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34 A.J. Burnett SP
Height/Weight: 6-4/225 | Birthdate: 1/3/1977 | Birthplace: North Little Rock, AR | Bats/Throws: R/R | Team: Pittsburgh | College: No College | MLB Experience: 17 | Salary: $16,500,000 | Owned/Started%: 93/72 | Average Draft Position: 212.09
PIT

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Pirates SP A.J. Burnett goes seven solid innings in win over Mets


by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5/23/2015) Pirates right-hander A.J. Burnett was dominant on Saturday in a win against the Mets. Burnett went seven innings, allowing just one run on five hits. He did not issue a walk and struck out a season-high 10 batters on the afternoon. He threw 96 pitches, 60 of them going for strikes.

Burnett (4-1) gave up his only run on the day in the fourth inning on a run-scoring fielder's choice by Daniel Murphy. Other than that, he never really got into any trouble, as he allowed just one other runner to get to third base all day. 

“He’s pitching as well as I’ve seen him pitch,” manager Clint Hurdle said, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “He’s doing his job."

Burnett has not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his first nine starts this season, and will take a nice 1.37 ERA into his next start, scheduled for Thursday in San Diego. 


Pirates starting pitcher A.J. Burnett throws seven shutout IP for win


by Ted Leshinski | Staff Writer
(5/17/2015) Pirates starting pitcher A.J. Burnett (3-1) threw seven shutout innings Sunday, scattering three hits, fanning seven and walking five to earn the win over the Cubs.

Burnett tossed 103 pitches and lowered his ERA to 1.38 in the outing.

"I do believe it's the best delivery of his career, at least since we've seen him," Hurdle said to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "It's just connected. He's holding his back side. He's getting out with perfect extension … with the angle he wants. Everything is coming out of the same arm slot."

Burnett has not allowed more than two runs in any of his eight starts this season, becoming the first Pirates starter since 1900 to do so.

Burnett returns to the mound for his next start Sunday, May 24, against the Mets.


A.J. Burnett earns second win of year for Pirates


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/12/2015) Pirates starter A.J. Burnett moved to 2-1 with Tuesday's win over the Phillies. 

Burnett gave up two runs, one earned, in seven innings. He allowed six hits, walked one and struck out five. Burnett threw 95 pitches, 65 strikes.

Burnett's next start is Sunday, at the Cubs.  


Pirates SP A.J. Burnett records 2,400 strikeout of career Thursday


by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(5/7/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett struck out four batters to record his 2,400 career strikeout during Thursday's 7-2 win over the Reds.

Burnett recorded the historic strikeout when he struck out Anthony DeSclafani in the third inning. He became the 41st pitcher in MLB history to accomplish the feat.

"Twenty-five hundred would be a good milestone; 2,400 is just on the way there," Burnett said, per MLB.com.

Burnett surrendered two runs on seven hits over seven innings of work during the start. He received his first win of the season for his effort and his ERA now stands at 1.66. Burnett has not allowed more than two runs in any of his six starts this season.

His next expected start is scheduled for Tuesday at Philadelphia.


Pirates SP A.J. Burnett strikes out seven during Friday's game


by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(5/2/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett tossed six shutout innings while striking out seven batters during Friday's 2-1 loss to the Cardinals.

Despite not allowing a run, Burnett received a no-decision for his effort after he exited with a one-run lead in the sixth inning. Pitcher Arquimedes Caminero relieved Burnett in the seventh and surrendered the game-tying run. Burnett also walked three batters and his ERA now stands at 1.45.

Despite not allowing more than two runs in any of his five starts this season, Burnett (0-1) has yet to record his first win of the season. He has allowed a total of five runs over his five starts this season.

His next expected start is scheduled for Thursday against the Reds.


Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett strikes out four in no decision


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4/25/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett allowed one run on five hits in seven innings of work in Pittsburgh's 2-1 win over the Diamondbacks Saturday. 

Burnett worked efficiently through his start, only running into one issue in the second inning. Burnett allowed a single to Chris Owings, who then stole second base. Tuffy Gosewich then singled to right to bring home Arizona's only run. 

Burnett, who remains 0-1 on the year, lowered his ERA to 1.80 and added four strikeouts to his totals.


Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett allows one run, earns ND in loss


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4/20/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett allowed just one run over his six innings of work in Pittsburgh's 5-2 loss to the Cubs Monday.

Burnett scattered eight hits in his outing, but allowed just one run in the fifth inning. After putting two men out with two outs, Burnett allowed an RBI single to Kris Bryant to tie the game at 1. Burnett lasted one more inning before getting the hook.

Burnett, still 0-1 on the year, lowered his ERA to 2.00 in 18 innings. He will look for his first win of the year Saturday against the Diamondbacks. 


