Pittsburgh picked up first baseman Chris McGuiness from Texas in exchange for Triple-A reliever Miles Mikolas.
Gaby Sanchez is around as the Pirates’ right-handed-hitting fallback option at first base in case they fail to land one of their primary targets and now they’ve acquired a left-handed-hitting first baseman in McGuiness to potentially platoon with him.
McGuiness hit just .246 with 11 homers and a .792 OPS in 104 games at Triple-A last season and also got into 10 games for the Rangers in his MLB debut at age 25. He has good on-base skills thanks to plenty of walks, but McGuiness is a career .257 hitter in the minors and lacks ideal power for the position.
There were a few exhibitions against college teams yesterday but today the Grapefruit League and Cactus League schedules begin in earnest, with big league teams, more or less, facing big league team, more or less.
The baseball will look like baseball, but the teams will be wearing different caps today: black caps with the maroon “SD” of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 17 people were killed in a mass shooting on February 14.
All teams and umpire crews will wear the caps pre-game, and they have the option to wear the caps during the games. The only two teams not playing today — the Royals and Rangers — will wear them tomorrow.
After the games players will sign the caps and they will be auctioned off to raise money for the Broward Education Foundation, which benefits the official Stoneman Douglas Victims’ Fund.
Here’s today’s schedule: