Ever since Bobby Bonilla, Barry Bonds and the like left the small MLB betting market of Pittsburgh for bigger bucks elsewhere, there has been very little to cheer about in the city of three rivers.
It seems like the pirates are in a perennial state of rebuilding. However, for the first time in a long time there was definite improvement in the squad last MLB betting season and the many young prospects on this roster flourished.
With nothing else to lose other than then the 90 or so games that this MLB betting team seems to always lose the young players were let lose and they produced. That should have very positive impact on the 2007 MLB betting season and when you couple that with the off season acquisition that this MLB betting team made, for the first time in quite a few years there is optimism in the Pirate nation that 2007 might be a online baseball betting year of good things to come.
About the only good thing to say about the 2006 MLB betting season for the Pirates is that at least they didn’t finish in last place in the MLB betting division. They edged out the Cubs by a game, despite closing the online baseball betting season on a 2-8 slide and posted a record of 67-95.
However, as mentioned earlier the MLB betting season, although capped with an awful record, wasn’t a total waste as plenty of young players got a lot of invaluable experience? One of the biggest lights last online baseball betting year and that should lead the batting charge this MLB betting year was Freddy Sanchez. Sanchez batted .347 and won the batting title. He is leading off hitter supreme and his keen glove at third make him one of the principal cogs in the Pirates’ lineup in 2007 MLB betting season.
However, the franchise player is still left fielder Jason Bay who saw his power numbers drop a bit last MLB betting season but he still put enviable numbers for any player. He’ll be batting third in the lineup this online baseball betting year and should see some better pitches, expect his number to bounce upwards this MLB betting season and his power numbers to remain among the best in the NL.
Much of this will be due to the off season acquisition of Adam LaRoche who will add some protection for Bay and improve the pitches he sees. LaRoche was a key off season signing and adds some immediate beef to the clean up spot. He’s a bit unproven, coming off only one great MLB betting season, but he has the potential and if he settles in here in Pittsburgh, the combo of Bay LaRoche will be a powerful duo.
Xavier Nady will bat fifth for the Bucs and is yet another powerful bat in the middle of the lineup. He is terribly strike out prone as most big swinging players are, but along with the K’s you get the homers as well. Second baseman Jose Castillo is also a player to watch. He had a great first half last MLB betting season and then fell off the face of the earth in the second. If he plays up to his potential, he should bat .290 with 20 homers this MLB betting season and that in itself would mean a few more wins for the pirates.
The pitching is the main concern for the Pirates in 2007 MLB betting season. The starting rotation is very young and has little to no experience. Zach Duke will be called upon to be the ace of the staff in 2007 MLB betting season even though opponents hit .302 against him last season; however, his experience is much greater than any of the other young staffers so he’ll get the nod. He’s also shown great improvement the more innings he’s thrown and was much better the second half of last MLB betting season going 5-7 with a .365 ERA.
Following Duke in the starting rotation will be Ian Snell Paul Maholm, Tom Gorzelanny and Tony Armas Jr. Snell was the only Pirate last MLB betting season to have an online baseball betting winning record posting 14 wins and 11 losses, just the kind of experience this line up needs.
Mahom has a great pitch repertoire but has a week fastball and is homerun prone. Grozelnany and Armas are basically there so fill space and hopefully not lose too many games. This staff is very raw but is loaded with potential. One pretty sweet piece of fruit regarding the rotation though is the fact that they have three lefties in key spots and this can only help in the long run.
This team will at least fifteen to twenty games better next online baseball betting year which is a huge improvement in MLB betting terms. However, there will be no playoffs or wild card hunting in 2007 MLB betting season for this team. Expect 77-85 wins and a shot at jumping to third in the MLB betting division.