The Pittsburgh Pirates once again were the laughingstocks of baseball in 2010, as they finished dead last in the NL Central with a 57-105 record. Clint Hurdle was brought in during the offseason as the new manager in hopes of finally sparking this team to show some progress. Despite the team’s continued malaise, the Pirates actually have some interesting names for 2011 fantasy baseball, with one or two possibly being of star caliber.
In “30 Teams in 30 Days,” the Fantasy Baseball Cafe will preview each team in Major League Baseball on a daily basis. In addition to projecting starting lineups, rotations and closing situations, the Cafe will identify potential targets for 2011 fantasy baseball drafts.
|C Chris Snyder||.169||.268||.298||12||5||16||0||124|
|1B Lyle Overbay||.243||.329||.443||75||20||67||1||534||w/TOR|
|2B Neil Walker||.296||.349||.462||57||12||66||2||426|
|SS Ronny Cedeno||.256||.293||.382||42||8||38||12||468|
|3B Pedro Alvarez||.256||.326||.461||42||16||64||0||347|
|LF Jose Tabata||.299||.346||.400||61||4||35||19||405|
|CF Andrew McCutchen||.286||.365||.449||94||16||56||33||570|
|RF Garrett Jones||.247||.306||.414||64||21||86||7||592|
Unsettled: There could be a lot of daily shuffling in the lineup as Ryan Doumit should spell Garrett Jones in right when a lefty is pitching and also could split time behind the plate with Snyder. Other than that, the lineup actually looks pretty set, which doesn’t speak to how weak it really is.
Target: McCutchen is the guy to go all-in on here, as the Carl Crawford comparisons are right on. If he bats third as expected, the RBIs will get a nice boost and add to continued strong showings in steals and runs. The power is on the rise too, so this is a true five-category producer. The other big fish is Alvarez, who gets added value since he plays the very shallow third base position. The competition will be fierce for this slugger and the ability to hit 30 home runs could arrive quickly here. In additon to those two, Tabata is a nice lat round steals grab with the potential to add a few homers to the ledger, and Walker is a serviceable second base who will give you solid but not spectacular all-around digits.
|Paul Maholm (L)||9-15||5.10||1.56||102||62||185.1|
|Ross Ohlendorf (R)||1-11||4.07||1.38||79||44||108.1|
|James McDonald (R)||4-6||4.02||1.38||68||29||64|
|Kevin Correia (R)||10-10||5.40||1.49||115||65||145|
|Scott Olsen (L)||4-8||5.56||1.48||53||27||81|
Unsettled: Like with any team, the back end of the rotation could be up for grabs as Brad Lincoln and Scott Olsen figure to battle it out for the position. Look for Olsen to win this battle easily, as he showed some nice signs in his return to semi-health last season.
Target: There is really nothing to look at here other than a sleeper pick of James McDonald. The rest of the rotation is pure garbage and is not for the faint of heart. McDonald is intriguing as he has a nice K-rate, but a high walk rate could counteract that positive.
The 8th and 9th Innings
|Joel Hanrahan (R)||6||3.62||1.21||100||26||72|
|Evan Meek (R)||4||2.14||1.05||70||31||80|
Chasing Saves: Word out of Pittsburgh this week was that manager Clint Hurdle had already decided on who would be the closer between Evan Meek and Joel Hanrahan and that it would be revealed at the start of camp. My money is on Hanrahan, who was very good all last season and has the high K-rate suitable for the gig.
It is going to be another ugly season for the Pirates in 2011 despite the exciting young pieces they have in the lineup. The pitching staff could be the worst in the majors, and yet another season in the cellar is likely.
Check back tomorrow for our look at the Milwaukee Brewers.
Founder and creater of www.thefantasysportsboss.com which is your one-spot stop for all your fantasy sports needs.
Want to write for the Cafe? Check out the Cafe's Pencil & Paper section!