CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Premium and Super Premium Subscribers Get a 20% Discount at MLB.tv!

<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Tou... (10/01)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL... (09/30)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL... (10/02)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Advance Scouting Serie... (10/01)

October 1, 2013

Playoff Prospectus

NL Wild Card Game Preview

by Ben Lindbergh


With a weekend sweep in Cincinnati, the Pirates laid claim to home field advantage in Tuesday's NL Wild Card game, guaranteeing that playoff-starved Pittsburgh fans will see postseason baseball at PNC Park. In our comprehensive Wild Card preview, we'll do our best to divine whether the Pirates' surprise season will survive another rematch with the Reds. (Note: Neither team's Wild Card roster is set, so we'll update the article when the names are officially announced.)

Lineups (AVG/OBP/SLG/TAv)

Pirates

LF-R Starling Marte (.280/.343/.441/.285)
2B-S Neil Walker (.251/.339/.418/.275)
CF-R Andrew McCutchen (.317/.404/.508/.326)
1B-L Justin Morneau (.259/.323/.411/.263)
RF-R Marlon Byrd (.291/.336/.511/.302)
3B-L Pedro Alvarez (.233/.295/.474/.272)
C-R Russell Martin (.226/.327/.377/.257)
SS-R Jordy Mercer (.280/.331/.416/.265)
P-L Francisco Liriano (.064/.137/.064/.084)

The Pirates have a .256 team TAv, which is the worst among playoff teams. But that number is somewhat deceptive, as their lineup has added a few new faces since the start of the season. Pittsburgh acquired Justin Morneau and Marlon Byrd in late-season trades, and Jordy Mercer has been a big offensive upgrade over Clint Barmes at short. The end result is that while the Pirates have little star power aside from Andrew McCutchen (who might be the NL’s best hitter), they don’t really have any glaring holes. Pittsburgh’s hitters have struck out more often than any playoff team but the Braves, and they haven’t hit well in September. But on the season, everyone in the lineup has been at least a league-average hitter except Martin, who’s been above average for a backstop.

Another note: only the Twins, Marlins, and Padres have hit worse than the Pirates with runners in scoring position, so they’ve probably underperformed as a unit relative to their true talent. They have a good mix of lefties and righties in the lineup and on the bench, so they’re not one of the easier teams to neutralize with a situational reliever.

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

13 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Tou... (10/01)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL... (09/30)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL... (10/02)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Advance Scouting Serie... (10/01)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of Wednesday, Aug...
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Week 21
Premium Article What You Need to Know: August 21, 2014
Pebble Hunting: You Lie!
Eyewitness Accounts: August 21, 2014
Premium Article Skewed Left: Saber Seminar One Year From Now
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Information, Humans, and ...

MORE FROM OCTOBER 1, 2013
Premium Article Advance Scouting Series: Joey Votto
Premium Article Advance Scouting Series: Jay Bruce
Premium Article Advance Scouting Series: Brandon Phillips
Premium Article Advance Scouting Series: Pedro Alvarez
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Tout Wars in Review
Advance Scouting Series: Andrew McCutchen
Premium Article Advance Scouting Series: Shin-Soo Choo

MORE BY BEN LINDBERGH
2013-10-04 - BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 3...
2013-10-03 - BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 2...
2013-10-02 - BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 2...
2013-10-01 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL Wild Card Game Previe...
2013-10-01 - BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 2...
2013-09-27 - Premium Article Overthinking It: Mariano Rivera's Final Four...
2013-09-27 - BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 2...
More...

MORE PLAYOFF PROSPECTUS
2013-10-03 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Preview: Dodgers at...
2013-10-02 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL Wild Card Game Recap:...
2013-10-02 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL Wild Card Game Previe...
2013-10-01 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL Wild Card Game Previe...
2013-09-30 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: AL Game 163 Preview
2012-10-29 - Playoff Prospectus: World Series (and Postse...
2012-10-28 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: World Series Game Four P...
More...

INCOMING ARTICLE LINKS
2013-10-03 - Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NLDS Preview: Pirates at...