It seems that every Spring Training the last few years has had a theme. Last year the focus was on controlling the running game, which came a season after teams were stealing bases at-will on the Pirates. The year before the focus was the importance of pitching inside. The Pirates did a better job with each improvement, especially with their focus on catching runners last year.

Russell Martin was brought in for his defense, and ended up responding with a 40% caught stealing rate, which was the best mark of his career. That wasn't entirely on Martin, since the entire pitching staff focused on mixing up their deliveries to the plate to keep base runners guessing. The overall approach paid off, which means we won't hear quotes about controlling the running game every day this Spring Traini...

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