MLB MLB Team News NL Central — 23 February 2011

Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pirates will probably be the Pirates we have come to know over the last decade once again this year. The good news is though, they have finally started to develop some talent. Andrew McCutchen is becoming one of the most versatile outfielders in the game, and Jose Tabata, Neil Walker, and Pedro Alvarez all turned in stellar rookie seasons as well.

The Pitching staff, however, is a completely different story. John McDonald is the “Ace” of this staff and while he is a decent young arm, he is not the kind of pitcher most teams would want as their number one guy. Outside of McDonald, the Pirates really don’t have much talent in their rotation. Kevin Correia and Paul Maholm would be the fifth starter at best on most other teams. 2011 probably won’t be especially kind to Pirates fans, but they can at least take comfort in knowing they have some players on their team that should develop into solid major leaguers in the near future.

Key Additions: Chris Snyder, Lyle Overbay

Key Losses: Octavio Dotel, Zach Duke

Lineup:

C: Chris Snyder
1B: Lyle Overbay
2B: Neil Walker
3B: Pedro Alvarez
SS: Ronny Cedeno
LF: Jose Tabata
CF: Andrew McCutcheon
RF: Garret Jones

Rotation:

1: John McDonald
2: Paul Maholm
3: Kevin Correia
4: Ross Ohlendorf
5: Charlie Morton
CL: Joel Hanrahan

Critical Players to Success:

Andrew McCutcheon: McCutcheon is the face of this franchise. Though young, he now has a couple years under his belt and it is time for him to step forward and be the leader of this team.

John McDonald: McDonald is the only real intriguing talent in the Pirates’ rotation. He has been steadily improving and the Pirates would love if he could continue to do so and give them a reliable arm to turn to.

For more 2011 Team Previews, go here.

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