Pirates notebook: Snider gets 1st start, hopes for more
LOS ANGELES — Coming out of spring training, Travis Snider wasn't quite where he needed to be at the plate.
“I don't want to say I was still searching; I'll say I was progressing,” Snider said Friday. “Power-wise, there are some things I'm tweaking. I had some games where I showed some power. But I needed to make some adjustments as far as where I was hitting the ball and what kind of pitches I was looking to hit.”
At the start of camp, manager Clint Hurdle and general manager Neal Huntington repeatedly said the right field job was Snider's to lose. But when the season began, Gaby Sanchez and Garrett Jones were in the lineup and Snider was benched.
“Travis made very good strides throughout spring training,” Hurdle said. “(But) I wanted to break out with the guys who were swinging the bat the best.”
A left-handed batter, Snider made his first start of the season Friday against Dodgers righty Zack Greinke. Jones, who also bats left-handed, started at first base.
“We want to get Travis in play and heat him up,” Hurdle said.
The Dodgers will start left-handers Saturday and Sunday, so Sanchez will be back at first base. Hurdle didn't indicate who'll start in right field.
“When you get two pinch-hits in three games, you look forward to when you can get in there and get multiple at-bats,” Snider said. “My mind set is just to go compete, whenever I'm in the lineup, whether it's as a pinch-hitter or a starter.”
Friday was the first time catcher Russell Martin played at Dodger Stadium since Aug. 3, 2010, his final game with the Dodgers. He spent the past two seasons with the Yankees.
“I went out for early BP and saw how beautiful the field was,” Martin said. “It brought back some pretty good memories. But taking a right turn instead of a left to the clubhouse when I walked in here, that definitely was weird.”
Martin was drafted by the Dodgers in 2002 and made his big league debut four years later. He said the franchise's mystique didn't really hit him until after he left.
“I took it for granted before because they were the only organization I knew,” Martin said. “I didn't know how special it was until I got out. I've been fortunate, playing for the Dodgers and the Yankees. But I'm wearing the Pirates' colors now, and I'm proud of that, too.”
Speaking of reunions, Jack Wilson and his son, Jake, visited with the Pirates during batting practice. The former Pirates shortstop left the game after the 2012 season and said retirement is treating him well.
“I'm loving it,” Wilson said. “I'm playing softball every Tuesday night and coaching Little League.”
Whole lotta nothing
The Pirates and Chicago Cubs combined for only 24 hits in their season-opening series this week. According to Elias, it's the lowest total in a three-game set between those teams since 1915, when they combined for 22 hits at Forbes Field.
How hard was it to get a hit in that '15 series? Honus Wagner, who had a .328 career batting average, went1 for 9.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates willing to consider high salary to keep star McCutchen
- Pirates notebook: Nutting expects club to win division title
- Team interaction important to Pirates veteran pitcher Burnett
- Pirates looking at ways to make McCutchen’s off days more productive
- Pirates notebook: Mercer gains celebrity in Kang’s home country
- Pirates’ Alvarez eager to prove he can play first, regain power stroke
- Pirates acquire ex-Marlins reliever
- Spring training crash course key for new Pirates catcher Cervelli
- Pirates notebook: Team has big plans for newcomer Kang