The Pittsburgh Sports Forum is are looking for Writers/Bloggers to help in providing quality Original Content ......Read More
The BEST Pittsburgh Pirates Podcast on the internet! Check out The Pirates Forum often for new installments from Tom Smith, Cocktailsfor2 and Adam of Rumbunter.com for new Podcasts. ...Read More
You're a click away from entering the Pittsburgh Sports Forum Message Boards. Make the Click and join in the discussion... ...Read More
|Jolly Roger.png... [Read More]
Fans asked, and they received....a new shiny podcast for your listening pleasure. Want to get the heads up as to what I'm spouting off at the mouth about today? WELL, see below for a list of everything I discuss in chronological order.
- Steelers -
Time to Put Up and Shut Up
Expectations for this Season
- Penguins -
Horrible End to Season
Where do the Pens Go From Here?
Bylsma and Malkin Extended
Fleury Gets Boost While Vokoun Gets Pooped On
Letang and the other UFA
- Pirates -
The weakest position in the Pirates lineup is clearly shortstop. Clint Barmes began the year as the starter but recently has been yielding playing time to Jordy Mercer. When it comes to the fan base Mercer is the popular choice to handle the shortstop duties because he has a better stick but once you factor in defensive values most metrics say there is likely to be at most one quarter of a win difference between the two over the remainder of the season. That is really insignificant.
The bottom line here is that neither player is really a good option. Teams usually aren't going to have great options at every position but they need to be a little bit more attractive than what the Pirates currently have. Take RF for example, that is probably the Pirates 2nd biggest weakness currently but Snider, Tabata and Sands are all at least interesting players who have the potential to be good options. Barmes and Mercer on the other hand are like Alex Presley a perfectly acceptable bench option but not exactly someone you want to count on starting everyday. The solution is to upgrade the position but that is unlikely to happen this year. The potential trade market for shortstops looks pretty barren with the only attractive potential options being Jimmy Rollins and Alexi Ramirez. It can't even be assumed that the Phillies or White Sox will sell but if they don't the market only gets worse. A guy like Nick Punto from the Dodgers interests me but that is more due to his ability to play 2B and 3B and hit lefties well as he is no longer an everyday shortstop option.
So fixing the spot by trade is unlikely to happen. That leaves internal options but outside of Mercer and Barmes the only other real option is Chase d'Arnaud and he really is just more of the same. He has some nice tools but overall really isn't starting material. Josh Harrison and Ivan De Jesus are also down in AAA but they are like Garrett Jones and Brandon Inge are in the outfield. Guys who can sort of play the position but who you don't want there for an extended time period. Realistically upgrading the shortstop position this season either externally or internally isn't going to happen.
That leaves us with Mercer and Barmes as really the only options. There are compelling cases for each one. The best case for Barmes is that he probably isn't really as bad at the plate as he has been so far this season. He got off to a terrible start at the plate last season and... [Read More]
We sat down to chat with NH for 15 minutes yesterday...
About 40 minutes later, we had the longest interview we've ever done with the Pirates' GM, and the most information we've ever had packed into one episode!
HERE YOU GO: http://rumbunter.com/2013/06/15/pitt...is-hands-full/
As always, your feedback and comments are greatly appreciated!
AJ Burnett, Wandy Rodriguez, Jeff Locke, Francisco Liriano, and Jeanmar Gomez: 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitching rotation.
~Gomez begins his rehab assignment today in AAA Indy. Rodriguez is currently on the 15 day DL. Both are having forearm issues.
So the looming question is: When all these guys are healthy, who’s going to make the cut to start, and who’s gonna go to the Shark Tank? I played a little “ask the expert bloggers” today again with @jdunio and @campbellsproul to get their thoughts. Not as funny as last time because I wanted real answers and opinions this time.
Justin and Campbell’s predictions were pretty much in line with my thinking. If Gerrit Cole continues to do well, Morton will go to the bullpen, along with Gomez. If things with Cole don’t pan out, he’ll most likely go back to Indy. Rodriguez deserves his starting spot. We think the Pirates are moving towards a starting rotation of Burnett, Locke, Cole, Rodriguez, and Liriano. Campbell says Gomez isn’t a long term solution. Justin said its good that we have options, presumably in case of injuries.
... [Read More]
I know it’s early but I opted to take a short break in my usual baseball oriented world and take a look at the current Steelers roster. The roster currently includes 90 names but in just a few short months that number is going to have to be trimmed to 53. Now I would be shocked if that final 53 man roster did not include at least one player who is not currently on the 90 man roster but for the most part the final roster is indeed going to be made up of this group. So let's take a look at where things currently stand.
Secure Job: Ben Roethlisberger, Bruce Gradkowski, Landry Jones
Long Shot: John Parker Wilson
The quarterback position seems fairly settled at this point. Barring injury Roethlisberger will obviously be the starter. Gradkowski was brought in to be Ben's primary backup and Jones was drafted to groom as the eventual backup. Very little is likely to disturb that trio. John Parker Wilson remains on the roster most likely as a camp arm.
Secure Job: Le'Veon Bell
Competing: Jonathan Dwyer, Isaac Redman, Barron Batch, LaRod Stephens-Howling
Long Shot: Curtis McNeal
The running back position remains largely unsettled. The only player I feel confident in saying has a secure spot on the team is second round pick Le'Veon Bell. Beyond that I imagine the Steelers will carry 3 additional running backs most likely from the Dwyer, Redman, Batch and Stephens-Howling group. Stephens-Howling would seem to have a slight edge because of his return ability but I could see any one of the other 3 being let go. One of Redman or Dwyer will likely be kept as either the starting running back to begin the season or at minimum in a time share with Bell. Batch provides a good change of pace but the results just haven't been there and in addition to returning Stephens-Howling can do a lot of what Batch does. Even Curtis McNeal who I classify as a long shot mostly because of the logjam in front of him could factor into this discussion.
Secure Spot: Antonio Brown, Emmanuel Sanders, Jericho Cotchery, Markus Wheaton
Competing: Justin Brown, Plaxico Burress, Reggie Dunn, David Gilreath
Long Shot: Kashif Moore, Derek Moye, J.D. Woods
With the departure of Wallace it should be pretty clear that Brown and Sanders are the obvious starters. Beyond them the steady... [Read More]