Thursday, April 22, 2010

Same Ol'

Nothing new today - Pirate starting pitching was rocked (three homers), Pirate hitting was non-existant (four hits, 13 Ks), and Pittsburgh took it on the chin again, 7-0. All seven of the Pirates' losses this season have come by a margin of six runs or more.

Looks like it'll be a fairly continuing saga. Reminds us of 2008, when the pitching was so terrible that the entire staffs in Pittsburgh and Indy were basically dismantled.

It also makes us wonder about Pirate player evaluation skills. They reached for super-star potential with Bryan Morris, Chris Hansen, Charlie Morton, and Kevin Hart instead of opting for major-league ready arms with less upside but more consistancy.

It's early to tell (pitchers have notoriously difficult-to-predict development schedules), but it sure doesn't seem to be playing out as planned. Let's hope that it doesn't take a 2008 demo job to rebuild the pitching again.

-- Daniel McCutchen takes the mound for the get-away game with the Brew Crew, as he tries to salvage a game against Randy Wolf. It's hard to tell if he or the team needs a strong performance more; both could sure use one.

-- The Bucs made a move yesterday in response to Bobby Crosby's arm soreness and Andy LaRoche's stiff back, sending Brian Burres back to Indy and bringing up good glove, no hit shortstop Argenis Diaz. With LaRoche and Crosby out, Cedeno is the only shortstop and Delwyn Young the last man standing at third base.

Aki Iwamura is out of the hot corner mix; apparently the brass feel that moving him would create too much confusion in the infield (and they're right) even though he was an All-Star third baseman in Japan.

If LaRoche and Crosby are ready by the weekend, as expected, Diaz will likely be sent down on Saturday when the Pirates need to add a starter from Indy.

-- With two more hits in Indianapolis' game on Wednesday, Steve Pearce bumped his season average to .404. The first baseman has 12 extra-base hits in 13 games, with 2 HR and 6 RBI. As you can see by the RBI total, he's just 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position; guess it affects everyone in the organization, not just the big team.

-- Speaking of player evaluations, Matt Capps has a league-leading seven saves for the Nats, although he's still a tightrope artist. Eight's his magic number - innings, hits, walks - and his ERA is 1.08.

How could the Pirates have misread his value so badly as to let him go for nothing?

-- More player evaluation? Ted Lilly is rejoining the Cubs rotation, so Carlos Zambrano is going to the pen. So Tom Gorzelanny remains a starter, bumping Zambrano. Who'd thunk it?

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