Bullpen Report, Week 20: Raising The Jolly Roger In Relief

When your team is battling for a playoff spot, what's the most important thing?  Winning.  Winning out of the bullpen is a thing that is not predictable, I get it, but when your team goes 7-0 from the bullpen in the last 14 games, that is just a damn near beautiful thing if you love bullpens as much as I... I mean, you may not, but that's cool (maybe).  You have your love interests...
Via Razzball
August 20, 2015  |  Discuss

Back to back big ones

All that stuff I talked about on Friday, about how great it feels to see the Pirates pull out late, close games on the road against a good team? Same thing again on Saturday. Just tremendous stuff – we really have seen the Pirates turn it around. Remember when they were winless in extra innings for the first month or so of the season? Now they’re 9-7 in extras, and this was their...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
August 16, 2015  |  Discuss

More Busch Blues

The Pirates lost in St. Louis. That isn’t surprising. They didn’t lose on an extra inning walkoff, like they did in their last three games there. But this was still a one-run loss and blown lead that was similarly frustrating, just like it always seems to be in that ballpark. The most irritating thing is that the Pirates did some good things. They are rarely blown away/totally...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
August 11, 2015  |  Discuss

Breathing room

Tuesday night’s loss was miserable, but this win was pretty much the opposite in terms of fun. Long balls, some drama, clutch hits, big crowd getting fired up, etc. And it was an important win, too – a two game mini sweep would not have been a crisis, but it would have put the Cubs within two of the Pirates for that first wild card spot. Now it’s a four game difference as the...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
August 06, 2015  |  Discuss

Pittsburgh Pirates trade rumors: Kevin Jepsen edition

Over the past few weeks fans of the Pittsburgh Pirates know that one of the main problems for this year’s team is an average bullpen. The back end of this bullpen is solid featuring Mark Melancon, Tony Watson and even Jared Hughes. As for the rest of the bullpen, they have shown inconsistency and cannot be relied on in clutch situations. Vance Worley, Antonio Bastardo, Arquimedes...
Via isportsweb.com
July 25, 2015  |  Discuss

At long last

It took them a loooong while to do it this season, and it certainly took a loooong while tonight, but the Pirates finally managed to win an extra inning game on the road. Aside from the lack of sleep that comes as a result, wins like that feel pretty great, and this was no exception. Had the Pirates lost, the story would have been about how Gerrit Cole and Tony Watson couldn’t...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
July 01, 2015  |  Discuss

A more significant sweep

These Pirates already had a couple of sweeps to their credit this season – against the Mets, Marlins, Brewers, and DBacks. They also had a couple of road series wins: the DBacks sweep, and 2 of 3 from the Brewers. This one meant a little more. Sure, the Giants are the defending champs, but to get a road sweep against one of the better teams in the league is big…it really shows...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
June 04, 2015  |  Discuss

Pittsburgh Pirates questionable coaching decisions

Manager Clint Hurdle and his coaching staff have done an exceptional job turning this franchise around over the past few seasons, but some of his decisions regarding the pitching staff can be baffling at times. One of those choices cost the Pirates their 7th consecutive win Friday night in San Diego. Every team monitors their starting pitchers pitch count, but it appears the Pirates...
Via isportsweb.com
May 31, 2015  |  Discuss

Wild way to end a streak

Well….if you went to sleep with the Pirates ahead 2-0 and looking good yet again, you certainly got an unpleasant surprise this morning. The offense completely stopped producing, Jared Hughes lost the lead, and then in the ninth, Rob Scahill set himself up for disaster, nearly escaped it, then indeed suffered a disaster: a two out walk off grand slam. Normally you wouldn’t...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
May 30, 2015  |  Discuss

Pirates TWIBB Notes for Week of 5-18-15 to 5-24-15

Here are your This Week in Buccos Baseball Notes for 5/18/15 thru 5/24/15, the 7th week of the Pittsburgh Pirates 2015 regular season.   Weekly result: 3 Wins and 2 Losses, 29 Runs Scored and 16 Runs Allowed.   Hero of the week: Andrew McCutchen. McCutchen was 9 for 20 and jacked three homers into the stands at PNC Park this week. Enough said.   Zero of the week: Neil Walker...
Via Hidden Vigorish
May 25, 2015  |  Discuss

Watch: Twins' Hicks reaches base after Pirates pitcher kicks ball away

Twins outfielder Aaron Hicks got his seventh hit in as many games Tuesday, but it came in a very strange way. Hicks chopped the ball a few feet down the first base line and Pirates reliever Jared Hughes ran to field it, but failed miserably when he accidentally kicked the ball, sending it flying into foul territory. While it was an embarrassing moment for Hughes, it could have been...
Via Fox Sports
May 20, 2015  |  Discuss

Business trip to Philly

As I mentioned in Sunday’s wrap-up, the Pirates have a chance to really get on a roll this week. They rode high in to Philly after taking a series from the best team in baseball, and now they get to throw their top three pitchers in a row at one of the worst teams in baseball. Monday’s series opener wasn’t quite as easy as I would have liked given those circumstances, but a...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
May 11, 2015  |  Discuss

Game 19: Pirates 8 Diamondbacks 0

Last Tuesday, the Pirates lost to the Cubs with a second straight bullpen meltdown. They were 6-8 with five wins against the Brewers, who have managed to become an MLB punchline faster than any team in recent memory. Since then, they’ve torn off five straight wins against the Cubs and Diamondbacks. This weekend, they swept the Diamondbacks by a combined scored of 14-2. They’ve...
April 26, 2015  |  Discuss

