Apr 082011

Major Changes

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.

Charts

Player Position Age 2011 2010
Chris Snyder Catcher 30 0.6 0.2 Doumit
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
Ronny Cedeno Shortstop 28 0.2 0.4
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
10.6 4.3

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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
5.1 0.0

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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
Joel Hanrahan Closer 29 0.8 0.2 Dotel
2.7 5.3

 

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