• Other than pitchers Charlie Morton, working toward a midseason return from Tommy John surgery, and Francisco Liriano, the only Pirates player who began Spring Training on health-watch is second baseman Neil Walker, laid out by a herniated disk at the end of the season. Manager Clint Hurdle succinctly called off the watch following Friday's first full-squad workout: "His back is not an issue. The [rehab] work he was able to put in and the reports we got from our own people watching him [show us that] he's physically fit for duty and ready to go."
• Jose Tabata is the forgotten man in the outfield, but after following orders to skip winter league play and focus on conditioning, he looks lean and mean, and the ball was jumping off his bat out of the batting cage.
"We're extremely encouraged by what he's done in the offseason and what he did to prepare [for Spring Training]," Hurdle said. "He worked on a number of things to get that body back to where we saw it in 2010, and on strength and flexibility and intensity."
• Pitching may win games, but the sticks win popularity contests: The first workout featuring a full complement of position players drew a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd at Pirate City compared with the handful of fans who'd been attracted by three days of batterymen workouts.