Why the Pirates Will Be Fine if They Don’t Make a Big Addition to the Bullpen
Jul16

Why the Pirates Will Be Fine if They Don’t Make a Big Addition to the Bullpen

It seems like every year around this time I get into the same debates involving the bullpen. If you’ve read this site over the last few years, you know that I’m totally against paying anything for relief pitching. That involves trading prospects to add a reliever, or spending ridiculous amounts of money for a guy who has a limited upside due to his role. And so anytime the ideas come up to trade for a “Proven...

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First Pitch: Reviewing the 2014 Success of the Pirates Depth and Farm System
Jul16

First Pitch: Reviewing the 2014 Success of the Pirates Depth and Farm System

This is the sixth season that I’ve been writing about the Pittsburgh Pirates and their minor league system. For the first five seasons, I always did a season preview article, looking at X amount of things to focus on while the Pirates tried to end their losing streak (and X was always the year the losing streak was about to enter). This year there was no more losing streak, and thus the article format didn’t work. I still...

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Prospect Watch: Austin Meadows Picks Up Three Hits For West Virginia
Jul16

Prospect Watch: Austin Meadows Picks Up Three Hits For West Virginia

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. 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 (Jameson Taillon #1, Clay Holmes #12), he will be removed and everyone below him will move up a spot....

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All-Stars Responsible for Pirates’ Early-Season Recovery
Jul15

All-Stars Responsible for Pirates’ Early-Season Recovery

Follow @NateBarnes_ Follow @pirateprospects The Pittsburgh Pirates began the 2014 season in a fashion rather unbecoming after they finally ended professional sports’ longest losing streak with 95 victories last year and pushed the National League champion St. Louis Cardinals to five games in the 2013 National League Division Series. By May 20, the Pirates were 8 games under .500 at 18-26, 8 games back of the first-place Milwaukee...

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Jeff Locke’s Success is Real, Thanks to His Drastically Improved Control
Jul15

Jeff Locke’s Success is Real, Thanks to His Drastically Improved Control

It was almost one year ago that Jeff Locke found himself with the best players in the game in New York after a dominant first half of the season. However, the southpaw found himself on the opposite end of the spectrum, in Bradenton toward the beginning of this season. There is no secret what led to Locke’s downfall last season. Before the break last season, Locke walked 47 hitters in 109 innings. Following the midseason classic, he...

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First Pitch: What is Josh Bell’s Future With the Pirates?
Jul15

First Pitch: What is Josh Bell’s Future With the Pirates?

Prior to the 2011 draft, Josh Bell sent a letter to every team, telling them not to draft him. He intended to go to college at the University of Texas, despite being projected as a mid-first round pick. Whether that letter was just a negotiating ploy or actually legit will never really be known. A lot of teams — including interested teams like the Boston Red Sox — passed over Bell due to the letter. The Pittsburgh Pirates...

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