TribLIVE
Blogs | Sports | News
Dejan Kovacevic's Blog

Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

« Font size »
Decrease | Reset |Increase

Wakeup Call: The Duquesne outpouring

.

Brief and to the Point …

>> Well, I didn’t see that coming. When one sits down to pen a column about Duquesne basketball, one pretty much is resigned to getting next to nothing in terms of feedback the following morning. Not so for the piece yesterday admonishing the administration for firing Ron Everhart.

I received more combined email, blog, Twitter and Facebook feedback — positive and negative — for this than anything since the column support Sidney Crosby’s captaincy a couple months ago. Most of it, as you’d expect, were from Duquesne students or alumni, but I also heard from people at Pitt and Robert Morris, former coaches and players, from the high school coach of forget-about-him-now recruit Donovon Jack, and even from John Sarandrea, the former Pitt and North Carolina assistant. Sarandrea wrote: “I don’t think anyone could have said it better than that!”

I even heard — unsolicited — from a head coach in the Atlantic 10, who wrote a deeply emotional letter, though he asked not to be identified.

One excerpt: “Ronnie took Duquesne to the championship game a couple years ago and had winning records! Do they not remember what he inherited?  I was shocked he got fired. I am embarrassed to be in this profession at times like these.”

Again, not all were in agreement. Some thought I should have underscored more of Everhart’s negatives. My counter is that the university did plenty of that last Friday, even as Everhart didn’t have — and still doesn’t have — the chance to speak freely.

But the dominant majority voiced displeasure with the Duquesne administration, and not just in the area of athletics. I’ll echo that. The Bluff has become a passive place pretty much notable for nothing anymore. The law school fiasco was butchered by Charles Dougherty in 2008, the once-illustrious music school is being ignored, and even the precious Tamburitzans are being cut to the core.

Really, what is Duquesne anymore?

I can tell you what Point Park University is. It’s a growing, ambitious, something-new-everyday place that’s bringing life to Downtown, with budding programs especially in the performance arts.

I can tell you what Robert Morris is. It’s become a real player on the athletic scene thanks largely to the vision of former AD Susan Hofacre, who was tragically lost too young. The Colonials’ basketball is better than Duquesne’s, and the men’s and women’s hockey teams — both regional firsts — are having an impact at national and even Olympic levels.

Meanwhile, the Bluff sleeps, with the same old faces that have been guiding Old Main for an eternity.

>> Pedro Alvarez, the unconditional third baseman, went 0 for 3 last night against the Orioles, as some of you no doubt saw on the telecast. He struck out twice. He’s at 4 for 35 now, with 15 Ks.

This doesn’t even need a comment anymore, does it?

I’m just glad some of you got to see it instead of just having to take the word of myself and others who’ve been down there witnessing it. These at-bats actually were an upgrade.

>> Player to watch at Consol tonight is the Islanders’ John Tavares. He has zero points against the Penguins in four games, and there’s no way someone with those hands will put up an egg for the season.

I’ll be over there, penning a column for Wednesday. About time to get back into some pucks.

Comments

  1. Leah Backus says:

    Yay! Glad to see you will be back covering hockey. I have missed your insights while you’ve been focusing on baseball and college hoops. If the Islanders ever get their goaltending situation sorted out, they could become a real threat. They have a lot of young talent, as well as guys like PA Parenteau who are finally hitting their stride. So much so that I almost *want* to see them become competitive rather than see all that talent wasted on a perennial basement dweller of a team. Almost.

  2. Ex-Pat Pittsburgh Girl says:

    As a Duquesne law alum, I’ve been hoping for Dougherty’s departure long before the mess in 2008. The manner in which Coach Everhardt’s dismissal was handled by the AD and the President’s office was just the final straw for me. I’m not sure the hoops program will ever recover. I hope it does, but without a change in leadership at the very top and a commitment – and not just lip service – to the entire athletic program, I really can’t see that happening. That makes me sad.

  3. pgherinfl - Carl says:

    Duquesne bigwigs botched the handling of this firing of a coach who was doing the things needed to get a basketball team into a playoff caliber team every year. Wow, try saying that sentence in one breath. We know he had some bad points but he also had some good ones.

