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Dejan Kovacevic's Blog

Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Wakeup Call: A buzz about Steelers’ throwbacks


VOORHEES, N.J. – Brief and to the Point …

>> My Wednesday column is an open mea culpa to Jaromir Jagr after our lengthy talk yesterday.

One thing I hope you’ll never see me do on this job is refuse to say I’m wrong when I’m wrong, even it isn’t evident until well after the fact as in this case.

>> And now, without further ado …

The Steelers are all really small! And not at all racially diverse! And practicing on farmland!

Well, actually, those are the bona fide 1934 Steelers, now officially the fashion model for the 2012 Steelers and the throwback jerseys they’ll wear twice in the coming season.

And over there to the right, you can find Isaac Redman modeling the jersey in a bathroom yesterday. (He blew up on Twitter, with at least one swear word, that he was trying to avoid the media.) Somehow, I’m guessing the bathroom thing will come up again once the Steelers actually get around to taking the field in these.

That said, I love them.

No, really.

If you’re going to do a throwback jersey, at least make it a legitimate one. If you don’t do that, then you’re really achieving nothing at all with the concept. It’s not the main reason I so abhor the Penguins’ blue alternates — this is Pittsburgh, last I checked — but it’s one of them. The Penguins never wore anything like those sweaters. Ever.

They should be the next to do throwbacks right. And you know what I’m talking about. Oh,  yeah, those all-gold, head-to-foot skating bananas from the Mario Lemieux draft years.

Do it!

>> James Neal’s one-game suspension and Arron Asham’s four games aren’t going to draw a complaint from here. It’s weird that NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan felt compelled to go way back three years to cite precedent for Neal, but there’s no question Neal left his feet and hit Sean Couturier away from the puck. That’s that. Same with Asham.

But this is something else entirely …


That’s Marian Hossa getting cheap-shotted to the head by multiple offender Raffi Torres late last night. This is going to be a really big story today.

But hey, when you’re letting WWE-style head slams go unsuspended, the postseason simply become open season. This is NHL-created.

>> The Pirates lost Jeff Karstens after one inning last night, and the immediate word afterward in Phoenix was that it’s shoulder inflammation. I can’t say I like the sound of that happening in-game, but it’s a lot smarter not to really think anything until he’s examined Thursday.

Try to picture this team without pitching on top of all the hitting it isn’t getting …

>> One quick point of order: The chat will be pushed back to Friday this week because of travel back home when we’d normally do it.

>> Oh, and a final thing. This is the cover of tomorrow’s Philadelphia Daily News …

No, that’s not a fake. That’s actually the cover of a journalistic organization that, only yesterday, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for some tremendous work.

If you want to know how I felt about that, check my Twitter account for a fun exchange last night with someone at that paper.


  1. Vince says:

    Wow, that cover is a joke. Glad Pittsburgh is a two paper city unlike Philly pretending to be. Maybe Frank Seravalli said it best about the awful Daily News: “Understand: 2) We are a snarky tabloid. 3) We are trying to sell papers.”

  2. Dan1283 says:


    I have to apologize to all Pens fans here, but I’ll say the same thing I said last year….bring back Jagr!

    Seriously, I’m probably the last man in Pittsburgh who holds no ill will, bad blood, or anything in between toward him. But his talents don’t require that he be 28 years old. The other day on that power play when Kunitz was in the box, I knew a goal was coming as soon as I saw Jaromir was granted a little space. How special this year would have been with him on our team. How little we would have missed Tyler Kennedy, who we decided to pay instead. I’m alone in this stance, I know, but I’ve been consistent in it and it would have been a totally different season, a different playoffs, had he come back. For better or for worse, he should retire with the last jersey he’ll ever hang up being black and gold. ‘Nuff said.

  3. Josh says:

    “I`m guessing No. 68 would happily take a third Cup over that statue outside Consol Energy Center.

    It was the right call.”

    Really? Why? How many names are on the Cup versus have statues in their honor outside an arena? 30 something people get their name on the Cup every year…

  4. Leah Backus says:

    My take on the suspensions:

    Neal: I’m OK with this one. He’s lucky he didn’t get more. I’m surprised that Shanahan was able to go back three years to find a previous suspension. I thought the CBA limited “repeat offender” status to something like 18 months? I could be wrong.

    Asham: This one was an utter joke. I don’t care what precedent was set by merely fining Shea Weber for his WWE antics. And I don’t care that Schenn wasn’t disciplined for his hit on Martin. Asham could have seriously, seriously injured Schenn and, as a 34-year-old veteran, he should know better. If he was just a kid, I could excuse him more for acting in the heat of the moment. But his actions, like Weber’s, showed no respect for his fellow player or for the game. And keep in mind, this opinion is coming from a huge, huge Asham fan.

