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CIN -145, O/U 8.5
Mon, Apr 37:10 pm
Top Pirates News
Pirates' Robert Stephenson: Beginning rehab assignment
Stephenson (elbow) is set to begin a minor-league rehab assignment Friday with Triple-A Indianapolis, Justice delos Santos of MLB.com reports.
Stephenson was placed on the 15-day injured list on Opening Day, retroactive to March 27, after being slowed this spring by lingering right elbow soreness. But he is on track now to perhaps join the Pirates' bullpen as soon as he is first eligible for activation.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Bryan Reynolds: Money agreed to, but opt-out hurdle
The inclusion of an opt-out clause is the sticking point in contract extension negotiations between Reynolds and the Pirates, Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic reports.
The good news is the two sides have come to an agreement on the financial terms of a long-term deal with a package of about $106 million, Biertempfel says. Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette hears that the $106 million figure would cover eight years and would start in 2023. Reynolds has expressed a willingness to back-load the contract and because he's also relented more than the club on the dollar ask, he wants the Pirates to include an opt-out clause. Pittsburgh has historically been opposed to including opt-outs in contracts, but it's possible they might make an exception here. Biertempfel intimates that the Pirates might like to have a deal in place prior to their home opener on April 7. Reynolds -- who is currently under team control through 2025 -- requested a trade back in December when negotiations fell apart, but it seems there's real momentum for a deal now if the two sides can overcome the opt-out hurdle.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Canaan Smith-Njigba: Surprise Opening Day starter
Smith-Njigba went 1-for-5 with three strikeouts in Thursday's 5-4 victory over the Reds.
Manager Derek Shelton rewarded the 23-year-old Smith-Njigba for an outstanding spring in which he slashed .333/.407/.583 with three homers and 14 RBI across 20 games. Not only did Smith-Njigba get the nod in right field, he hit fifth in the order behind Andrew McCutchen and Carlos Santana, and ahead of Ke'Bryan Hayes and Jack Suwinski. He was later lifted for a defensive replacement, but it seems Smith-Njigba will get a look as a primary outfielder in Pittsburgh to start the season.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Ji Hwan Bae: Two steals in opener
Bae went 2-for-3 with a walk, a double, two runs scored and two stolen bases in Thursday's 5-4 victory over the Reds.
Bae started the game at second base before ultimately moving to center field in the bottom of the ninth inning as Canaan Smith-Njigba was lifted for a defensive replacement. Although Bae was buried in the eight hole in the order, he was in the middle of every rally for the Pirates and showcased his speed when he got on base. The 23-year-old ranked in the 90th percentile in sprint speed last season according to Statcast.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Oneil Cruz: Smacks awe-inspiring homer
Cruz went 1-for-2 with two walks, a home run, two RBI and two runs scored in Thursday's 5-4 victory over the Reds.
Cruz erased an early Reds lead with a missile of a home run, a 425-foot long ball off Hunter Greene clocked at 111.1 mph off the bat. His tools are just silly, and the walks are nice to see, suggesting the improved plate discipline from late last season might stick. While the team context isn't great, the upside is massive regardless for the Pirates' leadoff hitter.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' David Bednar: Notches save Thursday
Bednar picked up the save Thursday against Cincinnati. He allowed one hit while striking out two over one scoreless inning.
With the Pirates clinging to a one-run lead, Bednar got the call to nail things down. He worked around a Jonathan India double, throwing 14 of his 18 pitches for strikes to earn his first save of the season and the 23rd of his young career. Bednar's skills are excellent and his job security is high, though the threat of a trade later in the season looms.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Mitch Keller: Fans eight in no-decision
Keller did not factor into the decision Thursday, allowing four runs on six hits and four walks over 4.2 innings against the Reds. He struck out eight.
Keller was an out away from qualifying for the win, but he gave up a two-out, two-run triple to Jason Vosler in the bottom of the fifth inning to lose the lead. He threw an even 100 pitches in his 2023 debut, inducing 15 swinging strikes. The 26-year-old righty may never break out as a star player, but he's in the streaming conversation. Keller lines up for a road start in Boston next week.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Rob Zastryzny: Makes bullpen for PIT
Zastryzny had his contract selected by the Pirates on Thursday.