    They are better ways to wreck an athletic program like they seem to be trying to do. They could just eliminate the athletics department and not have to worry about it anymore. Just slightly kidding.

    Pedro Alvarez is what he is. You kind of hate to give up on him. What if he is another Jose Bautista? At this rate with the way he looks, he needs to go back to the minors to try to straighten out his mental part of the game.

  4. @dc07cf says:

    About K-dro. Unfortunately I was unable to rubberneck tonight. He is the one player on the team that has the ability to change the dynamic of the lineup if he can ever put it together. It’s extremely frustrating to see him to continue to struggle and gives little hope of the Bucs having a legit power threat behind the top 3 or 4. That being said, I don’t see the advantage in having him start at AAA. He’s proven he can hit down there. I have to side with management on this one. He should be given the oportunity to do prove himself in the bigs in games that count, even if it’s just against righties to start. Could it turn out to be another 5 car pile up on the side of the road? Yeah. If so then send him down.

  5. It would have been easy to ignore the Duquesne coaching story. The president and the athletic director have worked hard to encourage being ignored. Amodio has eliminated the salary for the Pep Band director and top notch programs like baseball (2 players in majors last season) and wrestling during his tenure, and now he has given up the top recruiting class in the Atlantic 10 by throwing his weight around and dismissing the only true thing Duquesne seems to be doing right in athletics.

    It all starts at the top. Doughtery’s email shows how out of touch he is. Losers, both!

  6. According to Neal Huntington, Pedro is just going through one of those phases all batters go through.

    He’ll break out of it next December in Winter Ball!

    DK: Boom!

  7. Deb says:

    You have facebook? I comment here, and sometimes on twitter. Didn’t know you had a facebook account.

    Agree with Leah. Waste of your talents covering baseball. Hockey needs you more now.

    I expect you to refocus and realize that Fleury is indeed the Pens MVP.

    This team of Pens, (prior to Crosby’s return), remind me a lot of the Capitals from two years ago. Run/Gun and high scoring against weak teams, and winning against strong teams when they are ‘lucky’ or ‘get good bounces.’ But you only have to look at Malkin’s plus/minus to know, his line gives up almost as many goals as they score. In fact, the defensive lapses this team makes are front and center when the backup goalies play…when Fleury plays, the team wins because he pulls magic out of his hat every game, robbing two or three ‘sure goals’ most every game.

    The Geno line has been eye candy, just as Ovie was in his hay day as far as pretty shots and goals. But Malkin has added 10 points to his plus/minus since Sid returned to the lineup. Geno has 90+ points, and a plus/minus of 18 [he was a plus 8 until Sid’s return]. Sid has 25 points and a plus/minus of 16.
    I’m not real hung up on the plus/minus as stat, as there can be all sorts of things that influence it. However, in this case it is a warning. Geno’s play/and the Pen’s run and gun style this year has paid less attention to defense , and is reminiscent of the Capitals style from years past.

    While fun to watch, that type of play doesn’t win the Stanley Cup. It will maybe win you one best of seven series, (although the Caps haven’t even been able to achieve that) but what it primarily does is win individual players a trophy or two, and nothing more. Geno may win the Hart, as mostly it has become a secondary award for whoever wins the Art Ross. But the player most important to the Pens championship hopes is Fleury.

    Fleury will steal a game here and there for the team, and maybe a playoff game or series. He is that good. He is the Pens MVP. He covers for many of the defensive lapses of the team, and gives them a chance to win every game. The second is Sid and Staal. Both are defensively responsible and able to shut down opposing teams best lines, while generating offense. In Sid’s case, generating a lot of offense.

    Fleury is the key to Stanley cups.

    DK: Been on Facebook forever!

  8. Deb says:

    Ha..just catching up on my hockey reading and ran across this from Eliotte Friedman’s 30 thoughts blog from CBC….the man with the inside info.

