The Pittsburgh Pirates had their 16th consecutive losing season in 2008. That is the record for any professional sports franchise. The Pittsburgh Pirates auctioned off several of their good players last season but at least they’re pretty good about getting talent in return (talent that they later trade away). Can the Pirates put together a winning season or will it be more of the same.
Major League Baseball 2009 Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates Strengths
The Pittsburgh Pirates biggest strength is youth. There are young players all over the Pittsburgh lineup and rotation. Many of them are pretty promising too but there is a question mark about whether they will actually produce. Andrew McCutcheon, Nate McLouth, Ryan Doumit, Brandon Moss and Andy LaRoche are all younger players the Pirates are hoping to count on.
Major League Baseball 2009 Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates Weaknesses
The Pittsburgh Pirates biggest weakness is also youth. The Pittsburgh Pirates have young players and some of them are pretty talented but they probably won’t develop for a couple of seasons. A couple of seasons from now when they are finally developing they will be traded to the Yankees or Red Sox.
Major League Baseball 2009 Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates Key Player
For the Pittsburgh Pirates’ key player in 2009 I can’t choose between their starting pitchers so I’ll say the entire rotation. Paul Maholm, Ian Snell, Zach Duke and Tom Gorzelanny have all been fantastic for one season and then they just lose it somehow. Paul Maholm had a good bounce back season last year but one or two more starting pitchers will have to play well for the Pittsburgh Pirates to have any hope at a winning season.
Major League Baseball 2009 Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates Sleeper
It’s a pretty well known fact that Nate McLouth is the best player on the Pittsburgh Pirates after a breakthrough season and All-Star appearance. But Adam LaRoche had a batting average, home runs and RBI around the same as Nate McLouth but played 20 less games. If Laroche plays the entire season he could be just as valuable in the Pirates lineup as McLouth.
Major League Baseball 2009 Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates Prediction
I like some of the Pittsburgh Pirates young players and hopefully they develop into everyday Major League Baseball players but I don’t see Andy LaRoche or Brandon Moss becoming any better than above average. The pitching won’t improve that much in 2009 and the Pittsburgh Pirates will finish last in the National League Central.