Pirates notebook: Harrison compares his highlight reel catches
Josh Harrison wasn't guaranteed a spot on the Pirates' roster, let alone major league playing time, in 2013, but he took to heart the saying that anything worth having isn't going to be easy.
He took the multiple assignments to Triple-A the right way, manager Clint Hurdle said, with a mixture of angst and openness to hearing what he needed to work on and why. Now, Hurdle said, it's fun to watch the work Harrison put in pay off with some spectacular catches and timely offense to give the team a spark in recent games.
His leaping catch at the wall in right field on an Ian Desmond fly ball ended Friday's game against the Nationals.
“Josh is playing the game like he had a hand in inventing it,” Hurdle said. “(It's) the backyard mentality. You get to lead off, you tag up, you score from first, you lay out, you make catches and that million-dollar smile he dropped on us in right field after he made that play, man, it doesn't get any better than that.”
Harrison made one fully-extended catch Sunday against the Yankees and another Thursday in the sixth inning against the Nationals . He said he's still not quite used to seeing himself on the nightly highlight reels.
“It's always a little different seeing (the plays) from a different perspective, seeing it on TV,” he said. “When I laid out for the one (Thursday) night, I was like, this one's as good if not better than the one in New York. New York's was good, and it was later in the game, but the one Thursday, I don't know. I just play aggressive. I just remember I threw the ball in, and (Andrew McCutchen) was standing over me, and I was like, ‘That must have looked pretty sick.' ”
Grilli returns to closer's role; Sanchez sent to Triple-A
Jason Grilli was activated from the disabled list Friday and, despite Hurdle's claims before the game that he would not immediately be the Pirates closer, pitched in the ninth inning to earn his fifth save and first save since April 14.
“I've got one available arm after Jason,” Hurdle said after the game. “He had to give us an inning. I wanted to give him an inning where he was comfortable. The ninth is familiar territory. He's got some skills. He's also got some moxie and experience.”
Hurdle said earlier in the day that they planned to take a similar approach to last season. Grilli came off the disabled list with a flexor strain Sept. 3, then made a handful of appearances in the seventh and eighth innings before returning to the closer's role Sept. 21.
Grilli said he would have been OK in whatever role he was given but added it felt good to experience ninth-inning adrenaline again.
“Nothing like getting into a one-run ballgame right out of the chute,” he said. “It just felt good to get back on the horse. It's like getting in that groove again and getting that one out of the way. But my confidence felt good. My fastball was live. I'm ready to do this again.”
Catcher Tony Sanchez was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis to make room for Grilli on the active roster.
Stolmy Pimentel left for Bradenton and is scheduled to begin a return-to-pitch program by pitching a one-inning simulated game Saturday. Hurdle wouldn't rule out an appearance with High-A Bradenton before returning to the majors. ... During the pregame ceremonies on the field, the Pirates honored first responders who assisted during last month's stabbings at Franklin Regional.
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 defeat Braves, 3-2, clinch NL playoff spot for 2nd consecutive season
- Pirates notebook: Pirates prepare for playoff berth celebration
- Pirates beat Braves, clinch 2nd straight trip to postseason
- Wednesday’s scouting report: Pirates at Braves
- Pirates notebook: Volquez open to re-signing with team
- Pirates find a bridge at end of baseball world in Holdzkom
- Pirates notebook: Bucs set single-season attendance record
- Liriano, McCutchen help Pirates to 1-0 win over Braves
- Pirates, Worley edge Brewers, 1-0, move to cusp of playoffs
- New approach on offense has Pirates in playoff contention this season
- Pirates’ 5-game winning streak ends with 1-0 loss to Brewers