BRADENTON, Fla. - Former Pirates manager John Russell was announced as the third base coach, bringing a huge outbreak of indifference.
You could have heard a pin drop - much like the crowd's reaction at every joke from last night's Oscar telecast.
No applause for Russell, no jeers, nothing but absolute silence.
So much for a warm homecoming.
J.J. Hardy struck out looking to begin today's game. Felix Pie followed with a sharp grounder that deflected off third base and skipped into left field for a double. The throw beat Pie to the bag, but he dived in safely.
Pie took third on Mark Reynolds' ground out and raced home when Vladimir Guerrero reached on an infield hit.
Yes, that's two in two days.
Third baseman Pedro Alvarez made a diving attempt, but he could only knock down the ball. It rolled behind him as Guerrero reached safely.
Guerrero absolutely smoked that ball. I'm surprised that Alvarez saw it.
Update: Brad Bergesen retired the side in order in the bottom of the first, striking out Andrew McCutchen to end the inning. He threw seven of his 10 pitches for strikes. Pie made a nice running catch in right-center field to deny Josh Rodriguez.