Pirates Middle Infield Battle Is Heating Up

4-1-22 By Craig W. Toth (aka @BucsBasement on Twitter) Back when Ben Cherington signed on to be GM of the Pittsburgh Pirates-and subsequently hired Derek Shelton to be the team’s manager-during the 2019-20 off-season, two of the positions that didn’t really need to be addressed, or questioned were those on either side of the keystoneContinue reading “Pirates Middle Infield Battle Is Heating Up”

Kevin Newman: From Top Prospect to Prospect Seat Warmer

He’s a first round pick, a terrific defender and notoriously the negative launch angle leader on this club for 3 seasons running. He’s a cautionary tale of believing all the can’t miss you see in a system too.

The Quandary Surrounding Kevin Newman; And The Shortstop Position In General

As I have written, and spoke about multiple times before on Gary Morgan’s Fan Forum-DK Pittsburgh Sports, as well as my own Bucs In The Basement Podcast, I wasn’t completely fooled by Kevin Newman’s Spring Training explosion because of the sheer numbers. Obviously, posting a slash line of .606/.641/.788 with six doubles and zero strikeoutsContinue reading “The Quandary Surrounding Kevin Newman; And The Shortstop Position In General”

Filling The Immediate Hole Left By Frazier’s Absence Wouldn’t Be An Easy Task

This past off-season General Manager Ben Cherington had a decision to make, as he had two candidates for the first base job in Josh Bell and Colin; with him operating under the assumption that the designated hitter would not be in play, which turned out to be correct.. Ultimately, he found a suitor for BellContinue reading “Filling The Immediate Hole Left By Frazier’s Absence Wouldn’t Be An Easy Task”

Competition is the Real Game Story

During the first inning of yesterday’s ballgame, we were given a glimpse into another reason to largely ignore Spring stats as after 2/3 of an inning and with the Pirates still in business, the Orioles coach called “enough” on his pitcher.

Cole Tucker Needs to Grab 2021 by the Throat and Not Let Go

The Pirates first round selection (24) in the 2014 MLB draft class has a litany of attractive and impressive attributes, but on this team, he’ll quickly find himself out of chances unless he can prove he and his thus far anemic bat belong.

Kevin Newman is Defying the Odds OR At Least Disproving the Data

For anyone that studies advanced metrics there almost always seems to be a pattern, a reason to justify why a player is struggling, data to show how improvements were made, basis for an upcoming hot or cold streak and a way to determine how well a player is performing; among many other things. Teams useContinue reading “Kevin Newman is Defying the Odds OR At Least Disproving the Data”

Progression, Regression and Stagnation: 2020 Pirates Player Projections

Each year before a season begins there are expectations; for the organization as a whole, for the team and especially for the individual players on the field. We try to predict a direction or a path for the future; sometimes based on numbers and patterns, but often it is rooted in emotion, a gut instinctContinue reading “Progression, Regression and Stagnation: 2020 Pirates Player Projections”

Roster Construction: Thoughtful Planning Versus Reckless Abandon

As soon as the announcement was made on Tuesday evening that players had agreed to report to Spring Training 2.0 on July 1st the brains of Major League Baseball fans and media members’ alike immediately went into overdrive. With new rules, health and safety protocols, scheduling, an end to the MLB transaction freeze and impendingContinue reading “Roster Construction: Thoughtful Planning Versus Reckless Abandon”