manager Clint Hurdle. Working with his skipper continued throughout spring training when McKenry focused on some adjustments at the plate. McKenry is already sound behind the plate, earning the nickname “The Fort” for his defense. McKenry wanted to improve upon his .222/.276/.322 line in 2011 with Pittsburgh....

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Pirates Notebook: Karstens Getting Back to Last Season’s Form

Jeff Karstens has been working hard to get back to his 2011 form. After missing two months of the season on the disabled list with a right shoulder injury, Karstens has shown over his last four starts that he’s getting there. Karstens tossed seven scoreless frames in the Pirates 3-0 shutout over the Florida Marlins. The 29-year-old has pitched at least seven frames in each of his last four starts, while allowing six earned runs...

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Pirates Notebook: Pitching Struggles Against Milwaukee, Presley Set For Rehab Assignment

Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle shuffled the rotation for the second half of the season and gave the first start to James McDonald. And based on his impressive season, the right-hander deserved it. McDonald entered the All-Star break ranked third in the National League in ERA (2.37) and second in batting average against (.196). However, both those numbers took a hit in the first game back on Friday in Milwaukee as McDonald struggled from...

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Hurdle and Alvarez Share a Bond

Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle knows the challenges of high expectations. They were put on him when he was drafted in the first round (ninth overall) by the Kansas City Royals in the 1975 draft. At just 20-years-old, Hurdle made his Major League debut and was on a Sports Illustrated cover being labeled as the next young “phenom”. While Pedro Alvarez never made a magazine cover of that magnitude, he and Hurdle share many...

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Pirates Notebook: Karstens Looking Like the 2011 Version

PITTSBURGH, PA — Jeff Karstens has been very sharp over his last two outings with Pittsburgh, showing a glimpse of what we saw from the right-hander during the 2011 season. After missing two months of this season due to right-shoulder inflammation, and a set back during a rehab outing with a hip flexor injury, Karstens first trip back the mound was shaky. Karstens allowed six earned on 11 hits over five frames, wondering if...

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