First Pitch

First Pitch: Yes, The Farm System Has Been Dramatically Upgraded Since 2007

First Pitch: Yes, The Farm System Has Been Dramatically Upgraded Since 2007

There's been a lot of frustration with the Pittsburgh Pirates in recent weeks. The team went from 16 games over .500 at the end of July, to clinching their 20th losing season in a row on Sunday. The frustration has brought on a lot of criticism. A lot of that criticism is warranted. But some of the criticism has been a bit of a reach, which is confusing. There are things you can legitimately criticize this team about. There's the second straight collapse, where the entire team fell apart. Their philosophy of ignoring the running game is something to question. Rod Barajas is still getting too much playing time over Michael McKenry, which raises questions about their values of game calling. There's the overall lack of trust in younger players, even if it means playing a struggling veteran. There's the questionable small ball strategy with a home run heavy team that seems to be built more for big innings and shouldn't be giving away outs.

One area where criticism isn't warranted is the...

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Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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