Not much went right for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2019, who ended with a 69-93 record, which landed them dead last in the five-team NL Central. They were 22 games out of first place and only the Marlins had fewer wins than them in the National League at 57. If you were hoping for a fresh outlook on the 2020 season, I have some bad news to share with you. It’s not looking like it’s going to happen.
RP Sam Howard
C Luke Maile
OF Guillermo Heredia
SP Francisco Liriano
SP Dario Agrazal
RP Parker Markel
The Pirates’ biggest offseason moves weren’t really player-based, instead, shifting their attention to the front office. The team almost completely wiped the slate clean, ridding themselves of general manager Neal Huntington, manager Clint Hurdle, president Frank Coonelly, pitching coach Ray Searage, and hitting coaches Jeff Livesey and Jeff Branson. With a whole new regime at the helm, we could see a Pirates team with a new philosophy for 2020. The problem is, a team that didn’t find much success last season stayed relatively the same. Sure, they have some great hitters like Starling Marte, Bryan Reynolds, Josh Bell, and Kevin Newman but the team is severely lacking in pitching.
The timing is unfortunate for the Pirates, as the NL Central feels as wide open as it’s ever been. The Cubs could be coming to a crossroads with Kris Bryant and could end up trading him. The Brewers and Cardinals are likely to remain competitive but have lost some pop in their lineups. The Reds are a potential dark horse of the entire division as long as their pitching staff can hold up. The Pirates, even with an opportunity like this season in front of them, are likely headed to yet another season of disappointment and likely sellers at the trade deadline.
I’m surprised to see the win total on DraftKings Sportsbook set at 72.5. That just feels too high, even though it’s only a four-game difference from last season to hit the over. Even still, I would not feel comfortable taking the over on a team that very well could sell off some important pieces at the trade deadline as they look ahead to 2021. Starling Marte has been the subject of trade rumors, specifically to the Mets, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him shipped off at some point. I can’t take the over here at all.
Pirates UNDER 72.5 wins
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