Bucs Bits: Pirates News and Notes 12/19/12

A few days removed from PirateFest weekend, here are some Bucco links:

– Speaking of PirateFest, nearly 17,000 fans flocked to the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, which set a new record.

– Charlie Wilmoth of Bucs Dugout provides five reasons why the Pirates aren’t likely to get a huge return if they decide to trade Joel Hanrahan.

– More on Hanrahan — Mike Petriello of Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness wonders if the Hammer would be a significant upgrade for the Dodgers.

– Andrew McCutchen is a candidate to be on the cover of MLB 13: The Show. Voting begins on January 7th.

– Jason Shetler of Bucco Nation got an exclusive interview with MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo.

– Gaby Sanchez is ready to bounce back in 2013, writes Bob Cohn of the Trib.

Happy Holidays from the Pirates.

– The introduction of the new Sunday alternate uniforms and batting practice cap at Friday’s PirateFest luncheon:

– Neil Walker is 100% and ready to go for 2013:

102 days until Opening Day.

Go Bucs

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Pirates sign Mike Zagurski

The Pirates announced this morning that they have signed minor league free agent Mike Zagurski. The deal includes an invite to spring training.

Zagurski, a 29 year old lefty reliever, has never posted an ERA below 5.40 in the big leagues. He’s 1-0 with a 6.13 ERA in 83 career MLB games with the Phillies and Diamondbacks.

We found this while searching for Zagurski:

Zagurski
(Credit: D-backs Memes on Facebook)

That picture was associated with the following caption:
“My apologies for bringing up Mike Zagurski, but it seemed fitting. (No, he is no longer a Diamondback, hopefully it stays that way).” Yeah…

Go Bucs

MLB Free Agency: Open for Business

Josh Hamilton is one of the top free agents this offseason. (Keith Allison/Creative Commons)

Free agency is officially underway in Major League Baseball. The Pirates probably won’t make a big splash, but could add depth at some point this offseason. Here are a few links to get you started on this year’s ‘Hot Stove’:

– Many teams made qualifying offers to their top free agents. If the player rejects the offer and signs somewhere else, the team receives a compensation draft pick.

– Dan Haren was reportedly involved in a deal that would have sent him to the Cubs in exchange for Carlos Marmol. However, the proposed trade was called off. The Angels then declined Haren’s option, and he’s now a free agent.

– David Ortiz is close to signing a new two-year deal with the Red Sox.

– Video: MLB.com’s Jim Duquette breaks down the top free agents.

– Dave Schoenfield of ESPN.com takes a look at the top 10 storylines of the offseason.

– Stay up-to-date with MLB.com’s Hot Stove Tracker.

– You can predict where players will land with MLB.com’s Free Agent Frenzy.

Around the League:
– Major League Baseball donated $1 million for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.
– The Astros unveiled their new uniforms.
– The Marlins hired Mike Redmond to be their new manager.
– The Dodgers may hire Mark McGwire to be their hitting coach.