First Pitch: The Bench Has (Almost) Been Fully Upgraded
Aug07

First Pitch: The Bench Has (Almost) Been Fully Upgraded

One of the big areas of need for the Pirates leading up to the deadline was the bench. For a long stretch the Pirates had a weak hitting bench, with Michael McKenry, Brandon Inge, Clint Barmes, and Travis Snider all struggling to hit. The only other hitter on the bench was either Gaby Sanchez, who can’t hit right-handers, or Garrett Jones, who can’t hit left-handers, depending on who was playing that day in the platoon....

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First Pitch: It Pays to Use Steroids
Aug06

First Pitch: It Pays to Use Steroids

Major League Baseball suspended 12 players today from the Biogenesis list, along with Alex Rodriguez, who is the only person appealing the suspension. This all follows the suspension of Ryan Braun from a few weeks ago. Throughout the process, MLB has tried to make it look like they are cracking down on steroid use, and that they are serious about it all. But at the end of all of this, the penalties are weak, the process has been...

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First Pitch: What Would it Take to Extend A.J. Burnett?
Aug05

First Pitch: What Would it Take to Extend A.J. Burnett?

Last night I wrote about how Francisco Liriano and A.J. Burnett are the 1-A and 1-B when it comes to Pirates aces. I also said that I feel Liriano has passed Burnett as the Pirates ace. Typically, Burnett would follow that up with a complete game gem, allowing one run and striking out nine. After the game, Clint Hurdle was asked about the possibility that the Pirates have two aces. “Frankie set the bar in a good place for us the...

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First Pitch: Has Liriano Passed Burnett As the Staff Ace?
Aug04

First Pitch: Has Liriano Passed Burnett As the Staff Ace?

Tonight Francisco Liriano was the stopper for the Pirates, preventing them from slipping to a three game losing streak, and allowing the team to pick up a win on the same night that the second place St. Louis Cardinals lost. Liriano has been extremely reliable all season, and has been one of the best free agent signings this year. There are debates starting asking whether he should draw Cy Young consideration, although that award is...

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First Pitch: The Pirates Have Answered Their Draft and Development Questions
Aug03

First Pitch: The Pirates Have Answered Their Draft and Development Questions

I was reading Grant Brisbee’s article today detailing how the Pittsburgh Pirates were built, and how they’re a legitimate contender this year. Or, another way to put it, I was reading the annual “Grant Brisbee article that dooms the Pirates to a collapse over the final two months of the season”. Brisbee detailed how every player was added to the team — whether via draft picks, international free agent...

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First Pitch: Why Charlie Morton Belongs in the Pirates Rotation
Aug02

First Pitch: Why Charlie Morton Belongs in the Pirates Rotation

When it comes to any player in the majors, you’re going to get a variety of opinions. You’re going to get different opinions on how good a player actually is, and in some cases you’ll have a debate over whether the player is even good at all. There’s one player on the Pirates pitching staff who draws the biggest split in opinions, and that is Charlie Morton. There are a lot of people who don’t like...

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