Pirates' Burnett looking to avenge two losses to Cubs in 2014


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(4/20/2015) Pirates starting pitcher A.J. Burnett heads into his start Monday against the Cubs with a 7-4 record, 3.25 ERA and 1.17 WHIP against the NL Central foe in his career. He has a .219 opponents' batting average against Chicago.

Although, Burnett did not have much luck against the Cubs in 2014. He went 0-2 with a 4.61 ERA in two starts. He's allowed at least three runs in four of his last six starts against Chicago.

The Cubs have totaled 45 runs, which is below the league average of 51.


Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett strikes out eight in losing effort


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4/14/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett allowed one run on seven hits in Pittsburgh's 2-0 loss to the Tigers Tuesday. 

Burnett totaled eight strikeouts and two walks in his 6 2/3 innings of work. His only blemish came in the seventh when he walked both Alex Avila and Jose Iglesias. After a Shane Greene strikeout, Burnett surrendered an RBI single to Rajai Davis.

Burnett lowered his ERA to 2.25 and will look for his first win of the year Monday against the Cubs.


Pirates SP A.J. Burnett Ks seven, settles for no-decision


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(4/9/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett struck out seven and fell two outs shy of a quality start on Thursday against the Reds. He permitted two runs on four hits and one walk over 5 1/3 innings of work in a no-decision. Of his 87 pitches, 58 were strikes.

Burnett will return to the mound Tuesday at home against Detroit. In 16 starts, he went 4-8 with a 3.68 ERA at home last season.


Pirates P A.J. Burnett feeling good, confident


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(4/2/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett is feeling good heading into the beginning of the season, reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

"I feel better than I have in the past this time. I'm confident I'm where I need to be," Burnett said.

The right-hander threw four shutout innings in Thursday's 6-2 loss to the Yankees, giving up six hits with two strikeouts and one walk.

Burnett had a career-high 18 losses in 2014, compared to only eight wins. He finished the season with an ERA of 4.59 with 190 strikeouts and 96 walks. 


Pirates P A.J. Burnett changes tune about shifting


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/27/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett has not had the highest of opinions when it comes to infield-shifting in the past. In 2013, he let some reporters know what he thought about shifting at the time.

When asked about a shift of shortstop Clint Barmes that year, Burnett stated, “I do not have a problem with (Barmes), I had a problem with the (expletive) shift. We play people in the wrong spot.”

But Burnett seemed to change his tune when reflecting upon the subject.

“As much as I complained about the shifts, they helped,” Burnett said. “They really did. It's that one a game, you've got a no-hitter for four or five innings and one gets through, and where you're like … ‘(expletive) shift.'

“But (shifts) saves you more than anything, and that's the truth.”

The 38-year-old has lost some steam on his fastball at this point in his career and he knows that.

“It took me getting a little older to realize that I'm not able to blow it by guys anymore and ground balls are just as good,” he said.

Burnett has posted a 6.39 ERA with nine earned runs, eight walks and 12 strikeouts in four starts this spring.


Pirates' A.J. Burnett allows five runs vs. Rays Monday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/23/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett surrendered five earned runs on three hits and three walks in 4 2/3 innings while striking out five in his team's 7-6 win over the Rays.

Burnett allowed four earned runs in eight innings in his first three appearances of the spring before turning in his worst Grapefruit League outing Monday, with the Rays scoring two runs in the first inning and adding four more in the fifth. The pitcher has delivered a 12:8 K:BB ratio to go with a 6.38 ERA this spring.


Pirates' Liriano draws Opening Day start for second straight year


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/17/2015) Pirates manager Clint Hurdle announced Tuesday starting pitcher Francisco Liriano will start Opening Day (April 6) against the Reds. It will be the second straight year Liriano starts on opening day for Pittsburgh.

Hurdle also announced Tuesday starting pitcher Gerrit Cole will start the second game of the season and A.J. Burnett will finish off the three-game series before Pittsburgh moves onto a three-game series at Milwaukee.

Hurdle added Vance Worley or Jeff Locke, who are competing for the final spot in the team's rotation, will start the fourth game of the season and Charlie Morton will start the fifth game. Hurdle said splitting up Burnett and Morton was important because they have similar pitching styles.


Pirates' A.J. Burnett feels 'good' after first spring start


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/8/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett said that he "felt good" after giving up one hit in two scoreless innings in his first spring start Saturday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

"Felt good," Burnett said. "I felt better than I've felt in a long time."

Burnett pitched through a hernia last season but underwent surgery to repair the injury in October. He attributed his feeling to being back with the Pirates this spring.

"I think it's everything," Burnett said. "... Guys around, 48 people watching you warm up, it's just great to be here and back. I think that plays in. It makes it free, it makes you want to go out and work on pitching and nothing else, and that's what I'm able to do."


A.J. Burnett only wanted to pitch for the Pirates in 2015


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(2/19/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett had eyes for just one team this offseason, according to FoxSports.com.

