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 Post subject: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 11:18 am 
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As I see it the Pittsburgh Pirates 2014 season began on Friday May 2, with the exciting two homers in the ninth comeback win against the Blue Jays, after three weeks of playing lousy, uninspired extended spring training baseball.

Going into that game they were 8 games under .500 the low water mark of the season, touched on once since then. Since then they have gone 18-12, exactly .600 ball. Let's see how the rest of the season plays out at various percentages with 104 games to play.

.600 ball will yield 90 wins, serious wild card contender, may even be in line for the division if the Brewers come back to earth.

.575 ball will result in 88 wins, probably solid for the second wild card.

.550 ball sees them @ 85 wins, a nice solid still above .500 season to build on.

.525 ball.........83 wins, Hey at least we don't have to hear the jokes about starting another 20 year under .500 streak. HA HA.

Is the team capable of playing around the .600 mark? There are many factors in play:

1. Gregory Polanco should, hopefully give the offense and defense a major boost.
2. Liriano finds his "last year" rhythm, which seems to be happening.
3. Grilli settles back into the role of closer. (also signs of progress)
4. Marte and Mercer figure things out and get back to last year level.
5. Some young pitching help arrives or a deadline trade.
6. They have the chance to make some serious noise in June. After the Brewers series they have seven with Cubs and four with the Mets, not to mention the "about to throw in the towel" Rays, the Fish and the Reds, not exactly the Tigers and the As. A nice 15-5 run through that stretch, putting them comfortably above .500 and who knows>

All told, I see them staying competitive, staying in striking distance of the second wild card into September. PNC Park should be rocking still after Labor Day.

I see 86-87 wins, and a nice building block season.

Go Bucs


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 11:52 am 
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Wow- that tells you what a hole they dug to begin the year. They can play .600 ball from May 2 on and just win 90 games. I hope that's possible- I think it will take at least 90 wins to get the second wild card. We will definitely need to acquire another solid starter to make this run, I believe.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:07 pm 
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13-19. That's the Pirates record against the NL Central. That number has to reverse. Need to play better against the Brewers,Cards and Reds. That will determine our fate.

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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:17 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
Wow- that tells you what a hole they dug to begin the year. They can play .600 ball from May 2 on and just win 90 games. I hope that's possible- I think it will take at least 90 wins to get the second wild card. We will definitely need to acquire another solid starter to make this run, I believe.



I saw an interesting thing the other day. Last year the Bucs were 14-5 after their poor start to the season (1-5, including the sweep by the Dodgers). This year it was almost an exact reversal of that, going 4-14 over that putrid 3 week stretch this year.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:43 pm 
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bucco boy wrote:
13-19. That's the Pirates record against the NL Central. That number has to reverse. Need to play better against the Brewers,Cards and Reds. That will determine our fate.


To be fair, they're 2-8 against the Brewers, 5-4 against the Cards, 3-5 against the Reds, and 4-2 against the Cubs. And we've been "unlucky" to get Cueto twice. As usual, the big problem is Milwaukee.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:43 pm 
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bucco boy wrote:
13-19. That's the Pirates record against the NL Central. That number has to reverse. Need to play better against the Brewers,Cards and Reds. That will determine our fate.


The Pirates actually have a winning record against the Cardinals. It's just the Reds & Brewers that have been killing the team. Big series this weekend. Just taking 2/3 would be HUGE.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:59 pm 
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RTJR wrote:
bucco boy wrote:
13-19. That's the Pirates record against the NL Central. That number has to reverse. Need to play better against the Brewers,Cards and Reds. That will determine our fate.


To be fair, they're 2-8 against the Brewers, 5-4 against the Cards, 3-5 against the Reds, and 4-2 against the Cubs. And we've been "unlucky" to get Cueto twice. As usual, the big problem is Milwaukee.


And, as usual, the big problem has been Braun. Like it or not.

Gonna be a big series this weekend.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 1:21 pm 
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Corsair wrote:
1. Gregory Polanco should, hopefully give the offense and defense a major boost.
2. Liriano finds his "last year" rhythm, which seems to be happening.
3. Grilli settles back into the role of closer. (also signs of progress)
4. Marte and Mercer figure things out and get back to last year level.
5. Some young pitching help arrives or a deadline trade.
6. They have the chance to make some serious noise in June. After the Brewers series they have seven with Cubs and four with the Mets, not to mention the "about to throw in the towel" Rays, the Fish and the Reds, not exactly the Tigers and the As. A nice 15-5 run through that stretch, putting them comfortably above .500 and who knows>


1. Yep
2. I'm not confident that he'll be that good, but anything closer to it should be good enough.
3. Yep
4. Mercer maybe. Marte? Yikes. It would be nice.
5. Other than Locke (*gulp*) and maybe Kingham, who else do the Bucs have to bring up? Worley maybe? And does anyone know who might be available in terms of tradable arms?
6. Just survive the Brewers! :D

Great post. Love the optimism and analysis!

Go Bucs!

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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 1:30 pm 
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Tell me we don't get Gallardo again. Cole will not be available. Still, 2 out of 3 is a must.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 1:34 pm 
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Cole would pitch Sunday, wouldn't he?


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 2:26 pm 
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If they skip Cumpton's turn, I guess he would. I say do it.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 3:04 pm 
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The way they're playing right now they could easily play over .600 ball the rest of the way. We just took 3 of 4 in LA and 2 out of 3 so far in SD. Both places we always have problems at. Very good sign. 2 out of 3 from Brewers this weekend will be a very good indicator. If Liriano can just get a "little" better not even his 2013 form and Cumpton can do anything better than Wandy - with the arrival of Polanco we could be unstoppable. That's my typical optimistic opinion. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 3:55 pm 
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Gallardo had his ass kicked his last start, K-Rod is reverting to form. Those two had ridiculously fortunate starts, particularly given their eminently mediocre stuff. Gallardo has a 4.87 FIP and is benefitting from a BAPIP of just .264. Meanwhile, K-Rod has benefitted from an 87% strand rate and a BABIP of .242.

That stuff does not last. The BABIP gods do not play favorites.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:05 pm 
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But Gallardo has always killed us...no matter how he is going against the rest of the league.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:14 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
But Gallardo has always killed us...no matter how he is going against the rest of the league.

He killed the Pirates - and the rest of the NL - because he was good. He no longer is.


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 2:15 am 
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Update: 6-4 in the last 10 for 24-16 since the season started on May 2. Exactly .600, still on pace to win 90 games. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 11:44 am 
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5. Other than Locke (*gulp*) and maybe Kingham, who else do the Bucs have to bring up? Worley maybe? And does anyone know who might be available in terms of tradable arms?

...What about Casey Sadler?
Stats -> http://www.milb.com/milb/stats/stats.js ... pid=594987

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 Post subject: Re: Playing the Percentages.....
PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 11:28 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
Wow- that tells you what a hole they dug to begin the year. They can play .600 ball from May 2 on and just win 90 games. I hope that's possible- I think it will take at least 90 wins to get the second wild card. We will definitely need to acquire another solid starter to make this run, I believe.

It's not going to tank anything like 90 wins to get the second wild card. If the season ended today, the wild cards would go to St. Louis and LA. The Cards are playing at an 86 win pace and the Dodgers 84. Out of the other contenders, Washington is pretty good. Atlanta is in first right now, but they don't impress me. I think that Miami, Cincy and Colorado just aren't that good. I worry about St. Louis, LA or Washington getting hot, but I'm nowhere near as worried that two of them will do it. I'm guessing that 88 wins will do the job, maybe even a little less. I don't know that the Pirates will be the team will get that many, but i like their chances if the can just get their rotation healthy.

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