First Pitch: What Do the Pirates Have in Their Rotation?
Apr11

First Pitch: What Do the Pirates Have in Their Rotation?

Earlier today I wrote an article looking at what should be expected from each spot in the rotation from a numbers standpoint. That focused on the league averages, and the ERA from each spot. As a side note, I prefer FIP and xFIP over ERA, but when you’re talking about league averages, it really doesn’t make much of a difference. Also, the goal was to look at what teams actually did last year, rather than what they’d...

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Prospect Watch: Three Hits For Alen Hanson, Gregory Polanco and Stetson Allie
Apr10

Prospect Watch: Three Hits For Alen Hanson, Gregory Polanco and Stetson Allie

TOP OF THE SYSTEM A look at how the current top 20 prospects did today.  Note that this list doesn’t include players currently in the majors (Tony Sanchez #11, Stolmy Pimentel #13). If a player is in the majors, he will be removed, everyone below him will be shifted up a spot, and a new player will be added to the bottom of the list. If a player is out for the season (Clay Holmes #12), he will be removed and everyone below him...

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What Should You Expect From Each Rotation Spot?
Apr10

What Should You Expect From Each Rotation Spot?

Back in 2006, Jeff Sackmann wrote an article in the Hardball Times taking a look at what should be expected from each rotation spot. His research was done because people tend to overestimate how good a pitcher should be. Sackmann studied the 2006 season to find the results for each spot in the rotation, using the following method: For the purposes of this article, it’s necessary to define exactly what a #1 starter (or #2, or #3)...

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Is There a Spot in the Majors For Jeff Locke?
Apr10

Is There a Spot in the Majors For Jeff Locke?

If you look at Jeff Locke’s numbers from the 2013 season, you won’t find much wrong on the surface. He put up a 3.52 ERA in 166.1 innings last year, with a 4.03 FIP that suggests he over-performed his season numbers a bit, but no more than Charlie Morton (3.26/3.60), Wandy Rodriguez (3.59/4.42), or Jeanmar Gomez (3.35/3.85). But the season numbers don’t tell the story with Locke. During the first half of the season,...

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First Pitch: Are MLB Teams Getting Smarter With Certain Financial Decisions?
Apr10

First Pitch: Are MLB Teams Getting Smarter With Certain Financial Decisions?

Buster Olney wrote an interesting article earlier today, talking about Stephen Drew, Kendrys Morales, and mentioning Vin Mazzaro clearing waivers. Mazzaro could have been had for just the cost of his $950,000 salary on waivers, but ended up clearing waivers and getting outrighted to Triple-A. Olney had the following quote from one GM to explain the situation. “Once you go to spring training, you’ve spent almost all the money...

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Jeff Locke Dominates With His Fastball in a Rehab Start
Apr09

Jeff Locke Dominates With His Fastball in a Rehab Start

Jeff Locke made a rehab start tonight for the Bradenton Marauders, coming in to the start with the goal of six innings or 100 pitches, depending on what came first. He ended up reaching the six innings easily without worrying about the 100 pitches, all due to strong fastball command and an approach to pound the strike zone. Locke gave up two runs on five hits and a walk in six innings, with ten strikeouts. A lot of the strikeouts were...

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