Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bold and semi-bold predictions for the 2010 Pirates and the minors

One of the reasons I started this blog is so that I can go back periodically and re-read my stuff to see what level of idiocy I may/may not have been espousing. No one seems to back-check their opinions on the Interwebs, but I intend to go back and grade these predictions:

1. The Pirates will win 76 games -- OK, I've covered this one in my WAR-based analysis of the team. Give me a +/- of 2 wins on this one. I think the makings of a winning team will start to materialize this season.

2. Robbie Grossman's LH-hitting struggles will continue and he will give up switch hitting -- As a RH hitter his OPS was 897 and his K-rate was 24%. As a LH hitter his OPS was 679 and his K-rate was 40%. I think if the trend continues up to mid-season, he will abandon switch-hitting.

3. Quincy Latimore will continue to show that he is not a prospect -- Admittedly, I seem to have an ax to grind with Latimore. I think it's just that people want so badly for him to be a prospect when in reality he is not even close. His K/BB rate last year was 25%/5% with a .251 BA, 3 steals, and poor defense as a LF. The BB rate will not play as he continues to move up. He is already low on the defensive spectrum. He doesn't make great contact and he's not fast on the bases. Other than that, how was the play, Mrs. Lincoln?

4. Pedro Alvarez will hit .260 with 20 HR's but a 30% K rate in the majors -- Pedro will show us enough to warrant setting the Excitement Meter to 10 in 2011. Cutch-22 spoiled us last year with an electric debut. I think Pedro will be more of a rookie with his struggles, but ready to explode in 2011. Speaking of Cutch-22....

5. Andrew McCutchen will more or less consolidate his gains in 2010 -- I'm not saying he'll have a Sophomore Slump, but rather he will put a similar line to his .286/.365/.471 2009 season. His counting stats will increase proportionally, not exponentially as some are hoping/predicting.

6. Tony Sanchez will put up a season in 2010 that will make Ryan Doumit expendable -- I think Sanchez ends 2010 in Altoona and has a season significant enough to warrant Huntington trading Doumit in the 2010 offseason. Jaramillo will hold the fort in 2011 until Sanchez is ready to come up.

7. Zach Von Rosenburg will fail to live up to the lofty expectations in 2010 -- It actually semi-pained me to type that, but I think his present stuff (high 80's FB, shaky secondary stuff) will get him lit up in full-season ball in 2010. He was always more of a projection than a present-day stud, so I think folks will see sub-par numbers and write him off. Similar to Quinton Miller last year.

8. Diego Moreno and Brock Holt are going to have breakout seasons in 2010 -- Holt seems like a slightly lesser version of Chase D'arnaud to me and you saw how his 2009 season went. I think Moreno is going to be a fast-mover this year and put himself in the prime discussion for a bullpen spot in 2011.

9. John Russell and Neil Huntington both get extensions -- I think NH deserves 3 more years to see his work through. It usually takes 3-4 years to see a draft class come up to the surface so he needs AT LEAST 2011 to see his 2008 class, right? Plus, I have agreed with the concepts of his trades, if not all the pieces received. As for Russell, I'm not thrilled about this part of the prediction, but I think they will give him 2 years (2011/2012) to actually have some impact players to work with and make a go of it. 2 more years of wanting to use a defribrulator on him during his press conferences.

10. Nutting brings in a minor partner to the ownership group -- Unless his will is made of complete iron, I think Nutting hears the natives beating the drums. He will try to appease them by finding a partner willing to infuse a small percentage of cash into the enterprise. It will be a local businessman, not Lemieux/Burkle, that has been out of the public's radar screen.

OK, there you go. 10 predictions. We'll see in October how I did.

No comments:

Post a Comment