    On the Jagr thing:

    I wasn’t a fan when he was with the Pens previously, so it doesn’t resonate with me the way it does with some of you. I have more or less the same feeling I have about Max. I love this game and it’s a joy to see anyone who is having fun playing it cleanly and being successful, no matter what team they’re with. The Flyers are very lucky to have two such quality guys providing leadership in their locker room.

  5. Okel Dokel says:


    I live in the Philadelphia area and would never paint the media with a broad brush. Generally, the sports reporters in this area do a good job without being too “homerish” and receive a lot of grief from the fan bases because of it.

    However, Seravelli does not fit into that class. He is trying to fit in with the good ole’ boy Flyer network which features the likes of Al Morganti and Chris Therrien. They are constantly whining about Crosby and seem to be carrying the message of the Flyers wonderful owner Ed Snider. He seems to have “just a bit” of a grudge against the Pens.

    Others in the Philly media, like Bill Clement, Rick Tocchet and Keith Jones can comment, and have a Philadelphia slant, without coming across as having an agenda. BTW why doesn’t NBC use Clement? But, I digress.

    Hey, they are entitled to be “homers” and perhaps I am a little jaded as Pittsburgh sports fan located in southeastern PA but I have noticed a need by some to jab the Pens, especially Crosby, at every opportunity. This has only happened since Mario became owner. I find that a bit ironic because I will never forget the ovation he received at the Spectrum, of all places.

    Really liked the piece on Jags, it is difficult to watch him in a Flyers uniform though. It’s probably because I got hit in the head with a beer while wearing a Jagr jersey to the Spectrum when he was still with the Pens. Listening to Flyer fans praise him when they use to whistle at him because of his long, flowing hair is just weird.

    One of my friends here says this series is payback for the Pirates taking 2 of 3 from the Phillies.

    Keep up the great work1

  6. Schmitty says:

    Well hopefully that newspaper cover wakes up the Penguins. Sadly, I’m not sure that anything will at this point. I agree about the Steelers alternates somewhat. You’re right at least they’re actual throwbacks and actually black and gold. But that doesn’t mean they’re not awful looking, because they are.

  7. Leah Backus says:

    Okel…I like Tocchet. He’s fair and not too self-important to interact with people on Twitter, even fans of the opposite team. I appreciate that. Just wish he could spell and use proper grammar, but that might be too much to ask of the guy. ;-)

    And, on another note, Pittsburgh fans have now sunk to the level of rumors and conspiracy theories to explain the Penguins implosion. Did you know that the Flyers called up nine guys from the Phantoms just so they could stage a big brawl tomorrow? Yeah, I didn’t either. (They did call up the guys, but big whoop. Everyone does that if their affiliates are out of the AHL playoffs.) There are more rumors to ridiculous to repeat.

    I tell you what. I have met some of the most intelligent, thoughtful people through following hockey, but I’ve also met some real mouth-breathers.

  8. Amber says:

    Hey Dejan!

    First off, awesome job tonight defending yourself to the Flyers writer. I had tweeted him when him and Rossi went on ESPN before the series started and complimented him on being unbiased and giving each team credit where the credit was due and what happened tonight is the exact opposite of what he did back then. I don’t know how he thought the paper would not get criticized for “cowardly” attempting to get humor by depicting our captain like that. It’s humorous in the way that you handled yourself and I want to give you props for staying classy and not going over the edge like I might have after getting called a “homer”.

    Secondly, the Hossa hit has me fuming. I don’t know if it is that Hossa is a guy that I just love or the fact that it was Torres that delivered the hit. He is a guy that has a reputation of headhunting (Seabrook last year) and going for the big hit in a vulnerable position. I’m going to go ahead and guess that he gets in the range of 5-7 games and that is ridiculous. He should be gone for the rest of the playoffs and then some of the regular season come October. Why do you think the “higher ups” haven’t realized what Cooke’s suspension did to him? Some people i’ve talked to said that Cooke’s lesson was learned from ownership coming down on him to change or leave but I really think Cooke had time to realize his faults and change his game completely around. But I don’t understand how the league can go on show after show and say that the hits to the head are being handled accordingly and are giving out small suspensions to guys like Torres?? When can we expect change?? You have Sid coming out and now Toews has said he doesn’t like the “star treatment” method that seems to be going on.

    Awesome article on Jagr, still bitter about the way him and his agent handled the situation with our team but still a legend none the less

  9. LeeFoo says:

    I’m still waiting for the Steelers to bring back the Batman uni’s.

