Pirates Notebook: Locke Gets Hit Hard, Irwin Drawing Some Attention

Jeff Locke had a bit of a rough outing today at McKechnie Field. The left-hander was hit hard, with eight hits in 3.1 innings, although he managed to limit the damage with only two runs allowed. Part of the low run count was due to Phil Irwin stranding two in the fourth, after Locke gave up a walk and a double to lead off the inning. Locke got a groundout for the first out, but the Pirates called on Irwin to get out of the jam....

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The Transformation of Phil Irwin From a 21st Round Pick to a Legit Prospect

When the Pittsburgh Pirates drafted Phil Irwin, he was known as the other pitcher from Mississippi in the 2009 draft. The Pirates also selected Nate Baker in the 5th round that year. Baker and Irwin were the number two and three starters in the Ole Miss rotation in 2009, with the ace of the staff being 2010 first rounder Drew Pomeranz. Irwin was taken in the 21st round. A college pitcher taken in the 21st round usually doesn’t...

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First Pitch: The Starting Pitching Depth

With yesterday’s news that the Pirates were adding Jonathan Sanchez, and today’s news that they’re still on track to sign Francisco Liriano, the starting pitching scene is getting crowded. Here is a breakdown of all the options who are either currently on the team, or in the case of Sanchez/Liriano, expected to sign. Guarantees for the Rotation A.J. Burnett - Burnett had a 3.51 ERA in 202.1 innings last year, and his...

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Pirates Add Five to the 40-Man Roster

Today was the deadline to protect players for the upcoming Rule 5 draft in December. The Pittsburgh Pirates added five players to the 40-man roster today. The new additions were Vic Black, Tony Sanchez, Phil Irwin, Ramon Cabrera, and Hunter Strickland. Sanchez and Black were the two obvious names from the list. Sanchez was the first round pick for the Pirates in 2009. His hitting hasn’t been that good in the upper levels, but...

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Pirates Prospects 2012 Minor League Pitcher of the Year

In previous years it wasn’t difficult to pick the Pitcher of the Year in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ minor league system. Kyle McPherson was clearly the winner last year, posting a 2.96 ERA and a 142:27 K/BB ratio in 161 innings. Rudy Owens ran away with it in 2010, posting a 2.46 ERA in 150 innings at the Double-A level, with a 132:23 K/BB ratio. This year there was a little more competition, which led to a tougher decision....

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