Roundup: Pirates' failure to sign Mark Appel helps Indians get Michael Bourn

Melina Vastola-US PRESSWIRE

-P- The Indians have signed Michael Bourn to a four-year deal, which seems like the kind of thing that convinces casual fans they want to win. I'm not sure binging on free agents will really fix a team that allowed 178 more runs than it scored last year, however.

-P- Let's Go Tribe notes that the Pirates' failure to sign Mark Appel helped the Indians sign Bourn, because the compensatory pick the Bucs received for 2013 bumped the Mets, one of Bourn's suitors, from No. 10 (a protected pick) to No. 11 (which is unprotected). If not for Appel, the Mets could have signed Bourn without worrying about losing their top pick.

-P- A.J. Burnett won't be in bunting drills this spring unless a coach is doing the pitching. After last year's debacle, that's probably a smart move.

-P- The Pirates' Spring Training motto evidently is the clunky "Excellence is a verb -- 1/10 of 1% better everyday," which sounds like it was written by whoever wrote this. Maybe they should hire someone from the marketing department to excellence some mottoes for them?

-P- Stolmy Pimentel, the pitching prospect acquired in the Joel Hanrahan deal, has visa troubles and isn't in camp. Well, that settles that particular cliche. We still don't know which player is in the best shape of his life, however.

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