Pittsburgh Pirates: Three Regulars Who Were Having Strong Springs

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /

The Pittsburgh Pirates got off to a tough start in Grapefruit League action this spring.  However, they did have some players who put together a strong first few weeks.

Throughout this Spring Training there were more lows than highs for the Pittsburgh Pirates team.  Luckily, as the old cliché goes, “it’s just Spring Training.”  Still, with Spring Training abruptly coming to a halt, one can step back and focus on some of the players who were performing well this spring.  Despite the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-15 record, they saw a lot of their regulars performing to expectations.

One of the keys to the Pittsburgh Pirates lineup for 2020 will be if their young hitters can continue to progress.  Can Bryan Reynolds build on his overall impressive 2020 season?  So far his Spring Training numbers suggest that he will pick up where he left off.  Reynolds is only batting .263 right now, but his OPS is up over 1.000 while hitting two home runs in 10 games.  If there is one area Reynolds has a chance to improve this year it would be power.  He has the frame and bat speed to be a 20 homer player.

One of the breakout players for the Pittsburgh Pirates last year that wasn’t named Bryan Reynolds or Kevin Newman was catcher Jacob Stallings.  Before the 2019 season started, Stallings was placed on waivers, luckily for the Pittsburgh Pirates, no one claimed him.  Stallings earned the starting job last year and is having a strong spring to back it up.  So far, Stallings is batting .350 with two doubles in eight games.

The last regular who is off to a great start this spring is Gregory Polanco.  Polanco very well could be the Pittsburgh Pirates x-factor this season.  If the Bucs get 25+ home runs from Polanco, then they will have a really solid three-four combo along with Josh Bell.  Seeming to be 100 percent healthy, Polanco is slashing .381/.519/.667.  He has a home run and three doubles in nine games played.  Furthermore, he has had good at-bats and though he has struck out seven times, he has also has drawn six walks.

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These three players are very important to the Pittsburgh Pirates potential success in 2020.  Bryan Reynolds has a chance to solidify himself as the team’s next franchise player.  Meanwhile, Jacob Stallings can prove that the team does not need to acquire any close to MLB ready catching help.  Then of course if Gregory Polanco can stay healthy and continue to hit the way he has this spring, then the Pittsburgh Pirates might at least have a surprisingly fun offense to watch in 2020.