First Pitch: Jeff Locke Having Another Poor Second Half, Only This One is a Surprise
Sep14

First Pitch: Jeff Locke Having Another Poor Second Half, Only This One is a Surprise

Jeff Locke is currently having another poor second half. Last year it was predictable. He posted a 2.15 ERA in 109 innings during the first half, with a 4.21 xFIP that suggested things wouldn’t go so well in the second half. And things didn’t go well. Locke’s control bottomed out in the second half, with a 5.8 BB/9 ratio, helping to lead to a 6.12 ERA and a 4.14 xFIP. This year it looked like Locke would be getting...

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Jeff Locke Struggles With Fastball Command
Sep14

Jeff Locke Struggles With Fastball Command

In most ways, Jeff Locke is just like almost any other major league pitcher: If his fastball command is off, than he has to find a way to compensate. And when he has to compensate, he’s likely to pay the price. Today, Locke paid the price. No, he didn’t struggle tremendously. Despite constantly missing his fastball to the glove side, Locke was able to fight his way through 5.1 innings, walking three and surrendering six hits and three...

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Starling Marte still out of the Lineup
Sep13

Starling Marte still out of the Lineup

Starling Marte will remain out of the lineup as he continues to deal with discomfort from being hit in an arm by a pitch against the Phillies on Thursday. “He’s improving to some degree, but not where he’s going to be able to start,” Clint Hurdle said. “The level of competing is still minimal at best.” Though he’s not extremely hampered by the injury, the discomfort hasn’t subsided enough for him to take...

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Morning Report: Stetson Allie Offers a Rare Combo of Power and Plate Patience
Sep13

Morning Report: Stetson Allie Offers a Rare Combo of Power and Plate Patience

It’s always fun to look back on historic stats to find comparisons for current players in the minor league system. We did it last week with Willy Garcia to show how rare it is for a batter with a low walk rate and high strikeout rate to make an impact in the majors. We also did it for Alen Hanson, to show how rare it is for someone to have his combination of power and speed. Today we take a look at the last two seasons from...

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First Pitch: So This is What the Other Side of The Collapse Looks Like
Sep13

First Pitch: So This is What the Other Side of The Collapse Looks Like

Pittsburgh Pirates fans are familiar with a second half collapse. The 2011 team was contending in July, thanks mostly to a weak division. That team wasn’t really a strong contender, and ended up fading down the stretch. The 2012 team was much better than the 2011 team, which made the second half collapse even worse. We may be seeing The Collapse from the other side of the equation this year. At the end of June, the Milwaukee...

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Pirates’ Offense Continues to Lead the Way
Sep13

Pirates’ Offense Continues to Lead the Way

The Pirates weren’t crushing the ball in tonight’s game against the Cubs. Despite opposing starter Tsuyoshi Wada leaving his high 80s fastball over the plate several times, the Pirates didn’t bash numerous extra base hits. Yet, with a single here, a blooper there, and a few extra base hits mixed in, the Pirates put seven runs and 14 hits on the board, winning the game 7-3. It wasn’t anything spectacular; not an offensive showcase to...

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