02/27/11 5:48 PM EST
Doumit could be traded, but nothing imminent
By Jenifer Langosch / MLB.com
The Pirates haven't ruled out dealing Doumit, who is in line to make $5.1 million this year in a backup role. The trouble has been finding another team that has interest in the catcher/outfielder and is willing to offer Pittsburgh an attractive package in return.
Such a package could still come, but it would likely be late next month when another team has a need arise due to injury or ineffectiveness.
"Things kind of die in terms of most conversations when you get into February, and they kind of pick back up again with a couple weeks left of games," general manager Neal Huntington said. "Right now it is a very quiet period for most clubs."
If Doumit remains with the Pirates, it is still being determined how the club would use him as a backup. Doumit could slot into a traditional backup catcher role, which would limit how much he could be used as a pinch-hitter. If the Pirates opt to carry a third catcher, Doumit would be used more liberally off the bench and would be available as an option in right field or at first base.
Russell to face Bucs for first time as O's coach
BRADENTON, Fla. -- John Russell spent six springs -- three as a coach, the rest as the Pirates' manager -- guiding players through Spring Training drills in Bradenton. Russell will return to McKechnie Field on Monday, this time, though, he'll be alongside an Orioles club that will occupy the visitors' clubhouse.
It has been almost five months since Russell managed his final game with the Pirates. He was dismissed from the position one day after the 2010 regular season, ending a tenure in which the club went 186-299. During the offseason, Russell was hired by Buck Showalter to serve as Baltimore's third-base coach.
"I enjoy this," Russell said of his new duties, which include working closely with the Orioles' catchers. "It's a great group. We have such a neat coaching staff. Everyone is experienced. It's an open line of communication. It's a little bit different dynamic. We had a very friendly staff in Pittsburgh, but to have the experience we have here, I think that's the one thing that really stands out."
2010 Spring Training - Major League Baseball
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Russell said he has no regrets about accepting the managerial job in Pittsburgh well aware of the fact that he would be guiding the team through a tough rebuilding process. That said, Russell also said he doesn't believe he was given enough time to get the franchise back on track.
"It was a tough chore to turn things around in a short period of time," he said. "It takes a little more time. Unless you go out and do like some teams have done and just jump the payroll up $60, $70, $80 million dollars, it's tough.
"It doesn't happen overnight. You have to have good Drafts. You have to have good young players. You have to replenish the players that you lose. Unfortunately, it takes time. I think being in Pittsburgh, it's been so long that patience has run really thin. I think that's a big factor, unfortunately. We'll see where they go."
In addition to seeing the Pirates five times this spring, Russell will return to Pittsburgh during Interleague Play for a three-game set in June. It is a visit that, for various reasons, he is already anticipating.
"It will be different being on the other side," Russell said. "We have a lot of friends there. The city was great. The fans were great. It will be fun."
Correia overly amped during spring debut
BRADENTON, Fla. -- Kevin Correia pointed to adrenaline as the primary reason for the fastball command issues that plagued his Pirates debut on Sunday.
Like all the team's starters during these first spring games, Correia was expected to finish two innings in his start. An escalating pitch count, however, forced manager Clint Hurdle to pull Correia with the bases loaded and only one out in the second.
In all, Correia was charged with two runs, two hits and two walks in the appearance.
"I was overthrowing," Correia said. "It seems like I do it every year, and I get mad because every year I say I'm not going to do it this year. You're not nervous or anything. You just have that adrenaline rush that you have after not pitching in months."
Correia said he could feel his stride getting long and his pitches -- particularly his two-seam fastball -- getting flat from the get-go. He tried to correct it by continuing to throw the fastball early in the count. That ended up exacerbating his issues, though, as Correia then continued falling behind in the count.
"He was amped up," Hurdle said. "He wasn't in the rhythm that we have seen him in and that he wants to be in. He got a good sweat in. He got on the mound. We'll take that and move on."
"I hate pitching bad," added Correia. "It angers me every time, no matter where it is. It could be in the backyard. I'm also not real concerned about it. Giving up a run or two in my first Spring Training outing, I've done that plenty of times. I'm not concerned about it. But I obviously still have some work to do."
Encouraging to Correia, though, was that he did have decent command with his offspeed pitches. He also reported no lingering sting from a line drive that struck him on the left heel in the second inning.
Olsen set for another 'pen session on Monday
BRADENTON, Fla. -- Lefty Scott Olsen remains scheduled to throw another bullpen on Monday. That will be Olsen's third side session since he was first sidelined with a mild left hamstring strain.
General manager Neal Huntington said there have been no setbacks in Olsen's slow progression back. It isn't clear, however, how soon Olsen will be given the OK to make his first game appearance. Olsen has not yet resumed running or participating in fielding drills.
"We need to ... get him doing the things that a pitcher needs to be doing after the ball leaves his hand," Huntington said. "That will determine his progress back out, and when he gets back into game activity."
Though Olsen is behind the other pitchers at this point, Huntington maintained that he will still have enough time to get stretched out as a starter before Opening Day. Olsen is still in the mix for the open spot in the Pirates' rotation, and will be considered for a bullpen spot if he is beaten out for the starting job.
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.