Pirates Focus on Game 2 Bounceback, Avoiding 2-0 Deficit
Oct04

Pirates Focus on Game 2 Bounceback, Avoiding 2-0 Deficit

Leave it to Andrew McCutchen to provide an ounce of perspective following the Pirates’ first-ever NLDS loss. “One team had to win, one team had to lose,” the Pirates center fielder said. “We’re the team that had to lose tonight.” Hey, it’s not deep, but it’s true. The playoffs create a cauldron for The Narrative™ to emerge, no matter what that narrative is. And there is no better source...

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Dusty Baker Out as the Manager in Cincinnati
Oct04

Dusty Baker Out as the Manager in Cincinnati

According to an AP report this morning, Dusty Baker is out as the manager for the Cincinnati Reds. No word on whether Baker was fired, or reached an agreement with the Reds to end his contract early. He had one year and about $3.5 M left on his deal. Buster Olney suggests that the loss to the Pirates played a big role, and that it was the Reds owners that wanted a change. The Reds' front office folks were seething after their...

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Why Did Clint Hurdle Delay Pulling A.J. Burnett?
Oct03

Why Did Clint Hurdle Delay Pulling A.J. Burnett?

A.J. Burnett didn’t have a good day. He was rocked in the third inning, but the struggles started before that. James Santelli has the full breakdown of what led to Burnett’s struggles on the day. That poor third inning, combined with the fact that Burnett was struggling prior to the inning, raises the question of why he wasn’t pulled earlier. Things didn’t look good when he walked Adam Wainwright to start the...

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What Led to A.J. Burnett’s Seven-Run Inning?
Oct03

What Led to A.J. Burnett’s Seven-Run Inning?

Busch Stadium has been the home of several A.J. Burnett nightmares, but his Thursday afternoon was a new day terror. The St. Louis Cardinals attacked Burnett for seven runs without recording an out in the 3rd inning of National League Division Series Game 1. The veteran right-hander escaped a no-out jam in the 2nd by generating two groundballs, but nothing worked out for Burnett in the next frame as all eight batters reached base to...

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Bullpen Wars: Why Pirates-Cardinals Could Be Decided in Relief
Oct03

Bullpen Wars: Why Pirates-Cardinals Could Be Decided in Relief

A five-game playoff series shines a light on every aspect of your team. Stars will shine brighter and flaws will be exposed. In this National League Division Series, the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates share at least one similar strength: a quality bullpen of mostly young arms. Look at some of the key season stats: Category Cardinals Pirates FIP 2nd (3.26) 4th (3.35) SIERA 1st (3.19) 5th (3.39) ERA- 8th (95) 2nd (79) K% 5th...

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Pirates Being Favored Over Cardinals in Stat Friendly Previews
Oct03

Pirates Being Favored Over Cardinals in Stat Friendly Previews

If you strongly favor statistical analysis, then your stance on RISP numbers is that it is not a predictive value. So while the St. Louis Cardinals have an amazing .330 average with runners in scoring position, going forward they should be expected to be closer to their .269 average overall. It’s not a surprise that previews from people who think this way are picking the Pirates over the Cardinals in the NLDS. Rany Jazayerli has...

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