Tim Williams did his weekly radio interview with David Todd today on ESPN 970 in Pittsburgh. Here are the highlights of the interview, with the full podcast below.
** They discussed injury updates from around the system, with news on Jung-ho Kang, Jared Hughes, Elias Diaz and Stephen Tarpley. You can read about those updates here, along with some other injury reports on prospects in the system.
** The Jared Hughes injury update led to a discussion about the bullpen and the roster crunch coming up. The Pirates will need to add non-roster players to the 25-man roster before Opening Day on Sunday, and the 40-man roster is currently full. First Pitch this morning talked about the difficult decisions the Pirates need to make with the roster by this weekend.
**With Juan Nicasio making the rotation, that means Ryan Vogelsong will be in the bullpen. With Hughes out, that could open a spot in the bullpen for Kyle Lobstein, since he is already on the 40-man roster. David and Tim discuss the issues with having both your 6th and 7th starter options in the bullpen, instead of Lobstein getting stretched out in Indianapolis.
**They also discussed how Nicasio ended up winning that rotation spot, and how that decision could affect the rest of the bullpen. One of the main points was trusting Neftali Feliz to return to his past success. On Monday, we took a look at the two trends that could signal a bounce back for Feliz.
**Finally, they talked about the bench setup and who will be the backup at shortstop. The Pirates have a lot of options for occasional spot starts, but none of them are long-term solutions. That could affect the last bench spot.