First Pitch: The 2015 Prospect Guide is Now Available
Dec19

First Pitch: The 2015 Prospect Guide is Now Available

I was expecting the 2015 Prospect Guide to arrive tomorrow. I had plans to drive up to Tampa and pick up the book from my publisher around 3 PM, get back to Bradenton around 4, and spend the rest of the night packaging the books up to ship out Saturday morning. I woke up this morning to an e-mail from my publisher, saying the books would be ready today at 3 PM. As a result, the 2015 Prospect Guide is here a day early. If you...

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First Pitch: A Different and Easier Approach to the Pitching Staff This Year
Dec18

First Pitch: A Different and Easier Approach to the Pitching Staff This Year

In 2012, the Pirates needed A.J. Burnett to bounce back in order to have a shot at a top of the rotation starter. They had Burnett in 2013, but needed Francisco Liriano to bounce back in order to join Burnett at the top of the rotation and make the pitching staff stronger. Last year they parted with Burnett, and brought in Edinson Volquez to replace him. They also brought in Vance Worley in a smaller deal, and he played a big role....

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First Pitch: Looking at the Pirates Starting Pitching Depth in 2015 and Beyond
Dec16

First Pitch: Looking at the Pirates Starting Pitching Depth in 2015 and Beyond

The Pittsburgh Pirates entered the off-season with a need for two starting pitchers. They filled those needs with A.J. Burnett and Francisco Liriano, who both join Gerrit Cole to give the Pirates a good trio at the top of the rotation. Charlie Morton is right behind those three, and could be healthy by Opening Day. Finally, they’ll have Jeff Locke and Vance Worley fighting it out for the final spot. Beyond those six pitchers,...

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First Pitch: You Can’t Say the Pirates Aren’t Focused on Winning in 2015
Dec13

First Pitch: You Can’t Say the Pirates Aren’t Focused on Winning in 2015

In the past few years, there have been questions about the Pittsburgh Pirates’ commitment to winning. There have been complaints that the Pirates aren’t acting like a winning team, and aren’t making moves a winning team should make. Complaints that the Pirates are focused too much on the future, and not enough on the now. Complaints that they’re wasting Andrew McCutchen’s prime years, or that...

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First Pitch: Have the Pirates Filled All of Their Needs Already?
Dec12

First Pitch: Have the Pirates Filled All of Their Needs Already?

Today might have wrapped up one of the most busy Winter Meetings I can remember. Normally on a Thursday, things have died down, the Rule 5 draft takes place, and it’s all over. This morning there were a wave of transactions that almost made you think the general managers wouldn’t make it for the draft. The Pirates didn’t have an active day. They didn’t select anyone at all in the draft, and lost three players....

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First Pitch: Breaking Down the Antonio Bastardo Deal, and a Story on Joely Rodriguez
Dec11

First Pitch: Breaking Down the Antonio Bastardo Deal, and a Story on Joely Rodriguez

A little over four years ago I was driving up to Williamsport, PA on September 3rd, 2010. The minor league season was wrapping up, and I was finishing my second season running this site, and the first season where it was more of an overall look of the organization, rather than a close look at the Lynchburg Hillcats (who moved away to Bradenton that year) and a not-so-close look at every other level. I had this crazy idea to write a...

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