Pittsburgh Pirates: News And Notes From Around The National League Central Division


While the sun may shine from time to time, we still can not shake the arctic chill across the rivers and highways in Western Pennsylvania. One way to keep warm is to stay by the internet.

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The folks at Bovada Online Sportsbook have been busy going over the odds on who might win the National League Central this season. It may surprise you a little bit where they have the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The St. Louis Cardinals are the +125 favorites on the odds to capture the NL Central, with the Chicago Cubs next at +225. The Battling Bucs are third at +275, followed by the Cincinnati Reds and the Milwaukee Brewers, who are tied at +1200 odds.

For some, it is not too early to place a wager on the over/under accomplishment of an individual player. The over/under benchmark on how many home runs Andrew McCutchen will hit this season is set at 23.5 by both the 5Dimes and Heritage sportsbook sites. The over/under on wins by pitcher Gerrit Cole is 11.5 according to 5Dimes.

The Black and Gold get under way on the grapefruit circuit with an intrasquad contest Monday, March 2 at noon. Clint Hurdle‘s crew welcome the Toronto Blue Jays for their first Spring Training contest Wednesday, March 4 at McKechnie Field. The opening pitch is set for 1:07 p.m.

You have the final say here at City of Champions Sports. Take time out to let me and the rest of the Jolly Roger’s fans know what you think in the comments section below on whether or not the Boys of Summer at PNC Park can claim the NL Central crown this season. In the meantime, let’s take a look at how the rest of the NL Central is doing.

Nicholas D. Blazek at the Cubbies Crib asks the question, “Should Theo Epstein welcome back Sammy Sosa to the fold?”

Staying on the North Side, Jordan Campbell of the Da Windy City blog reports that shortstop Starlin Castro is looking forward to his first winning season.

Time to jump on the paddle steamer for Cincinnati as the Blog Red Machine‘s Matt Wilkes examines the status of pitcher Homer Bailey and if he is ready to start the season.

Reviewing The Brew‘s Pete Schwichtenberg believes left-hander Wei-Chung Wang has an awesome goal for the 2015 season.

From near the Gateway Arch, Daniel Solzman at Redbird Rants sees left-hander Jaime Garcia taking aim for a spot in the starting rotation.

The Bucs are getting ready for Opening Day in April, so let’s check in and see what people are saying around the internet about the Jolly Roger crew.

Rumbunter‘s Jacob R. Misener thinks that Andrew McCutchen could draw $25 million a year in a new deal with the Pirates.

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    Tim Williams of Pirates Prospects reviews the next steps in pitcher Jameson Taillon’s Tommy John rehab process.

    Over at Bucs Dugout on SB Nation, Charlie Wilmoth writes that the plan is to use Radhames Liz in relief this season.

    Pat Lackey of the Where Have You Gone Andy Van Slyke? blog, previews right-hander John Holdzkom for 2015 in fewer than 500 words.

    Ryan Gaule at Bleacher Report believes a six-man rotation could make sense for Pittsburgh this season.

    The Associated Press reported on Yahoo Sports that Bucs chairman Bob Nutting’s stature in the industry is on the rise.

    That brings down the curtain on another session Pirates fans. We will get together again next week to see what is going on around the NL Central.

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