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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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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First Pitch: The Pirates Don’t Need to Trade For an Ace at the Deadline
Jul14

First Pitch: The Pirates Don’t Need to Trade For an Ace at the Deadline

Last year, the Pittsburgh Pirates had three pitchers who looked like top of the rotation guys in the second half. Francisco Liriano had a great season, A.J. Burnett continued his success with the Pirates, and Gerrit Cole was looking like a top of the rotation guy by the end of the year. Prior to this season it looked like they could potentially have three once again by the end of the season. They had Francisco Liriano and Gerrit Cole...

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First Pitch: The Pirates Need to Adjust How Frieri and Pimentel are Used
Jul13

First Pitch: The Pirates Need to Adjust How Frieri and Pimentel are Used

The Pittsburgh Pirates have a problem with their bullpen. The problem isn’t a lack of talent in the bullpen. Tony Watson has been one of the best relievers in baseball this year, and Mark Melancon isn’t far behind him. Those two give the Pirates a great combo in the late innings. Jared Hughes has stepped up to have an impressive year. While he’s not as good as his ERA, his xFIP of 3.76 currently ranks third on the...

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First Pitch: The Unfortunate Landscape of Professional Sports
Jul12

First Pitch: The Unfortunate Landscape of Professional Sports

I grew up a Baltimore Orioles fan, and a Cal Ripken Jr. fan. Because of that, I got to experience something that is extremely rare in sports these days: watching your favorite player play for your favorite team his entire career. Earlier today, in non-baseball news, LeBron James signed a deal to return to Cleveland. I’m not a basketball fan at all, but it’s pretty impossible to avoid the drama that surrounds LeBron James...

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First Pitch: Pirates Have a Good Opportunity to Take Over the NL Central
Jul11

First Pitch: Pirates Have a Good Opportunity to Take Over the NL Central

It hasn’t been a good day for the other NL Central contenders. A quick recap of the day’s events below: St. Louis Cardinals - Yadier Molina went down last night, and today it was announced that he would miss 8-12 weeks after having surgery on his thumb. That will put him out for most of the remainder of the season, if not all of it. Here is a feel for the impact that Molina provides for the Cardinals. Things are about to...

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