Pirates notebook: Burnett undecided about pitching in 2014
A month has passed since A.J. Burnett last pitched, but the free agent is still undecided whether he will return. Free agents could begin signing with clubs at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday.
“A.J. remains undecided,” his agent, Darek Braunecker, wrote in an email to the Tribune-Review on Tuesday.
Burnett led National League starting pitchers in both strikeout rate (9.8 strikeouts per nine innings) and groundball rate (56.5 percent) in 2013 but was not extended a qualifying offer by the Pirates. The one-year qualifying offer of $14.1 million guarantees clubs draft-pick compensation should the player sign elsewhere.
The qualifying offer figures to be below market value for quality free-agent starting pitching this offseason, though perhaps too high a price for the Pirates.
Burnett has indicated he would either pitch for the Pirates in 2014 or retire, though should the 36-year-old test the free-agent market, he could receive lucrative short-term offers.
McCutchen, Hurdle finalists for awards
For the second year in a row, Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen is a finalist for National League MVP.
The four major awards were voted on at the end of the regular season by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Winners will be revealed next week during hour-long shows on MLB Network: rookies Monday, managers Tuesday, Cy Young on Wednesday and MVP on Thursday.
Last year, McCutchen finished third. This year, he's a finalist with Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina.
Clint Hurdle, who completed his third season with the Pirates, is a finalist for NL Manager of the Year. The other two finalists are Fredi Gonzalez of the Braves and Don Mattingly of the Dodgers.
Tanner Awards banquet
The Pirates will be well-represented at the seventh annual Chuck Tanner Awards Banquet. The event will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 16 at the Rivers Club, Downtown.
Team owner Bob Nutting will receive the Chuck Tanner Memorial Award, given to someone who helps advance baseball in Pittsburgh. Hurdle will be recognized as major league manager of the year. Long time Pirates employee Sally O'Leary will receive the inaugural Distinguished Woman in Baseball Award. Pirates broadcaster and former relief pitcher Kent Tekulve is the Lifetime Achievement Award winner.
Tickets are $180 apiece and are available at chucktannerbanquet.com or by calling 412-471-6210. Proceeds will go the Pittsburgh Rotary Club.
Travis Sawchik and Rob Biertempfel are staff writers for Trib Total Media. Reach Sawchik at email@example.com or via Twitter @Sawchik_Trib. Reach Biertempfel at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @BiertempfelTrib.
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 notebook: Morton hopes to return this season
- Biertempfel: With McCutchen sidelined, Kershaw becomes NL MVP front-runner