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SteelerDan43
01-26-2006, 01:49 PM
I'm going to share my position breakdowns of the Buccos

Lets start with 1B
Starter - Sean Casey
Backup - Brad Eldred/Craig Wilson

1B is the one of the positions I like the most. Casey is a solid middle of the line up type of hitter. While he lacks pop (9 HR last year) he makes up for it in consitency. He is a career .305 hitter and has a good on base percentage (.371 last year 10th among 1B in MLB) He rarely strikes out (48 last year with 48 BB) and will bring some stability to the team. He also brings alot of leadership to the team. Something that was obviously laking last year. His hometown boy status will make him an instand crowd favorite like he was in Cincy. He will also be able to mentor Brad Eldred. Eldred tore up the minors but when he finally got up to the bigs he was obviously not ready. He has huge holes in his swing that were exposed when he came up. He has tons of talent, just needs a little seasoning. I would rather go with Wilson as the backup and let Eldred get the playing time he needs in AAA where he can work on his swing and his defense.

My Grade - B+

SteelerDan43
01-26-2006, 02:18 PM
2B
Starter - Jose Castillo
Backup - Freddy Sanchez

I think we really have a blossoming star at 2B in Castillo. The best part of his game is definatley his defense. He had a .977 fielding percentage and participated in 93 double plays. His offensive production should not be overlooked though. He only hit .268 last year but look for him to improve. From 04 to 05 all his major offensive stats went up while he had less at bats due to injury. His average went up 12 pts, he hit 14 more RBI and struck out 33 less times (59 overall). His OPS also went up 9 pts. He also hit 11 HR! I would like to see his OPS go up to at least .325 this year. I would also like to see the new manager Tracy run him a little more as he only had 2 SB in 5 attempts. Castillo also has a competant backup in Sanchez. Sanchez was once a highly regarded prospect with the Red Sox but after comming to the Bucs in a trade was sidelined with foot problems. In 05 he hit .291 in 453 AB. He lacks pop as he only hit 5 HR but was still extremly reliable off the bench and as a utility infield starter.

My Grade - A-

SteelerDan43
01-26-2006, 11:42 PM
SS

Starter - Jack Wilson
Backup - Freddy Sanchez

Jack really regressed last season batting only .257 after having his best offensive season of his career in 04 hitting .308. The main reason I can site for this dramatic drop off was his emergency appendectomy. I dont think Jack will get back over .300 again in his career but I would expect some where between 04 and 05, something like .275 or so. Just like Castillo at second though Jack isn't here for his offensive production. He is one of the best defensive SS in the league. He sported a .982 fielding percentage! He also contributed to 126 double plays. Along with Castillo this is one of the top 5 defensive middle infields in the game. They just suck everything up and turn some of the prettiest double plays you will ever see. And we will need their defense because as usual this year the Pirates will once again struggle offensively.

My Grade - B

SteelerDan43
01-26-2006, 11:53 PM
3B

Starter - Joe Randa
Backup - Freddy Sanchez

3B is one of the major holes on this team. Joe Randa had a nice season last year and sparked serious trade bait from teams lookin for that last piece for the playoff run but lets face it, he is not the answer to the Pirates hole at third that has been an issue since Ramirez was given away for a song and a dance. Being 36 now is when father time is catching up with Randa. In the first half of last season with the Reds he hit .289 but tired in the second half after being traded to the Padres hitting a measly .256. Now dont get me wrong he has the potential to a decent stop gap for now ala Kenny Lofton. I expect about .280 or so out of him and about 10 HR, decent but not what we could of had if we could of just kept Ramirez and our cheap ownership wouldnt of made DL dump his salary... But thats another gripe for another time. If he struggles though ala Chris Stynes I fully expect Sanchez to come in and take the starting job from him. I would really like to see what we have with Sanchez if he could start on a regular basis. As I said before, he was a highly regarded prospect with the Red Sox. But I dont know if he will be the future at the position. 3B will be a pressing issue for the Bucs all season

My Grade - C-

SteelerDan43
01-27-2006, 12:16 PM
LF

Starter - Jason Bay
Backup - Nate McClouth/Jody Gerut/Jose Bautista

We are set a LF for easily the next decade. Bay is the real deal, no sophmore slump for him last year! He hit .306 with 32 HR and 101 RBI. Easily the Pirate with the most pop. His only problem offensively was his strike outs (142 last year). He got jobbed in the All Star Game last year based mostly on Lloyd's feud with LaRussa. He also sucked it up in the Home Run Derby... Look for him to have another All Star season and become one of if not the premier left fielders in league. He along with possibly Casey and Perez are the only Bucs with a real shot to be part of the hometown roster for the All Star game at PNC park this year. The one question mark that continues through all the out field is who will be the backup? Nate McClouth has great potential but has no where to play with Duffy in CF and the signing of Burnitz in right. I'd like to see him go to triple A to continue to get playing time and come up in September to play right. Gerut is obviously not the future and can be a serviceable backup in the OF for now, but he has no real potential in my opinion.

