Pirates Already Wrap Up Houston Series; These Boys For Real
So work has essentially made baseball my version of counting sheep so I can’t say I can give you analysis on how the Pirates took three games from Houston in three different ways. What I can tell you is that there are generally four tiers that separate baseball teams and it looks a little like this:
Tier 4: Teams with no talent on offense or defense, rely on two or three stars, lucky games from most deliver wins. Ex: Chicago
Tier 3: Teams with some to a good amount of talent on both offense and defense, but struggle to string together consistency. Usually great pitching games get coupled with horrible offense; visa versa. Ex: Detroit, Pirates until late May.
Tier 2: Teams with a decent amount of talent all around and win on a consistent basis by balancing good hitting and pitching performances when one side fails to live up to expectations. Ex. Pirates right now.
Tier 1: Teams with most talent and win consistently; teams you just simply do not want to play on any given night. Ex. Texas, NYY.
As my highly scientific leveling system shows, the Pirates have moved up a level into the top half of the teams in the MLB. Furthermore, the Pirates are playing like a top tier team in the MLB, the problem is you wouldnt guess just by looking at the lineup card.
The Pirates bats have been a huge part of this equation. While their averages are still not the greatest in the NL, they are currently performing at that level, blowing out Houston in game win, scoring 7 to come back in game 2 and another solid 6 run game on the 4th. Overal, this team is playing a first place team. They have a NL MVP candidate in Andrew McCutchen. And no one can debate that Clint Hurdle is a manager with experience in this situation who obviously has tremendous influence in the locker room.
I think everyone sees what I am getting at: this team is good. They are DEFINITELY good enough to break .500 and I think they do this year. Are they good enough to win the Central? I think the Reds will need to collapse once again in September if that is going to happen. Can they make the one game Wild Card berth? Yes, but only if the bats continue to produce when the pitchers falter. This is the year that we stop counting fellas.