First Pitch: Decision Day For Francisco Liriano
Nov10

First Pitch: Decision Day For Francisco Liriano

Francisco Liriano has a decision to make. He can reject his qualifying offer, enter the open market and try to get a three or four-year deal with a lot more guaranteed money, but risk his draft pick compensation hurting his market. Or, he can accept his qualifying offer, receive $15.3 M for one year, hope that his 2015 season goes just as well as the 2013 and 2014 seasons, and try again next year for a big contract. I’ve said...

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First Pitch: No Clear Answers For the Pirates at First Base
Nov07

First Pitch: No Clear Answers For the Pirates at First Base

A few weeks ago I wrote about the first base platoon, asking which players should stick around for the platoon in 2015. The Pittsburgh Pirates saw all of their internal options have down years in 2014, with Ike Davis, Gaby Sanchez, and Pedro Alvarez all struggling at the plate. Based on the career numbers, a platoon of Davis and Sanchez would be the best internal option. However, this would also cost around $7 M, which is getting...

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First Pitch: The Process of Ranking Every Pirates Prospect
Nov06

First Pitch: The Process of Ranking Every Pirates Prospect

Today I finished putting together the first draft of the 2015 Pirates top 50 prospect list. The top 50 list is exclusive to the 2015 Prospect Guide, which you can currently pre-order on the products page of the site. As a result of this, plus getting the formatting of the book completed, I don’t really have an article topic tonight. So I thought I’d go into detail on the process of ranking prospects for the books, where we...

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First Pitch: Once Again, Clint Hurdle Should Be the Manager of the Year
Nov05

First Pitch: Once Again, Clint Hurdle Should Be the Manager of the Year

For the second year in a row, Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has been named a finalist for the NL Manager of the Year award. Hurdle won the award last year. After he was named as a finalist, I wrote about how he deserved the award, due to the way he embraced advanced metrics such as defensive shifts, and how he controlled the clubhouse and never let the Pirates get into a prolonged funk. This time around I think Hurdle...

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First Pitch: How Do the Pirates Look if Francisco Liriano Accepts the Qualifying Offer?
Nov04

First Pitch: How Do the Pirates Look if Francisco Liriano Accepts the Qualifying Offer?

The Pittsburgh Pirates made the right moves today. They not only extended a qualifying offer to Russell Martin, but also made the same offer to Francisco Liriano. Both players will have a week to accept or decline their offers. If they decline and sign elsewhere, then the Pirates would get two draft picks as compensation. If they both accept, the Pirates would see their current payroll expand by $30.6 M. I think there’s zero...

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First Pitch: Pirates Need to Make Two Qualifying Offers Today
Nov03

First Pitch: Pirates Need to Make Two Qualifying Offers Today

Today is the final day for teams to re-sign their departing free agents, as well as the deadline for teams to extend a qualifying offer. I don’t expect the Pittsburgh Pirates to re-sign anyone today, although the qualifying offers will be significant news. There are two players who easily deserve qualifying offers, if only to get the Pirates some sort of compensation when/if they sign elsewhere. The easiest decision lies with...

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