Originally posted on Raise the Jolly Roger!  |  Last updated 3/8/13
News and notes from spring training and the WBC… The Pirates take on the Orioles tonight at 7:05 in their only home night game of the spring. ROOT Sports will carry the game. Kyle McPherson will get the start. The Bucs are on ROOT Sports again tomorrow. That game starts at 1:05 against the Twins. On Thursday, the Bucs lost to the Rays 4-2. James McDonald tossed four scoreless innings, although he was still a bit shaky. He walked three, allowed one hit, and struck out one. Jason Grilli also had a shaky  scoreless outing yesterday, but the stakes were much higher. He came on in the ninth inning to close out a one run lead for Italy in a WBC first-round game against Mexico. Grilli gave up a leadoff hit, then Mexico sacrifice bunted the runner to second. Jason got a pop-out, then walked Luis Cruz (after getting him 0-2) and hit Adrian Gonzalez to load the bases with two outs. He escaped (narrowly) by getting Jorge Cantu to bounce out on a full count. It was stressful and long outing, but I suppose that’s some useful experience for Grilli–pitching in a real high-leverage save situation that spring training games can’t simulate. There’s more WBC action (including the U.S.) on MLB Network today, but no notable Bucs are scheduled to play. Chris Leroux starts for Canada tomorrow. Want to get pumped up for the season? Watch this: 23 days until Opening Day.
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