Monday, July 18, 2011

Pirates Week in Review: July 11-July 17

This is going to be a hopefully new weekly post that I thought would be a nice addition to the site. This is going to be a Pirates weekly review where I go over the results for the past seven days and link up the box scores and the recap for each of the games. I also use the lovely FanGraphs and Baseball Reference to give you the box scores and the weekly stats for the team. I will try to have this up either late Sunday night or early Monday mornings, but you know how these things go.

Here is the Bucs weekly recap for this past week:

The Pirates only competed in three games this week due to the All-Star break so there really isn't much to recap here. The Pirates won the first and last game of the series which won them their 19th series of the season. During the week the Pirates would spend a day atop the NL Central and finished up in a second place tie, beating out St. Louis by mere percentage points.

Friday, July 15 - Pittsburgh 4, Houston 0
[Box Score] [TRBB Recap]

Saturday, July 16 - Houston 6, Pittsburgh 4
[Box Score] [TRBB Recap]

Sunday, July 17 - Pittsburgh 7, Houston 5 (11 innings)
[Box Score] [TRBB Recap]

Here are the hitting stats for the short week:

This was a really good set of three games for Neil Walker. Before the break Walker had been starting to get hot and it was nice to see that the time off didn't deter from him swinging a good bat. Walker collected seven hits and drove in three in the series which included a four hit night on Saturday night. Brandon Wood, who many left for dead, stepped up and had a nice three game set, picking up three hits in his two starts. He hit an monster home run on Saturday night and slugged two doubles yesterday. Both Walker and Wood were a 0.3 WAR in three games, which were both by far the best of the week. Alex Presley bounced back nicely after a tough Saturday and collected three hits on Sunday. Presley took a lone hit in the opening game and then an ugly 0-for-5 on Saturday before bouncing back with a three hit day on Sunday.

If you watched any of the games this weekend your pitching begins and ends with Jeff Karstens. Karstens in one start was a 0.3 WAR and went the distance in only 83 pitches. You don't see stuff like that too often. Karstens didn't walk a batter and was a bit lucky as evidence by hit 3.82 xFIP. Daniel McCutchen was very good in his relief role, showing up in two games and not even giving up a hit. Chris Resop was also very solid in two appearances, earning his first save on Sunday after Joel Hanrahan blew his first save of the year. Resop appeared in two games and played pretty well despite a negative WAR. Jose Veras had a forgettable week when he blew a save and had a bad outing in the two he was in. The short week really didn't give us much look at anything from the Pirates staff.

The Pirates weren't particularly good offensively hitting only .237 with a team wOBA of .308 and below average wRC+ of 98. It was a three game week so there isn't much to analyze especially since part of the league played in four games while the Pirates only played in a three game set. Take what you will with the information above.

That will hold true for the pitchers also. The Pirates picked up two wins and besides Karstens effort didn't look too great overall. The Pirates finished 12 for the week in ERA with a 3.21 mark with them letting teams hit only .266 on balls in play. The Pirates forced the second least among of ground balls (37.9%) but were able to escape with two wins with a 7.7% HR/FB rate, which was in the top half of the league for the week.

Here is how the NL Central looks the week after the All-Star break:

1MIL5145.531---W 24.44.5-0.147-49413-1120-1712-86-933-1418-313-522-1342-339-1220-2031-256-410-1013-17
5CHC3858.39613.047.5L 24.05.1-1.038-5807-1012-2414-145-1021-2917-295-312-1728-4210-1620-2818-303-77-1311-19
6HOU3164.32619.580.0W 13.95.0-1.236-59-55-1715-257-104-1115-3416-291-310-1617-4814-1514-4117-222-84-167-23
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 7/18/2011.

Next Week's Slate:
Monday, July 18 - Cincinnati (Willis) at Pittsburgh (McDonald) - 7:05 p.m.
Tuesday, July 19 - Cincinnati (Leake) at Pittsburgh (Morton) - 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday, July 20 - Cincinnati (Cueto) at Pittsburgh (Karstens) - 12:35 p.m.
Friday, July 22 - St. Louis (Carpenter) at Pittsburgh (Maholm) - 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, July 23 - St. Louis (Garcia) at Pittsburgh (Correia) - 7:05 p.m.
Sunday, July 24 - St. Louis (Lohse) at Pittsburgh (McDonald) - 1:35 p.m.

Let me know what you think of the new feature and if you would like to see anything else in the weekly features the rest of the season. See everyone after the break and check back tomorrow for a [hopeful] podcast about the mid season Pirates.

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