Spring Preview: Lineup predictions

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Dejan Kovacevic and Paul Meyer, the Post-Gazette's baseball writers, predict the Pirates' opening day lineup for March 31 in Atlanta, presuming John Smoltz is starting for the Braves:

Kovacevic:

Nate McLouth, CF

Freddy Sanchez, 2B

Jason Bay, LF

Adam LaRoche, 1B

Xavier Nady, RF

Ronny Paulino, C

Jose Bautista, 3B

Jack Wilson, SS

Tom Gorzelanny, P

Comment: McLouth's on-base skills, along with the Pirates' value on offense, will decide the center-field duel with Nyjer Morgan.


Meyer:

Nyjer Morgan, CF

Freddy Sanchez, 2B

Jason Bay, LF

Adam LaRoche, 1B

Jose Bautista, 3B

Steve Pearce, RF

Ronny Paulino, C

Jack Wilson, SS

Tom Gorzelanny, P

Comment: Xavier Nady gets traded during spring training, Pearce impresses and wins the job.



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