You get my 2 cents' worth … and a lefty's view of ball and other (less important) matters.
Things Are Going to Potpourri (2/12/12)
Even if the Pirates and Yankees work out all the details of the trade that would bring right-hander A.J. Burnett to Pittsburgh, the deal isn’t likely be announced until Monday. With so much cash involved in the transaction, it would require the obligatory approval of the Commissioner’s Office.
Bring on Burnett: Love the upside of this likely move. Returning to the NL after a six-year AL misadventure can only help him. Through his first seven seasons with the Marlins, Burnett had a career ERA of 3.73 — a figure he never reached in any single season with the Blue Jays or the Yankees.
Yet, Burnett could be a big weapon during Interleague Play. He has a lifetime record of 27-19 against the Pirates’ 2012 AL foes (Tigers, Royals, Orioles, Twins and Indians).
Burnett (2009 Yankees) would double the number of players on the Pirates’ roster with World Series rings (Rod Barajas, ’01 Diamondbacks).
Speaking of Barajas, the last Pirates catcher to hit as many homers (17) as he has averaged the last three seasons was … Jim Pagliaroni, in 1965!
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle says “It’s hard to read a lot into Spring Training performances,” and that’s a good thing to keep in mind as camps open and when Grapefruit League play begins. Last spring, both eventual World Series participants had losing exhibition records (Cardinals 14-16, Rangers 13-16) while the best record was the Royals’ 20-10.
I may be missing something, but why do so many people assume the guy bumped from the Pirates’ rotation by Burnett would be Jeff Karstens? Yes, he already has considerable bullpen experience. But Karstens did a lot of the heavy lifting while the Bucs were making their move last season, going undefeated in eight starts from June 3 through July 15, with a 1.26 ERA and .193 opponents average.
When did Flavor Flav become the Waldo of sporting events? He and his bling-bling have been popping up everywhere, from Indianapolis to Broadway to Las Vegas.
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