Burnett called general manager Neal Huntington during the offseason, and told him he would only negotiate with Pittsburgh. Huntington wanted Burnett back, but admitted the situation was "awkward."

"The last thing we wanted to do was insult him," Huntington said. "At the same time, every dollar we can save in every contract we can re-allocate to another player who can make us deeper, a better club."

Burnett admitted the money wasn't an issue. He actually expected to make less coming off a 4.59 ERA. Burnett actually turned down a $12.75 million option from the Phillies, but was willing to sign with Pittsburgh for $8.5 million. 

Burnett had one of the finest seasons of his career with the Pirates in 2013. He posted a 3.13 ERA over 191 innings with the club. Burnett hinted that 2015 will be his final season, but doesn't want any type of retirement tour. 

"Not a lot of players have a chance to finish up where they want," the 38-year-old said. "I was lucky enough where Neal wanted me."


A.J. Burnett says he'll retire after 2015 season


by Larry Hartstein | Senior Analyst
(1/11/2015) Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett, 38, said the 2015 season will be his last, reports the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Burnett is coming off a disastrous season with the Phillies in which he led the majors in losses (18), walks (98) and earned runs (109).

Per the paper, he's hoping to recapture the form he showed in Pittsburgh when he revitalized his career in 2012-13. In 2013, Burnett led NL starting pitchers in strikeout and groundball rates.


Pirates sign pitcher A.J. Burnett to one-year deal


by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(11/14/2014) The Pirates have signed pitcher A.J. Burnett to a one-year contract, the team announced.

CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman reports the one-year deal is worth $8.5 million.

Burnett struggled in 2014, going 8-18 with a 4.59 ERA. He previously pitched for the Pirates in 2012 and 2013, producing a 3.50 ERA.


Report: Orioles offer deal to veteran starting pitcher A.J. Burnett


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11/13/2014) The Orioles have offered free agent starting pitcher A.J. Burnett a contract, according to Yahoo Sports MLB columnist Jeff Passan. However, nothing is close to being completed.

However, one Orioles official told CSNBaltimore.com the reports of an offer to Burnett was "news to me."

Burnett became a free agent in early November after he declined his $12.75 million player option with the Phillies. The two sides also declined a mutual $15 million option.

The 37-year-old pitcher lost a career-high 18 games in 2014. He also won fewer than 10 games for the first time since 2004. He did toss 213 2/3 innings, while posting a 4.59 ERA and striking out 8.0 batters per nine innings.


A.J. Burnett hits free agent market


(11/4/2014) By formally declining his $12.75 million player option Monday, A.J. Burnett is officially a free agent.

Both the Phillies and Burnett had declined the mutual option for the 2015 season. Despite turning down his player option, Burnett still wants to pitch in 2015.

His agent, Darek Braunecker, told Ken Rosenthal of FOXsports.com, Burnett would not only play in 2015, but he prefers to play for a contender. 


Phillies, A.J. Burnett decline mutual options


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(11/1/2014) The Phillies and pitcher A.J. Burnett both declined their $15-million mutual option Friday, the Philadelphia Daily News reports.

Burnett has the option of picking up his $12.75-million player option by Monday or becoming a free agent. He went 8-18 with a 4.59 ERA, 1.41 WHIP and 190:96 K:BB ratio in 213 2/3 innings in 2014.


Report: Phillies SP A.J. Burnett likely to return for 17th season


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10/9/2014) It appears Phillies starting pitcher A.J Burnett will return for a 17th season in the majors in 2015, according to CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman. Burnett suggested following a rough outing in August that he would "probably" retire, but people close to Burnett believe he will likely pitch next season.

A.J. Burnett will have hernia surgery


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/27/2014) Immediately after the end of his final start of the season, Phillies starting pitcher A.J. Burnett told reporters that he will have surgery to repair his inguinal hernia, MLB.com reports Saturday. Burnett also indicated that he is unsure if he'll pitch again next season.

A.J. Burnett suffers league-leading 18th loss


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/27/2014) Phillies starting pitcher A.J. Burnett suffered a league-leading 18th loss in his final start of the season Saturday night at home against the Braves. The right hander permitted four urns on five hits and three walks while striking out seven over 6 2/3 innings of a 4-2 defeat.

Burnett finishes the season 10 games under .500 (8-18), with a 4.59 ERA and a 1.41 WHIP over 34 starts. He posted a 190:96 K:BB ratio over 213 2/3 innings.


A.J. Burnett clobbered Sunday against Athletics


by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(9/21/2014) Phillies right-hander A.J. Burnett received plenty of run support Sunday in Oakland, but pitched too poorly to take advantage and came away with a no-decision.

Burnett surrendered six runs on three hits and six walks over 4 1/3 innings. It was his fourth six-walk game of the year. Burnett fanned three along the way. He was all but doomed by a three-run first inning and was knocked out after allowing a two-run double to Geovany Soto in the fifth.

He will try to perform better against Atlanta on Saturday.