Pirates notebook: Replay could catch players in a trap
It's long enough after the fact now that Travis Snider can admit he didn't really catch that blooper a couple of seasons ago at Triple-A Las Vegas. Snider made a diving attempt in center field, but the ball hit the ground and hopped into his mitt.
“I sold it and got the call,” Snider said. “I've had a few like that throughout my career, but I can't think of too many at the major league level.”
Soon, selling a trap as a bona fide catch could become a lost art. At the owners meetings Thursday, Major League Baseball inched closer to expanding the use of instant replay to include traps, fair/foul calls and plays at bases. MLB also is considering putting a replay official in the booth at every game.
“The more angles they can get and having somebody in the booth to speed up the process, I think it will take some pressure off the on-field (umpires),” Snider said. “I think it can have some benefit for the players and the umpires.”
It certainly will make players think twice before trying to sell a near-miss as a catch.
“You won't be able to get away with as much,” Garrett Jones said. “The more cameras we have, it's going to turn into a very honest game.”
The downside is it might also turn into a much longer game.
“You want to get the call right,” Jones said. “But it might slow down the game, constantly replaying every close play. Human error is always going to be there in this game, so it's hard for me to say one way is better.”
Jones has had two calls on balls he hit this season changed to home runs after replay reviews.
Morton back on track
Right-hander Charlie Morton (elbow surgery) threw four innings (61 pitches) in a rehab start Thursday with Double-A Altoona. Morton allowed two runs on two hits (both solo homers), walked one and struck out one.
“A little rough around the edges, but it was his first time back” after a shoulder setback, manager Clint Hurdle said. “His velocity was 90 to 96 mph, threw some breaking balls and changeups. All in all, it was a good effort.”
Hurdle said Morton will make three more rehab outings before he comes off the disabled list. Morton's next start will come with Triple-A Indianapolis.
Right-hander Jeanmar Gomez, who will make his fourth fill-in start Friday, will go back to a long-relief role when Morton returns.
Righty Jeff Karstens (shoulder) is slated to throw four innings/65 pitches Saturday for Altoona.
Through Wednesday, the Pirates had 22 stolen bases, sixth most in the National League. They finished the 2012 season last in the NL with 73 steals.
Nearly all of the Pirates' production has come from Starling Marte (10 steals) and Andrew McCutchen (nine). Jones, Russell Martin and Jose Tabata each have one.
“Marte and Cutch can be combustible,” Hurdle said. “But we've got some other guys who can sneak some (stolen) bases. The number isn't important; the percentage is. I'd like to see a bigger number.”
This year, the Pirates have a 76 percent success rate, tied for fifth best in the league. They were last with a 58 percent rate last season.
Infielder Chase d'Arnaud (thumb surgery) began his rehab assignment Thursday with High-A Bradenton. ... After a 14-7 victory Wednesday against Buffalo, Triple-A Indianapolis (29-12) had the most wins in all of the minor leagues.
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.