5 Early Disappointments for the Pittsburgh Pirates

5 Pittsburgh Pirates to Disappoint Early in 2014

Pittsburgh Pirates Francisco Liriano
Charles LeClaire-USA Today Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates are off to an incredibly poor start to the 2014 season. After making the postseason last year, the Pirates have taken an obvious step back so far this season. When looking at the Pirates and their 11-18 record, it isn't hard to find five players that have been major disappointments through the first month of the season.

Left Fielder - Starling Marte

Starling Marte Pittsburgh Pirates
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Left Fielder - Starling Marte

Starling Marte Pittsburgh Pirates
Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

After a great first full season in MLB, Starling Marte has gotten off to a rough start offensively in 2014. In 131 plate appearance, Marte is hitting .265/.344/.359 with a 104 wRC+. Despite his slow start with the bat, Marte does have nine stolen bases. His defense and base running have been excellent, making up for his poor offensive numbers to this point.

Shortstop - Jordy Mercer

Jordy Mercer Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Shortstop - Jordy Mercer

Jordy Mercer Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pirates trusted Jordy Mercer with the 2014 starting shortstop job, and so far he hasn't done much to reward them for their faith. In 80 plate appearances, Mercer is hitting .151/.203/.164 with a wRC+ of -5. Yes, -5. A wRC+ of 100 is average, Mercer is at -5. Obviously, he's been terrible.

RHP - Charlie Morton

Charlie Morton Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

RHP - Charlie Morton

Charlie Morton Pittsburgh Pirates
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For the most part, Charlie Morton has been good. It's always one really rough inning that hurts Morton. In 36.1 innings, the sinker-baller has an ERA of 4.21 and a FIP of 4.39. Compared to 2013, Morton is walking more batters, striking fewer batters out and getting fewer ground balls. These are certainly not good signs for Ground Chuck.

LHP - Francisco Liriano

Francisco Liriano Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

LHP - Francisco Liriano

Francisco Liriano Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It's been well-documented that Francisco Liriano has never had back-to-back great seasons. So far in 2014, he has been decent, but definitely not the dominant lefty that he was last season. Much like Morton, Liriano's walks are up, his strikeouts are down and his ground ball percentage is down.

Right Fielders - Jose Tabata and Travis Snider

Jose Tabata Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Right Fielders - Jose Tabata and Travis Snider

Jose Tabata Pittsburgh Pirates
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

While we wait for top prospect Gregory Polanco to be promoted in June, Travis Snider and Jose Tabata are the Pirates' options in right field. So far, neither has shown the ability to play good baseball. Snider is batting .216/.293/.338 with a 82 wRC+ and Tabata is hitting .250/.299/.319 with a wRC+ of 76.

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