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/opinion/2012/03/quebec-arena-announcement-ends-strange-week-30-thoughts.html

    5. On a Pittsburgh team stacked with stars, a couple opponents say the real key is Marc-Andre Fleury. The Penguins do give up chances, and Fleury prevents disaster. “Oh, he’s really good,” said one scout. “No rebounds. He’s in total control and gives up nothing.” You saw what happened in Ottawa Saturday night when he sat. Brad Thiessen is improving and talented, but not at Fleury’s level.

  9. Playoffs by 2012 says:

    Pay-dro — 2 strikeouts and an error…already in mid-season form.

  10. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    DK- Do you disagree with NH on keeping Pedro up at the MLB level to get his AB’s?

    DK: You mean forcing the issue if nothing improves? I’d think that’s painfully clear.

  11. JAL says:

    JAL’s Alexander’s Ragtime Band Morning Links

    GENERAL DAILY UPDATED BASEBALL SITES

    1- MLB Transactions

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/pittsburgh_pirates/

    3 Yahoo Free Agent Tracker

    http://ca.sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news;_ylt=AvN8KLXkNW0TcRjzSCagLIMBbgM6?slug=jp-passan_ultimate_free_agent_tracker_baseball_110211

    4 Pittsburgh Pirates 2012 Spring Training Tracker

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/st2012

    5 2012 Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training Broadcast Schedule

    http://blogs.piratesprospects.com/williams/2012-pittsburgh-pirates-spring-training-broadcast-schedule/

  12. JAL says:

    7 Bucs Dugout

    Orioles 4, Pirates 1: Pedro Alvarez’s Night A Microcosm Of Bucs’ Offensive Troubles

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2012/3/26/2904919/orioles-4-pirates-1-pedro-alvarez

    For Pirates Fans, Diamondbacks’ Roster Decisions Bear Watching

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2012/3/26/2903158/for-pirates-fans-diamondbacks-roster-decisions-bear-watching

    8 Rumbunter

    A Simple, Non-Batting Coach Analysis of Pittsburgh Pirates Slugger Pedro Alvarez

    http://rumbunter.com/2012/03/26/a-simple-non-batting-coach-analysis-of-pittsburgh-pirates-slugger-pedro-alvarez/

    9 McEffect

    3/26 Recap | Orioles 4 Pirates 1

    http://www.mceffect.com/2012/03/326-recap-orioles-4-pirates-1.html

    10 WHYGAVS

    Kip Wells is considering a comeback

    http://whygavs.com/pittsburgh-pirates/march-2012/kip-wells-is-considering-a-comeback.html

  13. Mechanicsville Bill says:

    The Islanders will never get their goalie situation figured out because they have “cost-certainty” at that position with that 84-year (with player option for an 85th year) contract that they gave to perhaps the most injury-prone hockey player ever, Rick DiPietro. No team in their right mind would take on that contract in trade, and DiPietro will remain on the payroll till the very end of that deal.

    I flipped from the Pens to the Isles when I was 9 after I lost a bet with a relative who was also an Islanders fan. I knew i’d regret it.

  14. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES

    11 Bradenton Herald

    Pittsburgh Pirates | Evening games break monotony of spring training routine

    http://www.bradenton.com/2012/03/27/3963661/like-night-and-day.html

    12 Baltimore Sun

    Orioles secure 4-1 win against the Pirates

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/blog/bal-orioles-secure-41-win-against-the-pirates-20120326,0,3632668.story

    13 Indian Express

    Baseball dream ends but 23-yr-old Varanasi youth returns a winner

    http://www.indianexpress.com/news/baseball-dream-ends-but-23yrold-varanasi-youth-returns-a-winner/928873/

    14 Aberdeen News

    Brandon Wood arrives in Tempe by way of Colorado

    http://www.aberdeennews.com/sports/la-sp-0327-angels-20120327,0,7699772.story

    15 Pittsburgh Tribune Review

    Relief pitchers jockeying for bullpen position with Pirates

    http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/pirates/s_788467.html

  15. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    20 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Rooney: ‘Sooner the Better’ on Long Term Deal for Wallace

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2012/3/26/2902899/nfl-free-agency-mike-wallace-larry-fitzgerald-contract

