Monday, June 22, 2009

Around The Horn 6/22/09

No game tonight for our battlin’ Bucs. They really took it on the chin in Colorado and new coach Jim Tracey. The Rockies showed the Pirates that their top of the lineup is very, very potent and inevitably that is what beat them this past series. Ian Snell will start for the Bucs tomorrow as they face off against the Cleveland Indians.

Pedro Alvarez was promoted to class AA Altoona from Lynchburg today. As all of your probably know Alvarez was the Pirates first round draft pick last year. At the age of 22, Alvarez was hitting .247 with 14 home runs and 55 RBI in 243 at bats. Alvarez is looking to move quickly through the Pirates system. It will be interested to see how quickly he moves to AAA. It will mostly be determined on two things. One is how successful he is in AA. Right now Alvarez is striking out 29% of his at bats so that will most certainly need improving. As he moves up in the system pitchers will study him more and his weaknesses will be exposed more. The transition will be very interesting to watch. The second key in the progression is how Andy LaRoche holds up at third base. Right now LaRoche is playing very well both offensively and defensively so that can let the Pirates slow down the movement of Alvarez if he is struggling in some aspects.

Brad Lincoln was also promoted to class AAA Indianapolis. On the season Lincoln was 1-5 but boasts a 2.28 ERA with 65 strikeouts and 18 walks. Impressive for Lincoln. Not a great record but pitching very well. It would be nice to see one of the Pirates top draft picks come up and contribute for the big team. Like Alvarez only time will tell.

Seth from Empty Netters has a great piece on a game by game recap of the season. Seth includes a video from NHL.com and his in game blog for every game in the recap. Very nice job and a definite read.

Pens Universe also put together a great piece. A Mike Lange soundboard. Most all the calls are there. Have a great time listening.

Great Article by Rob Rossi the other day in the Trib about how Malkin has adjusted to the Burgh.

Short post today. Trying to get a free agent list up with the salary cap mumbo jumbo for a post.

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