First Pitch: Even With Polanco in the Majors, Pirates Well Represented in Prospect Rankings
Jul08

First Pitch: Even With Polanco in the Majors, Pirates Well Represented in Prospect Rankings

It was a busy news day today, but the big news to start the day was that the mid-season prospect rankings came out from both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus. The Pirates had four in the Baseball Prospectus rankings, and had five in Baseball America’s Top 50. Neither list saw the Pirates with any top 20 talent, which isn’t a huge surprise. Gregory Polanco was just promoted, which removes the only guy who had a chance to...

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First Pitch: The Pirates Are Probably Done Signing 2014 Draft Picks
Jul07

First Pitch: The Pirates Are Probably Done Signing 2014 Draft Picks

There’s one thing the new Collective Bargaining Agreement got right about the MLB draft, and that was speeding up the process to sign draft picks. Under the old system, MLB would delay over-slot deals. Teams would have agreements in place with players on July 6th, but MLB wouldn’t approve the deals until the end of July, or the beginning of August. That cost the Pirates a few picks, including Dace Kime in the 2010 draft....

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First Pitch: The Tough Decisions When Francisco Liriano Returns
Jul06

First Pitch: The Tough Decisions When Francisco Liriano Returns

In the upcoming weeks, Francisco Liriano will be returning to the Pittsburgh Pirates’ rotation, with his return currently anticipated for just after the All-Star break. The Pirates are getting good starts from their entire rotation, which will lead to a difficult decision when Liriano returns. The current rotation consists of Gerrit Cole, Jeff Locke, Charlie Morton, Edinson Volquez, and Vance Worley. Of that group, only Locke...

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First Pitch: A.J. Burnett Would Not Upgrade the Pirates Rotation
Jul04

First Pitch: A.J. Burnett Would Not Upgrade the Pirates Rotation

Here are the numbers for two pitchers. One of these pitchers is seen as a potential mid-season upgrade for the Pirates, and a guy who could help them for a playoff run. The other pitcher is a guy who is currently in the Pirates’ rotation, and who a lot of fans would have as the top candidate to be moved to the bullpen or traded away. Player A: 3.92 ERA / 4.04 xFIP Player B: 4.07 ERA / 4.23 xFIP You can tell by the title that one...

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First Pitch: International Signing Recap, McCutchen, Kingham, Meadows
Jul03

First Pitch: International Signing Recap, McCutchen, Kingham, Meadows

The Pirates were busy today with the opening of the 2014-15 International Signing Period. They signed five players to six-figure deals, with the biggest deal going to outfielder Yondry Contreras. The International Signing Tracker can be found here, and keeps track of the players signed and the bonus pool spent. Here is a link to information on each player signed.   Pittsburgh Pirates Sign Outfielder Yondry Contreras Pirates Sign...

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First Pitch: Tyler Glasnow and Nick Kingham Should Be Untouchable
Jul02

First Pitch: Tyler Glasnow and Nick Kingham Should Be Untouchable

The way it looks right now, the need for the Pittsburgh Pirates at the trade deadline might be pitching. That need could be reduced if Jeff Locke continues pitching well (3.46 ERA / 3.54 xFIP after tonight, so no regression is expected this year), and/or if Vance Worley turns out to be back to his pre-2013 self. That said, the Pirates currently have a rotation made up of Gerrit Cole, Charlie Morton, Edinson Volquez, Locke, and Worley....

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