    Steelers Land QB Nick Foles, Several Guards, in Later Rounds of Live Mock Draft

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2012/3/26/2902889/steelers-land-qb-nick-foles-several-guards-in-later-rounds-of-live

    Weekend Checkdown: Reviewing the Big Stories of the Past Week

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2012/3/24/2898348/nfl-news-tim-tebow-new-york-jets-new-orleans-saints-denver-broncos-peyton-manning-steelers

    21 Steelers Depot

    - Steelers Awarded Three 2012 7th Round Compensatory Draft Picks

    http://www.steelersdepot.com/2012/03/steelers-awarded-three-2012-7th-round-compensatory-draft-picks/

    22 Nice Pick Cower

    William Gay To ‘Pittsburgh West’

    http://nicepickcowher.com/2012/03/25/william-gay-to-pittsburgh-west/

  16. JAL says:

    Pitt Blogs

    23 Pitt Blather

    Roughly Halfway Spring Practice Round-Up

    http://www.pittblather.com/2012/03/26/roughly-halfway-spring-practice-round-up/

    24 Cardiac Hill

    CBI Finals: Pitt Falls Apart In Second Half, Loses To Washington State

    http://www.cardiachill.com/2012/3/27/2905216/cbi-score-tournament-pitt-vs-washington-state-pittsburgh-panthers-basketball-brock-motum

    WVU Blogs

    25 Metro News

    Jones Named John Wooden All-American

    http://www.wvmetronews.com/wvu.cfm?func=displayfullstory&storyid=51818

    26 WV Illustrated

    WVU Players, Coaches Excited For Spring Break

    http://www.wvillustrated.com/story/17255488/wvu-players-coaches-excited-for-spring-break

  17. JAL says:

    PENGUIN BLOGS

    26 Pensburgh

    Pens recall Simon Despres and Brian Strait from Wilkes-Barre

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2012/3/26/2904397/pens-recall-simon-despres-and-brian-strait-from-wilkes-barre

    Soccer(football)

    27 Sky Sports

    Rooney strike separates sides

    http://www.skysports.com/football/match_report/0,19764,11065_3484836,00.html

    28 World Soccer Daily

    World Soccer Daily: 10 stories you need to read, 26th March, 2012

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/247/world-soccer-daily-10-stories-you-need-to-read-26th-march-2012

    29 Daily Telegraph

    Bolton’s thoughts with Fabrice Muamba ahead of emotional return to Tottenham for FA Cup quarter-final

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/bolton-wanderers/9167995/Boltons-thoughts-with-Fabrice-Muamba-ahead-of-emotional-return-to-Tottenham-for-FA-Cup-quarter-final.html

  18. JAL says:

    Alexanders Ragtime Band 1911. Alice Faye 1938. First hit by Irving Berlin. Liza Minnelli currently opens and closes her shows with this song. Version from 1938 movie Alexander’s Ragtime Band sung by Alice Faye, who was one of the top box office stars of the late 1930’s.

  19. TJA says:

    Wow regarding the Duquesne University story. That’s pretty amazing stuff, Dejan, coming from the “competition”. That says a whole bunch for Ron Everhart and does not say much for his bosses. Doesn’t appear he’ll be looking for work for too long a period. Speaking of which…thanks for your good work.

    DK: Appreciated.

  20. Lee says:

    One of the argument for not sending PA down to AAA was the fact he has nothing to prove down there. That his OPS is well over .800!!

    Well…….Matt Hague’s OPS is well over .800 for his minor league career. Why is he being said to be unproven and not have potential???

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=hague-001mat

    I don’t get it.

    Foo

    ……

    Foo

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=hague-001mat

  21. Jandy says:

    Deb, I enjoyed reading your posts this morning. And honestly, I agree with you that without Fleury this team doesn’t go far. But I do disagree in that Geno is much more than Ovie. Geno can steal the puck, he plays more defense than Ovie will ever see in his entire career, and he can set up others to score as well. Ovie doesn’t play the entire ice as Geno does. This team as set up now with the strength down the center can and will win playoff games, AS LONG AS THEY REMEMEBER TO PLAY DEFENSE AS WELL. I’m not sure where all this run and gun is coming from, but it really needs to stop. Thiessen will never be the goalie MAF is. Won’t happen. MAF has his own individual style, depends on this athleticism, and Thiessen will never have that gift. What I see from Thiessen now is that he totally needs more repsonsible defense in front of him. He can’t make those windmill saves if his life depended on it. Here’s hoping the guys get back into the responsible, disciplined playing style that has brought them thru so many lean times. I’m actually thinking BJ might have a start against the Islanders in one of these games.

