A.J. Burnett: Anatomy of a One-Hitter

So many events have to go right for a no-hitter to happen. We sometimes lose sight of that, living in this Golden Age of 23 no-hitters in the last six years. Even with no-hitters becoming almost as common an occurrence as Clint Barmes home runs, they still require a potent combination of talent and good fortune to come true (you know, like a Clint Barmes home run). When looking at A.J. Burnett taking a perfect game into the 6th inning...

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Bucs’ Bats Finally Show Signs of Life in Win at Arizona

It took more than a week, but the Pittsburgh Pirates finally showed something resembling consistency on offense in the Bucs’ 6-5 win on Wednesday against Arizona at Chase Field. The Pirates posted a season-high in runs scored and broke into double-digits in the hit column for the first time in 2013 with 11 hits against the Diamondbacks. This was not an offensive explosion by any means, but with the way the team came limping into...

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Pirates Notebook: Platooning Alvarez? Hurdle Says “No Way”

It was a great privilege to cover the Pirates this past weekend at Dodger Stadium. The team’s offense still has to make some drastic improvements to consistently score runs, and before I left Chavez Ravine, I asked some of the players and coaches how that will happen. No Platoon for Pedro Any Time Soon It is Clint Hurdle’s decision whether Pedro Alvarez will platoon in the ¬†immediate future, but the manager made it clear...

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McCutchen Homer Only Respite as L.A. Completes Sweep 6-2

Don’t let the sunshine and the mountain views fool you. Dodger Stadium continues to be a ravine of terror for the Pirates, but Sunday provided a fresh face to engineer the 6-2 Los Angeles victory and a weekend sweep. Adrian Gonzalez started to earn the $127 million he will collect the next six seasons after arriving from Boston last August. The first baseman went 3-for-4 with four RBI to complete his destruction of Pirates...

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First Pitch: Who Should Bat Second?

At the end of Spring Training, the Pittsburgh Pirates started using Garrett Jones as a number two hitter. I wrote about the topic during the final week, and noted that Clint Hurdle said the team was also looking at Neil Walker, Russell Martin, and Travis Snider as other options. He also said that they would be looking for some consistency throughout the year. So far the number two hitter hasn’t been consistent. Jones started...

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