First Pitch

First Pitch: 2013 is Just the Beginning for the Pittsburgh Pirates

First Pitch: 2013 is Just the Beginning for the Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pirates will get Gerrit Cole for a full season next year. (Photo Credit: David Hague)

Tonight Gerrit Cole pitched Game 5 of the NLDS. He wasn't on the Opening Day roster. He joined the team mid-season. He didn't look like an ace until the final month of the year.

Next year the Pirates have Gerrit Cole for a full season, and hopefully at the level he's been pitching over the last season.

Starling Marte had a 4.6 WAR in his first full season in the majors. Andrew McCutchen had a 3.5 WAR in his first full season in the majors. Marte might not see the same improvements to MVP levels that McCutchen saw, but even if he stays at the current levels, he's fine.

Marte will be back next year for his age 25 season. Oh yeah, McCutchen will also be back, at the age of 27.

The Pirates used 12 starting pitchers this year, and eight of them had a 3.59 ERA or better. Out of that group, Francisco Liriano, Gerrit Cole, Charlie Morton, Jeff Locke, Jeanmar Gomez, Brandon Cumpton, Kris Joh...

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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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