Results tagged ‘ Wil Ledezma ’

Ledezma claimed by Blue Jays

Jenifer Langosch/

Left-hander Wil Ledezma has been claimed off waivers by the Blue Jays. The Pirates had designated Ledezma for assignment on Dec. 23 to make room for lefty Aaron Thompson.

In 27 relief appearances with Pittsburgh last year, Ledezma allowed 15 earned runs in 19 2/3 innings. He struck out 22 and walked six.

Ledezma, who was arbitration-eligible this offseason, had already agreed to a $700,000 contract earlier this winter.

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Pirates claim Thompson, sign Atkins

Jenifer Langosch/

The Pirates have signed infielder Garrett Atkins to a Minor League deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Also on Thursday, Pittsburgh claimed lefty Aaron Thompson off waivers from the Nationals. Left-hander Wil Ledezma was designated for assignment in order to clear a spot on the roster for Thompson.

The Pirates have 10 days to trade, release or outright Ledezma to the Minors, if he clears waivers. The club had already signed Ledezma to a 2011 contract in order to avoid arbitration with the left-hander. He was expected to compete for a spot in the team’s bullpen this spring.

Thompson spent almost all of the 2010 season in Double-A, where he went 4-13 with a 5.80 ERA in 26 starts. The 23-year-old struck out 95 and walked 53 in 136 2/3 innings. He also made one start in Triple-A.

By agreeing to terms on a Minor League contract, Atkins is reunited with his former Colorado manager, Clint Hurdle. Atkins played for the Rockies from 2003-09, before signing as a free agent with the Orioles last December.

Atkins appeared in 44 games for Baltimore before getting released in July. He batted .214 with seven doubles, one homer and nine RBIs in 140 at-bats. In his seven seasons with the Rockies, Atkins hit .289 with a .354 on-base percentage. He hit 98 homers and 162 doubles in those 773 games.

Of the 781 games Atkins, 31, has played in his career, 642 of them have come as a third baseman. He has played 135 games at first, three in the outfield and one at second. The right-handed hitter will be competing to earn a spot on the Pirates’ roster as a back-up corner infielder.

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Bucs make roster moves

Jenifer Langosch/

The Pirates just announced that they have made the following roster moves:

  • LHP Wil Ledezma, who was to be eligibile for arbitration this winter, has agreed to a one-year contract for 2011.
  • RHP Ross Ohlendorf, RHP Jose Ascanio and 1B Steve Pearce have been reinstated off the 60-day disabled list and put back on Pirates’ 40-man roster.
  • 1B Jeff Clement was removed from 60-day disabled list and outrighted to Triple-A Indianapolis
  • The following players were removed from 40-man roster and outrighted to Triple-A: OF Brandon Moss, LHP Justin Thomas, RHP Sean Gallagher, RHP Steven Jackson
  • RHP Chan Ho Park has been taken off the 40-man roster, as he is now a free agent.


  • Because they have already been outrighted off a 40-man roster before, Moss, Thomas and Jackson are now free to declare Minor League free agency immediately. Expect each of the three to do so very soon.
  • Gallagher has accrued enough Minor League service time to also become a Minor League free agent, but he can’t do that immediately like the aforementioned guys. The Pirates have until 5 p.m. ET to try and negotiate a contract (techincally called a successor contract) with Gallagher to keep him. The Pirates are believed to be making such an attempt to resign Gallagher.
  • Clement doesn’t have the service time to become a Minor League free agent, so he will remain on Indianapolis’ roster. He should be invited to big league camp next spring, though he might still be recovering from knee surgery.

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Day 33: Red Sox @ Pirates

Jenifer Langosch/

As I’m sure you saw on Tuesday afternoon, lefty Zach Duke was named the Opening Day starter for the Pirates. Because the announcement came after Duke had left the ballpark, I spoke with him this morning about the honor.

“It is an honor,” he said. “But at the same time, I know there are two other guys that could have done it as well. It just so happens that I get the opportunity.”

There was plenty more from Duke about that Opening Day start, his previous one and about this season as a whole. Here’s the teaser, though. You’re going to have to wait until next week to read it. There will be all sorts of Opening Day content coming out on next week in advance of the start of the season, and a preview to Duke’s start will be part of it.

