MLB Network has been posting their rankings of the top ten players at each position across the majors. It’s been going on now for over a month, but the Pittsburgh Pirates have barely been mentioned on any of the shows, so there hasn’t been anything to write about. That should change tonight when they cover the top relievers and top center fielders. We are posting this article early so you have a chance to follow along. You may also want to stick around for another show afterwards.
Here’s the schedule tonight. All are hour long shows:
9 PM EST: Top Ten Relievers
10 PM: Center Fielders
11 PM: Forever Brothers: The 1971 Pittsburgh Pirates Story
I am going to update this article live as the results are announced for the first two shows. Spoiler alert: The Pirates win the World Series in 1971.
Each position is ranked by 5-6 people, plus “the Shredder”, which is just their name for the list put together by the show’s researchers based on offense and defense, using “analytic methodology”. Brian Kenny hosts the show along with a former Major Leaguer who played the same position. Bill James and a panel of experts (2-3 more people) also give their own lists.
So far the only player from the Pirates to make a list was Josh Harrison, who ranked seventh for Brian Kenny and Harold Reynolds, but did not make any of the other lists. Josh Bell was one of nine first basemen who got an honorable mention at the beginning of the first base show. The Pirates had nothing for shortstop, third base, catchers, starting pitchers, left field and right field. The Pirates actually had no one eligible for left field because they did the list after the Andrew McCutchen trade and noted that Marte would be on the center field list instead.
Buster Olney put out his list of top ten by position and Starling Marte was the only Pirate to make a list. He was on the left field list still at that point, so now we get to see how he stacks up in center. Felipe Rivero got an honorable mention for relievers, but should do better tonight.
Check back later for updates. Enjoy the shows if you decide to watch along.
UPDATE #1: Reliever show is on and I’ll post as the results from each person when they are announced. They started the show off with the “just missed” players and Felipe Rivero was in that small group, so he won’t make it on the Shredder list.
Shredder – NR
Bill James – NR
Mike Petriello – #4
Vince Gennaro – NR
Ben Lindbergh – #10
Brian Kenny – #10
Dan Plesac – NR
UPDATE #2: Center field show is on now and Starling Marte was among six players in the “just missed” group. That means that the Shredder didn’t have a single Pirate player in the top ten. Brian Kenny also noted at the top of the show that Marte wasn’t on his list. I’ll add the rest as they are announced.
No one had Marte on their list, so all he gets is a ‘just missed” among center fielders.