    The whole “Dark Knight” theme would be great, imho.

    We could make Harrison up as the Joker. Could you see him out there saying “Wait’ll they get a load of me”.

    Holy Robin Foo


  10. Jandy says:

    Sorry, I’m not hopping on the Jagr bandwagon. Jagr himself said he’d love to cme back Pittsburgh. Love to play here again. made it rather sentimental, even. Why paint such a nice picture, then stab us in the back? No, sorry, don’t buy it, even now.
    So he wants to win the cup? Beating us doesn’t get him the cup. Philly would still have to survive several rounds to do that. I don’t see that happening with the goaltending they have.
    Maybe I’m a bit unforgiving, but that’s how I see it.

    Had to go to The Philly newspaper site to see the pic. It won’t show on my computer. I was sorry I did.

    Nice win by the Pirates last night. Thanks to JRay3 for giving that baseball away, the “karma” worked :)

  11. Milo Hamilton says:

    The Steeler throwbacks are clearly a tribute to the 25th anniversary of Stryper’s To Hell With The Devil” tour.

  12. LeeFoo says:

    There’s lots of Philly fans out here and VERY FEW of them have ever bought a Daily News.

    One guy said there’s a better sport section in the National Enquirer.

    :) :) :)


  13. Jandy says:

    Lee ~ They’ll look at the pic, laugh, then put the paper back on the rack, right? ;)

  14. Roland says:

    Truth is we could’ve cloned another 30 year old jagr and signed both of them for the league minimum but with our group of defensemen it wouldve been irrelevant.

  15. MBS says:

    Enjoyed the Jagr column very much. There is no arguing he’s a great hockey player who gave us his best years, but I also think a fascinating character. There seems to be more to his personality than your typical professional athlete these days, and I don’t think he’s fully understood. In response to Jandys comment above, I believe he would have loved to come back to play here, but he analyzed the situation and did what he felt was best for him to do. The easier decision would have been to sign with the Pens, but he’s a lot smarter than that.

  16. bdubb says:

    I really enjoy the honesty and then have no fear backing it up DK. That cover is absolutely ridiculous. Stupid really. Man I hate the Flyers fans.

    Concerning the Hossa hit why is it players go after other players who don’t have the puck? I know I read early in the year how the NHL players have no respect for each other and it appears to be so. This is such a fun game to watch when it is played in the Olympics. It is embarrassing to watch it played like this. I think it is time for Mario to be the Commish. Only step left in his hockey career.

  17. JT says:

    Sources: Pens hate each other, Staal wants out of Pittsburgh as soon as possible. Penguins dont want Sid as their captain. Funny how none of this come out when the team is winning. Not a shot at you Dejan, just extremely annoyed with people using the annonymous sources to make statements like that. Coming from wanna-be shock jocks and people that ticked off the Pens and are no longer covering them on a daily basis.

  18. Jandy says:

    JT, I believe none of those rumors unless it’s verified. That’s why i don’t read uncreditable sources, and why I *DO* come here.

  19. LeeFoo says:

    Jandy…actually, I laughed at the photo. It was so ridiculous.


  20. Jandy says:

    Foo Man, yes it is ridiculous. I guess when it hits home (to me) it’s not as funny. Thing is, even though the way Sid acted wasn’t right, it sure wasn’t cowardly. He had to know he was inviting abuse. lol

  21. Eric Majeski says:

    Raffi Torres shouldn’t play another NHL game until about November. His lengthy rap sheet doesn’t even include his annihilation of Brent Seabrook, which the NHL poo-pooed away with some BS about a mystical hitting zone that no one had ever heard of before or since. That hit also occurred in his first game back from a suspension for a dangerous, illegal hit on Jordan Eberle. This is a guy that doesn’t get it. He should be done for the playoffs and 20 games next year.

    The 4 officials that worked that game should be done for the playoffs too.

    I’m on board for a return to “old” gold. The Vegas Gold nonsense has gone on far too long. That said, with rows of Vegas Gold seats at CEC, I’m not holding my breath for a full-time return. A third would be nice though…

    No problem with either Pen suspension. I’d have actually been fine with more for each. Interesting things about the Asham one were that 1. he basically got 3 extra games for the punch, considering Backstrom got 1 game for a similar cross-check and 2. Shanahan made a point of stating Asham’s stick never hit Schenn’s throat/chin. Point 1 is odd, b/c Matt Carkner threw a lot more than one punch at a downed opponent and he got 1 game in total. Point 2 sounds like it *could* be a subtle suggestion that Schenn took a dive there.

