Pirates Notebook: No question where this team stands

A lot of the complaints I read from the Pirates players following the Nate McLouth trade expressed anger over the notion that the front office was giving up on them while they were just six and a half games out of first place. If there’s one point of evidence that can refute the line of thinking that says we had a shot with Nate McLouth on the team, then here it is: Player A: 6.64 ERA in 42 innings pitched Player B: 0.90 ERA in...

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Pirates Notebook: Seriously, extend Jack Wilson

I like Jack Wilson. I like his defense. I like his hustle. I like seeing him turn double plays (my favorite play in baseball). So you may think that when I say the Pirates should extend Wilson, as I did a few weeks ago, I’m not being objective. Well here is some objectivity. While Jack Wilson was out, Brian Bixler saw 26 plate appearances. In those plate appearances, Bixler struck ot 18 times. 18 times! His strikeout rate (.692)...

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Pirates Notebook: Buccos win a West Coast series

The last time the Pirates were four games over .500 was early in the 2003 season. The last time the Pirates were doing this well so late in the season was in 2002, when they moved to a 13-8 record on April 26th after a 10-1 loss to the Padres. That same season the Pirates got off to a 9-5 start before Aramis Ramirez, hitting .348 at the time, sprained his ankle charging the mound on April 17th, 2002. Ramirez didn’t return to the...

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2009 Pirates Preview: To trade or not to trade?

Last year the Pirates made two major trades, dealing outfielders Jason Bay and Xavier Nady, plus left handed reliever Damaso Marte, in an attempt to give the farm system a quick boost in the rebuilding process. In return for those deals, the Pirates received eight players. Those eight players include starting third baseman Andy LaRoche, starting right fielder Brandon Moss, number four and five starters Ross Ohlendorf and Jeff...

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Spring Training Battles: Bullpen

The bullpen is an area that Pirates’ GM Neal Huntington doesn’t like to spend a lot of money on. I’m in agreement with this strategy. All it takes is a quick look to the 2008 Milwaukee bullpen to see that spending money doesn’t equal success. The Brewers spent almost $26 M on the following bullpen arms last season: Eric Gagne, Guillermo Mota, David Riske, Brian Shouse, Salomon Torres, and David Turnbow. Of that...

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