Tag: Jim Negrych

Almost-Last-Minute Roster Adjustments

The Pirates announced two roster moves this afternoon:
RHP Mike Crotta had been not-entirely-officially told that he'd make the major league team.  Now it's official:  Crotta and reliever Garrett Olson are on the Pirates' Opening Day roster. 
That means that reliever Chris Leroux will be assigned to Indianapolis.  Olson, a lefty, will be the only lefty in the bullpen, at least until Scott Olsen is healthy again.  Olson also pitched more effectively in last night's pre-season game against the Phillies.  It was not a good night for Leroux to surrender runs.  

Also, the Pirates have traded INF Jim Negrych to the Marlins, in exchange for minor league catcher Carlos Paulino.  Negrych had asked to be traded if he was not going to be assigned to AAA Indianapolis.  
 
Paulino is a 21-year-old Dominican native, who made his US debut with the Marlins' GCL team in 2008.  He moved up to the short-season A Jamestown team in 2009, and hit well there, though without much power:  .291 average, 11 doubles, one triple, one homer, and 14 RBI in 42 games.  In 2010, Paulino caught 60 games for A level Greensboro, but did not hit well, and still showed no power:  .184 with 10 doubles and 10 RBI.  He made 9 errors and 2 passed balls, and he threw out 33 of 81 batters trying to steal.  He was moved up to A+ Jupiter for 3 games, where he hit an RBI double in 8 at-bats.  Paulino's small size makes it easy to see why he doesn't have a lot of power.  He appears to have been the back-up catcher for his team in the past two seasons, and he's likely to do that again for the Pirates.  The Pirates have a lot of catchers already vying for a spot on the West Virginia and Bradenton teams, so it's not clear where Paulino will be assigned.  

Crotta Gives Up A Run, More Reassignments

Yankees  4,  Pirates  2
Reliever Mike Crotta, who had not given up a run up 'til today, surrendered his first spring training run this afternoon in Tampa.  Crotta came on to pitch the final inning, with the Yankees already ahead 3-2.  He gave up a single, a sacrifice bunt, and another single, for the Yankees' final run of the game.  Crotta is still in the running for a bullpen spot with the Pirates.  
The Yankees got onto the scoreboard first, with a 2-run homer by Alex Rodriguez in the bottom of the 1st inning off starter Kevin Correia.  Correia sailed through the next two innings, then gave up another run in the 4th on a walk and two singles.  He gave up only one more hit in the next two innings, finishing his afternoon with 6 innings, 5 hits, 3 runs, 2 walks, and 5 strikeouts.  Jose Veras pitched a scoreless 7th inning. 
The Pirates scored one run in the 2nd inning, when 3B Pedro Alvarez led off with a walk and C Jason Jaramillo doubled him in.  LF Jose Tabata smacked a triple in the 5th inning, and scored on 2B Neil Walker's sacrifice fly, for the Pirates' second run.  The Pirates posted 10 hits in the game, but did not score again  -- 8 runners were left on base.  Manager Clint Hurdle indicated that today's lineup is what he expects to be his regular starting lineup, and today most of those position players were in for the entire game.  SS Ronny Cedeno came out of the game in a double-switch in the bottom of the 8th, and Josh Rodriguez entered the game.  Rodriguez lined a single in the top of the 9th, but was left on base.  

The Pirates have two more games in Florida (at McKechnie Field against the Rays on Sunday, and in Ft. Myers against the Twins on Monday.  Then they will play two games in Philadelphia on Tuesday and Wednesday, before heading to Chicago to begin the regular season next Friday.  


The Pirates reassigned four more players to minor league camp this morning:  P Bria
n Burres,  C Dusty Brown, INF Andy Marte, and INF Corey Wimberly.   Moving Marte to minor league camp is encouraging for Steve Pearce, who is now nearly assured a bench spot on the major league team.  


S/W-B Yankees  6,  Indy Indians  5
The Indians faced New York Yankees' pitcher CC Sabathia this afternoon in a AAA spring training game against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees in Tampa this afternoon.  They hit 5 singles off Sabathia in three innings, but could not bring any of those base runners around to score.  James McDonald came from the Pirates' big league camp to make a start for the Indians.  He gave up one run on 4 hits in his 3 innings.  The Indians scored a run in the 6th inning on Alex Presley's sacrifice fly.  Josh Fields, who went 2-for-3 in the game, doubled in a run in the 7th, then Jim Negrych followed with a 2-run homer.  The Indians were leading 5-2 going into the bottom of the 8th.  The Yankees tied the score in the bottom of the frame with 3 runs on a pair of doubles.  Then in the bottom of the 9th, the Yankees scored with a 2-out single to take the win.

