The Pirates have been anemic offensively for a number of years now. Last year the pitching was very good, however the team just couldn’t score enough runs to really make a run at anything. That is a big concern for the 2012 season, especially since the team didn’t do much in the offseason to improve on the offensive side of the ball.
While you can’t read into spring training statistics, it’s been a very good offensive start to the 2012 season for the Bucs. Let’s take a look at the numbers.
The team has put together 315 at bats in 10 games. In those at-bats they have collected 93 hits, good for a .295 batting average (their team average last year was something like .260). They have also drawn 21 walks and have been hit by six pitches, which gives them an on-base percentage of .351. The team has 19 doubles, two triples, and eight home runs. That equates to a .444 slugging percentage.
Those are some pretty impressive numbers. They haven’t faced the best pitching, you never will in exhibition games, but no team in the league has and the Pirates are hitting better than all but two of them.
Leading the way in hits is Starling Marte who has nine hits in 14 at-bats (.643/.643/1.143). Alex Presley has seven hits (.389/.389/.500), and the trio of Andrew McCutchen (.429/.467/.643), Nate McLouth (.545, .643/.636), and Yamaico Navarro (.429/.467/.500) all have six hits.
The long ball hasn’t been the most common thing to see around Pirates games this spring, but they’ve hit their share. Marte and Pedro Alvarez lead the way with two, and Garrett Jones, Jake Fox, Matt Hague, and Nick Evans all have hit one.
Again, spring training numbers don’t need much, especially just nine games worth, but you would certainly rather have your team hitting well than not. Here’s hoping this isn’t a mirage and we can carry some of this over into the regular season.