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News Roundup: Pirates Scout Yankees/Mariners Game

The Pirates had two representatives at the Yankees/Mariners game on Thursday, Jim Benedict and Larry Corrigan. Both are special assistants to Neal Huntington. The Post thinks the Bucs might be in talks with the Yanks about John Grabow, but then it's surprising to me that the Pirates would be scouting the Yankees' big-league team rather than one of its minor-league affiliates. The Yanks only have a few youngsters on their roster, and most aren't obvious candidates to be traded to the Bucs. Backup catcher Francisco Cervelli might be a possibility. I'm sure the Pirates would love to have Alfredo Aceves or strikeout machine David Robertson, but that raises the question of why the Yankees would acquire Grabow by giving up a younger reliever who's already better. There's also Phil Coke, who was rumored to be coming to the Pirates in the Xavier Nady deal, but Coke is the only lefty in the Yankees' pen right now, which is why they'd need Grabow in the first place. My best guess is that, if the Pirates are talking to the Yankees about Grabow, then they were looking at an outfielder, either Melky Cabrera or Brett Gardner, neither of whom excite me much. But Gardner didn't play on Thursday. Then again, maybe the Bucs and Yankees are discussing some other deal, or maybe Benedict and Corrigan were checking out the Mariners, or maybe there's no "there" here at all.

Tommy Hanson of the Atlanta Braves Voted Winner of the Gillette Presents National League Rookie of the Month Award for June | Official Info
Tommy Hanson has been selected as the National League's Rookie of the Month, over Andrew McCutchen (and Casey McGehee of the Brewers, and Jordan Zimmermann of the Nats). I've watched Hanson a fair amount and I'm not impressed; he has good velocity and a terrific slow curve, but his fastball is a bit straight and he leaves the ball up in the zone a lot, so he'll need to rack of strikeouts to offset the homers he's going to allow. He also struck out 18 batters against 17 walks this month.

Reading 4, Altoona 3
Pedro Alvarez returned to the Curve's lineup yesterday and went 1-for-3 with a double and two strikeouts.

Royals sign top Nicaraguan prospect | News
The Royals signed Cheslor Cuthbert, a top Nicaraguan prospect who had been linked to the Pirates.

Chambers finds success in professional debut | Penn State News | Sports - Centre Daily Times
Third-round pick Evan Chambers went 0-for-1 with three walks in his State College debut, then went 1-for-4 with a double last night.