Wassup Sports!?!?!?!?

17 year old Cale's very opinionated view on everything sports.

MLB Season Preview: #29 Pittsburgh Pirates

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Overview: As Pittsburgh fans have become accustomed to, the Pirates finished with a losing record again last season. That being nearly the twentieth season in a row, the franchise is looking for some relief. Frankly, I believe that the Pirates are the most promising team in baseball.

Offseason Moves: The Pirates had a relatively quiet offseason, which has also become a regular occurrence for the team. Pittsburgh added a veteran presence in 2B Akinori Iwamura, who has playoff experience from his time in Tampa Bay. The Pirates also added veteran relievers P Octavio Dotel and Javier Lopez to help out a mediocre at best bullpen. Finally, Pittsburgh added some stop-gap players in IF Bobby Crosby and OF Ryan Church to fill the holes until their young and promising talent arrives to the big leagues.

Projected Lineups and Pitching Staff:

1. CF Andrew McCutchen (.286, 12 HR, 54 RBI)

2. 2B Akinori Iwamura (.290, 1 HR, 22 RBI)

3. 1B Garrett Jones (.293, 21 HR, 44 RBI)

4. C Ryan Doumit (.250, 10 HR, 38 RBI)

5. LF Lastings Milledge (.279, 4 HR, 21 RBI)

6. RF Brandon Moss (.236, 7 HR, 41 RBI)

7. 3B Andy LaRoche (.258, 12 HR, 64 RBI)

8. SS Ronny Cedeno (.208, 10 HR, 38 RBI)

Backup C: Jason Jaramillo (.252, 3 HR, 26 RBI)

Backup IF: Bobby Crosby (.223, 6 HR, 29 RBI)

Backup IF: Jeff Clement (No Major League Stats in ’09)

Backup IF: Ramon Vasquez (.230, 1 HR, 16 RBI)

Backup OF: Ryan Church (.273, 4 HR, 40 RBI)

1. Zach Duke (11-16, 4.06 ERA)

2. Paul Maholm (8-9, 4.44 ERA)

3. Ross Ohlendorf (11-10, 3.92 ERA)

4. Charlie Morton (5-9, 4.55 ERA)

5. Daniel McCutchen (1-2, 4.21 ERA)

CP: Octavio Dotel (3-3, 3.32 ERA, 0 SV)

SU: Javier Lopez (0-2, 9.26 ERA)

SU: Joel Hanrahan (1-4, 4.78 ERA)

MR: Evan Meek (1-1, 3.45 ERA)

MR: Donnie Veal (1-0, 7.16 ERA)

MR: Jose Ascanio (0-2, 4.00 ERA)

LR: Chris Jakubauskas (6-7, 5.32 ERA)

Player to watch: Last year, Pittsburgh brought up their top prospect, Andrew McCutchen, in mid May. He went on to excite Pirates fans everywhere with his speed and ability. It would be crazy to think McCutchen wouldn’t continue to be a spark plug in Pittsburgh for a long time, and look for the 2010 season to really be where he shows what he can do in the big leagues.

Prediction: 70- 92, 4th in NL Central

I did it again. Yes, the Pirates will only make about an eight game improvement this season, but it will be enough to get out of the cellar. Although this may not seem like much to the fans, the Pirates have young talent such as 3B Pedro Alvarez, who some have called “the left-handed Albert Pujols”, and P Brad Lincoln coming soon. Combined with some of the young players at the big league level, and a couple of veteran additions through free agency, could make the Pirates a winning team in 2011. Not to mention, they will be in a division with all but one of the other teams that are getting older and will begin to fade in the coming years.

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