Friday, August 7, 2009

Thoughts on the Pirates

Watched a feature on Pirates top prospect Pedro Alvarez (left) and was surprised to see that he appears to have gained some weight. He has a pear-shaped body and a large backside. While the extra weight has not seemed to bother Alvarez's hitting or fielding, the Pirates should get him on a weight plan this winter.

The Pirates should be concerned that Kevin Hart did not meet with the media following his Pittsburgh debut. According to the John Perrotto of, Hart avoided talking to the press after the game. So what, you say? So this. The Pirates are at the bottom of the league in attendance and as football season intensifies, the crowds will shrink. The Pirates need all the exposure they can get with these new players and Hart not talking to the media makes fans upset and makes Hart look like he has an attitude problem.

This season is shaping as an important one for manager John Russell. The Pirates could lose 100 games this season, the locker room is filled with inexperienced players and most might not be sure exactly how to conduct themselves on and off the field. I won't judge Russell on wins and losses. I will judge him on how the Pirates respond to his coaching and how hard they play. It's the only legitimate way to evaluate Russell.

The Pirates' bullpen is aweful. One of the ways this team can improve next season is to rebuild the bullpen, most likely through free agency because the minors don't appear to have anyone ready to make the next step.

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