Moneyball – The 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates Version
Sep24

Moneyball – The 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates Version

One of the biggest misconceptions about “Moneyball” is that people were led to believe that the Oakland Athletics were the first team to come up with the idea of focusing on undervalued stats like on-base percentage. The belief, especially if you saw the movie, was that the Athletics just flipped a switch and changed their approach one year, and that led them to become a winning team. The truth is that the methods the...

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First Pitch: When Washington Shut Down Strasburg and How it Relates to Cole
Sep14

First Pitch: When Washington Shut Down Strasburg and How it Relates to Cole

Last night I wrote about the state of the rotation leading into the playoffs. My playoff rotation would include Francisco Liriano, A.J. Burnett, Charlie Morton, and Wandy Rodriguez. When I mentioned Gerrit Cole, I noted that he’s been great lately, but that my main issue with him is innings. I also said that the Pirates might want to use Cole as a reliever if they have four other starters who are capable. I thought that was...

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First Pitch: The Reason the Pirates Could Be Successful For Many Years
Aug20

First Pitch: The Reason the Pirates Could Be Successful For Many Years

Baseball teams pay ridiculous prices for pitching. The Texas Rangers just traded a top 50 prospect and three Grade B pitching prospects a month ago for two months of Matt Garza. Zack Greinke got $147 M over six years over the off-season. Anibal Sanchez got $80 M for five years, while Edwin Jackson got $52 M for four years. Even a 36-year-old starter like Ryan Dempster landed $13 M a year on the free agent market. The Pirates have...

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First Pitch: How Many Teams Around MLB Would Charlie Morton Start For?
Aug08

First Pitch: How Many Teams Around MLB Would Charlie Morton Start For?

I’ve talked about Charlie Morton a lot in the last week, arguing that he deserves to be in the starting rotation. There are plenty of anti-Morton Pirates fans who feel that Morton shouldn’t even be on the team. His strong overall numbers are chalked up to being a fluke, and his bad starts are highlighted. In short, if Charlie Morton is doing well this year, it’s just a small sample size, but a smaller sample of one...

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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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