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March 31, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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God bless Frank Coonelly

ATLANTA — Frank Coonelly was disgusted last September when, a few days after being hired as Pirates president, he saw the Pirates lounging and laughing in their dugout while “God Bless America” was being played. Coonelly brought up that moment …

March 31, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Surprise! It’s Doumit at catcher

ATLANTA — John Russell’s first surprise move as Pirates manager came in today’s season opener against Atlanta, when Ryan Doumit replaced Ronny Paulino as the starting catcher. Russell said he made the switch because Doumit’s patient approach at the plate …

March 29, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Final spring thoughts

TAMPA — As I drove to Tampa Airport this morning, I was reminded of a scene from a couple of days ago on the same stretch of highway. The Pirates had played the New York Yankees that afternoon at the …

March 13, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Picking a roster

TAMPA — The Pirates won’t make another big round of cuts until Saturday at the earliest, and the 25-man roster won’t be finalized until a day or two before the season begins. But even at this point, I don’t think …

March 11, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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What a joke!

BRADENTON, Fla. — Today is the Pirates’ lone day off during spring training. They’re back in action tomorrow and Thursday play the New York Yankees in Tampa. But it appears the Yankees consider that game against the Pirates as a …

March 8, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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What, me nervous?

BRADENTON, Fla. — The two games in which Daniel Moskos has pitched so far this spring were an audition of sorts. They were a way the Pirates’ new management team and coaching staff to get an up-close look at the …

March 8, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Lights out

BRADENTON, Fla. — Last night was supposed to mark the first night game in the 85-year history of McKechnie Field. But the game was washed out by a line of lightning storms and a tornado watch. Good times! The evening …

March 7, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Win? Lose? Who cares?

SARASOTA, Fla. — There are some Buccos bloggers and casual fans out there who get all worked up over spring training losses. I can’t understand why. The Pirates had lost six games in a row before rallying in the ninth …

March 6, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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No blockbuster … yet

BRADENTON, Fla. — Minutes before the NHL trading deadline, the Penguins gave up two starters, a prospect and a draft pick and got Marian Hossa, one of the top offensive threats in pro hockey. On baseball’s deadline day last year, …

March 1, 2008
by rob biertempfel


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Meeting Mr. Red

CLEARWATER, Fla. — Strange day at Ed Smith Stadium. The game between the Pirates and Reds was marked by sloppy defense and ineffective pitching. It was a slow-paced game, and took 3 1/2 hours to wrap up. The Pirates blew …

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