Sketchy reports from two other games:
On Thursday, the Indians lost to the Las Vegas 51's by a score of 5-3, despite home runs by Chase d'Arnaud and Alex Presley.
On Friday, the Indians and the S/W-B Yankees played to a 1-1 tie.  Rudy Owens pitched 4 innings for the Indians, and struck out 6 batters.  


Three Hits For Cedeno With Indy; Olson Debuts For Pirates

Iron Pigs  6,  Indians  5

The Indianapolis Indians ended their 4-game spring training winning streak with a loss today to the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs.  Pirates' Ronny Cedeno came to minor league camp to DH in the game and posted 3 hits for the Tribe.  OF Andrew Lambo singled and tripled for the Indians, and his triple in the 4th inning brought in one run.  The score was tied at 4-4 going into the top of the 9th, with reliever Tom Boleska on the mound for the Indians.  He gave up 3 hits, including an RBI single by former Pirate Brandon Moss, plus a sacrifice fly, to give the Iron Pigs a 6-4 lead.  The Indians got within one run when INF Jim Negrych got on and was brought across the plate by INF Josh Harrison's RBI single.  Lambo's single loaded the bases with one out.  But a double play ended the inning and the game with the Indians unable to catch up.  


Twins  4,  Pirates  1

Newest Pirate LHP Garrett Olson made his debut with his new team this afternoon, as the Pirates lost to the Twins in Bradenton.  Olson came on in relief to pitch the 8th inning, and retired the side in order with a pop out, a fly out, and a ground out.  
Paul Maholm made the start for the Pirates.  He pitched 6 innings and gave up 9 hits and 2 walks, but allowed only 2 runs.  With two outs in the 3rd, Maholm gave up a single, then made a throwing error on a pick-off attempt, which put the runner into scoring position.  A single by C Joe Mauer brought in the run.  The second run scored in the 5th, when a double, a single, and a walk loaded the bases.  A grounder to short started a double play, but the runner from third still scored.  
Jose Veras pitched a scoreless 7th inning for the Indians, allowing just a double.  Anthony Claggett took the 9th, and he gave up the remaining two Twins' runs.  A walk and a single put runners on the corners, then a ground out plated the first run.  A fielding error by SS Pedro Ciriaco allowed the runner from second base to come around and score.   
The Pirates' only run scored in the 2nd inning, and was unearned.  A fielding error on a force attempt gave the Pirates runners on first and second.  C Jason Jaramillo lined a single into center field for the RBI, as RF Matt Diaz scored from second base.  
The Pirates had just 6 hits in the game, including one by LF Steve Pearce.  That gives Pearce 9 hits over his last 9 games (9-for-19,  .474), and a .308 average overall.  LF John Bowker and C Dusty Brown also singled.   CF Corey Wimberly, 2B Shelby Ford, 1B Josh Fields, pinch-hitter Starling Marte, and 3B Andy Marte all got into the game.  

The Pirates have a day off on Tuesday. 

2011 Prospect Watching: Holt, Ford, Negrych

The minor league spring training games began today, with the Indy Indians facing off against the Las Vegas 51's in Dunedin.  Info about the minor league games tends to be sketchy at best, and often non-existent, but this evening we got some info:
51's  5,  Indians  2  --   Rudy Owens got the start in the Indians' first game.  He pitched 3 innings and allowed 2 runs on 6 hits, no walks, with 3 strikeouts.  The runs came in the 3rd, with former Indy Indian (2005-06) Craig Stansberry contributing to the rally.  The Indians scored one of their runs in the top of the 1st, on three consecutive hits by CF Gorkys Hernandez, SS Chase d'Arnaud, and 1B Matt Hague (RBI).  Stansberry picked up another RBI in Las Vegas' 3-run 7th inning.  


Meanwhile, back to the middle infielders:


Brock Holt --  Bats L / Throws R;  5' 10",  165 lbsHolt was the Pirates' 9th round pick in the 2009 draft.  He can play both second base and shortstop, and did both at State College in 2009, though more at short.  He also hit well for the Spikes, with a .299 average, 6 homers, and 33 RBI in 66 games.  The Pirates thought well enough of him to have him begin 2010 at A+ Bradenton (skipping A level West Virginia).  It was a good move, at least offensively, as Holt got off to a roaring start -- he hit .383 in April, .310 in May, and was 9-for-18 in June.  His defense was a little shaky.  Holt made 14 errors in 47 games at shortstop.  Then in early June, Holt collided with teammate Adenson Chourio during a game and tore the median collateral ligament in his knee.  It was a "compound" tear, so it took longer than the average time to heal, and Holt missed the entire rest of the season.  He has said that his rehab time went well, and he was ready to go when spring training began.  Holt could begin the 2011 season back with Bradenton if the Pirates feel he needs more work on defense at that level, but his hitting in 2010 seems to indicate that he'd be ready for AA Altoona.  The 23-year-old Holt has said that he's equally comfortable at second base and shortstop and that he has no particular preference for either one.

