Pittsburgh Pirates Wake Up Call: Big Greg’s Big Season?


In our daily Wake-Up Call, we get you ready for the day with a complete look at all things Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are playing out the string. Some could cynically call the season’s last weeks as “stat-padding time.” Some even think that’s happening with Gregory Polanco.

Yesterday I put out a call on Twitter for Pittsburgh Pirates fans to help me decide if Polanco has had a good season:

Feel free to read the replies, but suffice to say folks were split.

The fact is, Polanco is still a streaky player. The other fact is, it has been a hell of a season for the right-fielder. He has set career highs in OPS (.825) and wRC+ (119 as of this writing).

Both can be true.

And if both are true, the debate comes down to a philosophical question. If a hitter has enough production at the end of a season (re: his stats looks good) at the expense of semi-lengthy slumps, can he be considered a good hitter?

The true answer requires some study. However, if we take the long view, we can find a huge positive in the fact that Polanco and the Pittsburgh Pirates brass now know exactly what type of hitter he is: a left-handed bat that sometimes sells out for power. The type that can reach 30+ doubles and 20+ HR rather easily over the course of 162 games.

And those types of players? Teams will take those types of players 10 out of 10 times.


Baseball Talk on the Web

  • David Laurila’s latest Sunday Notes column is live. Always a good read.
  • He was fantastic again yesterday, so let’s revisit Alex Stumpf’s detailed look at how Trevor Williams is out of his mind right now.
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