Before Wednesday night’s Bravos de Margarita game in the Venezuelan winter league, Jose Osuna met with the local press and discussed his winter plans. Wednesday was the first day he worked out with his team this off-season. He told the local media that he feels he could be game ready within the next 7-10 days.

Osuna laid out his plans for playing time, including defense and how long he expects to play. He said that he will likely play third base four days a week, followed by splitting the rest of his time between the outfield and first base. Osuna also noted that the Pirates are allowing him to play for four weeks only, although he will ask to play in the playoffs if Margarita gets a playoff spot.

That seems like a short time, but as of today, there are only 50 days left in the regular season in Venezuela. The team has four days off in a row at Christmas, before playing the final three games. So he would be playing most of the remaining schedule once he starts playing.

I assume the Pirates will want him to attend the voluntary winter mini-camp at Pirate City in Bradenton, which is usually held during the second week of January. They can’t require him to go, but I’m sure they would like to get a look at his progress at third base. Osuna left the playoffs in Venezuela last year to attend the four-day camp, so he will likely be there.

Osuna took ground balls at third base during Spring Training this year and for most of the season, although the Pirates never used him there in a game. He has never played the spot in the minors or winter ball, so when he debuts at third base this winter, it will be his first game action.

Bravos de Margarita also announced that Elias Diaz could begin play a week after Osuna, which would be around November 22nd.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Him playing 3B is not realistic, he can’t play OF very well. He is a 1B (which we already have) or a DH. One more 1/2 year or year coming off bench for Pirates, hopefully provides power off bench and days off on occasion for Bell…..then trade to AL team for RH or LH young reliever.

    • Problem is that every year there’s an excess of DH/1B players readily available in free agency and through trades. Doubt the return would be a young, presumably controllable for several years type of reliever when a team with a need for someone with his skill set can sign somebody with a longer, more productive track record for something like 5-7 million a year and keep their players and/or prospects.

  2. I thought he did a nice job for the season especially
    considering very few thought he would even be in
    Pittsburgh this season. He dropped off a little
    at the end, but probably the effect of a long season
    and also less playing time.

    He played at times like he was young and hungry.
    If his future is not with the Pirates, it may be somewhere else.

      • First exposure to MLB at age 24 and posted a .697 OPS. 50 hits in 215 AB and 24 of those 50 hits were extra base hits -13 2B/ 4 3B/ 7 HR. C’mon Joe, they are very good offensive numbers for a pre-rookie (missed getting a service year by 6 days).

        Percentage of EBH/AB is 11.15% – which is higher than any other Pirate. Bell 10.56%, ‘Cutch 10.52%. Not his fault he did not get more PT down the stretch, nor any time at 3B. Who played 3B? Sean Rodriguez who posted a .528 OPS/4.21% EBH/AB. And, unless traded, Rodriguez will be making $5.5 mil in 2018, therefore he will have to play – as if Hurdle needed a reason to favor a veteran.

        • Unfortunately the National League game requires a glove be worn. No glove, no play in the NL. No glove = DFA by June 2018

          • I thought he played a pretty good first base.
            Also had one real good game playing left field.
            Not bad for a guy who basically was a
            first baseman who was thrown into his
            first MLB season on short notice

            • I must have missed the game in left. I cringed every time that guy played the outfield.

              I agree that he is a fair first baseman but l don’t think he’s much of a trade chip. I think his upside would a Garrett Jones sort of player and there are a lot of those floating around MLB.

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