    DK ~ Glad to see you doing some hockey, boss. I know we have to share, but it’s been a while! Upside is, I’m still reading everything and learning a lot. Thanks for ALL you do. =)

  22. Jandy says:

    Not to change the subject, but I absolutely love the headlines today about Payton/Purcells. I hope Bill accepts the job. That will really be thumbing their collective noses at Goodell (who thinks he’s God).

  23. Lee says:

    Jandy….isn’t his name Roger GODdell? I think you misspelled it. :) :) :)

  24. Jandy says:

    Lee, I honestly think *HE* thinks so! lol
    I can’t describe with words how much I despise GODell. He ranks up there with Bud Selig…

    remind me to fix my spellcheck ;)

  25. JaxBuc says:

    @Foo (#22)

    One is on scholarship, one is a walk-on. Thought this was cleared up the other day.

  26. bdubb says:

    Do you take 30 home runs and 220 strikeouts like a Mark Reynolds? Not saying Pedro is going hit 30 but he could. From the things I have been reading NH say lately it is apparent Pedro has a fragile ego. Neal hasn’t said this many positive things about someone yet in his career here. They seem to be trying desperately to get him to just relax. I take him North

  27. NMR says:

    Honest question: has any player ever been treated like Pedro has been the last four weeks?

    I mean, we have the most respected sports journalist in town live-tweeting every spring training at-bat. I’m not saying its wrong or unfair, but simply asking the question for perspective. Sign of the times?

    That being said, JAL provided a great link from Rumbunter(#8). I was shocked to see how different Pedro’s swing looks this season compared to 2010. Who is coaching this kid?

    Does nothing but strengthen my opinion that Hurdle/Ritchie deserve a hefty portion of blame.

  28. Lee says:

    JaxBuc….# 27. Sorry….don’t get to read the blog everyday, but that DOES seem to be the consensus.

    Sadly….

    Foo

  29. Lee says:

    bdubb….gimme James Loney or Mark Grace over Mark Reynolds.

    Not even close.

    Foo

    ….

  30. Lee says:

    NMR…..they changed his swing because he couldn’t get to certain pitches. That was brought up early in ST.

    His changed swing is the least of his problems.
    He’s a headcase. Bring Hague north. ALl he does is ‘collect hits’.

    Foo

  31. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Can’t give up on Pedro yet. He does have the potential to be 30/100 guy. Its about time he lives up to this potential.

    A swing change is no big deal. How many different swings/stances did Cal Ripken have? Cutch changed his swing in the off season too.

    Hague is the infielder version of Alex Presley. Just hits, not much power though.

    @Lee-If Hague is a Mark Grace/James Loney type, I’ll take him too. However, those teams (Cubs and Dodgers) haven’t and didn’t win much either though. But still more than the Pirates.

  32. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Zach Duke released by the Astros. Does it get any worse than that?? Pirates want a lefty RP, maybe bring back Zach?? Always liked him.

    DK: Wow, for real? Link?

  33. SeanE says:

    The thing about Pedro that caught my eye was during his second AB. He worked the count to 3-0 and was served up a fat 88 mph fastball-and couldn’t turn on it. There was an outstanding replay which showed just how late he was on the swing. All he could do was weakly foul off the pitch.

    This is a real concern. If your power hitter can’t catch up to an 88 mph fastball out over the plate something is wrong.

    DK: Terrific observation. Right through the ball.

