#06 - Pittsburgh
Offense: Easily the best OF in recent memory. WsL Rank: 2nd
Starting Pitching: can Weaver pitch 162 games?.WsL Rank: 10th
Relief Pitching: Expect quite a few blown leads. WsL Rank: 19th
Who won the World Series last year? Kiss my ring, bitches. After years of ownership turnover, Pittsburgh finally was in good hands in 2010, acquiring Jered Weaver, Bobby Abreu and Nick Swisher in-season leading to a monsterous 105-win season. Fortunately, the Showboats avoided a playoff upset after Toronto eliminated the Chicago Fireflies in the ALDS. With their rival eliminated, Pittsburgh battled through Colorado, Toronto and Kansas City on the way to their first title.
Final Record: 105-57, 2nd in AL Central
Team AVG: .273, 5th in the WsL
Team OBP: .347, 4th in the WsL
Team SLG: .460, 3rd in the WsL
Team ERA: 3.63, 8th in the WsL
Opponents AVG: .250, 9th in the WsL
HR Allowed: 160, 11th in the WsL
Best Offseason Move|
If you are going to trade an ace, you need to get something major back for him. Especially when he just won a World Series for you! Pittsburgh turned Cliff Lee into Tim Lincecum, who was then swapped to Colorado in a deal with Hunter Pence for Carlos Gonzalez and Matt Moore. Gonzalez is already a better player than Pence, plus he has an extra year on his contract. Meanwhile, Moore looks to be the best SP prospect in WSL since Clayton Kershaw. Not bad, not bad.
Worst Offseason Move
It's difficult to really single out a bad deal for Pittsburgh this off-season. Unfortunately, moves made this year will impact their roster going forward in a big way. The Showboats have $40M to spend next off-season with Ellsbury, McCann, Napoli and Yunel Escobar. Then, Carlos Gonzalez hits the market the following year. Building the team around a Jered Weaver, Matt Moore, Stephen Strasburg rotation sounds great, but this offense could be awful if ownership isn't careful.
PG's '11 Prediction
In the AL West, everyone is throwing haymakers. Pittsburgh has a slightly better rotation than Cleveland, so that gives them an edge. Better than Chicago? No sir.94-68 record.