Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Pirates 8, Manatee CC 1

Yoslan Herrera was dealing and Neil Walker was wheeling as the Pirates beat their annual competitors today in Florida.

Herrera, competing for the 5th spot in the Pirates rotation but expected to open in AAA, tossed two perfect innings, striking out two and facing just six batters.

"We're just going to take some small steps with him, and hopefully just gradually progress," Jim Tracy said. "He's a good-looking young pitcher. His mechanics are very sound, and all signs point toward the fact that he's just going to continue to get better.

Walker, who is making the transition to third base from behind the dish, made a few solid plays at the hot corner, with the most impressive being the fielding of a rolling bunt and getting the out. He also hit a two-run double in the first inning to give the Bucs all the runs they would need.

The Pirates open their Grapefruit League schedule tomorrow at McKechnie against Cincinnati. Zach Duke will start and be followed by Tom Gorzelanny, Salomon Torres, Kevin Gryboski and Matt Capps. Eric Milton will start for the Reds.
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