First Pitch: Welcome to Opening Day

It took almost four months too long to get here, but it’s finally Opening Day for the Pittsburgh Pirates and most of baseball. The Pirates are in St Louis tonight to take on the Cardinals in a three-game series. The starters for the Pirates will be Joe Musgrove, Trevor Williams and Mitch Keller, who will be going up against right-handers Jack Flaherty, Adam Wainwright and Dakota Hudson.

We will have Live Game Discussions posted just prior to the start of the game each night. I’m going to post tonight’s a little early because it’s Opening Day. So expect it around 7 PM for the 8:15 PM start time.

The Pirates set their 30-man roster yesterday. There isn’t a lot to discuss here. We already knew the players certain to make the team and the guys at the end of the roster have two weeks to prove that they belong when the active roster is cut down to 28 players. That’s assuming that everyone stays healthy to that point, but also, no one else joins the team (ahem, Ke’Bryan Hayes).

I take no responsibility for you not recognizing this as nothing more than a fun tweet. I started tracking to see who the 2,000th player would be.

News came down yesterday that 16 teams will make the playoffs this year. So the Pirates could have a chance and one of those extra spots, especially with it being a short season and one hot streak can change everything. I’m personally not a fan of so many playoff teams, but that’s always been true. I have a favorite basketball team that has occasionally made the playoffs and I don’t even bother watching the first round. If they make the second round, then I get interested. If you’re good, you shouldn’t have to play an awful team in the playoffs, and if you’re that bad that you need extra spots to just get in, you probably have no shot at winning anything. Just my opinion, no one has to agree with it. Eight playoff spots were enough for me.

Wilbur Miller took a look at the Pirates pitching staff yesterday. Here’s his preview on the hitters from Tuesday night.

**We will have at least five articles today, including the one you’re currently reading. If any news comes up we will have more. The other scheduled articles for today are as follows:

This Date in Pittsburgh Pirates History – The birth of Barry Bonds, 56 years ago today

Pittsburgh Pirates Seasons – A close look at Jason Thompson’s 1982 season.

1979 Season Recap – A rough first inning against the Reds put the Pirates down early. Could they bounce back for the win?

Hope everyone has a great Opening Day!

SONG OF THE DAY

DAILY QUIZ


RANDOM STUFF OF THE DAY

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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