Durham And Atkins Both Homer For Pirates

The Pirates played two split-squad spring training games this afternoon (Monday):

Orioles  6,  Pirates  4
The Pirates were held to 5 hits at McKechnie field this afternoon, but one of the big ones was a 2-run homer over the left field wall in the bottom of the 9th by RF Miles Durham, who was up from minor league camp.  1B Lyle Overbay also singled for the Pirates, scoring the first Pirates' run of the game in the 5th.  3B Pedro Alvarez knocked in the remaining run for the Pirates, in the 6th inning.  LF Jose Tabata led off the inning with a single, stole second base, then scored on Alvarez's single    Alvarez also doubled for the Pirates.

LF John Bowker, SS Brian Friday, CF Mel Rojas, 3B Andy Marte,  1B Steve Pearce, 2B Chase d'Arnaud, 2B Jim Negrych, and C Wyatt Toregas all got into the game for the Pirates.   

Paul Maholm took the loss for the Pirates.  He gave up a run in the 1st inning on a double and a single, then another on a solo homer in the 2nd.  Jeff Locke allowed a run on two hits in the 6th.  He allowed a single and a walk, then with two outs, an RBI single brought in a run.   Justin Wilson got the first out, then walked the next three batters to load the bases in the 8th.  A double and a sacrifice fly drove in all three of the base runners.  Jeff Karstens pitched 2 scoreless innings, then Tyler Yates, and Mike Crotta each pitched a scoreless frame.   Cesar Valdez finished up the 8th for Karstens, then pitched a scoreless 9th, facing only 4 batters.

Altoona Curve Win Eastern League Championship

Altoona Curve� 5,� Trenton Thunder� 2 ...����� (box)

IMG_4068The Altoona Curve clinched the Eastern League Championship tonight, defeating the Trenton Thunder in Game 4 of the championship series in Trenton.� Starter Tony Watson, who was also the winning pitcher a week ago when the Curve won the divisional series, earned the win again tonight.� Closer Daniel Moskos (photo, while with the Indy Indians), earned his 5th save of the playoffs.� He had a save in each of the Curve's three wins in the championship series, and also in two of their three wins in the divisional series.� The offensive star of the game was DH Jim Negrych, who went 3-for-5 and led the way with 3 RBI.

Watson pitched 6 innings and struck out 10 Thunder batters.� He gave up 2 runs on only 5 hits and 2 walks.� The Thunder began the bottom of the 1st with a single off the bat of CF Austin Krum, who also stole second base.� After two strikeouts, Watson walked C Austin Romine, but then struck out the next batter, leaving the two runners on base.

Watson gave up two hits and a run in the 3rd.� 2B Matthew Cusick led off with a triple into right field.� Two outs later, he scored on RF Daniel Brewer's line drive single into right field, and the Thunder had a 1-0 lead.

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IMG_3661The Curve had put one runner on base in the 1st, when 3B Josh Harrison reached base on an error, then stole second base.� In the 2nd, Negrych hit a 2-out single up the middle, then CF Jose De Los Santos walked, but all three of them were left on base.� When the Thunder made another fielding error in the 4th, the Curve were able to capitalize.� 1B Matt Hague led off with a walk, then a fielding error by the Thunder first baseman put LF Andrew Lambo on first and Hague on third.� That brought up the offensive hero, Jim Negrych (photo, with the Indy Indians).� Negrych slapped a grounder into left field for a 2-RBI single, bringing in both Hague and Lambo to give the Curve a 2-1 lead.

The Curve rallied again, with help from Negrych, in the 5th.� Harrison led off with a line drive into center field, and he moved to second base on SS Jordy Mercer's ground out.� Hague lifted a single into right field, and Harrison raced around from second.� When the throw in from the outfield ticked off the catcher Romine's glove, Harrison scored and Hague advanced to second base.� Hague moved up to third base on Lambo's ground out.� The Thunder intentionally walked C Hector Gimenez, and Negrych again came to the plate with a runner in scoring position.� Negrych lined into left field, with the Trenton LF Damon Sublett giving chase.� Sublett went for the sliding catch -- and missed.� As the ball went on behind Sublett, Negrych was safely into second base with a double, and Hague scored, giving the Curve a 4-1 lead.

