First Pitch: The Not-So-Great Jordy Mercer Compromise

About two weeks ago the biggest topic surrounding Pirates baseball was the fate of Jordy Mercer. Some argued that he should have remained in the majors, with John McDonald being released, Brandon Inge taking McDonald’s role, and Mercer taking Inge’s role. Some felt he should go to Triple-A and play everyday, fearing that the Pirates would just sit him on the bench while he was in the majors. It was a debate between...

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First Pitch: Who Pirates Draft and Who Fans Want, Might Not Be The Same

Since taking over the draft coverage on the site this year, I have learned one thing that is pretty clear. Unless you’re picking at the top of the draft class, there is nothing close to a consensus. That is especially true with the Pittsburgh Pirates two first round picks this year. There wasn’t a consensus back in February and there certainly isn’t one now. Early in the season, we decided what players we should...

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First Pitch: Like the Pirates Pitching Staff? Thank Neal Huntington.

Dave Littlefield has not been in the general manager’s office for over five years, but his impact on this Pirates team can still be felt. No, that’s not a bad thing! Sure, he left the Pirates’ minor-league system in shambles despite six straight Top-11 picks, but at least a couple of those prospects worked out. Three productive players in the Pittsburgh lineup were all amateurs picked up by Littlefield: Andrew...

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First Pitch: Runs Tough to Come By in Burnett Starts

A.J. Burnett has pitched like a staff ace so far in 2013 but does not have the record to show for it. Granted, wins and losses are not good statistics to judge a pitcher’s performance but what is troubling has less to do with Burnett and more to do with the Pirates offense. Burnett has been great at the top of the Pittsburgh rotation and the Pirate offense has shown the ability to score runs, yet somehow the two have not found a...

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First Pitch: This Year is Different Because of the Depth

After recording the podcast today, I was talking with James and Tom about depth. We were specifically talking about the Dodgers, and how despite their mega payroll, they don’t really have a good team. They’ve had a lot of injuries, but who do they have behind those big salaries? Hanley Ramirez goes down, and Justin Sellers is their shortstop. It’s not like Dee Gordon was doing any better. They’ve lost a lot of...

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First Pitch: Do the Pirates Need to Make Any Trades This Year?

Earlier this week Jon Morosi of Fox Sports wrote that the Pirates needed to add some depth at the trade deadline, especially for their over-worked bullpen. It’s probably too early to talk about deadline strategies, since the deadline is over two months away, and most trades don’t start happening until late June. But considering the article, I thought I’d look at the state of the Pirates. One issue I’ve always...

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