Bill Brink's Pirates chat: 7.19.17
powered byJotCast
Bill Brink
12:01
Welcome to today's Pirates chat. We'll get going in a minute; thanks to all who submitted questions, and keep them coming. Here we go ...
Chuck
12:02
How do the Yankees and Dodgers out draft the Pirates in outstanding baseball talent?  In the last 2 years the Yankees have brought up Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge.  The Dodgers in the same timeframe have brought up Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger.  I know that both are moneyed franchises, but that doesn't explain how they are able to discover such outstanding baseball talent.   What's your explanation for how do the Yankees and Dodgers do it?
Bill Brink
12:07
There's an argument to be made regarding the Pirates' hits and misses in the draft, but going Seager, Judge and Bellinger (Sanchez was signed internationally) is using extreme outliers, the likely MVP and rookie of the year. Seager and Judge were first-rounders, and the Pirates have done well with first-rounders recently (Cole, Bell and Taillon are working out and Kevin Newman looks like he could be a major leaguer). Bellinger was a fourth-round pick, and that's where all teams look for an edge, to find that guy that might outperform his draft position. The Pirates have had some success there (not comparing to Bellinger, but Kuhl was a ninth-rounder, Mercer a third, and they're major league players) but they could do better in that department.
Barry McKakiner
12:07
How do expect Marte to play within the next 4 or 5 games?  Will there be rust, or adrenaline and excitement?
Bill Brink
12:09
I think all three. You saw it last night, with the excitement (sliding catch in the first) and rust (getting picked off). There will be a brief re-acclimation period and I think he'll be fine after that.
SalemPirate
12:10
With the starting pitching minor league depth of the Pirates and the overall improvement of the SP at the big league level, is it time to seek a trade for Gerrit Cole? He's a talented guy but for some reason he's not fulfilling his talent level.
Bill Brink
12:11
If the Pirates don't see an avenue to contention 2018, they should think about trading Cole, but I think they see an avenue to contention next year. Full year of Marte and Taillon will help. Cole is not that far removed from his 2015 self and I think he can still be that guy, even though he has underperformed his stuff this season.
Mike
12:11
One area the pirates do have depth is at the AAA level starting pitchers. Holmes, Epler, Hutchison, Kingman, Brault, Dickson and a guy named Glasnow. Any chance the pirates use one of them as part of a package to get a reliever?
Bill Brink
12:12
I don't see Huntington cutting into his starting depth for a reliever, especially because the bullpen has stabilized this month. The Pirates have been lucky with starting pitching health (Taillon's unfortunate situation notwithstanding, I'm speaking more of pitching injuries) and that luck might run out at any moment because pitchers get hurt.
Concerned Parent
12:13
Do you think the pirate fans' celebration of Marte's return evidence that most fans don't care about steroid usage?
Bill Brink
12:13
It's a complicated dynamic that I think varies from fan to fan. Stephen Nesbitt talked to some of them for this piece: http://www.post-gazette.com/sports/pirates/2017/07/19/starling-marte-p...
But ...
12:14
I think the past few decades, from the Mitchell report to the BALCO trial to Biogenesis, have made fans realize that steroids are a part of the game's past and present as much as MLB would like them not to be.
SalemPirate
12:14
Kang's uncertain future clouds the 3rd base issue for the Bucs. The Red Sox will most certainly  grab the highest available player, but is it reasonable that the Padres Solarte could be traded for? A AAA pitcher plus a lower level prospect perhaps?
Bill Brink
12:15
That would make some sense. He's having a nice little year in San Diego and is under team control for two more years after this one. That would be a "now and later" move I could see the front office making.
SalemPirate
12:15
The bullpen has been very good lately, but Rivero is throwing a lot of innings. Watson is rumored to be on the block, as is Nicasio. Those 2 spots will need to be filled plus another. Replacements internally or by trade.
Bill Brink
12:17
They could try to do what they did with Melancon last year and get a controllable reliever in exchange for an expiring contract like Watson's or Nicasio's. Internally, Neverauskas and Santana could make sense, or they could temporarily put one of the starters in the bullpen.
