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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First Pitch: How Russell Martin Went From a Perceived Bad Signing to a Must-Sign Player
Sep12

First Pitch: How Russell Martin Went From a Perceived Bad Signing to a Must-Sign Player

There was a lot of talk about Russell Martin today, including an article from our own Ryan Palencer, who talked with some of the Pirates’ pitchers last week about their catcher. I thought it was an interesting article, because you always hear the general compliments about Martin from the pitchers, but this went a little deeper into how exactly Martin helps his pitchers. Of course, any article this time of year about Martin is...

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First Pitch: Has Pedro Alvarez Played His Last Game With the Pirates?
Sep11

First Pitch: Has Pedro Alvarez Played His Last Game With the Pirates?

Today it was announced that Pedro Alvarez would be out 4-6 weeks with a foot injury. That pretty much ends his season, and unless the Pirates make it deep in the post-season, it means he’s probably done for the year. Then there’s the other situation involving Alvarez, where he is now finished with one of the worst years of his career, which featured a drop in power, and some horrible defense at third base that led to an...

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First Pitch: The Pirates Once Had a Good Bullpen; How Can They Get Back?
Sep10

First Pitch: The Pirates Once Had a Good Bullpen; How Can They Get Back?

The other day I was going back and looking at a few articles that I wrote from the start of the season, when I ran across this title: The Pirates are Returning a Bullpen That Was One of the Best in Baseball At the timeĀ it was true. The bullpen was great last year, and the Pirates were returning the same bullpen this year. But five months after that article was written, it’s clear that the emphasis in that sentence should now be...

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First Pitch: Should the Pirates Continue Going With Reclamation Starting Pitchers?
Sep09

First Pitch: Should the Pirates Continue Going With Reclamation Starting Pitchers?

This past off-season, the Pittsburgh Pirates made what seemed like a risky decision to go with Edinson Volquez and pass up on A.J. Burnett. Despite the fact that they revived the careers of Burnett and Francisco Liriano the previous two seasons, Pirates fans didn’t trust them to turn Volquez around, and instead wanted the “guaranteed production” that Burnett would bring to the table, based on his track record. I am...

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First Pitch: Are the Pirates Limited to the Second Wild Card Spot?
Sep08

First Pitch: Are the Pirates Limited to the Second Wild Card Spot?

The Pittsburgh Pirates won today, putting them half a game up for the second Wild Card spot. Earlier this week I wrote about how the Pirates aren’t out of the playoffs, although they’re probably confined to the second Wild Card spot, and not in a good position to make a long run. In the playoff odds series, I looked at how they were still in this, thanks to a weak second Wild Card race. They are now leading that race. So...

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