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Pedro Alvarez Keeps Hitting, But Pirates Still Don't Promote Him

Pedro Alvarez continues to hit for the Indianapolis Indians - he went 2-for-4 with a homer in Saturday's game against Rochester, giving him a .350 average with a .444 on-base percentage and .550 slugging in 60 at bats at Class AAA.

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That, naturally, has Pirates fans screaming for his return, particularly since the Pirates have gotten so little out of third base this year.

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A couple observations about that, though:

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Now that the Pirates are playing much better, fans have become extremely short-term-oriented. To some extent, that's fair, but when it comes to things like trading Jose Tabata and two top prospects for Hunter Pence, the Bucs' front office should be a little more circumspect. 

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It's no surprise that Alvarez can hit Class AAA hitting. That doesn't tell us much. The front office needs to see that he's keeping his strikeouts down and hitting the ball to all fields with authority. If he can do that, it'll put the Pirates in a much better position to win post-2011 than if they thrust him into a pennant race. As others have pointed out, this isn't about whether he can currently hit a bit better than Brandon Wood or Chase D'Arnaud. It's about helping him become the cornerstone player we thought he could be when he was drafted.

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Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.