Curve Shut Out Trenton, Take Advantage In Series

Altoona Curve� 5,� Trenton Thunder� 0 ...������ (box)

The Curve took advantage of the unexpected day off yesterday, and came back to action ready to roll.� Three Curve pitchers combined to shut out the Thunder in Trenton, as the Curve took a 2-games-to-one lead in the 5-game Eastern League Championship Series.

Justin Wilson made the start for the Curve, pitching 7 innings and allowing only 5 hits and a walk, with 3 strikeouts.� Wilson had to work around at least one runner on base in every inning but one, as he scattered the hits and the walk, and also had a batter reach third base on a fielding error by Anthony Norman in right field.� The Thunder put two runners on base in the 3rd inning, when Wilson got two outs, then gave up a single and a walk.� That was the closest the Thunder came to hurting Wilson, though, and he calmly got a fly out to end the inning.� Wilson was also able to take advantage of timely double plays to erase base runners in the 6th and 7th innings.� He earned his second post-season win, and increased his total of post-season scoreless innings to 13.

LF Andrew Lambo was the first to provide Wilson with some run support, when he blasted a solo home run, rising over the left-center field wall in the 2nd inning.

The Curve batters were quiet for the next two innings, until DH Jim Negrych walked to start a two-out rally in the 5th.� A passed ball put Negrych on second base, and CF Jose De Los Santos singled to second base, moving Negrych to third.�� Norman slipped a grounder just out of the reach of the Trenton second baseman, scoring Negrych.� 2B Chase d'Arnaud was hit by a pitch, loading the bases.� That gave 3B Josh Harrison the opportunity to drive another single into right field, bringing in both De Los Santos and Norman, and the Curve had a 4-0 lead.

Curve Hold Their Own Against Pettitte, But Lose Game One

Trenton Thunder� 3,� Altoona Curve� 2 ...���� (box)

Curve starter Rudy Owens faced off against National's phenom pitcher Stephen Strasbourg at the beginning of the season, and held his own.� Now he winds down the season by facing off against New York Yankees' rehabbing star Andy Pettitte -- and again, Owens held his own.� Owens and Pettitte each pitched 5 innings in tonight's first game of the Eastern League Championship Series, held in Altoona.� Owens gave up 2 runs; Pettitte gave up 2 runs.� Owens gave up 7 hits and 3 walks; Pettitte gave up 6 hits and 2 walks, and he also threw a wild pitch.� Owens struck out 7; Pettitte struck out 4.

2B Chase d'Arnaud faced Pettitte three times and must not have been very impressed.� He put the first run of the game onto the scoreboard when he led off the bottom of the 1st inning with a solo home run off Pettitte.� In the 3rd inning, d'Arnaud worked a walk, and in the 5th, he singled off Pettitte.

The Curve took d'Arnaud's home run lead into the 3rd inning.� Rudy Owens gave up a walk and a single in the 2nd, but induced a double play to end the inning.� In the 3rd, he gave up three singles, including the RBI single that slipped past first base and down the right field line to tie the score at 1-1.

The Curve came right back in the bottom of the 3rd to take a 2-1 lead.� With one out, DH Yung Chi Chen lined a single into right field.� Pettitte's wild pitch put Chen on second base, and when d'Arnaud walked, ball four got past the Trenton catcher for a passed ball, allowing Chen to advance to third base.� 3B Josh Harrison grounded just out of reach of the Trenton shortstop and into left field for the single that scored Chen.

Owens retired the side in order again in the 4th.� Then he gave up two doubles in the top of the 5th, and Trenton had tied up the game again, at 2-2.

The Curve threatened in the bottom of the 5th.� Chen reached base on a fielding error by the Trenton third baseman.� Back-to-back singles by d'Arnaud and Harrison -- a line drive into right field by d'Arnaud and a bunt single by Harrison -- loaded the bases for Altoona.� But Pettitte got SS Jordy Mercer to bounce back to the mound, where he fired the ball back to the catcher, forcing out Chen at the plate, then on to first base to complete the double play.� A strikeout ended the inning.

Curve Advance To Eastern League Championship Series

Altoona Curve� 10,� Harrisburg Senators� 5 ...���� (box)

The Curve doubled up the Senators tonight, winning their second game of the series in the Senators' home park.� That gave Altoona a 3-1 game win of the season, advancing them to the championship round of the Eastern League playoffs.

