Pittsburgh Pirates 2017 Rum Bunter Staff Predictions: Nick

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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Pittsburgh Pirates Predictions
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Editorial: Opening Day for the Pittsburgh Pirates is just two days away. Who will be the top Pittsburgh Pirates this year?

The Pittsburgh Pirates are finishing up their Spring Training schedule in Montreal against the Blue Jays this afternoon.  In just about 48 hours they will be taking the field against the Boston Red Sox.  The first series will feature some big-time pitching matchups, as Gerrit Cole will be toeing the rubber against 2016 AL Cy Young winner Rick Porcello in the opener.

The Pittsburgh Pirates will look to get back into the playoffs in 2017.  They have been in the Wild Card game three of the last four seasons.  Last year was a bit of a bridge year, as the Pirates had their first losing season since 2012.  However, they also graduated some of their more promising prospects to the big league roster.  Many of those prospects will take the next step in their careers and help push the Pirates back into the playoff race.

With that being said, the Pirates will have tough competition.  Obviously, the Chicago Cubs are the heavy favorites after dominating the National League last season.  Outside of the Cubs, the National League has a lot of quality teams that will be battling for the playoffs as well.  Although it will be a grind of a season, there is a lot of upside to this team that should put them in the thick of things.

Who are the main Pittsburgh Pirates that will help get them back to the playoffs this season?