• Jose Contreras, recovering from Tommy John surgery, threw a 21-pitch simulated game on Wednesday, and reported feeling "great, no problems."
• Wandy Rodriguez's first post-Classic action came in a Minor League game on Thursday. He went 5 1/3 innings at Pirate City, throwing 89 pitches and allowing a run and three hits, while walking three and striking out two.
• The Pirates' inaugural Leadership Meeting, the first of what manager Clint Hurdle plans to be twice-monthly airing-out sessions with players, was convened prior to Thursday afternoon's workout. This one involved the entire clubhouse, but expectations are that a "focus group" of selected players will get the floor, and the manager's ears, during the season.
"Hey, that's all I've got. That's my thing." -- A.J. Burnett, when asked why he didn't come up with a new '13 slogan and instead passed out the same "Preparation for Domination" tee-shirts he gave teammates last summer.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less