As for other items on this very chilly morning…

  • D.J. Carrasco is getting ready to pitch in back-to-back games for the first time this spring. And yes, he was excited about it when we spoke earlier. Carrasco pitched in a Triple-A game on Tuesday and will pitch in a regular Grapefruit League one today. He made the appearance in the Minors in order to keep his pitch count low in case he gets into any trouble today and needs to extend himself a bit.
  • Octavio Dotel will also take the mound on Wednesday in his anticipated Grapefruit League debut. In a camp with minimal news so far, Dotel’s side injury and return from it has been pretty notable. Everyone still seems to think he’ll be ready for Opening Day, so we’ll stick with that prediction for now.
  • Left-hander Javier Lopez is back with the team after flying home to be with his wife for the birth of their daughter.
  • For those still convinced that Bobby Crosby might start the season as the team’s everyday shortstop (and I know you people are out there), the fact that Ronny Cedeno and Aki Iwamura continue to be paired at second and short on the same day should tell you that the Pirates plan to stick with that pair. With Spring Training winding down, you want your double play combo to get comfortable together, and that’s what Cedeno and Iwamura are doing by playing together.
  • Joel Hanrahan and Wil Ledezma are pitching an inning in a Minor League game over at Pirate City. Neither have made a game appearance yet this spring because of injuries. 
  • Tomorrow’s pitching plan: Charlie Morton (6 innings/90 pitches), Brian Bass, Evan Meek

Pirates lineup:

  1. Aki Iwamura (2B)
  2. Ronny Cedeno (SS)
  3. Lastings Milledge (LF)
  4. Garrett Jones (RF)
  5. Bobby Crosby (1B)
  6. Ramon Vazquez (3B)
  7. John Raynor (CF)
  8. Jason Jaramillo (C)
  9. Paul Maholm (LHP)

Pitchers: Maholm (5-6 innings, 80 pitches), Carrasco, Brendan Donnelly, Lopez, Dotel

Red Sox lineup:

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury (LF)
  2. Mike Cameron (CF)
  3. Victor Martinez (C)
  4. Mike Lowell (1B)
  5. Jeremy Hermida (DH)
  6. Bill Hall (SS)
  7. Tug Hulett (2B)
  8. Josh Reddick (RF)
  9. Jorge Jimenez (3B)

Pitchers: Josh Beckett, Joe Nelson, Brian Shouse, Fernando Cabrera

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Day 32: Astros @ Pirates

Jenifer Langosch/

I’m going to keep this short because the big news of the morning — Daniel McCutchen winning the fifth starter job — has already been reported (reference previous blog entry if you haven’t seen it).

In other news:

  • Octavio Dotel is scheduled to make his Grapefruit League debut on Wednesday. He pitched a four-out inning in a Minor League game on Monday. GM Neal Huntington confirmed on Tuesday morning that Dotel is still on track to be ready for Opening Day.
  • For those wanting to stay ahead, your other Wednesday pitchers include: Paul Maholm, D.J. Carrasco, Brendan Donnelly and Javier Lopez.
  • Carrasco is also pitching in a Triple-A game at Pirate City today.
  • Both Joel Hanrahan and Wil Ledezma will pitch one inning in a Minor League game on Wednesday. This will be the first time either has pitched in a game this spring.
  • The Pirates’ clubhouse was closed this morning due to cuts being made and a Players’ Association meeting.
  • For the first time this spring, the Pirates will have their pitcher hit in the game today.

Pirates lineup:

  1. Andrew McCutchen (CF)
  2. Aki Iwamura (2B)
  3. Garrett Jones (RF)
  4. Ryan Doumit (C)
  5. Jeff Clement (1B)
  6. Lastings Milledge (LF)
  7. Ronny Cedeno (SS)
  8. Andy LaRoche (3B)
  9. Ross Ohlendorf (RHP)

Pitchers: Ohlendorf, Anthony Claggett, Steven Jackson, Jeremy Powell

Astros lineup:

  1. T.J. Steele (CF)
  2. Kazuo Matsui (2B)
  3. Jason Michaels (LF)
  4. Pedro Feliz (3B)
  5. Chris Shelton (1B)
  6. Edwin Maysonet (SS)
  7. Humberto Quintero (C)
  8. Drew Locke (RF)
  9. Felipe Paulino (RHP)

Pitchers: Paulino, Brandon Lyon, Shane Loux, Gary Majewski

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Bucs cut eight, including Hart

Jenifer Langosch/

Kevin Hart was among eight players cut by the Pirates on Tuesday morning. Hart was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis, which would seem to take him out of the running for the fifth spot in the rotation. Though nothing has been announced as of now, it’s expected that this means Daniel McCutchen will be the Pirates’ fifth starter to begin the season.

