Jenn Menendez's Pirates baseball chat transcript: 4.22.14

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Jenn Menendez: Alright, thanks for joining me. Let's get started.

JamesinNYC: I think the Pirates did will getting Davis for what they did, their patience is remarkable. Is there anyone they would look to add after the draft that would be comp free?

JJ: Hi Jenn! In your opinion, what do u give the signing of Ike Davis to the Pirates. Was it a good move?

Jenn Menendez: Two Ike Davis questions off the bat, so I'll answer both here. I think The Pirates did show remarkable patience adding a first basemen three weeks into the season considering it was a priority dating back to November. My guess – and this is speculation - is the Mets were determining if they could give up Davis or not, and no other deals quite worked for the Pirates in the meantime. That said I think it's been a great move. He hit 32 home runs in 2012 and has the power potential the club was in need of. I think he works well batting No. 6 in the lineup, and wouldn't be surprised if he's bumped up to 5 at some point.

JJ: Do u know the other piece of the trade for Davis?

Jenn Menendez: I do not know the other piece of the trade for Ike Davis. It's believed to be a significant recent draft pick, but we'll have to wait on that one.

JJ: Are the Pirates still on Didi now that Jordy is banged up?

Jenn Menendez: No word on that of late.

JJ: How is Mercer? What is his condition?

Jenn Menendez: Hurdle said yesterday that Mercer can hit, run in a straight line, run the bases, but he's limited with side to side movement while fielding. He entered the game late last night as a pinch hitter and stayed in. I suspect we'll learn more later today when the clubhouse opens and Hurdle is available.

Jeremy: With Travis Snider probably getting suspended, will we see Polanco called up within the next few days?

Jenn Menendez: No. Heaven and earth would have to move for Polanco to be called up before mid June. It doesn't make financial sense for the Pirates who retain an extra year of control by waiting until that point. Most teams would do the same.

Jenn Menendez: And as for suspensions from Sunday's brawl, unclear what time we will get information from MLB regarding the review of the incident.

RichL: Any thought of batting Cutch 2nd?

Jenn Menendez: Not that I'm aware of. In the perfect lineup he'd probably be a great candidate for the No. 2 spot, but I have not heard of that with this lineup.

Jenn Menendez: What else ya got?

Jenn Menendez: Sorry was having technical difficulties for a minute and the queue appeared empty. But now many came in all at once.

JAL: Which is more likely, Pimentel starts in Wandy's spot or he send Hughes down and bring up Cumpton to thake the starts?

Jenn Menendez: My guess is that since Hurdle said the start would likely come in-house that Pimentel is more likely to get the start than calling up Cumpton. However, I think if they had decided he would have said that with a bit more conviction and even announced the starter. Possible we'll find out today. But either makes sense.

BobbyToledo: Where does Lambo fit in now with the addition of Ike Davis? He seems to be blocked at 1B and in the outfield.

Jenn Menendez: That's pretty unclear. He's a depth guy at both positions now, and I'm sure we'll see him at some point, but as always there will need to be some production to warrant.

JJ: Does anyone get suspended in the basebrawl?

Jenn Menendez: I think we'll likely hear of some sanctions later today for both teams, but not positive they will release their findings of the review this quickly. We'll see later today.

James_Pittsburgh: Jenn, would you accept a beat down that Russell Martin is offering to Maldinado if it were for charity? I wouldn't want to come near Russ in a boxing ring, especially after you messed with a teammate of his. The guy is a stud.

Jenn Menendez: I would never get in the ring with Russell Martin. He would kick my butt in one punch. If you're asking would I support a charity match between them - not really my place to say so or not - but it's probably a better idea than plunking one another repeatedly in the next series.

Jenn Menendez: OK, Buster Olney is reporting that Maldonado has been suspended for 5 games and fined. No official word from MLB yet. If that happens momentarily I'll need to step away to report.

gwbicster: Maldonado got five games, according to Buster Olney.

