Pirates Projected Among NL’s Top Four Benches

Pirates Projected Among NL’s Top Four Benches

When we last left the Pirates' pinch hitters, they were bringing down the team's offense with an astounding lack of punch. The Pirates hit .176 in pinch-hitting situations last season, with just two home runs in 227 at-bats, both second to last in the National League.

The main culprits in the Bucs' dreadful hitting off the bench were the players that got the most pinch-hit chances: Josh Harrison (4-for-29), Jeff Clement (3-for-20) and Alex Presley (2-for-17). And don't forget Yamaico Navarro and Nate McLouth combined to go 0-for-25 as pinch hitters in 2012. Clement, Navarro and McLouth are all gone, and Presley is unlikely to make the Major League roster to start the season.

Coming off such an unproductive season, including a .513 OPS from the pinch hitters, labeling the Pirates' res...

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James dabbles in the baseballey-writey world. He won the SABR Analytics Conference Research Award for contemporary baseball analysis. It was for that defensive shifts piece, you remember that? Not a huge deal, he also lost a bunch of other awards. He has also written for, Pittsburgh Magazine, Pittsburgh Sports Report and the official websites of the Los Angeles Clippers and Pittsburgh Penguins. By night, James is a television news reporter and weekend anchor for WKBN and WYTV in Youngstown, Ohio. Makes sense, seeing as how his degree from the University of Southern California is in Broadcast Journalism. James dispenses more bad jokes at his Twitter account, @JamesSantelli. It's there that he promises to write in the first-person.

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