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Blog Entry

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

Posted on: November 26, 2011 1:46 pm
 
Jose Bautista

By C. Trent Rosecrans


What if players were only permitted to stay with the team that originally made them a professional? No trades, no Rule-5 Draft, no waivers, no minor- or major-league free agency ... once you are a professional baseball player, you stay in that organization. This series shows how all 30 teams would look. We give you: Homegrown teams.

In 2011 the Pirates extended their streak of losing seasons to 19, finishing 72-90 after a promising start. However, there are signs of the team finally putting it together, with much of their talent coming from within the organization. Andrew McCutchen and Neil Walker are among the future stars the team has drafted and kept. If Pittsburgh had been able to keep a couple more of its homegrown players, the Pirates could at the very least be looking at fielding a winning team.

Lineup

1. Andrew McCutchen, CF
2. Neil Walker, 2B
3. Jose Bautista, RF
4. Aramis Ramirez, 3B
5. Ryan Doumit, 1B
6. Jeff Keppinger, SS
7. Ronny Paulino, C
8. Nyjer Morgan, LF

Starting Rotation

1. Paul Maholm
2. Bronson Arroyo
3. Tom Gorzelanny
4. Brad Lincoln
5. Chris Young

Bullpen

Closer - Juan Oviedo (Leo Nunez)
Set up - Matt Capps, Mike Gonzlaez, John Grabow, Sean Burnett, Tony Watson
Long - Tim Wakefield, Zack Duke

Notable Bench Players

Pedro Alvarez, Rajai Davis, Brent Lillibridge, Nate McLouth, Alex Presley

What's Good?

The top of the lineup is the envy of just about any organization -- there's speed at the top and power throughout the first four batters. Jose Bautista will forever be the one that got away, but not just for the Pirates, who drafted him in 2000, but also for the Orioles, Rays, Royals and Mets, who all acquired -- a got rid of -- Bautista at some point. But still, the Pirates had him twice and are now watching him blossom as one of the game's best players while in a different uniform. In addition to the top of the lineup, the bottom of the lineup isn't too bad, while the bullpen is stout. 

What's Not?

The rotation isn't going to intimidate too many batters, but the team will put up some runs and leads have a good chance of being held with that bullpen. Keppinger is a solid bat and makes all the plays in front of him, but doesn't quite have the range most teams look for at shortstop. He can play there, but it isn't an ideal spot.

Comparison to real 2011

The Pirates rotation overachieved in the first half of 2011 and flopped in the second -- as Pittsburgh went 25-47 after finding themselves trailing by just a game in the NL Central at the All-Star break. While this lineup would put up more runs, its starters would allow more. That said, the improved lineup and bullpen would be good for several more wins and probably even give the team a winning record. 

Up next: Chicago Cubs

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Comments

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: December 24, 2011 5:56 am
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

kash you are wrong in many ways. First off the Pirates have lost plenty of guys who had success afterwards. Bautista, Neagle, Bonds, Schmidt, Rincon, Capps, Leiber, Ramirez, etc. Secondly even if the NFL didn't have a cap it would never have the seperation that MLB sees, mainly because the draft can effect your team more rapidly than in any other sport, plus the Steelers have been a hot ticket and a top merchandise seller since the 70's, even through their poor decade in the 80's. Regardless of the disadvantages the Pirates have been so bad more because of bad management than anything else, the Steelers would be ran the same way regardless of the cap. On top of all that even with the cap the Steelers are always one of the higher spending teams, add a cap to MLB and the Pirates would still spend as little as possible.



Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: November 28, 2011 3:22 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

I agree the current Pirate team is better than that hypothetical one.  Sure they let ARam get away, but their current pitching staff is way better than the one above - Bronson Arroyo is done.  Tom Gorzellany? Matt Crapps?  Zack Duke?




Since: Nov 19, 2011
Posted on: November 27, 2011 11:02 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

Pirates could be so good. Freddy Sanchez Neil Walker Andrew Mccutchen, and Jose Butista would tear it up. That could be a world Series team, if they stayed. I love the pirates, and next year the young pitchers must be used to pitching a full season. That is key!



Since: Apr 15, 2008
Posted on: November 27, 2011 6:26 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

McCutchen was a Yankee prospect.  He was acquired during the Nady deal.  Big error by writers of this Homegrown team report.
Daniel McCutchen was a Yankee prospect not Andrew, Pirates drafted him in first round out of high school in Florida
is correct, Andrew McCutchen was drafted 11th overall in the 2005 draft by the Pirates.

@ Daniel McCutchen was involved in the trade for Nady, he was drafted by the Yankees in the 13th round , 404th overall. 

One guy is white, a pitcher.. the other guy is black and an outfielder..lol



Since: Apr 15, 2008
Posted on: November 27, 2011 6:19 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

SkyKawk is an absolute moron.  What a ridiculous thought process.  Figures he's a Sens fan.  The guy probably has a lower IQ than Chris Neil.
Sorry folks , not trying to clog the article up with hockey talk but I just had to say one thing.....

The Senators have fans? 



Since: Dec 8, 2008
Posted on: November 27, 2011 6:09 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

Daniel McCutchen was a Yankee prospect not Andrew, Pirates drafted him in first round out of high school in Florida



Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: November 27, 2011 5:55 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

McCutchen was a Yankee prospect.  He was acquired during the Nady deal.  Big error by writers of this Homegrown team report.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: November 27, 2011 5:16 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

SkyKawk is an absolute moron.  What a ridiculous thought process.  Figures he's a Sens fan.
Spoken like a true Leafs fan, can't answer the argument so you don't even try. There's a reason Buffalo has become a bigger rival.



Since: Oct 18, 2007
Posted on: November 27, 2011 4:48 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

Honestly, I'll take the current Pirates over these Pirates. Jose Bautista was a fringe starter here that looked like a bench player. If the Blue Jays thought he'd be good he would have drawn more than Robinson Diaz. Aramis Ramirez was a terrible trade, no doubt. Ronny Paulino had a great rookie season and just regressed every year since.



Since: Apr 15, 2008
Posted on: November 27, 2011 2:46 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Pittsburgh Pirates

I see a ridiculous spike in home runs from a guy who had never shown that power before. And honestly, it wouldn't shock me if Jacoby Ellsbury was juicing too, he's never been a home run threat and suddenly hits 32 homers this past year. Prior to this year, Jacoby Ellsbury didn't have 32 home runs in eight professional seasons in the minors and majors. It's tougher to make that accusation with him because he plays in a park where cheap home runs are very possible and Bautista does not, but yeah, I wouldn't be surprised.

All the evidence with Bautista points to drugs. That's my guess and I'm sticking to it. By the way, I've seen a lot of high school and college baseball. I know you're exaggerating. Most players that age cannot hit huge bombs, and when they do hit one that deep, it's because of the aluminum bat.

Your going to sit here and tell me Bautista has never been tested over the past two seasons? Gimme a damn break. It has nothing to do with size, it has everything to do with technique.

You said it right though "that's my guess". Like me guessing what days it might snow in December.  


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