Projecting the Pittsburgh Pirates Opening Day Lineup

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BRADENTON, FL – FEBRUARY 19: Jarrod Dyson #6 of the Pittsburgh Pirates poses for a photo during the Pirates’ photo day on February 19, 2020 at Pirate City in Bradenton, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
BRADENTON, FL – FEBRUARY 19: Jarrod Dyson #6 of the Pittsburgh Pirates poses for a photo during the Pirates’ photo day on February 19, 2020 at Pirate City in Bradenton, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images) /

Center Field

The Pittsburgh Pirates appear to be going all in on run prevention this year. This will include getting a lot of defense out of their new center fielder, veteran speedster Jarrod Dyson.

Although now into his mid-30s, Dyson is still a top tier outfield defender. Through 879 innings coming from all three outfield spots, but mainly center field, Dyson had +14 DRS, +7.9 UZR, +1.3 range runs above average, and +5.7 outfield arm runs above average. Despite not reaching the 1000 innings mark, Dyson was still top 10 in DRS, UZR and arm runs. This is a big upgrade over Starling Marte who, surprisingly, ranked next to last in DRS, and UZR, and last in range runs among center fielders with at least 800 innings.

But while it is a major upgrade defensively, it’s going to be a major downgrade offensively. In the past three seasons, Dyson has only hit .229/.310/.317 with a 68 OPS+ and 71 wRC+. Dyson can still swipe bags at a good rate, stealing 30 in 34 attempts last year, but his overall offense obviously is not good. Regardless, his defense has made up for it as he still has a positive fWAR in those three years.

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