Swept the snakes

If you think back to last year, the Pirates had some serious trouble putting away sweeps. They didn’t get one until sweeping Philly early July, despite numerous chances after winning the first two games of a series. They also did not put together a five game win streak until their red-hot September that vaulted them into a playoff spot. Well, now the Pirates already have two...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
April 26, 2015  |  Discuss

Pirates TWIBB Notes for Week of 4-13-15 to 4-19-15

Here are your This Week in Buccos Baseball Notes for 4/13/15 thru 4/19/15, the 2nd week of the Pittsburgh Pirates 2015 regular season.   Weekly result: 4 Wins and 2 Loss, 22 Runs Scored and 14 Runs Allowed   Hero of the week: Gerrit Cole started the week by holding the red hot Detroit Tigers to just 1 hit in the first 6 innings on Opening Day at PNC Park. Cole would run into trouble...
Via Hidden Vigorish
April 20, 2015  |  Discuss

It’s April and the Pirates can’t hit again

Welp, stop me if you’ve heard that one before. I am still very confident that this is a good offense. A couple of awful games doesn’t change that. They are in a slump. A quick look at some of the averages for guys with legit track records will tell you right away that this won’t last long: Not great. pic.twitter.com/PCF6YLwgm0 — Brian McElhinny (@rtjr) April 16, 2015 Regardless...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
April 15, 2015  |  Discuss

Game 7: Pirates 5 Tigers 4

It’s hard to imagine a more picturesque afternoon at PNC Park than this one: Josh Harrison hit the first pitch in the bottom of the first over the fence, Gerrit Cole kept the Tigers off balance for six innings with a fastball that averaged 97 mph and a ton of swinging strikes on his off-speed pitches (PitchFX says that he threw 22 sliders/curves (though I guess one of those might...
April 13, 2015  |  Discuss

Home Opener wrap-up: That was fun

Pirates home openers have gone pretty well lately. Last year’s ended on a home run (by Neil Walker). This year’s started with a home run (by Josh Harrison). Mix in some absolutely spectacular weather and an optimistic, sold-out crowd that made for yet another wonderful scene on the North Shore…and it really doesn’t get any better. For a while it looked like the Pirates would...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
April 13, 2015  |  Discuss

Heading home happy

What might have been heading for a poor finish to a bad opening week turned around drastically on Sunday, and all of a sudden 2-4 feels a lot better considering it includes a series win at Miller Park heading into the home opener. Casey Sadler did an admirable job filling in for Francisco Liriano, going five and allowing just a two run shot to Carlos Gomez. The Pirates looked like...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
April 12, 2015  |  Discuss

Bucs are on the board

Raise it for the first time in 2015!! #RTJR — Greg Brown (@gbrowniepoints) April 11, 2015 It took a while, and nobody in Pittsburgh was able to see it (thanks, Root Sports / ridiculous MLB blackout rules), but the Pirates picked up their first win in solid fashion – a good night at the plate, on the mound, and in the field. The Brewers remain winless. Jeff Locke, who always...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
April 11, 2015  |  Discuss

News and notes: Roster taking shape, Polanco, Bryant

With John Holdzkom being assigned to Indy on Tuesday, there are only two decisions left to be made regarding the Pirates’€™ opening day roster. It’s Jared Hughes vs. Stolmy Pimentel for the last bullpen spot, and a three way battle between Jaff Decker, Pedro Florimon, and Andrew Lambo for the final bench spot. In the bullpen, either Hughes or Holdzkom was going to have to...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
March 31, 2015  |  Discuss

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin visit Pirates camp

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) Steelers coach Mike Tomlin was very impressed with the Pittsburgh Pirates' Andrew McCutchen and Jared Hughes. He even spent some of his visit to the Pirates' spring training camp Monday jokingly trying to persuade the two to play at the other stadium in Pittsburgh. Tomlin lobbied Jared Hughes, a 6-foot-7 reliever, to consider playing tight end. He had a more...
Via AP on Fox
March 30, 2015  |  Discuss

Stolmy Pimentel < 500

The Stolmy Pimentel Story is a pretty straightforward in 2015. He had a rough go of 2014 and spent time bouncing between the bullpen and the disabled list, because he was out of options. The Pirates wanted to hang on to him at all costs, though, because in the 32 2/3 innings that he did pitch with the Pirates, he struck out 38 hitters and threw his fastball 93.3 mph on average. The...
March 10, 2015  |  Discuss

Some Sunday morning reading

I haven’t written a whole ton about Spring Training, so let’s take a Sunday to get caught up on some reading about what’s going on in and around the Pirates thus far in camp. David Todd has an excellent interview with Jim Benedict up at Bucs Dugout, which you can listen to or read. There’s lots of interesting stuff there, from him watching John Holdzkom throw in AA last year...
March 08, 2015  |  Discuss

Jared Hughes < 500

This is what I think is great about Jared Hughes: there’s an awfully good chance that he’s walking proof that the Pirates’ front office is a step ahead of most analysis about the relationship between pitching and defense. Over the course of his Pirate career, Hughes has pitched in 170 games and thrown 183 innings. He’s struck out 119 batters and he’s walked 61. He keeps...
February 19, 2015  |  Discuss
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