JAL: A couple of times last night Martin looked like he was hurting? Heard anything on a possible injury?

Jenn Menendez: Did not see that, but will watch him closer today. I also did not hear a peep about a potential injury, though catchers always have something going on they barrel through.

Jason: Whom do you feel will be 5th starter now that Wandy is on DL

Jenn Menendez: I think they'll piece it together for a little while, then re-assess if Wandy's knee appears to be a bigger problem.

Nate: Biggest surprise of the season thus far?

Jenn Menendez: Edinson Volquez. No question. Though if you watched closely during spring training - which was hard for any of you to do since so few games were televised - his changup and curveball both looked very good. It was his fastball that was all over the map for a while. It really did improve with each outing and he has had a fantastic attitude since the day he showed up in the clubhouse. Seems like a happy, well-adjusted guy, ready to work hard.

JAL: After seeing the Brewers twice are they as good as their record or just having one of those hot streaks that Pirates and Cards will probably have later in the season.

Jenn Menendez: Bill Brink had this past weekend series against the Brewers, and I covered the one on the road. The Pirates got in their own way several times in the games at Miller Park, so my guess is the law of averages will even this series out as the season goes on.

Jenn Menendez: But no question they are hot right now, and a healthier and more complete team than they were a year ago.

James_Pittsburgh: Is Pimental bascially being given an audition for 2015?

Jenn Menendez: I think he's past the audition stage. But I see what you're saying.

Nathan: Will the PTBNL be a top 10 prospect for the buccos? I am a little nervous to see a lot of people saying it is a top prospect from the 2013 draft!

Jenn Menendez: I wish I could tell you more, but not sure who the player is going to be.

James_Pittsburgh: There isn't a guy more admirable on the Pirates roster than Josh Harrison...The guy never says a word about playing time or position placement and he continues to be one of our best pinch hitters. I hope he knows he plays a big role in the Pirates success last year and this year!

Jenn Menendez: He's certainly a gracious guy, and does what's asked of him.

Bill: on unwritten rules -- do players prefer the cycle of offense/retaliation to a few harsh words? Cole's alternative was to drill Gomez at a later time, and given Gomez's history he could take offense at that as well, or the Brewers would feel justified in retaliating against Pirate hitters. Seems better to say your peace and move on. Players argue and jaw in other sports all the time and it doesn't require a pound of flesh.

Jenn Menendez: Something we could debate for hours. I think the players are generally OK with Gomez barking back at Cole, but I don't want to speak for them. They were not OK with the punch Maldonado threw at Snider who was being held back.

JAL: After the the Cole game CH said he took Cole out after 8 because of his inexperience and didn't want failure. Doesn't that contradict using Cole to start game 5 of the playoff series? I see Cole as guy not fazed by the situation.

Jenn Menendez: On the surface, yes. But Sunday was clearly a bit more heated and I'm guessing Hurdle thought on that particular day that 8 innings was too deep for Cole.

DC: Were Grilli's two blown saves simply because of him running into a very-hot Ryan Braun, or is Grilled Cheese beginning to finally...err..melt down?

Jenn Menendez: I think he deserves some time to answer that. I think his next few appearances will tell us whether it was a hot Ryan Braun or a problem with Grilli.

Bill: ooh ooh can I answer -- Grilli's command is off. Has been for a while. 1st HR to Braun was BP

Nate: When the season is done and over with, do you see the buccos with two 30 HR players. I say yes in Pedro and Davis

Jenn Menendez: Yes. Those very two.

James_Pittsburgh: Could Wandy Rodriguez be shit down for the entire season again?

Jenn Menendez: I think that's getting ahead of things. And though no injury is a good injury a knee one is probably better than his arm troubles popping up again.

Jenn Menendez: Alright guys, have to pack up and head over to PNC Park for tonight's games. Thanks for the questions today, and sorry I could not get to them all. Bill will chat from the road later this week. Check the blog for a time.


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