March 16: Cranks & Clunks
The Pirates led the Majors with 57 one-run decisions last season, and are already at it again. Saturday’s 2-1 exhibition loss to the Twins was their ninth of the spring — out of 21 games — and the fifth in a row.
- Gerrit Cole: Showed his most Cole-blooded side. In a 1-1 tie, ended both the third and fourth innings with strikeouts with the tie-breaking run in scoring position.
- Alex Presley: Two doubles, two walks, a load of pitches seen. What the Bucs wish they’d gotten more from him last season.
- Carlos Paulino: Had no chance tio throw out the runner on a pitch that had gotten away from him — and still almost did. McKenry has to hold down The Fort, or Paulino could sneak ahead of him on the depth chart.
- Brandon Inge: Right now, it’s a feel-not-so-good story. In an 0-for-15 drought at bat, found his first test at first base a challenge.
- Kris Johnson: He had a total of 13 walks in 59 1/3 innings in the Dominican Winter League. Walked two of the first three men he faced, and it cost the Pirates, and him, the game.