Barmes Makes Adjustment, Improves at the Plate

The common (and mostly correct) assessment of what Clint Barmes brings to the Pirates is that he’s a player who provides a capable defensive option at shortstop but brings little to the table with his bat. One just needs to look to his 0 for 3 performance on Sunday against Houston to see that. Barmes was never intended to be a player Pittsburgh looked to as a vital piece of its lineup, as made evident by his usual appearance in...

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Luis Heredia Close to Joining West Virginia

On Thursday I went over to Pirate City to watch Luis Heredia make a start in extended Spring Training against the Philadelphia Phillies farm system. There hasn’t been a lot to write about Heredia this year, as the Pirates have held him out of action. He only threw in a game once during Spring Training, which came at the end of March. He didn’t make his first extended Spring Training start until the end of April. Along the...

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What Are the Odds the Pirates Draft a Future Major League Hitter?

The 2013 draft is a few weeks away, and if you haven’t followed our draft coverage, I suggest you start now. Last night John Dreker and I recorded a segment for the upcoming podcast, looking at Baseball America’s latest mock draft, and talking about a lot of the players who fell in the Pirates’ range. At this point it seems very likely that the Pirates will end up with one position player in the first round, and...

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Pirates Should Extend Starling Marte – And Here’s a Price Guide

I was discussing Starling Marte on Twitter this afternoon with Travis Sawchik of the Trib and Charlie of Bucs Dugout, and we got on the topic of extensions. Marte currently has less than a year of service time, and at the end of this season he will have a little over one full year. We all agreed today that Marte should be extended, perhaps as early as yesterday. But the list of offensive players who have received such extensions with...

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Pirates Notebook: Four Things We Have Learned About Pirates Pitchers

We took a look on Monday at five Pirates hitters and which stats have a large enough 2013 sample size for us to see year-to-year changes. Now it’s time for the pitchers. Remember a couple important caveats. First, batting statistics tend to be more reliable than pitching statistics, especially in small samples. Second, early-season pitcher performance can often be skewed by which teams the pitcher has faced. I’ve talked...

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Projection Systems See Pirates Finishing Just Over .500

FanGraphs unveiled two new features Thursday, depth charts and projected standings. Supreme Overlord of FanGraphs (unofficial title) Dave Cameron explains how they work and how to use them. The key takeaway is that the standings use a combination of ZIPS and Steamer projection systems, along with the depth charts, to suss out season records for all 30 teams. One purpose we can use the projected standings for is looking at the...

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