First Pitch

First Pitch: What Led to Last Year’s Collapse and Why This Year Is Different

First Pitch: What Led to Last Year’s Collapse and Why This Year Is Different

The Pirates have lost four of their last six games, losing a series each to the Phillies and Cubs. That sent the team plummeting to having the best record in baseball still, even after those losses. Yet, as with any loss, the word "collapse" gets thrown around, as if losing a series is something that could only mean a collapse, rather than just something that happens to every team.

The "collapse" term gets thrown around so much that I thought I'd take a look at what actually led to the collapse last year. The losing was just the result. There were many factors that led to that losing down the stretch, and a lot of those factors don't exist this year.

The pitching depth has already been tested this year. (Photo by: David Hague)
The Pitching
The pitching staff fell apart down the stretch, with the rotation suffering the most. The pitchers in the final two months of the season combined for a 4.39 ERA, compared to a 3.55 ERA in the first four months. Looking specifically at what ha...

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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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