  34. Jandy says:

    I don’t fully understand the PA/Hague dilemna. If you’re getting production from someone at lesss cost, to me it doesn’t take a genius to go with the one producing for less money. But that’s just me.
    Also, if you send PA down, I don’t care where, and he straightens out his mental block, then bring him back up, you can always put him in, and you then have 2 producers, no?
    Ahhhh…women, right? ;)

  35. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    DK-http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/

  36. JuniataKid says:

    About four years ago, I did some work for Duquesne. We’ll call it promotional stuff. Even after having spent months with their people, I couldn’t tell you what it stood for. It’s kind of Catholic, but not really. It’s expensive, but I couldn’t tell you why it’s worth it. Even the higher-ups couldn’t put a finger on exactly what Duquesne’s value is, aside from vague generalities. And the people we were working with couldn’t be considered outstanding in their field, to put it mildly. I have three kids of varying distance from a college decision, but Duquesne won’t be in the consideration set. If they can’t tell me what’s outstanding about their institution, why should I trust my kids’ future to them?

    That ineptitude is on public display with the Everhart firing.

  37. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    I wish I would’ve been able to see the telecast. I’m sorry, but if the counts 3-0, ANY hitter, let alone your “power” hitter, needs to be sitting fastball. He couldn’t catch up to an 88 MPH fastball? I could see being early on an 88, but late?? SMH

  38. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Sorry, guess I’m not good at adding links.

  39. Jandy says:

    Ryan, you did good, see, here’s where the link took me :
    The Astros released left-hander Zach Duke and outfielder Jack Cust, Senior Director of Social Media Alyson Footer tweets.

    Cust, 33, signed a non-guaranteed Major League deal worth $600K in January. The one-year contract had also included a club option for 2013. Cust posted a .213/.344/.329 line with three home runs in 270 plate appearances for the Mariners in 2011, when he earned $2.5MM. However, the TWC Sports client averaged 28 homers and 103 walks with the A’s from 2007-09.

    Duke, 28, posted a 4.93 ERA with 3.8 K/9, 2.2 BB/9 and a 49.6% ground ball rate in 76 2/3 innings last year. The 2009 All-Star owns a 4.56 ERA with 4.6 K/9, 2.4 BB/9 and a 49.0% ground ball rate in seven seasons with Arizona and Pittsburgh. SFX represents the Clifton, Texas native.

  40. Jandy says:

    JuniataKid, is that Juniata, as in near Altoona, PA?

  41. bdubb says:

    If Pedro is late on 88mph fastballs then he has too much going on in his head. I have said before they need to stop with all the information. He can’t process everything. He has a quick bat. So if he is missng BP fastballs he is thinking of too many other possibilities. Just relax kid. Do what you do (or used to do – except for watching 2 strikes go by). The coaches need to scrap everything they have put in his head. The mental side is a tough side to crack

  42. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Its definitely a mental thing….one thing to work the mental side in the cage and on the Tee. In the box he needs to drop all that and it should be second nature. He has no idea what his first nature is.

  43. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Thanks Jandy. It didn’t hyperlink though did it?

  44. Lee says:

    Jandy #36….agree wholeheartedly

  45. Lee says:

    bdubb….#43….he was doing that LAST year. They’re incorporating changes to try to fix that.

    He is a mess mentally, which means it doesn’t matter how much power he has.

    Play Hague and Casey……pls.

  46. Jandy says:

    Ryan, I can’t hyperlink them either, but it’s all good if I can copy and paste and it takes me where I want to go :)

    Lee, yeah, right?!

  47. Milo Hamilton says:

    Free John Grabow.

  48. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    The only arguement I have against playing Megeheehee over Pedro is; Is he really that much better?? He batted .230 last year. Obviously better than Pedro, but wouldn’t that amount to 2-3 games won over the course of the year??

    I know its not the favored idea, but let Pedro start up with the Pirates. Let him work out his issues at the MLB level against MLB pitching.

  49. JohninOshkosh says:

    What is a columnist to do?

    A vocal group of the readership wants you to write about baseball. Another fervent group insists that you are at your best writing about hockey. Football is always a crowd pleaser. Now there is going to be some clamoring for you to write more about collegiate issues.

