Pirates Noteboook: Gorzelanny finds path back
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CHICAGO -- It might not have been clear to Tom Gorzelanny what message the Pirates were sending by making him one of the first cuts of spring training, but he found his way back to Pittsburgh, anyway.
Now, it is a matter of sticking, and that might not be easy.
For one, general manager Neal Huntington stated bluntly upon Gorzelanny's recall last weekend that he viewed the move as temporary because the Pirates see Gorzelanny as a starter and are using him in relief only to make up for Tyler Yates' absence.
For another, Gorzelanny would have to adapt to the role quickly: It has been mixed so far, with two runs in three appearances, three strikeouts and no walks.
"Whatever's needed of me," Gorzelanny said yesterday. "I obviously don't hope it's temporary. I hope I'm here all year. This is definitely a different job, but I've been enjoying it. It's a whole different feeling. As a starter, you have all kinds of time to prepare for your next start, to think about your last one. In the bullpen, someone yells out, 'You're up!' And you've got to go."
The Pirates seem to have been pushing Gorzelanny, first with the cut, then by trumping up Virgil Vasquez, a largely ineffective and inexperienced starter at Indianapolis, as having an upper hand on Gorzelanny for a recall. When Gorzelanny did come up, Huntington said it was entirely because that was his day to pitch, not Vasquez's.
Gorzelanny was asked yesterday what kind of communication or instruction he received from the Pirates during his six weeks in the minors, and he pointed only to the teaching of Indianapolis pitching coach Ray Searage.
"I never heard anything from anybody," Gorzelanny said, referring to Pittsburgh. "It was just me working with Ray. That's it. Unless Ray was communicating with them. But nothing directly."
Pirates pitching coach Joe Kerrigan was asked yesterday what he wanted to see from Gorzelanny after his cut.
"Same thing I said in spring training: Repetition of delivery," Kerrigan said. "He had a hard time repeating his delivery and, therefore, he had a hard time repeating pitches. Simple as that."
And has that happened?
"The reports I was getting from Ray were very good. And it's obvious now that he's a lot better now at repeating pitches than he was in the spring."
The Pirates' April 15 trade for utilityman Delwyn Young was completed yesterday when the Los Angeles Dodgers accepted minor league reliever Eric Krebs as the player to be named later, along with $1 in cash.
Original terms of the deal called for the Dodgers to take two players or a player and cash.
Krebs, 24, had a 4.86 ERA in 10 appearances for Class AA Altoona, with 15 strikeouts and 17 walks.
Reliever Craig Hansen has been shut down again by the neck and upper back spasms that have him on the disabled list, this after a bullpen session Friday in Bradenton, Fla.
He will fly back to Pittsburgh early next week for more tests, which could include an MRI, manager John Russell said.
"It's a setback, no question," Russell said.
• Yates had a light tossing session, and his sore right elbow held up about as expected. He will have another today.
• Andy LaRoche was out of the starting lineup, despite a seven-game hitting streak, in favor of Ramon Vazquez. Russell explained that it was one of few opportunities he saw in these few days to get Vazquez a start.
• Chicago will be without manager Ozzie Guillen today and tomorrow. He is leaving for Venezuela to tend to "a family matter," and Joey Cora will take his place.
First Published May 23, 2009 12:00 am