3 Up, 3 Down: June 5th-June 11th

Welcome to 3 Up, 3 Down: a weekly recap and preview for the Pirates. This post refers to games from June 5th-11th: a stretch where the Pirates lost two extra inning games in Baltimore (6/6-6/7) and split a four game set at home against the Marlins (6/8-6/11).

3 UP

Andrew McCutchen is continuing to clobber the baseball, recording a .417/.462/.542 line in his six games last week. He is 23 hits over his last 57 at-bats (.404), racking up 38 total bases in that stretch (a .667 slugging percentage). Elias Diaz has reached base safely in all four of his starts since taking over for the injured Francisco Cervelli. Diaz has a 1.050 OPS on the year, including a .500/.563/.643 line in his first look as a starter. I opined Thursday that giving him a look as a starter was long overdue.

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Looking Back at Pirates Drafts Under Neal Huntington

The MLB Draft doesn’t seem to get the attention that the amateur drafts in the 3 other sports receive but they are just as important to each teams individual long term success.

MLB will begin it’s 2017 players draft tonight and it will be televised on the MLB Network.

Tonight, the Pirates will have four picks (12th, 42nd, 50th and 72nd) in the first night of the draft. Unlike the drafts in other sports, it will be years before these players will have a shot at the majors and before we can properly evaluate how each individual team drafted.

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Analyzing Glasnow’s First Stint as a Pirate

Tyler Glasnow has finally pitched himself out of a job for the time being, getting demoted Saturday in favor of Jameson Taillon.

His first extended look in the majors did not go as planned, posting a 7.45 ERA and only going 54.1 innings in his first 12 starts. The strikeout stuff is there (8.28 per nine) and the ground ball rate is promising (43.1%), but just about everything else is somewhere between subpar to disastrous.

Friday was his sixteenth career start, which is roughly a half-season’s worth of starts in an ideal world. The problems he has shown in the majors are no longer skewed by a small sample size. There are clear problems he needs to address, and the Pirates are not going to rush them on his Indianapolis assignment.

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Pirates Rebound and Split Series With Marlins

After getting outscored 19-8 and outhit 32-17 in the first two games of the series, it looked like this was going to real long weekend vs. the Marlins at PNC Park.

However, that’s why sports are hard to predict because the last two games, the Pirates looked like a totally different team.

Yesterday, Clint Hurdle’s team showed heart by overcoming three Marlins leads to earn a 7-6 win.

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Pirates Flashback #2: Kris Benson

Welcome to Pirates Flashback, a weekly look back at some of the best players of the worst teams in Pirates’ history.

Today’s player is Kris Benson, who pitched for the Pirates from 1999-2004.

 BEFORE THE BUCS

Benson attended Clemson University from 1993 to 1996, but he first cracked onto the national scene by pitching for team USA in the 1996 Summer Olympics. Benson won a pair of games during the Olympics, but he was hit hard by Japan in the semifinals and lost. Team USA eventually took bronze in the event.

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