6 days until the Pittsburgh Pirates hold their first workout of the spring
The Pittsburgh Pirates are now less than a week away from sending their pitchers and catchers to the fields of Pirate City for their first workout of Spring Training 2018
Spring Training 2018 is now less than a week away. In just 6 days, the Pittsburgh Pirates will send their pitchers and catchers to the fields of Pirate City in Bradenton for their first workout of the spring.
For the Pittsburgh Pirates number 6 belongs of course to outfielder Starling Marte. With Andrew McCutchen now a San Francisco Giant, Marte will more than likely be looked to as the new face of the franchise.
Even before McCutchen was traded, an argument could be made that Starling Marte had been the team’s best player for at least two seasons. When Marte is on the field he is one of the best two-way players in the National League.
Since making his Major League debut in July of 2012 Marte owns an 18.6 fWAR. He’s had the rare combination of above league average offense (.341 wOBA, 117wRC+) and elite defense (+82 defensive runs saved) during his now six-year career.
Last season Starling Marte missed 80 games due to a PED suspension. Despite this, he still posted a 1.1 fWAR in just 77 games played. Prior to his suspension shortened 2017 season, Marte posted an fWAR of at least 3.4 in each of the previous four seasons. And, outside of 2014, he was worth at least 4 wins above replacement level in each of the previous four seasons.
Starling Marte is a two-time Gold Glove Award winner (2015 and 2016) and should have won a third in 2014. He was also a National League All-Star in 2016.
In March of 2014, Starling Marte and the Pirates agreed to a long-term contract. This contract will keep Marte under team control through the 2021 season.
Moving forward, expect Starling Marte to be the team’s center fielder. The Pittsburgh Pirates need him to continue to be the player that averaged a 4.1 fWAR in 2013-2016, and there is no reason to expect he won’t be.
Next: Where Daniel Nava fits with the Pirates
Just 6 more days until the Pittsburgh Pirates have their first workout of the spring. After the amount of snow and ice much of Pennsylvania received today, spring, warmer weather, and baseball season can not come soon enough.