First Pitch: Remember All of Those High Beta Players From the Off-Season?
Jul20

First Pitch: Remember All of Those High Beta Players From the Off-Season?

Over the winter there was a lot of talk about how the Pittsburgh Pirates were adding a lot of high beta players. The term first came up when David Todd described Francisco Liriano as a high beta player, pointing out that there were many possible outcomes for his 2013 season, ranging from very bad to very good. I wrote about how the Pirates had a roster full of those players, and how the 2013 season would depend on the success/failure...

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First Pitch: The Trade Market is Looking Pretty Weak So Far
Jul19

First Pitch: The Trade Market is Looking Pretty Weak So Far

Tonight we heard once again that the Pirates were looking at Alex Rios. Jon Heyman reported the interest this time, also saying they could be interested in Alexei Ramirez. One comment Heyman made stood out to me. He noted that Alex Rios is the top all around outfielder available on the trade market. He’s right about that, and that speaks to the quality of players on the market right now. Earlier today, Pat Lackey of WHYGAVS...

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First Pitch: The Actual Value of Platoons
Jul11

First Pitch: The Actual Value of Platoons

Last night I wrote about how the problem with the Pirates offense this year has been that three positions in the lineup struggle against left-handed pitching. Pedro Alvarez, Neil Walker, and the right-field duo of Travis Snider and Jose Tabata have all struggled against lefties this year. Platoons are very underrated. Or should I say the left-handed side of the platoon is underrated. Just look at a lot of the comments about Gaby...

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Liriano Cruises, Pirates Bats Spark 5-0 Win
Jul11

Liriano Cruises, Pirates Bats Spark 5-0 Win

The Pirates collected 12 hits, including five with runners in scoring position, to break free of an offensive slump. Meanwhile Francisco Liriano pitched seven shutout innings and recorded his fourth-straight victory in a 5-0 win over the Oakland Athletics. That is what we call a double-barrel lead, since the Bucs were stellar on both sides Wednesday night for the first-ever franchise win over the A’s in 12 tries. The offense and...

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Cubs Break Through in Extra Innings to Win Series
Jul08

Cubs Break Through in Extra Innings to Win Series

There are a lot of people you could blame for the Pirates losing Sunday: Brandon Inge for going 0-for-4 and fouling up an easy double play turn Garrett Jones for going 0-for-5, leaving four runners on base and making hiccups at first base Russell Martin for going 0-for-3 and committing his season’s first error in the 11th Manager Clint Hurdle for letting the game slip away without using All-Star Jason Grilli or five infielders...

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