Five Things the Pittsburgh Pirates Need to Do in June

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Play the kids

How many more times will we have to watch Josh VanMeter take semi-regular reps? How many more times will we have to watch Yoshi Tsutsugo make regular starts with a 60 wRC+? When are we going to start passing the ball off to Yerry De Los Santos in close games rather than Chris Stratton?

It’s one thing if the Pirates are going to lose with the young guys, but it’s another thing to lose when they keep marching out the depth/utility men who are in their late-20s/early-30s. It’s time they start to get the kids playing time.

Jack Suwinski and Cal Mitchell should be getting regular reps in the outfield. They’re two guys who could be part of the long-term outfield plans. You’re never going to figure out what they have when you sit one, have VanMeter start at second base, and have Diego Castillo playing in one of the outfield spots.

Speaking of Castillo, it’s time to get him and Bae platooning at second base, rather than him and VanMeter. Castillo has demolished lefties to the tune of a .295/.311/.568 line, .378 wOBA, and 144 wRC+. He has a sub-40 wRC+ against right-handers. Meanwhile, you have Bae with a .886 OPS against right-handers. A Castillo/Bae platoon at second base might give the Pirates the best production from the position in the bigs.

Next. Five Underrated Prospects Deserving More Attention. dark

Get Cruz starts at shortstop, get Martin starts at first base, get some of the pitching prospects some starts in the major leagues. It’s time to put the youth movement in full swing. No more excuses, no more half-measures, and no more pulling punches. Start getting these guys playing time now.