2021 Bucco Outlook

Happy Masters day! It’s a tradition unlike any other. It’s also the home opener for the Buccos, and the current tradition is for them to lose. 

This off-season, Ben Cherington was busy in remaking the roster. I apologize because “remaking the roster” is a completely sugar coating it. Let’s just call it what it is: the Pittsburgh Pirates are in a rebuild.

They released Trevor Williams, dealt Josh Bell to the Nationals, Jameson Taillon to the Yankees, and Joe Musgrove to the Padres. In return, they received a plethora of prospects.

Are these guys guaranteed to pan out? Absolutely not.

To assume that these guys that came back in these deals will be all stars when the time comes is just irresponsible. The bottom line is there is now direction.

This all started last year when they traded Starling Marte. Would you support a team that is just middle of the road? I wouldn’t. If they won’t invest in the major league roster as it was constructed before, then they have to restock the farm. The team last year was the worst in the majors. To invest in free agents with a team that was the worst in baseball is again irresponsible. 

Which brings us to this year, the ultimate goal is to again to get the top draft pick for the 2022 draft. Last year, the prize was Vanderbilt pitcher Kumar Rocker. As of now, that day on July 11th is clouded with who is going number 1 because fellow Vanderbilt teammate Jack Leiter is ballin. The 2022 class is filled with high school talent. The prize is a kid named Elijah Green. Do yourself a favor and check him out. 

It’s going to be a long road to relevancy again. Do yourself a favor and just bet against them to make some money. But while you do it, just enjoy guys like Ke’Bryan Hayes. He’s the new face and hopefully will be here a very long time. They already offered him a long term deal so that’s a positive. 

Regarding the pitching, the bullpen arms are absolutely electric. You’re going to see them a lot of the time because the starting pitching is not good. Guys like Mars’ own David Bednar, Duane Underwood Jr., and rule 5 pick Luis Oviedo have electric stuff. Sam Howard is the only lefty and has also looked good.

Starter Mitch Keller does not look like he’s a major league pitcher. Chad Kuhl is the “ace” and has looked awful in his two starts thus far having eight walks in seven innings pitched. Tyler Anderson looks ok but I assume he’s going to be dealt at the deadline. I’m excited to see Miguel Yajure who was part of the Taillon return. He probably won’t be up until midseason though. 

All I know is this, the Pirates are not going to be good.

I’m trying to avoid saying “trust the process” because those close to me know I hate on that alllll the timeeee. You have to see this vision when looking at the team and let BC do his work. He built the Red Sox farm back when they won the WS in 2018 and the Blue Jays young core right now.

Give him time to clean up the mistakes of old, so we can possibly enjoy the new era. And if he succeeds, let’s hope Bob Nutting adds quality free agents. BIG ask I know, but that’s where we are as a fan of the current Pittsburgh Pirates. 

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