    The greatest honor is in being read so whatever you write about, I will read. (Although, I am beginning to think that you never ever had a soccer column in the can, but just wanted to use it as a sword of Damocles over folks like Groat!)

  50. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    I”m sure this post was in JALS links, but its a good read. I agreed with everyone before that sending Pedro down was a good idea. But reading this made me think a little deeper about the idea.

    http://blogs.piratesprospects.com/williams/first-pitch-should-alvarez-go-to-triple-a/

  51. Milo Hamilton says:

    Here is the Zachary (sorry, I was thinking of Lanny this morning) Duke story.

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2012/03/astros-release-zach-duke-jack-cust.html

  52. Milo Hamilton says:

    @Oshkosh

    Forget about the soccer column. Aren’t we due another on how the Pirates aren’t cheap ?

  53. JohninOshkosh says:

    Also an article about Zuke on the Astros official page. I think I was the third visitor there this year.

    SIGNGRABOWNOW!

  54. JohninOshkosh says:

    I meant Duke, obviously.

  55. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    What about Mike Gonzalez instead of Grabow?

  56. JohninOshkosh says:

    @Ryan: I think either would be a welcomed addition.

    @Milo (#54) Indeed!

  57. NMR says:

    Foo

    Look at the differences in his swing. You don’t tell someone to have a simplified, see-ball-hit-ball approach and then add a hundred timing mechanisms into his swing.

    Literally, every part of Pedro’s body is moving before the pitch. That’s strikingly different from the Pedro we saw in college and in 2010.

    Sean made a great observation. A player with Pedro’s bat speed does not miss late on an 88 mph fastball if he’s comfortable with his mechanics. The kid didn’t just magically lose his eye sight.

    If we can give coaches credit for changing Charlie Morton’s arm slot, why can’t we question them for changing Pedro’s swing?

  58. Lee says:

    NMR….one last time…they changed Pedro’s swing to address the gigantic holes in his swing.

    THAT’S why I want him to go to AAA. Work on it there, El Whiffo.

  59. Lee says:

    Ryan……don’t disagree with Tim Williams that often, but I vehemently disagreed with his reasoning.

    …..

  60. JoeBucco says:

    “These at-bats actually were an upgrade.”

    Somewhere, NH is saying “See, I told you so.”

  61. 21sthebest says:

    If the reported graduation rate of Everhart’s players at 10% is an accurate number, hard to defend the firing just based on that.

  62. NMR says:

    “they changed Pedro’s swing to address the gigantic holes in his swing”

    How’s that workin’ out for him?

  63. Milo Hamilton says:

    I wanted to post Pedro’s minor league stats. He hasn’t exactly proven he can hit AAA pitching as many have said. A .270 batting average & 110 K’s in 367 AB’s say there’s even room for improvement at Indy.

    There’s more going on here than the eye can see. How else do explain Neal’s sudden about face ?

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=alvare001ped

  64. JuniataKid says:

    Jandy,

    Yes it is. 13th Ward.

  65. Lee says:

    Milo…..agree with #65.

    Foo

  66. Lee says:

    NMR…..#64…..not that well, but what choice did they have? Another .191, 4HR season? They HAD to change him.

  67. Jandy says:

    JuniataKid, Duncansville here :)

  68. JAL says:

    Ryan

    Had it in yesterday’s links but no problem bringing back today for any who missed it.

  69. NMR says:

    @Foo

    Um, how about going back to that 2010 swing? Seems to have worked alright for him.

    The hole came when he dropped the bat head early in his swing creating that loopy, long path to the ball. Thats why you see him take that deliberate, slow practice swing where he keeps the bat head above his hands through the zone.

    The timing mechanisms have nothing to do with holes. The wiggle, the toe-tap, the arm wag…those are all extra movement that, A. Pedro has to think about before every signle pitch, and B. Introduce an opportunity for his swing to come out of plane(theres the “hole”).

    The kid needs to simplify things, not reinvent the wheel.