My Grade - A

SteelerDan43
01-30-2006, 09:39 AM
LF

Starter - Jason Bay
Backup - Nate McClouth/Jody Gerut/Jose Bautista

We are set a LF for easily the next decade. Bay is the real deal, no sophmore slump for him last year! He hit .306 with 32 HR and 101 RBI. Easily the Pirate with the most pop. His only problem offensively was his strike outs (142 last year). He got jobbed in the All Star Game last year based mostly on Lloyd's feud with LaRussa. He also sucked it up in the Home Run Derby... Look for him to have another All Star season and become one of if not the premier left fielders in league. He along with possibly Casey and Perez are the only Bucs with a real shot to be part of the hometown roster for the All Star game at PNC park this year. The one question mark that continues through all the out field is who will be the backup? Nate McClouth has great potential but has no where to play with Duffy in CF and the signing of Burnitz in right. I'd like to see him go to triple A to continue to get playing time and come up in September to play right. Gerut is obviously not the future and can be a serviceable backup in the OF for now, but he has no real potential in my opinion.

My Grade - A

Whoops his name is spelled McLouth

SteelerDan43
02-01-2006, 11:25 PM
ok well I havn't updated this in a long time so I'll give you another position before I go to bed.

CF

Starter - Chris Duffy
Backup - Jason Bay/Nate McLouth/Jody Gerut

This is the guy im most excited to see what he can do. I really think he will become a permanent fixture in CF. Tike Redman can't wash Duffy's jock strap. Ok now that I gloated about Duffy I'll back it up with some numbers. Now his offensive numbers are a little inflated as he played against other September call ups, but anyway you cut it .341 is .341! His value is really in his attitude and the way he plays the game... 100 percent all the time. He finally gives us a legitimate leadoff hitter. I thank god we got rid of Tike Redman. Unlike Redman who was a liability in CF Duffy's stong point is his great range and defense. Over 33 games he had a .988 fielding percentage. He really can take up some of the defensive slack in right and help out Bay in left. His range factor was 2.94, to give you an idea of how good that is, the league leader was a 3.05 followed by 2.93. He is at the top of the league in defensive center fielders. The only real question I see is will he be able to maintain his high level of play for an entire season

My Grade - B- (just due to experience)

Oh ya, 400 posts!!!!! Whoo Hoo now I'm a starter! Just in time for the big game

SteelCityMan786
02-02-2006, 03:26 PM
Good Anaylsis. Points To Your Posts.

SteelerDan43
02-03-2006, 11:47 AM
RF

Starter - Jeromy Burnitz
Backup - Nate McLouth/Craig Wilson/Jody Gerut/Jose Bautista

This is by far the biggest hole on the Buccos. Can you say Derek Bell??? Thats what I see in Burnitz. Maybey we will get luck and get a Reggie Sanders out of him but I doubt it. He hit a whopping .258 last year! But on the bright side he had 24 HR playing mostly in Wrigley Field. I understand why they brought him in, to add some pop. But the fact is we have the same player only younger in C.Wilson. Wilson can hit 25 homers but has the nickname KKKKraig for a reason. I guess I can deal with Burnitz as a stop gap for a year, he is 36 after all. I forsee RF is going to be a continuous issue all year. Maybey we can get luck and Burnitz will play out of his mind so we can trade him at the deadline for some young guy like we did with Giles or if he doesnt play well just for some middle relief help in the pen

My Grade - D

SteelerDan43
02-03-2006, 07:57 PM
C

Starter - Ryan Doumit
Backup - Humberto Cota/Ronny Paulino

While we have some good potential here will it show itself in 06?? Doumit will probably come out of spring training as the starter but will split time with Cota. Doumit has better pop in his bat than Cota but still isnt great. Look for him to improve but dont expect Kendall numbers out of him. Doumit hit .255 with 6 dingers and 35 RBI while Cota hit .242 with 7 dingers and 43 RBI in just over 60 AB more than Doumit. Cota definatley has an edge over Doumit in defense however, .992 FP .227 CS vs Doumit's .975 FP and .400 CS. I would expect that is possible you see them alternate according to who's pitching and if we play a team that likes to run alot (Doumit has the better arm). Paulino is the odd man out and will start the year in AAA where if he isnt carefull could be passed up by hometown boy Neil Walker.

