Bill Brink's Pirates chat: 6.14.17
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Bill Brink
12:33
Could be, but then they'd have three catchers. My guess is they wait until after Thursday's off day, when every reliever gets a rest, and then make the switch.
Joe
12:34
Do you think The new first and 3 rd base coaches have made a difference ? I can't see
Bill Brink
12:35
I can only remember one questionable send by Cora, and even that guy was safe, so I'd say that has helped. They don't rank highly in steals, but they also don't have Marte, so tough to judge Bartee on that. The infield defense started poorly and has improved, so sort of a wash there.
Jsg
12:35
What happens to Watson now?
Bill Brink
12:36
He'll pitch in lower-leverage situations, which could include the seventh as he works his way back, for the forseeable future. As to whether they trade, him, it depends on how other teams value a closer who lost his job.
Eyepatch kid
12:36
Who is SS in future? Newman? Tucker?
Bill Brink
12:36
Could be either. I'll go with Newman for the time being because he has shown the ability to hit at a higher level in the minors, thought Tucker hasn't failed at double-A, he just hasn't gotten there yet.
John
12:37
Will Gosselin be called up again for the bench? Doesn't he need to spend 10 days or so in AAA?
Bill Brink
12:37
Gosselin does have to spend 10 days in the minors unless a major leaguer goes on the DL. Could be Bostick or Ngoepe.
Wayward
12:37
Given the mediocre catching depth in the system would the Bucs actually cut Stewart? Unfortunately for him I think Diaz is headed back to Indy and barring injuries will play the year at there.
Bill Brink
12:38
Pretty much, yeah, that's the scenario. Catchers are so injury-prone, and Cervelli and Stewart especially, that having one who is optionable in the minors is a necessity.
JAK
12:38
If Cutch is back (which the meter reads: very much back), what happens to him end of July? I think its reasonable that the team will try to deal him but if there are within striking distance of making a push, I don't see it happening. How much backlash will the Front Office get?
Bill Brink
12:39
All of it. They will get all of the backlash. But they're OK with that. They're worried about making the right move for now and later, and if they get deal that they think makes it worth it, they'll move him. But if the Pirates are to contend, a "back" McCutchen will be a big reason why, and they'll have a tough decision to make if the Pirates are in first or second in late July. Keep in mind for the time being, however, that they're still under .500 and in fourth place.
John
12:40
How long do you think Mercer's hot streak lasts? Is it flukey?
Bill Brink
12:41
It's not perfect, but look at his BABIP by month: .239, .304, .486. He was fluky the other direction early, and this is similarly not going to last, but in May, with a normal BABIP, he hit .278/.381/.443. Not saying he'll do that from here on out (the OBP seems awful high) but good production is possible.
Wayward
12:41
Do the Bucs think Bostic has a major league future, this year or next, at 2nd? He sure has played well at Indy. If so, what happens to JayHay?
Bill Brink
12:42
I don't think the Pirates are worried about a Bostick/Harrison logjam at this juncture.
JMcD
12:42
Who do you think will be dealt at the deadline? Could Harrison go?
Bill Brink
12:43
I don't think so because I don't think they like the idea of Frazier every day at second base, but it's possible. Could be McCutchen, could be Watson, but their opposite trajectories are making both notions less clear right now.
John
12:43
Oh and Polanco was hitting well before the DL trip, and then came back to hit not bad but then it got really bad again. Why is he so inconsistent? How do you fix inconsistency?
Bill Brink
12:43
You fix inconsistency by finding the root of it. Hurdle spoke recently about finding the portion of Polanco's swing that gets long and working with him to shorten it.
Lightning round. Go.
JMcD
12:44
Should Osuna platoon w Polanco?
Bill Brink
12:44
Don't think so. Give Polanco more time to figure it out -- he's done it before.
Wayward
12:44
Triple A starter most likely to spend meaningful time in the rotation the rest of this year?
Bill Brink
12:45
Tough one. Brault's earned it, but they chose Glasnow out of spring. I'll go Brault.
IndyFan
12:46
If Cutch stays hot, do you think he will go back to the 3 spot? I say leave him at 6 as long as he's hot.
Bill Brink
12:47
Hurdle said the exact same thing when asked about it last night. Why rush him back up? They've got a good thing going. Let it play out.
John
12:47
In the draft, who's your favorite pick so far?
Bill Brink
12:48
Jared Oliva, the seventh-round outfielder out of Arizona. Not much of a high school star, walked on, redshirted, now a seventh-round pick. That's cool.
JMcD
12:48
Let's say the Pirates are 2 games over on July 20th, 3 games back. Any chance they buy at the deadline?
Bill Brink
12:49
They dealt last year when they were right around .500 (52-50 off the top of my head) so I'd say no, but it depends on the trajectory of the team and the division. They were roughly 115 games back of the Cubs at that point last year, and that might not be the case this year.
12:50
That's it for today, thanks for all the great questions. We'll do it again next week. Enjoy the parade!
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