  70. Mike A. says:

    This is a rare occurrence when I don’t see eye-to-eye with you, DK. I understand that your Duquesne column was primarily focused on the administration, but I think the conclusion you drew about the firing chasing off the best recruiting class in years was presumptuous. Everhart’s track record of keeping top-end talent players at Duquesne was dubious, at best. This was one of the legitimate criticisms the administration leveled at Everhart at the press conference. So, there was no guarantee that better times were just on the horizon. As for the comments of the rival A-10 coach, what would you expect him to say? I view his statements as simply defending another member of the coaching fraternity. Finally, you rightly point out how Point Park and Robert Morris have made large strides. However, you seem to infer that Duquesne has been in a cryogenics lab for the past 20 years. The expansion of the campus footprint in both directions toward Uptown and Downtown are noticeable. The Hill District Pharmacy was hailed as a major achievement. A new dormitory is under construction. Hey, as an alumnus who was a student basketball manager during the Jim Satalin tenure, I’m disgruntled with the state of the basketball programs ineptitude, too. But to lay this all at the feet of an administration whom you paint as more or less as having their heads in the sand is, to me, doing the same thing you are accusing President Dougherty and AD Amodio of doing.

  71. Jandy says:

    So, Mike, how would you grade this article? ;)

  72. JuniataKid says:

    Jandy,

    Good to see Duncansville represented. Still there or, like me, displaced?

  73. Jandy says:

    Still here…originally from “up the mountain” Gallitzin. Where are you now, Juniata?

  74. Dave G in Liberty Township, OH says:

    Mike Tomlin today vehemently admitted decision was his to fire Arians, hire Haley

  75. CWalton_67 says:

    Any comparison of this Pens team to the Caps or Malkin to Ovechkin is nothing short of ridiculous.

  76. Dan1283 says:

    @SeanE #36

    It’s that friggin’ toe tap. He taps once during the windup, again during the delivery. It’s not fluid at all. It’s not going to become second nature at this point in camp either. It’s going to cause him to swing through those pitches all year and swing early on breaking balls, flailing lollipops to short. I hate it, get rid of it. He was describing his swing in an article yesterday and it’s unbelievably complicated. Think Mickey Mantle worried about how his back muscles factored into his swing and how deep his hands were in the zone? Grip and rip, son!

  77. Jandy says:

    @CWalton ~ LOL I was trying to be diplmatic ;)

  78. Lee says:

    @NMR…..I think you need to talk to Greg Ritchie, not me. :) I’m just going by what I read….you’re going by your eyes.

  79. Lee says:

    For all those criticizing El Whiffo’s new swing, pls remember that LAST year, he had his same old ‘grip and rip’ swing.

    A lot of good THAT did him.

    I don’t understand why you’d want him to go back to that.

  80. CWalton_67 says:

    @Jandy- and you did very well. :)

  81. Jandy says:

    @ CW ~ Thanks friend ;)

  82. CWalton_67 says:

    Pedro Alvarez got a hit. #woo

  83. PigLegs Robinson says:

    Don’t see how Pedro Alvarez’s ‘head’ has anything to do with being late on an 88 mph fastball.
    I guarantee you I would be late on an 88 mph fastball, and it wouldn’t have anything whatsoever to do with the things on my mind.
    He either has a physical vision problem, or his swing is crap.

    His actions speak for themself. They (his actions) are begging Huntington to put him in the minors so he can get his timing back (or get corrective lenses) and stay there until he is a consistent run producer once again, as he was in school before he was drafted.
    Meanwhile the subs who are hitting so well (Harrison, Navarro and McGehee) should man third base. And Hague, of all the players in camp, has EARNED a spot on the team.

    Last but not least, while everyone frets about Alvarez, the light-hitting Jose Tabata gets a pass from everyone, undeservedly. Tabata should be grateful everyone is so focused on Alvarez. Nate McLouth has outplayed him in every category this spring, and Nate is a proven commodity, unlike Tabata.

 
Other blogs
Sports: Rob Rossi | Steel Mill | Chipped Ice | Bucco Blog | iPreps | Pitt Locker Room | Penn State Sports | Trailing Off
News: This Just In | Trib List | ICycle | Flow Back  


» Top TribLIVE.com Sports
» Top TribLIVE.com News
» Top TribLIVE.com Breaking News