(Frigid) Monday lineups, notes
I feel bad for the Northeast and I know it’s not balmy in Cincinnati but here in Bradenton, it’s downright cold. The high is going to be 58 degrees but it usually feels about 10-15 degrees cooler in the McKechnie Field press box in Bradenton. Even when it’s 75 degrees here, everyone is bundled up because the wind whips through.
But that’s enough bellyaching for one day. You want lineups and news and here’s some to get you started:
Dickerson CF, Keppinger SS, Bruce RF, Phillips 2B, Encarnacion 3B, Gomes 1B, Nix LF, Hanigan C, Bankston DH
P – Bailey
RHP Mike Lincoln, LHP Aaron Fultz, LHP Daniel Ray Herrera, RHP Josh Roenicke are the pitchers available from the bullpen after Bailey.
McCutchen LF, Sanchez 2B, McLouth CF, Doumit DH, LaRoche 1B, Moss RF, Walker 3B, Wilson SS, Jaramillo C
P – Duke
- Dusty Baker said the other day that Jonny Gomes would get some action at first base to show versatility. Look for Jacque Jones to get some time there too this week. Neither Gomes nor Jones have ever played first base in the Majors.
“Now’s the time to check it out. He’s been working over there,” Baker said of Gomes. “We’ll have plenty of time with Joey [Votto] gone.”
Gomes has never played first base in his life. Jones played there in high school and a little bit at college.
“I’ve taken a bunch of groundballs. I’ve had to learn a whole new position,” Gomes said. “I’ve been practicing and getting a feel for it. You can’t practice game situations. I’ll just go out and run it out there. It will be alright.”
“Even as far back as Minnesota, I used to mess around and take groundballs in the infield,” Jones said. “I almost played there when Justin Morneau got hurt one year.”
I will have more on this on the main site later today but needless to say, both players are outfield candidates trying to improve their versatility and increase their chances of making the team. Anything can help and it doesn’t hurt to try at Spring Training when the games don’t count.
- Team Venezuela has asked for the services of fifth starter candidate Ramon Ramirez at the World Baseball Classic.
“During the game [Sunday], they called [GM] Walt [Jocketty],” Baker said. “He ended up leaving afterwards. It’s a tough decision for the kid but I told him we understood, no problem. Just go pitch lights out. He has a bona fide chance to make this club but who knows how many more chances he’ll have to represent his country? That’s a tough decision. We helped make it easier for him. He will be in their starting rotation.”
Ramirez is the fourth starting pitcher to leave for the WBC — besides rotation locks Edinson Volquez and Johnny Cueto and prospect Pedro Viola — who are all pitching for the Dominican Republic.
- Baker said Team USA considered adding Jay Bruce for the outfield but selected Adam Dunn instead.
Finally, here is a picture of Pirates beat writers in the front row. They know how to dress for games here.