Know Your Enemy: Pittsburgh Pirates


Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates finished with a 94-68 record for second place in the National League Central and defeated the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Wild Card Game before they lost in five games to the St. Louis Cardinals in the Division Series.

The Pirates were anchored by pitching with Francisco Liriano and Gerrit Cole in their rotation and Jason Grilli and Mark Melancon as closer. They also had relievers Tony Watson, and Vin Mazzar with an ERA under 2.80. NL MVP Andrew McCutchen and NL home run leader Pedro Alvarez led the way to mask a team, which only scored 32 more runs than the Chicago Cubs.

Financially speaking, the Pirates biggest addition this offseason was pitcher Edinson Volquez, who signed for $5 million. The biggest lost was pitcher A.J. Burnett, who signed a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Phillies and finished with a 10-11 record in 2013 after he suffered a calf tear in June. Marlon Byrd also wont be back for the Pirates. Manager Clint Hurdle will return for his fourth season and has a team poised to make a run to the playoffs.

Project Starters
Francisco Liriano
Gerrit Cole
Wandy Rodriguez
Charlie Morton
Edinson Volquez

Projected Lineup
Starling Marte OF
Jordy Mercer SS
Andrew McCutchen OF
Pedro Alvarez 3B
Neil Walker 2B
Russell Martin Catcher
Gaby Sanchez 1B
Jose Tabata OF

Cubs @ Pirates March 31, April 2-3
Pirates @ Cubs April 8-9-10
Cubs @ Pirates June 9-10-11-12
Pirates @ Cubs June 20-21-22
Cubs @ Pirates September 12-13-14

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