Last year the Pittsburgh Pirates won because of their pitching. The pitching staff as a whole combined for a 3.58 xFIP, which tied the Atlanta Braves for third in the majors, and second in the NL. The offense was middle of the pack, by advanced metrics, with the Pirates ranking 13th in baseball with a 98 wRC+. The actual results under-performed the advanced metrics, leading to the Pirates finishing in the bottom third in runs scored.
This year we're seeing the opposite. The offense for the Pirates has been doing well, especially in the last month. The Pirates rank 7th on the season in wRC+, and second in the NL. In the last month, they rank second in all of baseball in wRC+, and rank tenth overall in actual runs.
"We've been in a good place as far as getting in the box and making pitchers work for a while now," Clint Hurdle said after tonight's game. "Every guy has stepped up his game to some degree. We're looking for the ball in spots early, and when it's not there, we're taking...
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.