Pittsburgh Pirates Wake Up Call – A nightmare by any other name

In our daily Wake-Up Call, we get you ready for the day with a complete look at all things Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Felipe Vazquez clearly has his own set of principles and priorities that guide him through his baseball life. We saw that this offseason, when his sister stepped in to act as a de facto negotiator in signing his extension with the club. Now, as Liz Bloom of the Post-Gazette reports, Vazquez has legally changed his last name to better reflect his familial ties.

In reading Bloom’s report, I was struck by Vazquez’s devotion to his sister, who appears to have shared some tough times growing up with the Pittsburgh Pirates fireballer. Sometimes, a name is just a name, but other times it means so much more. This appears to be one of those times. At the risk of editorializing, I for one think that many of us can learn a lesson from this gesture.

Why are they trying to play in this weather

Major League Baseball negotiated more off days with the MLB Player’s Association in the most recent CBA, and the result was that the season would start earlier than usual. As a byproduct of that, many games are being played in frigid temperatures. One game that won’t be played in the chill is the Pittsburgh Pirates – Chicago Cubs game yesterday that was moved to today.

One thing I worry about due to the weather is that this may spurn more change at the next negotiation. Could a reduction of games be on th table? Absolutely.

Is the 162 game season sacred? Some say yes, others vehemently disagree. Count me in that camp. Not only would going back to, say, 144 games deprive us of more baseball, but the 18 shorter games could mean all the difference when it comes to late-season pennant chase drama or individual season stats for players.

The bottom line is that starting the season this early clearly did not work.

A quick note on Taillon’s CG

I did up a little info-graphic over at our sister site, Locked on Pirates, that dives into the numbers behind Jameson Taillon‘s stellar complete game:

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Jason Rollison

Jason Rollison has been analyzing baseball and the Pirates in one way or another for 4+ years. Jason's previous stops include rumbunter.com, Pittsburgh Sporting News, Call To The Pen and several print publications. He also covers the State College Spikes for the Centre County Gazette (State College, PA) When it comes to analyzing baseball, he likes to take a middle-of-the-road approach, with one foot on the analytics side of the fence and the other on the old-school side. Having said that, he is a sucker for pitchf/x. Jason has appeared as a phone-in and in-studio guests in numerous outlets, including Trib Live Radio and 93.7 The Fan (CBS Sports Radio)