We’ve hit the month of March and you know what that means? Baseball baby! Spring Training is here and the Pirates opening day at PNC Park is just a month away on April 2nd against the Twins.

But there are questions abound regarding the Pittsburgh Pirates offseason so far. No more McCutchen and no more Cole. And when Garrit Cole makes statements about it being “refreshing to come to an environment where the team is willing to continually put resources into the club” … it raises concerns. Especially now that the Players’ Union is looking into the organization’s use of revenue. It goes beyond us simple fans questioning matters. The players are concerned, so what the heck is this organization doing?

I don’t know if you’ve read or heard any of Neal Huntington’s statements regarding the recent moves, but they are confusing at best and quite dubious. In the short of it, he claims that the Pirates were not impacted at all by the McCutchen and Cole trades and that the organization is doing everything possible to get back into the postseason in 2018. And that with the trades the Pirates are “still on the outside, but right on the edge” … But the second of the two trades does knock a few wins off the boards —paraphrasing Huntington here.

Ok … so that makes no sense at all if you were trying to give the team the best shot. Because if we were on the edge of making the playoffs … doing things that make you win fewer games is not something that ‘didn’t have an impact’ on the Bucs chances at making the postseason. In fact, it is quite the opposite. It’s these kinds of explanations that really make us Pirates fans angry.

Here’s what we do know. The Pirates have plummeted to the bottom of the NL Central in the eyes of Las Vegas oddsmakers. There is good news to this though, when you’re at the bottom the only direction you can go is up! So having Neal Huntington crush our expectations for the 2018 season could be looked at as a good thing. If we actually do make a run at the playoffs it will be a huge win for the fans and team.

Another thing we need to keep in mind is the season wins totals. Make sure to check 5Dimes for all MLB odds, but we can expect an OVER/UNDER of somewhere around 71 to 76 wins. And if my prediction is true, I like the Bucs to go over those numbers. There is still some great talent and a large chunk of salary for prospects, so I do believe our Pirates will pleasantly surprise us in 2018.