BRADENTON, Fla. – A.J. Burnett started driving to Florida on Saturday not really knowing where he would end up — back in Tampa with the Yankees, in Bradenton at Pirates spring training camp or perhaps on a plane to Arizona to join the Indians. He got the answer via a phone call from Pirates manager Clint Hurdle.
Monday morning, Burnett met with reporters at Pirate City, ready for his first day with his new team. “It got done and I’m looking forward to this,” Burnett said. “It’s going to be a fresh start. It’s going to be fun. I’m going back to the National League, where I can hit and bunt and get the joy back into the game.”
»»» Burnett will wear uniform No. 34. Daniel McCutchen switched to No. 25. How much is the number going to cost Burnett? “I don’t know yet,” Burnett said, grinning. “I’ve got to tease him, play with him a little bit.”
»»» To clear a roster spot for Burnett, infielder Gustavo Nunez was placed on the 60-day disabled list due to a right ankle injury. Two months ago, the Pirates claimed Nunez from the Tigers in the Rule 5 draft.
»»» I bumped into Nate McLouth in the clubhouse early this morning. He hasn’t changed from three years ago, when he last played for the Pirates. “It feels great to be back,” McLouth said.