Pirates v. Cardinals NLDS series preview

Pirates Depth Chart – (RH/LH/Switch)

Cardinals Depth Chart – (RH/LH/Switch)

In the Wild Card game we saw the Pirates exploit an extreme strength of theirs which just happened to turn the Reds best assets into liabilities. Liriano is death on lefties in 2013 and the Reds’ best hitters work from the left side. Votto, Bruce and Choo went cold and the Pirates cruised to their first playoff victory since 1992.… Click here to read the rest

Players to Watch, NL Central

On Monday, I widened my scope on baseball and listed some players to watch for the NL West. Today, I’m gonna run down the not-too-highly-regarded National League Central Division. Despite producing a World Series winner recently–the 2006 Cardinals–fans, especially those of the AL East tend to think of the NL Central as one of the weakest divisions in the game. Regardless, there’s still some good talent there.

Let’s start, as we did with the NL West, with the 2009 division winner, the Cardinals. The guy we need to watch here is rather obvious: Colby Rasmus. As a rookie in ’09, he put up “meh” numbers at the plate overall–a .311 wOBA–but his IsoP was a respectable .156. His fielding in center field was also impressive, as he posted a 13.4 UZR/150 in 124 games. In 2010, we should watch for Colby to continue his impressive fielding and also to improve on his hitting. He’s projected to wOBA anywhere from .329 (Marcel) to .343 (CHONE).… Click here to read the rest

Pirates claim Claggett

From MLBTR, we learn that the Pirates have claimed Anthony Claggett off waivers from the Yankees. Claggett was designated for assignment on the 14th in order to free up a roster spot on the 40-man for speedster Freddy Guzman. The Pirates already have Ross Ohlendorf, Daniel McCutchen, and Jeff Karstens pitching for them, so why not bring in another Yankee arm (or two, or three)?… Click here to read the rest

Snell traded to Seattle

MLBTR (via Dejan Kovacevic) is reporting that Ian Snell, along with Jack Wilson, has been traded to the Mariners for Ronny Cedeno, Jeff Clement (who never got enough playing time, in my opinion), Brett Lorin, Aaron Pribanic, and Nathan Adcock. I guess this means Ian Snell won’t be joining the Yankees and that they’ll have to look for pitching depth elsewhere (not that he was at the top of the list, of course). The trade is strange for Seattle, though. I thought that they were sellers? Hmmm….

UPDATE – It looks like Cliff Lee is headed to the Phillies.… Click here to read the rest

Yanks scouting Snell

From Jen Langosch (MLB Pro Blog):

There may not be any biggest discussion/dilemma in the Pirates’ front office right now than about what to do with Ian Snell. One month ago, the right-hander asked for a demotion to Triple-A, certainly not something you hear a player asking about every day. He also has expressed little interest in coming back to Pittsburgh. Since going to Triple-A Indianapolis, Snell has been unbelievable. He has allowed just two earned runs in 32 1/3 innings (five starts). He has 43 strikeouts and 12 walks.

So it’s no surprise that a number of clubs have already contacted the Pirates to see what it would take to land Snell.

The Yankees are the latest and have a scout at Indianapolis’ Victory Field on Sunday to watch Snell’s start. Though their level of interest in Snell isn’t known, it’s no secret that New York is in the market for a starting pitcher to replace Chien-Ming Wang in the rotation.

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