Mike
12:18
McCutchen has become the Marc Andre Fleury of the pirates, all he wants to do is win. Now finally the pirates have their outfield together and playing well. McCutchen might be a step slower but he is a leader in the clubhouse. All this talk about bringing up Meadows who is hitting 248 and rehabbing a hamstring has to end.
Bill Brink
12:18
I don' think anyone is talking about bringing up Meadows now, considering he still isn't swinging a bat (or wasn't as of Sunday, we'll get a better update from the athletic trainer today).
Al in the swamps of Jersey
12:18
It looks to me like Josh Bell is quickly turning into a pretty good fielding first baseman. For someone who is just learning the position he has made some nifty plays with the glove recently and seems to stretch and catch throws really well.  Has Clint  commented on this improved aspect of his game?
Bill Brink
12:20
Clint has commented at length on Bell's defense because reporters (myself included) have pestered him about it for months. Hurdle started by saying he likes the strides Bell took but still preferred Jaso late, but now Bell is playing more full games. His defense is very good -- except for the arm, which still rears its ugly head at times. I can only remember two or three throws like the one the other night, but all of them resulted in a run or extra bases.
Will Zytnick
12:20
Do you think The Pirates will target pitching at the deadline and if so who might they target
Do you believe at the Trade Deadline the Pirates make a move for pitching after missing out on quintana
Bill Brink
12:23
Another starter would certainly help, and another reliever never hurts. I thought David Phelps of the Marlins would be a good piece, so that's one to keep an eye on. I don't think they'll spend for a Sonny Gray, but Jason Vargas could make sense. This being said, they have several decent young pitchers who at times have show the ability to make strides, so maybe they focus on a small upgrade in the bullpen.
Marte's Parte
12:23
The last 10 Games: Brewers 6-4; Cubs 7-3; Cards 6-4; Pirates 8-2. Can the Pirates keep up the winning catch the teams in front or will they quickly return to reality?
Bill Brink
12:24
Getting Marte back and the bullpen stabilized should help. If the rotation can go through a solid turn or two and Harrison can start hitting again, they might keep this up. I don't know about 8-2 every 10 games, but they should keep winning
Will
12:24
Will any contending team acquire an outfielder via trade who is superior to Starling Marte?   Or a bench player better than Adam Frazier?
Bill Brink
12:25
They might get a better bench guy than Frazier but I doubt anyone will get that type of upgrade in the outfield.
James
12:25
If the Bucs keep on a run and actually become buyers. What is the most likely name you'd expect to see them land?
Bill
12:26
Pirates more likely to try and improve bullpen or bench by deadline?
Bill Brink
12:28
Hmmm, most likely name ... I like the Solarte call. David Phelps or Jerry Blevins. Think Vargas might take a little too much now that I think about it.
Marte's Parte
12:28
How exciting is the trade deadline going to be if the Pirates keep winning?
Bill Brink
12:28
Very, because it's going to force some tough decisions.
Will
12:28
Rotation has been relatively healthy this year -- any chance the Pirates look to move any young pitchers?  AAA glut of Brault, Hutchinson and Glasnow blocked by promising results from Williams and Kuhl.
Bill Brink
12:29
Dealing from a position of depth is the way to go, but I know this front office values starting pitching depth in particular because of how frequently pitchers get hurt. But they could probably part with one and still have plenty.
Joe
12:29
Where do you put the chances of the Pirates and Cutch discussing any kind of extension?
The Real Cutch
12:30
No way I'm traded this year with a dead market, creeping into contention and no answer in AAA, right?
James
12:30
Any chance we get surprised and Cutch gets an extension this off-season? I just can't picture him anywhere else
Bill Brink
12:31
I never say never with this franchise, but I don't see it. McCutchen would have to take a big hometown discount to stay because the Pirates won't want to pay for what will probably be his decline years and I'm not sure he does that given what he could get elsewhere.
Marte's Parte
12:31
Can you give us an update on Glasnow in AAA. Has he pitched enough in the majors to lose his prospect tag? Will he be recalled before September? When he is recalled will he have an impact as a starter or in the bullpen?
Load More Messages
Connecting...