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Thread: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

      
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    Default Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp
    By Rob Biertempfel, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
    Tuesday, February 23, 2010

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- It was a few minutes past 8 a.m. Monday, and many denizens in the clubhouse at Pirate City were still rubbing the sleep out of their eyes. Suddenly, the room seemed to brighten and buzz.

    The M&M Guys had arrived.

    Outfielders Andrew McCutchen and Lastings Milledge checked into spring training well ahead of the midnight deadline for position players. They tugged on uniforms and went through a full workout, a day ahead of the first official full-squad drills.

    "I've been ready," McCutchen said. "I was tired of working out (alone). It seemed like a long offseason to me. I'm really excited about what we have and what we're preparing for. I'm ready to get it started."

    Although he has barely four months experience in the majors, McCutchen, 23, is rapidly becoming a team leader. He and Milledge, 25, are rarely far apart and feed off each other's buoyant personalities.

    "I just come in and joke around," McCutchen said. "We have a lot of fun with it because ... why not?"

    By 9 a.m. yesterday, all 66 players invited to big-league camp had checked in. About a dozen position players have been at Pirate City since last week.

    "That's kind of unheard of," manager John Russell said. "It's been a good turnout. Having the facility down here really makes a difference. A lot of the cold weather up north this winter probably helped push some guys down here earlier.

    "They're all here and ready to go, and I think they're looking forward to (Tuesday). Coming down that early, they really wanted to get out on the field with the rest of us."

    Of the 24 position players in camp, 19 took batting practice and did fielding drills. Those who didn't work out were undergoing physical exams.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]QUOTABLE[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    "He opened the box, and there was a Nationals jacket. I was like, 'What's that?' He threw it away quick."

    Andrew McCutchen

    On helping Lastings Milledge unpack after arriving at Pirate City

    [HIGH-LIGHT]DIGITS[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    138 -- Games in which Lastings Milledge played for the Washington Nationals before joining the Pirates.

    123 -- Days of major-league service time for Andrew McCutchen.

    http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_668442.html
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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    That kind of bonding this early, can only be a good thing.
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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    Lets Go Bucs!

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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    Quote Originally Posted by Steelreign View Post
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    That kind of bonding this early, can only be a good thing.
    Agreed completely....
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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    Quote Originally Posted by NKySteeler View Post
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    Agreed completely....
    Hopefully that will temper some of the problems that LM has had in the past and could have in the future...a great connection with a teammate could help keep him even keel.
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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    I think Milledge has a bit of a chip on his shoulder. He really wantsto prove the naysayers wrong. That doesn't mean that he will be successful in doing that, but he does have talent.

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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    Quote Originally Posted by Lup View Post
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    I think Milledge has a bit of a chip on his shoulder. He really wantsto prove the naysayers wrong. That doesn't mean that he will be successful in doing that, but he does have talent.
    It was a good trade regardless of whether he can overcome himself or not...his talent and age far exceed the value of Morgan and Burnett...even with Burnett pitching better last year.
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    Default Re: Young outfielders perk up Bucs' camp

    One guy everybody is discounting this year because of his horrible 2009 is Brandon Moss. Moss admitted he had no strength in his knee and lower body last season and he lost his power because of the surgery he had in 2008. If Moss gets his opportunities he could put some heat on Milledge and even Jones to challenge for playing time. He's rehabbed the knee and the strength is back.

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