Five home runs by the Curve kept the runs coming, as the Curve totalled 12 hits.� CF Andrew Lambo and LF Jim Negrych had 3 hits each, and Lambo and RF Miles Durham contributed 3 RBI each.� 2B Chase d'Arnaud homered for the second game in a row, and Lambo, Durham, SS Jordy Mercer, and C Hector Gimenez also had home runs.

After a quiet first inning, the Curve got things going in the top of the 2nd, with a walk to Lambo,� a single by Negrych, and Durham's 3-run home run.� The Senators came right back in the bottom of the inning.� The first batter of the inning reached on a fielding error by SS Mercer, then C Jhonatan Solano hit a 2-run homer to put the score at 3-2.

The Curve responded with two 2-run home runs in the top of the 3rd.� With one out, 3B Josh Harrison walked, and Mercer homered.� Then Hague walked and Lambo homered.� They added another run in the 4th, on a walk by d'Arnaud, a singled up the middle by Mercer, and an RBI line drive single into left field by Lambo.� Curve up, 8-2.

Starter Tony Watson continued his solid performance after the Senators' home run in the 2nd.� He worked around a single in the 3rd and another single in the 4th.� He retired the side in order in the 5th.� The 6th inning began with a lead-off home run by 1B Chris Marrero.� Watson retired the next three batters, plus the first two in the 7th, before giving up a walk.� At that point, he gave way to Craig Hansen, who threw a wild pitch, but finished the inning with a ground out.� Watson had allowed 3 runs (2 earned) on 4 hits and 2 walks, with 4 strikeouts in his 6.2 innings of work.

Hector Gimenez kept the Curve humming with a solo home run in the 7th inning, and Chase d'Arnaud added his solo blast in the 8th.

Wilson Dominates As Curve Take Game 3

Altoona Curve� 7,� Harrisburg Senators� 2 ...�� (box)

The Pirates' only minor league affiliate still playing in the post-season, the Altoona Curve, defeated the Harrisburg Senators 7-2 in the third game of the Eastern League Western Division playoffs tonight in Harrisburg.� After splitting the first two games in Altoona, the Curve now have a 2-1 game lead in the best-of-5.

The Curve pitching was a big key in the game, as starter Justin Wilson dominated the Senators for 6 scoreless innings.� He allowed only two hits and struck out 7 Harrisburg batters, though he also walked 5.� The first two batters in the Harrisburg line-up, 2B Steve Lombardozzi and SS Josh Johnson, led off in four different innings, and each time at least one got on base.� Lombardozzi had both of the singles given up by Wilson.� In the bottom of the 1st, Lombardozzi led off with a single and Johnson walked.� Wilson got a line out and a strikeout, then walked another batter to load the bases, but then ended the inning with a fly out.

Wilson retired the side in order in the 2nd, then the same two came up again to begin the 3rd.� This time Lombardozzi grounded out, then Johnson walked again.� Wilson got a double play to erase Johnson at second base, ending the inning.� Another walk and another double play got Wilson through the 4th inning, and he retired the side in order in the 5th.� The 1-2 punch began the 6th inning with another single by Lombardozzi (only Wilson's second hit allowed) and a third walk to Johnson.� This time Lombardozzi advanced to third base by tagging up on a fly out, but two strikeouts ended the inning.

Mike Colla relieved Wilson to begin the 7th inning.� He worked around a single in that inning, then had to face guess who to lead off the 8th inning.� This time they turned it around -- Colla walked Lombardozzi and gave up a single to Johnson.� Colla wasn't any more impressed than Wilson had been.� He left them standing right there, with a strikeout and two short fly outs.

Meanwhile, the Curve batters were busy scoring.� They posted a total of 12 hits, with five different batters collecting 2 hits each:� 2B Chase d'Arnaud, 3B Josh Harrison, 1B Matt Hague, lF Jim Negrych, and RF Miles Durham. The Curve threatened in the 2nd, when Hague led off with a line drive single into right field.� He was erased with a double play, then C Hector Gimenez and Negrych worked back-to-back walks.� They were both left on base when a fly out ended the inning.� Three consecutive singles got another rally going in the 3rd inning.� D'Arnaud and Harrison both grounded through the left side of the infield, and SS Jordy Mercer lined the third single into right field.� That brought up Hague, who rocketed a long ball off the top of the wall in center field, not missing a home run by much.� It fell in for a double, clearing the bases to give Altoona a 3-0 lead.

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