First Pitch: It’s Time to Recognize Mark Melancon as an Elite Reliever
Jul17

First Pitch: It’s Time to Recognize Mark Melancon as an Elite Reliever

Mark Melancon is one of the best relievers in baseball. That’s not just my opinion. It’s a statistical fact. Just take a look at the numbers over the last two years. Melancon ranks 7th of 139 relievers in xFIP. If you prefer ERA, he drops down to 8th. He’s been an amazing reliever for the Pirates, but he doesn’t get the credit he deserves in Pittsburgh. I’m always baffled by the reactions towards...

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First Pitch: The Sequel to the Mark Melancon Trade
Jun28

First Pitch: The Sequel to the Mark Melancon Trade

There are two things I feel should be common knowledge by now about relief pitchers. 1. Relief pitchers are very volatile. 2. ERA is a horrible stat to evaluate relievers. The Pittsburgh Pirates have had success finding strong relievers at low costs because they’ve ignored short-term struggles, and have looked past a poor ERA to see potential with advanced metrics. Meanwhile, other teams give out long-term deals to relievers,...

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Jason Grilli Removed From Closer Role
Jun20

Jason Grilli Removed From Closer Role

The Pittsburgh Pirates have removed Jason Grilli from the closer’s role, Clint Hurdle announced to the media this afternoon. Grilli will be replaced by Mark Melancon. Jenn Menendez says that Grilli will get work when the team is behind. Pirates Jason Grilli is being moved out of the closer role for now, said Mgr. Clint Hurdle. He'll get opportunities while club is behind. — Jenn Menendez (@JennMenendez) June 20, 2014...

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First Pitch: It’s Time For the Pirates to Make a Switch at Closer
Jun20

First Pitch: It’s Time For the Pirates to Make a Switch at Closer

Earlier today, Max Fogle wrote about the struggles that Jason Grilli has been having this year, breaking down some of the key problems that might be leading to the poor results. It was actually an article that Max had written before today’s game, and was originally set to go up tomorrow morning. However, with the blown save this afternoon, it seemed like an appropriate topic to discuss sooner, rather than later. Grilli...

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Photos and Analysis From Last Night’s Pirates Win Over the Brewers
Apr18

Photos and Analysis From Last Night’s Pirates Win Over the Brewers

Over the past weekend, the Pittsburgh Pirates were swept in a three game series by the Milwaukee Brewers. It was the first series loss of the season for the Pirates, and dropped them to .500. Last night the Pirates returned home to face the Brewers in a new series. This time around they won 11-2, thanks to four home runs and strong pitching from Edinson Volquez. Here is a photo recap from last night, with some thoughts on a few of the...

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