Found January 14, 2013 on
Over at FanGraphs, Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections for the 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates have been released. A few of the highlights from the projections.
**Andrew McCutchen is projected to lead the team with a 5.3 WAR. ZiPS has him projected with a .283/.369/.480 line and 24 homers.
**The article points out that McCutchen has been the best player in each of his first four seasons, but that he’s never had more than three teammates with a season WAR of 2.0 or better. ZiPS projects Pedro Alvarez (2.7), Starling Marte (2.6), Russell Martin (2.3), and Neil Walker (2.9) to have a WAR of 2.0 or greater in 2013.
**One notable comp was Starling Marte. ZiPS compared him to Adam Jones. Marte is projected for a .264/.310/.428 line with 11 homer, and a 2.6 WAR.
**Another interesting comp was Pedro Alvarez, who is compared to newly hired Indianapolis hitting coach Mike Pagliarulo. Pagliarulo hit for a .241/.306/.407 line with 134 homers in 4317 plate appearances in the majors. Alvarez is projected for a .236/.313/.451 line with a team-leading 29 homers.
**Out of the corner outfield options, ZiPS has the following OPS projections: Marte (.738), Alex Presley (.727), Travis Snider (.713), Jerry Sands (.698), Jose Tabata (.695), Felix Pie (.694). Presley being second on the list is a surprise, since most (myself included) would probably rank him fifth. Tabata has the second best OBP on the team, behind McCutchen. His OBP is .329, which speaks more to the lack of good OBP options for the Pirates.
**The starting pitching projections don’t look good. Wandy Rodriguez is projected to be the top starter, with a 2.7 WAR and a 3.59 ERA. A.J. Burnett is projected with a 1.5 WAR and a 4.07 ERA. James McDonald (1.2) and Gerrit Cole (1.1) are the only other starters with a WAR over 1.0.
**On the prospect front, Gerrit Cole is projected to have a 4.12 ERA and a 3.89 FIP. Phil Irwin is getting some surprising projections, with a 4.32 ERA and a 4.02 FIP.
**Looking at a notable bounce back candidate, ZiPS projects Mark Melancon to have a 3.47 ERA, a 3.31 FIP, and a 53:17 K/BB ratio in 59.7 IP.
**Jameson Taillon received a Kevin Brown comp. Taillon’s projections aren’t strong, with a 5.97 K/9. a 3.10 BB/9 and a 4.50 ERA/4.35 FIP. Of course I don’t think it’s a guarantee that he’d be ready this year.
BEST OF MAXIM
The Pirates Prospects 2013 Prospect Guide is now on sale. The book features over 250 prospect reports, the 2013 top 50 prospects, and the most comprehensive coverage of the Pirates’ farm system that you can find. While the top 50 prospects are exclusive to the book, we will be releasing the top 20 prospects over the next few weeks. Be sure to purchase your copy of the book on...
MiLB.com held a Q&A with two Pirates prospects, Gregory Polanco and Josh Bell. To read the Q&A, click here. Some of the highlights:
**Polanco mentioned that he’s trying to get stronger, and up to 225 pounds. He says he’s at 220 pounds. He mentioned his goal was to add the “right weight”, which would allow him to add bat speed, arm strength, and velocity...
I am a sucker for guys like Jeff Karstens. And there is no rhyme or reason for the fact. It just is. Perhaps it is because he is a former Yankee and it is a personal habit to follow such creatures once they leave the New York nest. But he left a long time ago. Perhaps it is because he was not drafted until the nineteenth round of the 2003 draft. It is not hard to root for guys who...
Throughout most of the off-season, it seemed inevitable that the Pittsburgh Pirates would trade Joel Hanrahan. There also seemed to be a strong possibility that Garrett Jones could be traded. In both cases we heard plenty of rumors about each player. Both players were due for a raise in arbitration. There was a good reason behind the idea of a trade for each player. But that didn’t...
Today the 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates ZiPS projections were released on FanGraphs. The projections included WAR estimates for every player. It’s difficult to get a season projection out of these results. The playing time for each player isn’t exactly accurate. For example, Clint Barmes, Chase d’Arnaud, Josh Harrison, and Jordy Mercer are all projected for 475+ plate appearances...
In Australian Baseball League action from today, Adelaide won 9-4 behind three RBI’s each from both Stefan Welch and former Pirates outfielder, Quincy Latimore. Welch went 1-for-3, with his seventh double and a run scored. He drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and walked in his other AB. He now has 22 RBI’s on the season. Latimore has eight RBI’s in eight games since joining...
This is nice to see.
Source: #Pirates, RHP Jeff Karstens agree to terms on one-year contract, pending physical
— Bill Brink (@BrinkPG) January 14, 2013
In an off season that has pretty much been the definition of “meh,” this is a move that makes some sense. Jeff Karstens, when healthy has been a very solid pitcher of the previous seasons and the Pirates are in need of some...
Earlier this evening, Jon Morosi reported that the Pittsburgh Pirates were still talking with Francisco Liriano. Morosi followed up with a tweet noting that the Pirates were one of the teams interested in free agent Shaun Marcum.
Shaun Marcum, free agent starter, is drawing interest from Padres, Pirates and Rangers, sources say. @mlbonfox
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 14, 2013...
After back-to-back solid seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Jeff Karstens will return for another year. He hit free agency at the end of last season, but the Pirates have agreed to bring him back on a one-year contract.
According to Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazzette, the Pirates and Karstens agreed yesterday to a one-year deal. Since the terms of the contract...
Almost immediately after I pushed "publish" on that last post, news came across the interwebs that the Pirates had agreed to a one-year deal with Jeff Karstens. Bill Brink at the PG is reporting that it's a one-year deal worth $2.5 million, which you may note is actually $600,000 less than he made with the Pirates last year. A big reason the Pirates non-tendered him...
In general, the arc of winter for a Pirate fan goes like this:
Depression bought about by the end of the season.
Talking yourself into the coming season's team as the front office makes trades and signings.
Release of the ZiPS projections, followed by the crushing realization that upcoming Year Y will be no better than the prior Year X.
Jared Hughes put up solid numbers coming out of the Pirates bullpen in 2012. The right-hander was 2-2 with a 2.85 ERA. Hughes told PiratesDugout.com's George Von Benko that he is looking to evolve into a bigger role this season.
While the Pittsburgh Pirates haven’t had much to celebrate over the last decade, today they can at least be proud that they are getting some good pub.
Andrew McCutchen won a fan vote to be on the cover of MLB The Show 13, he beat out Yankees CC Sabathia, Tigers Miguel Cabrera and Dodgers Matt Kemp.
McCutchen has been one of the best things to happen to the Pirates since 2009. Last...