Chris Jakubauskas and Neil Walker were also optioned to Triple-A this morning. Brian Myrow, Brian Burres, Wil Ledezma, Jean Machi and Hector Gimenez reassigned to Minor League camp.

There are now 37 players in Major League camp.

UPDATED at 9:12 am:

Here are some quotes from GM Neal Huntington:

On Hart being optioned: “There’s going to be a lot made that he lost the fifth starter job. We’ve got one start between now and April 24 when our fifth starter will be used. Kevin Hart has some work to do. We’re excited about the potential. We love the stuff. He didn’t pitch well this Spring Training, and as of now, Daniel McCutchen outpitched him and will be our starter for April 11. Daniel has a chance to put a stranglehold on the job with what he does between now and April 11, what he does on April 11, and we he does after. It means that Kevin Hart has some work to do. We’re excited about his upside. We felt it was best to take him out of camp right now to be able to solidify some things mechanically and be able to get him to trust his stuff and make it play at the Major League level at some point for us.

“It’s not all mental. It’s the passion and the desire to do well that sometimes inhibits the mechanics. We’re making a lot out of a pitcher struggling this spring. In Kevin’s situation, it’s a matter of getting the emotions and the adrenaline out of the way.”

On what McCutchen showed this spring: “We talked about it coming in that we had a competition with those two. Daniel stepped forward. He’s shown an average to solid Major League fastball. The slider is a good improvement for him this year. He’s got an above-average Major League changeup with quality command. That’s a good Major League pitcher. Daniel has earned this opportunity and what he does with it decides where we go from here.”

On plan for Walker in Triple-A: “Neil’s going to be one of those players who has the opportunity to become an everyday big-leaguer by being a role player initially. He’s going to get time at third, time in the outfield, time at first and, as we get comfortable, some time at second base. He’s had a great approach this spring. He just wants to help the Pittsburgh Pirates win. He’s maturing with the bat. He’s not giving away the at-bats we’ve seen in the past, and his work has been outstanding. He’s bounced around the field, taken balls off the bat with two different groups, then hit with the third group. It’s a lot of work, and Neil’s really stepped up this spring.”

On plan for Jakubauskas in Triple-A: “He may need to come up and make some starts for us. He needs to go down there and build some arm strength. We didn’t see the same arm strength this spring as what we saw with Seattle. There’s a difference there. It’s a couple miles an hour, but it’s made a difference for Chris.”


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Day 27: Pirates @ Twins

Jenifer Langosch/

Ross Ohlendorf is ready to make the start on Thursday in conditions much better than his last one. You’ll remember that it was Ohlendorf who had to take the mound in that messy, rainy contest in Orlando last Friday. Ohlendorf is scheduled to go four innings (60 pitches) here in Fort Myers against the Twins.

Other items of interest…

  • Octavio Dotel is throwing one inning in a Minor League game today back at Pirate City. Once we get word on how that went, I’ll let you all know.
  • Shortstop Ronny Cedeno is back in the lineup today. He missed two games because of a laceration in his right hand that he suffered Sunday but is having no issues now.
  • Joel Hanrahan and Wil Ledezma continue to work their way back from arm surgeries with side session work. No date has been given yet as to when we can expect either in a game.
  • Brandon Moss is your designated hitter today, which likely means he’ll stay in the game for all nine innings. That should get Moss four at-bats or so to try and get a hit. He’s 0-for-19 this spring.
  • There’s still enough time to get your bracket into the blog NCAA tourney challenge if you wish. Go here to submit your picks. Thanks to those who have already entered, and good luck!
  • Tomorrow’s pitching lineup: Paul Maholm (4 innings/60 pitches), Brendan Donnelly, Vinnie Chulk, Evan Meek, Brian Burres.

