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June 11, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

54 comments so far - add yours!

Pittsburgh, we have a problem

SOUTH HILLS – This was supposed to be a blog entry recapping the feel-good story that was Gregory Polanco Day at PNC Park. (The Polanco statue to be unveiled next week  on the river walk). Baseball Gods usually laugh at …

June 10, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

25 comments so far - add yours!

Happy Polanco Day (though it comes under gray skies)

SOUTH HILLS – In case you retire early and rise late, Gregory Polanco will be called up today and is expected to make his major league debut against the Cubs. (Though the Cubs do have a lefty scheduled). Polanco breaking …

June 9, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

73 comments so far - add yours!

Monday Mop-Up Duty: the sum of all fears

PNC PARK – So much rests upon the right shoulder of Gerrit Cole. The way I see it there are three players the Pirates cannot afford to lose for large portions of the season: Andrew McCutchen – you might have …

June 6, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

31 comments so far - add yours!

Going off the board

SOUTH HILLS – The Pirates had an opportunity and a challenge on the first day of the draft Thursday. They had four picks in the top 73 thanks to the trade with the Marlins that landed the 39th overall pick …

June 4, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

56 comments so far - add yours!

Never draft for need, until you need to

SOUTH HILLS – Last year at this time I offered the Pirates free advice. I suggested they adopt a high-upside draft doctrine, what I dubbed the Hart Doctrine, which is a theory how small-market clubs should target prep talent — especially …

June 2, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

136 comments so far - add yours!

Monday Mop-Up Duty: can Polanco be Puig?

SOUTH HILLS – It’s June. The Gregory Polanco Watch is officially on. I went to check on the prized Pirates’ asset on Friday night for a story on Polanco in Sunday’s paper. My contribution to the Polanco-hype machine is here if you’re …

May 28, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

56 comments so far - add yours!

Ray Searage goes back to work

NEW YORK – Much has been made about Ray Searage‘s ability to spin yarn, or at least Francisco Liriano, A.J. Burnett and others, into gold. Searage’s track record the last several years has been sterling, his ability to communicate with players …

May 26, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

29 comments so far - add yours!

Monday Morning Mop-Up: Cole vs. Strasburg, who ya got?

CITI FIELD  -  Which former No. 1 overall prospect would you rather have – and try to be objective here - Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg? Considering everything, the contracts, club control, skill sets, age, physical characteristics, Jonah Keri ranked Cole as the 26th …

May 23, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

47 comments so far - add yours!

Lessons from the Wandy Rodriguez Experience

SOUTH HILLS – The Pirates’ front office ran out of patience with Wandy Rodriguez yesterday, designating him for assignment. Even though his velocity wasn’t that far off his career average, even though his curveball appeared to have the same break …

May 21, 2014
by Travis Sawchik

46 comments so far - add yours!

Revisiting Machado vs. Taillon

SOUTH HILLS – If the first 40+ games haven’t been painful enough to many in Western Pa., if Tuesday night wasn’t disappointing enough with Francisco Liriano rocked by the Orioles, there was also Manny Machado playing third base at PNC …

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