My Grade - C-

SteelerDan43
02-03-2006, 07:58 PM
So my final grades for the field are

1B - B+
2B - A-
SS - B
3B - C-
LF - A
CF - B-
RF - D
C - C-

Here's my lineup

1. - CF - Chris Duffy
2. - SS - Jack Wilson
3. - 1B - Sean Casey
4. - LF - Jason Bay
5. - RF - Jeromy Burnitz
6. - 3B - Joe Randa
7. - 2B - Jose Castillo
8. - C - Ryan Doumit
9. - Pitchers Spot

Hey guys if you like my analysis help me out and visit my new Pirates forum The Jolly Roger! (link below)

Suitanim
02-03-2006, 08:11 PM
Not bad...The Bucks will definitely be better this year, but they need to follow the Indians plan of building/rebuilding. My second favorite baseball team is the Pirates, and it's disheartening to see them repeatedly make the same mistakes year after year.

Pitching is my big ???

SteelerDan43
02-03-2006, 08:14 PM
Not bad...The Bucks will definitely be better this year, but they need to follow the Indians plan of building/rebuilding. My second favorite baseball team is the Pirates, and it's disheartening to see them repeatedly make the same mistakes year after year.

Pitching is my big ???

lol I'm gettin there but you'll have to wait 'till after the Super Bowl... I think gettin rid of Spin Williams has been the best move the Pirates have made since getting Bay and Perez for Giles

SteelerDan43
02-07-2006, 07:08 PM
I just posted my starting pitching analysis over at The Jolly Roger! (http://users.boardnation.com/~thejollyroger/index.php)

SteelerDan43
02-18-2006, 02:37 PM
Well I will post my SP analysis over here as well since I'm still not getting very much traffic over at my other site...

SP

1. Oliver Perez

One of the biggest question marks of the pitching staff is will Perez revert to 04 form? I dont think he will have an ERA under 3 again ala 04 (2.99 ERA) but I do think he will definatley be better than his 05 ERA of 5.85. I think there are two main reasons behind his sup par performance in 05, one was his off season layoff. He had played winter ball every previous off season and I dont think he knew what to do with the off time, I dont think he knew how to prepare for the next season and it showed... the other reason is Spin Williams just couldnt settle him down at all, Spin's deficiencies are something that you'll see me reference continually with the pitching staff. Getting rid of Spin in my opinion has been the best move of the Pirates off season.

2. Kip Wells

Kip has regressed in the last two seasons leading the league with 18 losses last year (8-18). Some of this was due to injury but 18 losses is still unexcusable. He has the talent but his head was just not in the game... due in large part to Spin and Mac. I think the new coaches will benifit him, also he just signed a 1 year contract for over 4 million so this year might be the last for Kip in a Pirate uniform unless he gets his act together

3. Zach Duke

Rookie phenom Duke will play an integral role in the sucess or failure of the Pirates this season. He was a stellar 8-2 with a 1.81 ERA last year untill he was shut down at the end with an injury. I doubt he will have quite that sucess this year but I do expect over 12 wins for him this year... He along with the rest of the guys will benifit from the change in coaches.

4. Paul Maholm

Maholm looked great last year comming in and taking up the slack left from Duke's injury quite nicely. He went 3-1 with a 2.18 ERA in 6 games. His question mark is, is he ready for the bigs or just a product of call up sucess? Only time will tell but for the Bucs sake lets hope so.

5. Sean Burnett

Sean is no lock for the fifth spot in the rotation but I think he will get it. He played admirably against be league competition although his stats may seem like he got shilacked (5-5 5.08 ERA in 13 G) but that doesnt tell the whole story. He also had a complete game shutout. His question mark is how will he come out of his arm injury that kept him out all last season? Both JVB, Vogelsong, Snell, Gorezelanny, and Bullington will all be looking to take this last spot in the rotation also.

The problem with the pitching staff in general is their age, only 24 years old on the average (Perez 24, Wells 28, Duke 22, Maholm 23, Burnett 24). This will definatley lead to the blow out games and long losing runs that have plagued the Pirates in recent years. The key to the entire season is not the mediocre offense but the ability of the coaching staff to keep these young pitchers on the right track and level headed.

Suitanim
02-18-2006, 05:34 PM
Don't rely TOO much on ERA...remember Kevin Millwood had a 2.86 ERA for Cleveland last year but went 9-11 because the Tribe didn't hit for him. Subsequently, Texas turned around and WAY overpaid ($60 mil for 5 years) for a 31 year old pitcher.

Pittsburgh will be improved...Cincinnati will be the big loser this year...they are hagning on too hard to too many washed up/used up players.