Pirates lineup:

  1. Ronny Cedeno (SS)
  2. Delwyn Young (2B)
  3. Garrett Jones (RF)
  4. Jeff Clement (1B)
  5. Lastings Milledge (LF)
  6. Brandon Moss (DH)
  7. Pedro Alvarez (3B)
  8. John Raynor (CF)
  9. Jason Jaramillo (C)

Pitchers: Ohlendorf, Brian Bass, Chris Jakubauskas, Javier Lopez, Jean Machi, Jack Taschner

Twins lineup:

  1. Ben Revere (CF)
  2. Orlando Hudson (2B)
  3. Joe Mauer (C)
  4. Justin Morneau (1B)
  5. Jim Thome (DH)
  6. Michael Cuddyer (RF)
  7. Jacque Jones (LF)
  8. Brendan Harris (3B)
  9. Matt Tolbert (SS)

Pitchers: Carl Pavano, Jose Mijares, Clay Condrey, Anthony Swarzak, Kyle Waldrop

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Day 24: Pirates @ Red Sox

Jenifer Langosch/

What a difference a day makes. Sunny skies here in Fort Myers after dealing with rain and clouds all day on Friday. This is the Pirates’ only trip to the Red Sox’s Spring Training home, and today will be the 93rd consecutive sellout for Boston down here.

Friday’s rainout forced some shuffling in the Pirates’ pitching plans, which now has pushed Vinnie Chulk and Brad Lincoln from pitching today to pitching on Sunday.

Other stuff…

  • This will mark Paul Maholm’s third spring start of the season and he’s 3-for-3 in drawing the AL East’s two powerhouse clubs. Maholm made his first two starts against the Yankees. This one, obviously, comes against Boston. And with the way the pitching is lined up, his fourth start will come against the Red Sox, too.
  • Octavio Dotel continues to work his way back from the oblique strain he suffered back in February. He is throwing a 35-pitch bullpen back in Bradenton today. Assuming all goes well, Dotel will then throw batting practice at Pirate City on Monday.
  • Wil Ledezma continues to be slowed by shoulder discomfort and is not listed to throw (in games or on the side) through at least Monday.
  • The revised pitching schedule for Sunday’s “B” game now has the following pitchers throwing: Lincoln (2-3 innings), Brian Burres (2 innings), Bryan Morris (2 innings), Donnie Veal (2 innings) and Jeff Sues. This “B” game against the Orioles will start at 10 am ET at Pirate City.
  • Your pitchers for Sunday’s regularly scheduled contest against the Yankees include Charlie Morton, Chulk, Brendan Donnelly, Jeff Karstens and Jean Machi

Pirates lineup:

  1. Delwyn Young (2B)
  2. Andy LaRoche (3B)
  3. Garrett Jones (DH)
  4. Jeff Clement (1B)
  5. Lastings Milledge (LF)
  6. Brandon Moss (RF)
  7. Jose Tabata (CF)
  8. Jason Jaramillo (C)
  9. Argenis Diaz (SS)

Pitchers: Maholm, D.J. Carrasco, Jack Taschner, Chris Jakubauskas, Javier Lopez, Jeremy Powell

Red Sox lineup:

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury (LF)
  2. Dustin Pedroia (2B)
  3. Victor Martinez (C)
  4. Kevin Youkilis (1B)
  5. David Ortiz (DH)
  6. J.D Drew (RF)
  7. Adrian Beltre (3B)
  8. Mike Cameron (CF)
  9. Marco Scutaro (SS)

Pitchers: Clay Buchholtz, Jonathan Papelbon, Manny Delcarmen, Boof Bonser, Brian Shouse, Michael Bowden

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Day 16: Pirates @ Orioles

It’s the same tired old Ed Smith Stadium (as Marty Brennaman once pegged it), but with a fresh coat of orange and black paint. The Orioles moved here to Sarasota  from Fort Lauderdale last year after the Reds bolted Florida for the Arizona desert.

On a selfish note, it’s nice to have anyone playing in Sarasota because of the convenient 15-minute drive from Bradenton. It’s a welcome change from yesterday’s two-hour commute. Anyways, not sure how much anyone in Pittsburgh cares or knows about the Orioles, but I heard they have this catcher that’s pretty good. His name is Matt Weiters. You might have heard of him. He’s batting fifth for Baltimore tonight in case you’re curious.

