USA TODAY Sports
Jameson Taillon will start this afternoon against the Red Sox. It could be his only big-league start this spring -- he isn't in competition for a big-league job, and those types of players tend to be early cuts.
Jonathan Sanchez, Andy Oliver, Tony Watson, Justin Wilson and Bryan Morris will also pitch.
Alex Presley CF
Jose Tabata LF
Travis Snider RF
Brandon Inge DH
Clint Robinson 1B
Jared Goedert 3B
Josh Harrison SS
Tony Sanchez C
Chase D'Arnaud 2B
-P- Chris Leroux will throw more fastballs this year.
-P- Baseball Prospectus has a podcast previewing the Pirates' season. Once you get over the name "Taillon" being mispronounced about 50 times, it's a good listen. Notably, they aren't too optimistic about Starling Marte or Travis Snider. I can understand pessimism about Snider (although I have higher hopes for Snider than most), but Marte's defense is so good that it's going to be hard not for him to have a lot of value. As I've suggested before, if the Pirates' pitchers start posting surprisingly good numbers this year, the Marte / Barmes / Martin defense will be a big part of the reason why.
-P- Tom Singer writes about the possibility of signing Neil Walker and Pedro Alvarez to extensions. I'm not sure how you write an article about a long-term contract for Pedro Alvarez without writing the word "Boras," who makes this a non-issue, or pretty close to it. And I'm not sure of the point of speculating about Alvarez signing with the Yankees four years from now. But maybe I'm just feeling a little snarky today.
The important thing to keep in mind here, I think, is that you don't have to sign young players to extensions. It's not, like, a rule. Even if Boras would be willing to consider an extension, it's unclear why the Pirates would want to lock up a big, slow, strikeout-prone corner infielder into his 30s. This is not a player type that ages well. Just take him year-to-year. It's fine.