Friday, April 3, 2009


Twins 4, Pirates 4

Another spring of baseball in Bradenton ends in a tie.

It's been fun, folks. Hopefully, you have enjoyed the ride as much as I do. Hopefully, I'll see you all here next spring.


Nine left

Jack Wilson just tossed his hat to a fan as me made his way toward the clubhouse for the final time in Bradenton this spring. The Pirates have brought in the minor leaguers as they lead the Twins 1-0 in the top of the seventh.

Spring training is done...went by fast, right? The players can't wait to head north, and as much as I have enjoyed the last six weeks, I am looking forward to some meaningful baseball played in front of some emotional crowds.

Here's the good news, folks - at least the Rays are good. For the past decade, it was good-bye spring training, hello awful baseball. No longer.

The boys out over the Skyway have a pennant to defend - and a lot of ahem, "die-hard" fans to please, right??


1-0 Buccos, top of the 7th.

Watch out!

Maybe Brendan Harris is mad because the Rays dealt him a year before they went to the World Series.
Whatever the reason, Harris, now with the Minnesota Twins, accidentally flung his bat into the stands when he struck out to end the top of the fifth.
It hit a woman in the shoulder behind the third-base dugout. She seems fine.

So are the Pirates, who lead 1-0 on the strength of Adam LaRoche's second-inning home run. Zach Duke has blanked the Twins through five, allowing four hits.

1-0 Buccos...

Grand finale

They are removing the tarp off McKechnie Field, and the sky is clearing. Yes, we are going to have baseball in Bradenton this afternoon.

The Twins and Pirates are set to play the final spring game in The Friendly City this year, and let's look at who's in the lineups.

Denard Span, rf
Alexi Casilla, 2b
Michael Cuddyer, 1b
Delmon Young, lf
Carlos Gomez, cf
Brian Buscher, dh
Brendan Harris, 3b
Mike Redmond, c
Matt Tolbert, ss
Kevin Slowey, p

Nyjer Morgan, lf
Freddy Sanchez, 2b
Nate McLouth, cf
Ryan Doumit, c
Adam LaRoche, 1b
Craig Monroe, dh
Brandon Moss, rf
Ramon Vazquez, 3b
Jack Wilson, ss
Zach Duke, p

Game time in about 90 minutes...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Lancers Win!

Yes, the Lancers have cracked the win column in the annual charity game, beating the Pirates 6-4 at McKechnie Field.

The game ended dramtically - left-fielder Nick Graham made a sprawling catch with two on and two out in the ninth to preserve the win. But the hero was Manatee grad Derek Luciano, who went 3-for-4 with a single, double and a triple and four RBIs.

Big win for the Lancers....

I will be back tomorrow for the McKechnie Field finale...see ya then.

Get a load of this...

We're down with six innings, and the Lancers lead the Pirates 5-4. MCC has never led this la.e in the annual charity game's history, and took the lead on a two-out, two-run double off the bat of Derek Luciano in the sixth inning.

We will see some history at McKechnie today?

We'll soon find out...


The Pirates lead MCC 4-1 after three innings at McKechnie. The Buccos are fielding a pretty good Triple-A lineup - Andrew McCutchen, Brian Bixler, Neil Walker - not a bad team.

Steve Pearce has homered for the Pirates, and Kelvin Clark's grounder plated a run in the third.

I'll be back in a few innings...

4-1 Pirates, bottom of the fourth...


Well, it's time for the annual charity game between the Lancers and the Pirates at McKechnie Field. This game counts against neither team's record, but I will be blogging all day.

The lineups:

Kelvin Clark, cf
Taylor Wrenn, ss
Hunter Ovens, rf
Jonathan Griffin, 1b
Gus Schlosser, p/dh
Jonathan Rodriguez, 3b
Tony Mitchell, lf
Derek Luciano, 2b
Logan Moro, c

Andrew McCutchen, cf
Brian Bixler, ss
Neil Walker, 3b
Jose Tabata, rf
Steve Pearce, 1b
Robinzon Diaz, c
Brad Corley, lf
Ryan Mulhern, dh
Jim Negrych, 2b

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Chip Ahoy

Chip Ambres' second home of the game was massive - as in, clear over the Boys & Girls club and off the roof of another building.

It was the difference, too, as the Reds Sox beat the Buccos 4-3 at McKechnie Field, in front 5,004 fans.

I'll be back tomorrow when a bunch of Pirate minor leaguers host Manatee Community College in a charity game. Friday is the Bradenton finale.

See ya then!

Knotted up

3-3 here in the sixth, as the Red Sox fans serenade Dustin Pedroia with cheers as he jogs back to the clubhouse.

Nate McLouth smacked a two-run home run off the batter's eye against Red Sox starter Josh Beckett.

Everybody's favorite BoSox, Chip Ambres, hit a three-run home run off Pirate starter Paul Maholm before Nyjer Morgan's single tied things in the fouth.

3-3 tie, bottom of the sixth...


This is John Lembo from The Bradenton Herald, blogging live before McKechnie Field turns into Fenway Park South - yep, the Boston Red Sox make their last trip to Bradenton today.

Let's see who's playing.

Red Sox:
Jacoby Ellsbury, cf
Dustin Pedroia, 2b
Chris Carter, 1b
Rocco Baldelli, dh
Jed Lowrie, ss
George Kottaras, c
Chip Ambres, lf
Ryan Kalish, rf
Gil Velazquez, 3b
Josh Beckett, p

Nyjer Morgan, lf
Freddy Sanchez, 2b
Nate McLouth, cf
Ryan Doumit, c
Adam LaRoche, 1b
Brandon Moss, rf
Andy LaRoche, 3b
Jack Wilson, ss
Paul Maholm, p

First pitch in about 90 minutes...