Zastryzny claimed the final spot in Pittsburgh's bullpen after tallying 10 strikeouts and yielding zero earned runs across 7.1 innings this spring in the Grapefruit League. The 31-year-old southpaw tends to struggle against right-handed hitters, but he's held lefties to a .174/.321/.239 slash line over parts of four major-league seasons.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Jason Delay: Contract selected by PIT
Delay had his contract selected by the Pirates on Thursday.
Delay will open the 2023 season as the Pirates' backup catcher. He won the gig this spring over both Tyler Heineman and Kevin Plawecki.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Robert Stephenson: Placed on 15-day IL
Stephenson (elbow) was placed on the 15-day injured list Thursday, retroactive to March 27.
Stephenson managed to get into Grapefruit League action before spring training came to an end, but he'll require a little more build-up after battling lingering right elbow soreness for most of camp.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' JT Brubaker: Placed on 15-day IL
The Pirates placed Brubaker (elbow) on the 15-day injured list Thursday.
Brubaker could be facing season-ending surgery for a right elbow injury that he suffered at the tail end of spring training. He had been ticketed for a spot in the Pirates' starting rotation to open the 2023 campaign, but his injury paves the way for Johan Oviedo to enter the season as the No. 5 starter.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Jarlin Garcia: Placed on 60-day IL
Garcia (biceps) was placed on the 60-day injured list Thursday.
Garcia was diagnosed earlier this month with a nerve issue in his left biceps and is going to be in no-throw mode through at least mid-April.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Ryan Vilade: Designated for assignment
Vilade was designated for assignment by the Pirates on Thursday.
Vilade didn't make the cut for an Opening Day roster spot and now moves into DFA limbo. Pittsburgh claimed the 24-year-old outfielder away from the Rockies back in November.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Oneil Cruz: At leadoff spot for opener
Cruz is batting leadoff for the Pirates in their season opener Thursday against the Reds.
Cruz jumped up into the leadoff spot down the stretch in 2022, and he can hopefully latch onto that role throughout the entire 2023 campaign. The dynamic 24-year-old shortstop has tallied 18 home runs and 10 stolen bases across his first 89 major-league games.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Ke'Bryan Hayes: Batting sixth in PIT opener
Hayes is batting sixth in the Pirates' season opener Thursday at Cincinnati.
It's not an ideal lineup spot for what Hayes brings to the table in fantasy, though he could move up quickly if he shows improved power and OBP skills out of the gate. The 26-year-old third baseman posted a highly underwhelming .244/.314/.345 slash line with seven home runs (and 20 stolen bases) over 136 games for Pittsburgh in 2022.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Rodolfo Castro: On bench for opener
Castro is absent from the Pirates' lineup for Thursday's opener against the Reds.
Castro struggled this spring which caused him to lose the grip on his presumed starting role at second base. It will be Ji Hwan Bae at the keystone Thursday. The switch-hitting Castro figures to start at second against lefties, although it probably won't be a strict platoon.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' Ji Hwan Bae: Tapped for start at second base
Bae is starting at second base and batting eighth for the Pirates in Thursday's opener against the Reds.
He gets the call over presumed starter Rodolfo Castro, who will come off the bench. Bae put up some good numbers during his brief time with the Pirates last season and could be a stolen base threat right out of the chute.... See More ... See Less
Pirates' JT Brubaker: Might need season-ending surgery
Brubaker's right elbow injury is "not minor" and could require season-ending surgery, Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
The Pirates have simply referred to Brubaker's elbow injury as inflammation to this point, but it sounds like he has some structural damage. Mackey does add that the team is "holding out a sliver of hope" Brubaker can avoid season-ending surgery "through various treatments." Even if the right-hander is able to dodge surgery for now, it appears his rest and rehab will result in a significant absence. Johan Oviedo has entered the Pirates' rotation in Brubaker's place.... See More ... See Less
Team Statistical Rankings
|J. Brubaker SP J.T. Brubaker SP||Elbow|
|R. Stephenson RP Robert Stephenson RP||Elbow|
|J. Garcia RP Jarlin Garcia RP||Biceps|
|M. Kranick RP Max Kranick RP||Elbow|
Sat, Apr 1 @ 4:10 pm
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