Week In Review: OBP, Players of the Month, 2014 Draft Prospects
May05

Week In Review: OBP, Players of the Month, 2014 Draft Prospects

The Pirates got a little bit of a break this week due to a few rain delays. They ended up going 2-3 in the short week, winning two games in comeback fashion over the weekend. At the start of the week they had fallen so much that they were no longer projected as playoff contenders. Nate Barnes wrote this week about how the Pirates are looking to improve the offense by emphasizing On-Base Percentage. Nate also looked specifically at how...

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The Pirates Won’t Need a Regular Fifth Starter Until May 24th
May04

The Pirates Won’t Need a Regular Fifth Starter Until May 24th

When the Pittsburgh Pirates sent down Brandon Cumpton yesterday, I was a bit surprised. Cumpton has pitched well in both of his starts this season, along with his time in Triple-A, and his time in the majors last year. There seemed to be no reason to send him down. Then I took a look at the schedule, and realized that the Pirates could get by with four starters for most of the month of May. I don’t know if this is why Cumpton...

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Andy Oliver Dominating, But Still Has Questions With His Control
May03

Andy Oliver Dominating, But Still Has Questions With His Control

For former top prospect Andy Oliver, the only thing that is keeping him out of the Major Leagues is control, or lack there of. While he led the International League in strikeouts with 138 in 2013, he also blew away the competition with his league leading 112 walks. In fact, Oliver had more walks than hits allowed. He only allowed 99 hits in his 124.1 innings. Though on the surface, it doesn’t appear that Oliver has seen much...

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Pittsburgh Pirates Positive Regression Candidates: Pedro Alvarez
Apr30

Pittsburgh Pirates Positive Regression Candidates: Pedro Alvarez

Yesterday I wrote about how the Pittsburgh Pirates have a lot of players who are primed to regress to the mean in a positive manner. Typically when discussing regression, we talk about how someone won’t be able to keep up their strong performances, and will eventually fade. But it’s also possible for players who are struggling to regress to the mean, and improve their current numbers. That’s the case with a lot of...

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Pirates Look to Improve Offense by Emphasizing On-Base Percentage
Apr30

Pirates Look to Improve Offense by Emphasizing On-Base Percentage

Follow @NateBarnes_ Andrew McCutchen stepped to the plate against pitcher Alfredo Simon in the third inning of the Pirates’ April 23 game against the Cincinnati Reds with his team locked in a 1-1 tie. In his first at-bat, McCutchen lined out to center field after three pitches. The MVP’s second plate appearance of the night lasted ten pitches and culminated in a line drive home run into the left field bleachers that traveled over 400...

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Pittsburgh Pirates Positive Regression Candidates: Neil Walker
Apr29

Pittsburgh Pirates Positive Regression Candidates: Neil Walker

Regression is a funny word. It has developed a negative connotation, probably because it is most often used to describe players who are over-performing their advanced metrics, and who are expected to regress down to their expected performance levels. But regression can work both ways. It can be the usual decline in numbers, but it can also talk about a potential improvement in numbers. Last year we spent a lot of time talking about...

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