On another Baltimore note, interestingly enough tonight’s game is the first spring meeting between the Pirates and Orioles since 1993 when they met at RFK Stadium for an April 3 exhibition game.

So while you’re anxiously waiting for Weiters to come to bat, I’ll empty my pre-game notebook…

  • Octavio Dotel threw off flat ground (about 90 feet) for the fourth straight day. I asked him when he expected to get off the mound for the first time and his response was: “Ask me next week.” I think we can therefore conclude that it won’t be in the next few days. Is he concerned that he might not be ready for Opening Day? “I’ll answer you on that next week,” Dotel replied. So I guess we’ll get back to this topic next week.
  • GM Neal Huntington said that he fully expects Dotel to be ready to go April 5, even if the closer doesn’t get as many Spring Training appearances as he might typically like.
  • Joel Hanrahan also threw off flat ground on Friday, too: 40 throws at a 60-foot distance. That distance will slowly increase and he’s targeting March 15 as the first day to get on the mound.
  • Wil Ledezma, who was competing as a non-roster pitcher, has been set back by discomfort in his left shoulder. Huntington said it is nothing serious at this point, but Ledezma has not been scheduled to pitch at least through the weekend.
  • Friday’s most intriguing storyline is probably that it marks the start of the competition for the fifth rotation spot. Daniel McCutchen will make his Grapefruit League debut tonight and is expected to pitch the third and fourth innings. His competition — Kevin Hart — will toss two innings on Saturday.
  • Brendan Donnelly — who has taken things a little slower this spring — will make his Grapefruit League debut on Saturday. He’s scheduled to pitch one inning of relief.
  • Huntington talked a bit about the shortstop situation on Friday, once again emphasizing that it’s not an open competition between Ronny Cedeno and Bobby Crosby. The job belongs to Cedeno and something drastic would have to happen for that to change before Opening Day: “We were very open with Bobby coming in that he was the incoming utility infielder and would play all over the field and maybe spot some in the outfield in the corners. If Ronny Cedeno gets hurt or can’t hold the job, we’ve got Bobby Crosby who can step in and play with regularity. So it’s not a true competition, but it’s having a legitimate Major League player ready to go if Ronny isn’t able to do what we need him to do or if he gets hurt.”
  • The Pirates plan to get Jose Tabata comfortable at all three outfield spots, and that includes in left on Friday night.
  • We’re exactly one month away from Opening Day.

Pirates lineup:

  1. Akinori Iwamura (2B)
  2. Jose Tabata (LF)
  3. Garrett Jones (RF)
  4. Ryan Doumit (C)
  5. Steve Pearce (1B)
  6. Brandon Moss (DH)
  7. Ronny Cedeno (SS)
  8. Neil Walker (3B)
  9. John Raynor (CF)

Pitchers: Zach Duke, McCutchen, Virgil Vasquez, Evan Meek, Javier Lopez, Jeremy Powell

Orioles lineup:

  1. Adam Jones (CF)
  2. Robert Andino (SS)
  3. Nick Markakis (RF)
  4. Miguel Tejada (3B)
  5. Matt Wieters (C)
  6. Luke Scott (DH)
  7. Garrett Atkins (1B)
  8. Jonathan Tucker (LF)
  9. Justin Turner (2B)

Pitchers: Chris Tillman, Jim Johnson, Alfredo Simon

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Non-roster invitations

Jenifer Langosch/

Before I head out of town for my last short vacation before another baseball season consumes the next eight months of life, I wanted to give you an updated list of the non-roster players that the Pirates have invited to Spring Training:

Pitchers (14)

  • Jimmy Barthmaier (RHP)
  • Brian Bass (RHP)
  • Brian Burres (LHP)
  • Vinnie Chulk (RHP)
  • Neal Cotts (LHP)
  • Craig Hansen (RHP)
  • Jeff Karstens (RHP)
  • Wil Ledezma (LHP)
  • Jean Machi (RHP)
  • Jeremy Powell (RHP)
  • Jack Taschner (LHP)
  • Justin Thomas (LHP)
  • Virgil Vasquez (RHP)
  • Tyler Yates (RHP)

Catchers (3)

  • Luke Carlin
  • Erik Kratz
  • Tony Sanchez

Infielders (0)

Outfielders (2)

  • Brian Myrow
  • Jonathan Van Every

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