It is hard to consider changes on this team to be major. They are going to give full-time playing time, apparently, to Tabata (left field) and Alvarez (shortstop) and have gotten rid of professional under-achiever Lastings Millege. But their rotation and bullpen are NOT stocked with 24-year-olds: none are old but none are young prospects, either. The losing will apparently continue, at least for the foreseeable future.
Hitters 2010 F 2011 F
My analysis shows a 6 WAR improvement in the offense, which puts them clear up to dreadful. And I don’t believe it – I don’t see this team scoring a lot of runs again this year, unless Tabata and McCutcheon turn out to be Mantle and Maris. And if McCutcheon were to be injured, they could score like a team from the aughts, but the NINETEEN aughts, not the 21st century aughts.
Starters 2010 F 2011 F
The entire Pittsburgh rotation, taken as a group, were replacement-level in 2010. Given that, replacing the below replacement guys with true replacement (0.0 WAR) guys should show an improvement. They can hardly be worse than they were in 2010, and the analysis suggests much better, but still really bad. The entire staff doesn’t project to have as much value as the Cardinals lost when Wainwright went down.
Bullpen 2010 C 2011 D
And the one “strength” of 2010 appears to be worse. Meek was their best pitcher in 2010: he figures to regress to the mean. And every other reliever worth over 0.2 WAR is gone.
Overall 2010 F 2011 F
Surely the Pirates and Astros both know that, were it not for the other, they would be the undisputed leading candidate for worst team in baseball. Since they compete head-to-head we can watch this fascinating duel play out in the Central standings. I see the Pirates as a 59-103 team in 2011.
|Lyle Overbay||First Base||34||2.6||-1.1||Jones|
|Neil Walker||Second Base||25||0.6||1.5|
|Pedro Alvarez||Third Base||24||1.0||0.2|
|Jose Tabata||Left Field||22||2.0||0.8|
|Andrew McCutchen||Center Field||24||3.1||3.3|
|Garrett Jones||Right Field||29||0.5||-1.0||Millege|
|Paul Maholm||Starting Pitcher||28||1.5||0.7|
|Ross Ohlendorf||Starting Pitcher||28||1.6||2.0|
|Kevin Correia||Starting Pitcher||30||0.0||-0.8||Duke|
|James McDonald||Starting Pitcher||26||1.0||0.5||Burres|
|Charlie Morton||Starting Pitcher||27||1.0||-2.4|
|Chris Resop||Relief Pitcher||28||0.1||1.4||Hanrahan|
|Chris Leroux||Relief Pitcher||26||0.2||0.7||Carrasco|
|Daniel McCutchen||Relief Pitcher||28||0.0||-0.3|
|Scott Olsen||Relief Pitcher||27||0.0||0.7||Lopez|
|Evan Meek||Relief Pitcher||27||1.6||2.6|