Pirates still looking to add depth for spring camp

Huntington, Hurdle address the media from Pirate City

February 19th, 2016

BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Pirates' Spring Training officially began Friday, when pitchers and catchers took to the back fields at Pirate City for their first organized workout.
The 32 pitchers and six catchers in big league camp gathered around pitching coach Ray Searage to start the day. After saying a few words, Searge split the pitchers in groups and sent them on their way.
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Afterward, general manager Neal Huntington, manager Clint Hurdle and head athletic trainer Todd Tomczyk addressed the media. Here is some news and notes from the Pirates' first workout:
• The Pirates haven't officially confirmed the signing of outfielder Matt Joyce, as reported on Thursday, but Huntington said they are "working through the process of potentially seeing if there's additional players out there that we might bring into camp."
"There are some pretty good players still out there that may add depth, that may add a different dynamic to the club," he added. "The challenge we have is it's not like a player that we sign right now in this role would come in specifically to beat out one player."
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• The Pirates don't have many position battles to resolve in camp. The few they do have, Huntington said, will be determined in part by performance -- but not Spring Training statistics, which tend to be misleading in such a small sample -- and how the players fit on the Bucs' roster.
"There's a lot more that we look at than outcomes," Huntington said. "We're looking at the process. We're looking at their work from the day they show up into camp. If you define performance as the entire package, then yes, performance will be a factor."
• Non-roster outfielder Antoan Richardson, already working out at Pirate City, is recovering from a right foot fracture that required surgery in October, Tomczyk said. Richardson won't be ready to fully participate in baseball activities when position players report next week.
• Left-hander Jesse Biddle, acquired from the Phillies earlier this month, is in camp but not yet throwing. Biddle underwent Tommy John surgery in October and is expected to start throwing off flat ground in mid-March, Tomczyk said.
• Among the pitchers who threw off the bullpen mound Friday were closer Mark Melancon, setup man Tony Watson, reliever Jared Hughes and starter Jeff Locke. Newcomers Juan Nicasio, Neftali Feliz, Eric O'Flaherty, Cory Luebke and Kyle Lobstein also worked off the mound, as did top prospects Tyler Glasnow and Jameson Taillon.
Perhaps the most-watched pairing of the day? Glasnow, the Bucs' top prospect, pitching to catcher Reese McGuire, MLBPipeline's No. 98 overall prospect.