Pittsburgh Pirates:The Forecast Is Partly Sunny

Jim SimmonsContributor IMarch 3, 2009

The weather in Bradenton has been a little on the chilly side. Not “Pittsburgh cold” (wind chill -7 today), but cold for Florida standards.

The Pirates are heating it up a bit.

The Bucs are off to a sizzling 5-1 start. The pitchers are holding their own, the hitters are hitting it “where they aint” and the manager is..well, managing.

The Pirates have put things in motion for a league championship.

There it is, I said it…well I blogged it anyway.

Can the Bucco’s win the Grapefruit League? What would it all mean? Well it would be a moral victory, as we all know the Bucs haven’t won anything since…err..It's been a long time.

I know winning the Grapefruit League really means nothing, but maybe, just maybe it gives the guys a lift.  Something positive. (We the fans need something positive, and I know this is  a reach, but humor me here.)

Russell and Kerrigan look like they know what they are doing. Soon we will know for sure. These guys both are consummate professionals, and winners. (Something the Pirates have lacked since Jimmy Leyland dumped the team, way back when.

Neil Hunnington has been making the right moves, (Dave Littlefiled/Cam Bonifay, are you taking notes?). He's showing that same swagger the Cleveland Indians had. He's committing to youth, and sprinkling in the veterans. He's not spending just to spend. No Derek Bells in sight.

You know what..if you look real close, you can see..The Pirates have a PLAN. A real plan, not the same old, lets tell the fans we have a plan, plan. But a real life, honest to goodness, PLAN.

The Pirates have some pieces in place. McLouth and Doumit, Sanchez, and Wilson (who probably won't last the season in Pittsburgh). Those guys are ball players! LaRoche has been once the season is out of reach, maybe he can get it cranked up a little earlier.

They have some young guys on the way, Andy Laroche, McCutcheon, Walker, Jose Tabata, Shelby Ford, Robbie Grossman, and of course, Pedro Alvarez.

The pitching has a way to go yet, but with Brad Lincoln, Bryan Morris, Daniel Moskos, and Jeff Sues (Who's has one of the best fastballs around) on the way, oh and Dan McCutcheon, looks like a keeper too!

Its starting to come together. It won't happen overnight, and they need to take baby steps, but the Pirates are headed in the right direction.

A Grapefruit League Championship, is just what the doctor ordered!

We now return you to your regularly scheduled program, entitled: Reality.


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