First Pitch: This is Where the Pirates Need to Spend Money
Feb05

First Pitch: This is Where the Pirates Need to Spend Money

A few years ago, we asked Pittsburgh Pirates president Frank Coonelly if the team could eventually afford a $70-80 M payroll. He answered that the team could afford that payroll after attendance increased. That led to a series of expectations. 1. The Pirates would eventually become competitive. 2. The attendance would increase due to the Pirates winning. 3. The payroll would go up. Number three on that list has always been the focus...

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Pirates and Neil Walker, Vin Mazzaro Avoid Arbitration
Jan17

Pirates and Neil Walker, Vin Mazzaro Avoid Arbitration

The Pittsburgh Pirates and second baseman Neil Walker will sign a one year deal for $5.75 M according to Rob Biertempfel, avoiding arbitration. They also signed reliever Vin Mazzaro for $950,000 according to Biertempfel. They have officially avoided arbitration with every eligible player now ahead of the deadline to exchange figures. Neil Walker was projected to make $4.8 M, while Vin Mazzaro was projected to be $800,000 for the 2014...

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Six Pirates File For Arbitration
Jan14

Six Pirates File For Arbitration

The MLB Players Association announced today that 146 players have filed for arbitration. That list includes all six Pirates who were eligible: Pedro Alvarez, Vin Mazzaro, Mark Melancon, Gaby Sanchez, Travis Snider, and Neil Walker. The process to file for arbitration is only a formality, and isn’t really significant. The significant move this week will be when the teams and players exchange figures on Friday. Once the two sides...

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First Pitch: Changing My View on Neil Walker
Jan14

First Pitch: Changing My View on Neil Walker

Over the weekend I was talking with John Dreker, who brought up an interesting question. He asked me whether the 2012 season for Neil Walker would be considered “lucky”, or if the 2013 season would be considered “unlucky”. To answer the question, I started digging into the numbers between the two seasons. By the end of the analysis, I had a higher opinion of Neil Walker’s skills than before the question....

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First Pitch: When Should Players Change Positions?
Jan09

First Pitch: When Should Players Change Positions?

There are two types of questions I get often involving players changing positions. Usually the questions surround a position of immediate need for the Pirates. This year all of the questions involve first base. The questions have the focus of filling a first base need, either in the short-term or the long-term. I answer them all the time, but felt I would expand on each answer here. Short-Term The short-term questions usually involve...

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