Worth noting

• Gerrit Cole recalled texting his congratulations to Stanford's Mark Appel when the Pirates made the fellow Pac-12 pitcher the No. 8 selection in last June's Draft. Appel, of course, declined to sign with the Bucs and on Friday made his season debut with the Cardinal. UCLA's Cole doesn't think Appel had anything against Pittsburgh, but had expected to go No. 1 and stayed in school to try regain that status.

• All Spring Training camps have pitchers fielding practice, or PFP, but the Pirates on Saturday added a new acronym to the list: CRG -- control running game -- something at which Pittsburgh batterymen need a lot of work after allowing 154 steals in 173 attempts last season.

• Saturday's first round of live batting practice was more like taking practice, with pitchers dramatically demonstrating how far they are ahead of hitters. Among those overmatching teammates were Jason Grilli, James McDonald, Jameson Taillon, Jeff Locke and Kris Johnson.