Four weeks from today, pitchers and catchers will report to spring training. Here’s some Pirates news to hold you over…
“The single most significant winter ball story has been 22 year old Pirate outfielder Gregory Polanco, the Darryl Strawberry lookalike who was the MVP in the Dominican as he put up an astounding .428 on base percentage. He is close to being another huge chip in the rebirth of a franchise that had the third best record in the National League in 2013 and has Baseball America’s rating as the best farm system in the game.
– Other top prospects in the system are getting recognition as well. MLB.com is currently releasing their Top 10 lists by position; LHP, RHP, C, and SS have been named so far. The Pirates have a prospect ranked in three of those four categories:
MLB’s Top 100 Prospects list will be released next Thursday, January 23rd. Expect to see quite a few Bucco farmhands on there.
An all-around good guy, McKenry spent the last three years with the Bucs, hitting .226/.293/.381 in 187 games.
McDonald, 39, spent time with the Pirates, Indians, Phillies, and Red Sox in 2013. He hit just .065/.171/.097 in Pittsburgh before landing on the DL in mid-May and being traded less than a month later.
– Major League Baseball has officially expanded instant replay for 2014.
74 days until the opener.