Day 6: Daily Squeeze

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

full squad takes the field (Small).jpgIt was the first day of full squad workouts here at Pirate City and the sun certainly came out to greet the masses. As you’ll read on the main site, the day started with a 9 a.m. meeting in which all 66 players listened to president Frank Coonelly and owner Bob Nutting speak.

This will fill you in the rest of the day’s activities:

  • Right-hander Octavio Dotel sat out of workouts on Tuesday because of a sore left side. The injury isn’t expected to keep him out of action for more than a few days. Let’s hope.
  • On a related note, we (a handful of writers) got a taste of what to expect from Dotel this season. Seeing that he wasn’t out on the field, we went to go track him down in the clubhouse. When Dotel was asked about a potential injury, he told one writer that it was a right knee issue that would keep him out for a few days. Writer No. 2 was told a minute later that it was a left knee injury, and that he would be back tomorrow. Huh? Minutes later, Dotel came back into the room laughing, telling us that he had pulled a fast one over us. He had no knee injury. It was an issue with his side. Good thing none of us had pulled out our phone to tweet. I’ll remember that for the future…
  • Hall of Famer Bill Mazeroski has arrived in Bradenton and spent the day working with the team’s infielders. Former Pirates manager Chuck Tanner also made his first Spring Training appearance and spent much of the day sitting on a golf cart signing autographs for fans.
  • Infielders, outfielders and catchers spent about 30 minutes on defensive drills on Tuesday. And you can tell what the depth chart looks like by how they were divided. On the first field of infielders were Jeff Clement and Garrett Jones (1B); Akinori Iwamura and Ramon Vazquez (2B); Ronny Cedeno and Bobby Crosby (SS); Andy LaRoche and Pedro Alvarez (3B). On the second field, you had Steve Pearce and Brian Myrow (1B); Argenis Diaz and Delwyn Young (2B); Brian Friday (SS); Doug Bernier and Neil Walker (3B).
  • Vazquez (right knee) continued to take grounders right at him but did not participate in fielding drills that required side-to-side movement. He was cleared to take BP for the first time, though.
  • At this time last year, all of us were enthralled with “Camp Perry.” Infield instructor Perry Hill was an extremely vocal presence on the field and could be heard yards away. It’s a little quieter this year, and manager John Russell apparently noticed. “It’s OK to talk,” he quipped as he came to observe infield drills. “Let’s act like we’re having some fun.”
  • A total of 15 pitchers threw side sessions on Tuesday. One person who looked remarkedly more comfortable was Brendan Donnelly, who talked afterward about feeling out of sync during his first two times on the mound.
  • Pitchers will begin throwing live BP on Wednesday. They will throw two innings (one inning consists of 17 pitches). Half of the pitches will be from the windup and half from the stretch. The only exception to the two-inning deal is for Donnelly, who will throw one inning of 25 pitches.
  • Players have all sorts of to-do items this week as things get going. The people who take all the photos and film the clips for the video board at PNC Park are here to get all of that done before games start next week. Each player goes up into a makeshift studio one-by-one to be filmed. There’s also media awareness training going on this week. The 20-minute session will introduce players to who we are and hopefully they’re told to be nice.
  • Excuse the shameless plug here, but Pirates PR guy Dan Hart has been busy with the flip cam all spring and has all sorts of great footage and interviews that he’s putting on the site. You can find Dan’s videos on the top right-hand side of pirates.com. I would really recommend checking them out. There was a nice one on Ryan Doumit yesterday and a piece on Brad Lincoln that was posted today. I just wanted to make sure that Dan’s work wasn’t going unnoticed.
  • MLB Network is doing its “30 Clubs in 30 Days” series again this spring. The Pirates will be featured on March 7 at 5 p.m.

Follow me on Twitter: @LangoschMLB

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