By Zach Morrison @Zach_Morrison1 on May 8, 2014
The Pittsburgh Pirates are off to a slow start, at just 14-20, but they appear to be turning it around, going 4-2 in their previous six games. Winning the National League Central division seems unlikely at this point, but if they continue to try to win each series, they could find themselves back in the race at some point.
The starting rotation of A.J. Burnett, Francisco Liriano, Gerrit Cole, Charlie Morton and Jeff Locke pitched very well for the better part of 2013. The Pirates are having a decent year on the mound so far, but nowhere near as good as they were last season.
The Pirates hoped to roll with Travis Snider and Jose Tabata in right field until mid-June, but they simply aren't getting enough production to justify leaving top prospect Gregory Polanco in the minors. Snider is hitting .228/.315/.367 and Tabata is hitting .247/.293/.312. Meanwhile, Polanco is hitting a mere .395/.444/.613 at Triple-A.
The Pirates had hopes that Jordy Mercer could build on his impressive 2013 campaign moving forward. However, they should have looked deeper into his stats last season. Against lefties, Mercer hit .410, but he had an unsustainable .418 BABIP. Also, Mercer hit just .247/.297/.357 against right-handers. His early struggles in 2014 shouldn't be too much of a surprise.
Despite a very strong start to the 2014 season, Edinson Volquez is starting to look like the Volquez we are used to seeing. He isn't walking as many batters, with just 2.09 BB/9, but he is still not a good pitcher. In 38.2 innings, the right-handed hurler has a 4.19 ERA and a 4.47 FIP.
After winning the NL MVP in 2013 with a .317/.404/.508 line, Andrew McCutchen is off to an even better start in 2014. In 160 plate appearances, the Pirates' superstar is hitting .321/.431/.519, while also walking in 16.3 percent of his plate appearances.
January 30, 2015 by Pete Schwichtenberg
The Milwaukee Brewers have needed another lefty to add to their bullpen, and here is why Neal Cotts can be that answer. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Pete Schwichtenberg
The White Sox are ready to compete now, but the future is bright, too. Here is a look at their top 10 prospects heading into 2015. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Alex Drude
The Colorado Rockies always need pitching help, and this list is full of them. Coming to a mile-high ballpark near you. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Brad Berreman
The Philadelphia Phillies seem to be willing to trade closer Jonathan Papelbon, maybe the sooner the better. But here's why the Milwaukee Brewers need to stay away. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Christopher Gamble
The Tampa Bay Rays lineup could use some help and Steven Souza could be a nice tonic in 2015. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Brad Faber
See why the Toronto Blue Jays were wise to add Ronald Belisario on a minor league contract. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Michael Terrill
Here's a look at the early prediction for the Milwaukee Brewers' 2015 starting rotation without Yovani Gallardo. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Matt Turner
If the New York Mets wait until the offseason to re-sign Daniel Murphy, it might be too late. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Jordan Wevers
The Halos have nice pitching depth down on the farm right now, but no more Mike Trout's, sadly. I guess players like him don't grow on trees. Read More
January 29, 2015 by Drew Jenkins
The Cleveland Indians could compete in 2015, and these five players could further help their cause. Read More
The San Diego Padres have traded away a wealth of prospects this offseason, but these 10 players still give them some intrigue in their system. Read More
Curtis Granderson, reunited with his old hitting coach, Kevin Long, could be in store for a big year with the New York Mets. Read More