Today is my favorite day of the year as Pitchers and Catchers report to spring training. Both Pirates and Mariners made several moves to improve their teams. The Pirates haven’t made the postseason since 1992 where they lost to the Braves in the NLCS and their best player that season was an outfielder by the name of Barry Bonds and their manager was the great Jim Leyland who now coaches the Tigers who have the best pitching staff in the American League.
Now the last time, the Mariners made the postseason was in 2001 when they lost to the Yankees in the ALCS in which their best player was Brett Boone and their Manager was Lou Piniella.
Now in 2013 both Pirates and Mariners hope that this is the year they return to the Postseason. In Keith law’s farm system rankings, Pirates are ranked seventh and are led by the pitching duo of Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon. Cole is year away from making the club this year but Taillon might make the club this season which would be a bonus for the club because they need a reliever after give up their closer Joel Hanrahan to the Redsox.Now the Mariners are ranked eighth and they are led by their starting pitching as they have the trio of Victor Sanchez, Brandon Maurer and James Paxton. All three are a year behind from making the club.
Now it’s time to breakdown each team’s starting lineup and pitching rotation.
Mariners First baseman-Justin Smoak who last season hit 19 homeruns with 51 RBIs. I project him in 2013 to hit 20 homeruns and 50 RBIs.
Mariners Second baseman-Dustin Ackley who last hit only 12 homeruns with 50 RBIs. I project him to have a better in which he will hit between 15-20 homeruns if he can stay healthy with the same amount of RBIs.
Mariners Third baseman- Kyle Seager who had the best year of his career last season has he hit 20 homeruns with 86 RBIs. I project him to hit 30 homeruns with 100 RBIs.
Mariners Shortstop- Brendan Ryan had only 3 homeruns with 31 RBIs. Ryan is known for his glove not his hitting but I project him to have 10 homeruns and 30 RBIs next season.
Mariners Centerfielder- Franklin Gutierrez is known more for his glove and not his hitting as he only hit 4 homeruns with 17 RBIs. I project he will hit 10 homeruns if he’s lucky with 30 RBIs.
Mariners Leftfielder- Newcomer to this roster is Michael Morse who had a career year as he hit 31 homeruns with 95 RBIs. I project next season he will hit 30 homeruns with 102 RBIs.
Mariners right fielder-Michael Saunders who’s one of my favorite players because he’s Canadian and will be participating in the WBC for Canada. Last season he hit 19 homeruns with 57 RBIs. I project him to have a breakout year next season and will hit 25 homeruns with 60 RBIs.
Mariners Catcher-Jesus Montero last season hit 15 homeruns and 62 RBI’s. I project him to have a better season where he could hit 18 homeruns with 65 RBIs.
Mariners Designated Hitter- Newcomer, Kendrys Morales who last season with the Angels hit 22 homeruns with 73 RBIs. I project him to have 30 homeruns and 75 RBIs.
Mariners pitching staff is led by the Felix Hernandez who just recently signed a five-year contract to stay in Seattle. Last season he had a winning record of 13-9. I project him to have to come back to forum and have 15 wins. Their second starter will be the newcomer Joe Sanders who had a horrible record of 9-13 last season. I project him to have 12 wins. Third starter will be Blake Beavan who last season had a record of 11-11. I project him to have ten wins with a losing record. Their fourth and fifth starters will be their pitching duo of Taijuan Walker and Danny Hultzen.
Now it’s time to look at the Pirates lineup.
Pirates Catcher- newcomer, Russell Martin last season with the Yankees hit 21 homeruns with 53 RBIs. I project him to hit 16 homeruns with 50 RBIs.
Pirates First baseman-Garrett Jones had a career year in 2012 in which he hit 27 homeruns with 86 RBIs. I project him to hit 28 homeruns with 85 RBIs.
Pirates Second baseman- Neil Walker had 14 homeruns with 69 RBIs. I project him to have a breakout year in which he will hit 20 homeruns with 75 RBIs.
Pirates Third Baseman-Pedro Alvarez had a career year and one that he supposes to have every year. Last season he had 30 homeruns with 85 RBIs. I project him to have 30 homeruns with 90 RBIs.
Pirates Shortstop-Clint Barmes hit only 8 homeruns with 45 RBIs.I project him to hit 12 homeruns with 40 RBIs.
Pirates Centerfielder- Andrew McCutchen is your cover athlete for MLB The Show 2013 and the reason for this great honour is because he hit 31 homeruns with 96 RBIs. I project him to have 30 homeruns with 90 RBIs.
Pirates Leftfielder- Starling Marte hit 5 homeruns with 17 RBIs. I project that Marte will have a better year where he will hit 15 homeruns with 40 RBIs.
Pirates Right fielder- Travis Snider last season hit 4 homeruns with 17 RBIs where he was traded by the Jays to the Pirates. I project him to have a great year where he will hit 15 homeruns with 50 RBIs.
Pirates Pitching Rotation. First starter is AJ Burnett who last year had a record of 16-10. I project him to come down to earth and have 14 wins. Second starter is Wandy Rodriguez who last season had a losing record of 12-13.I project him to have 10 wins this season. Third starter is James McDonald who last season had record of 12-8.I project him to have 15 wins this season. Fourth starter, Francisco Liriano who just recently signed with the team and is injury prone player, last season he had a horrible record of 6-12.I project him to have 9 wins this season. The last starter is Jeff Karstens who last season had a record of 5-4.I project him to have 9 wins. But If Karstens does badly; he can be replace with hot-shot rookie Jameson Taillon. If the Pirates wanted to make the playoffs it will depend on their starting pitching. The past couple seasons the Pirates have had quick starts but they seem to blow it every year. I hope for Pirates fans this is their year. Now for the Mariners to succeed it will depend on their powerful hitting. I expect this year will be up year for both teams. Who knows maybe we can have a world series of Pirates vs. Mariners.