  22. gregenstein says:

    I like the new 3rd uniforms. At least now people can hate them because it’s something their Grandpa would wear. Personally, they look like Rugby uniforms to me, and that’s where the roots of this sport are held.

    Bad photo of Crosby, though it is sort of funny. Still, it’s something I’d expect to see on the wall of a Flyer’s homer on Facebook, not on the cover of a newspaper claiming to be legit. I probably would have laughed at it in different context.

  23. JAL says:

    Power out this morning so links a bit late

  24. JAL says:

    JAL’s Chattanooga Choo Choo Morning Links


    1- MLB Transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    3 Go Buccos- Pirate News (from external sources)

  25. JAL says:

    6 Rumbunter

    Success of Diamondbacks Coaching Staff Makes Me Wonder What If

    7 McEffect

    Recap 4/16 | Diamondbacks 5 Pirates 1


    It’s never too early to start worrying

    9 The Green Weenie

    Yamaico Navarro

    10 Raise the Jolly Roger

    Bucs lose arms, win game

  26. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    20 Behind the Steel Curtain

    A Pre-Draft Trade and Interior Linemen Highlight the Steelers’ Ideal Draft

    Steelers Set to Unveil Throwback Jerseys for 80th Anniversary Season

    Batch’s One-Year Contract Could Spell The End for Leftwich, Dixon

    21 Steelers Depot

    - Steelers to Open 2012 Season Sunday Night in Denver

    22 Nice Pick Cowher

    Steelers Back to the Business of Being The Steelers

  27. JAL says:

    Pitt Blogs

    23 Pitt Blather

    The Blather: Fair & Balanced – Almost Always!

    24 Cardiac Hill

    Pitt Basketball Season End Awards

    WVU Blogs

    25 Metro News

    WVU’s Calhoun Takes Fairmont State Job

    26 WV Illustrated

    Quick Hits: Another Short Session of WVU Football

  28. JAL says:


    27 Pensburgh

    Game 4 lines: With no James Neal- to have Crosby/Malkin together or not?.


    28 Sky Sports

    Championship round-up

    Gomez puts Bayern in charge,,11065_3504875,00.html

    29 World Soccer Daily

    World Soccer Daily: Stories you need to read, April 17th 2012

    29 Daily Telegraph

    Arsenal goal-scoring ace Robin Van Persie leads shortlist for PFA Player of the Year award

  29. Jandy says:

    I was wondering where you were, JAL….thanks :)

  30. Milo Hamilton says:

    Happy 70th birthday – Steve Blass.

  31. JAL says:

    Chattanooga Choo Choo, 1941. Harry Warren and Max Gordon wrote the songThe original from the 1941 film in two parts. Part 1 is Glenn Miller Band with vocals by Tex Beneke, Paula Kelly and The Modernaires. Part 2 continues the song with The Nicholas Brothers, & Dorthy Dandridge. Miller’s recording hit number 1 on a momentous day, December 7, 1941 and stayed number 1 for 9 weeks. The song continues to appear on albums and in movies today.

  32. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Nice one, Foo (#9). I’ve always loved that line by Nicholson and have enjoyed using it on grandchildren, et al through the years. That’s what Crosby ought to say to the Flyers and their media tonight.

  33. JAL says:


    Thanks, can’t do much without power. Took them about 90 minutes to get it back on. i would have posted a note from my phone but I couldn’t find this blog on the phone.

  34. NMR says:

    That Servalli punk just makes my skin crawl…

    I cringed when I started reading the exchange because the guy was clearly trying to provoke one of these Twitter wars that usually end up lowering(or raising) both parties to the level of teenage girls bickering over a prom dress.

    Call me a Pittsburgh journalist homer, but any adult can see Dejan clearly outclassed that guy.

    In an era where the internet provides numerous immediately accessable outlets for tabloid style entertainment, how is the Philly Enquirer even relevant?

    They’re that socially awkward friend that tries to make jokes but instead embarasses the whole group.

  35. Corey says:

    New Jerseys – I like them. I didn’t when I first saw them, but once seeing the pics of the old Steelers and realizing that they were very true to their roots, they grew on me very quickly. Yes, they are kind of ugly, but so were the 1934 originals, so I’m OK with them.

    Pens suspensions – about what I thought they would be. I don’t think Neal does a lot of this stuff, so I thought one game was appropriate. Asham’s could have been longer, but I’m not surprised it isn’t. If you’re only going to fine a guy for driving a players head into the glass, I wouldn’t expect you to do much more than a few games for a guy that cross checks someone in the throat and then punches them while they’re down.

    Daily News – I can’t believe that rag won a Pulitzer. I lived in Philly for years. This Photoshopped cover is par for the course for that paper. I would have been more surprised if they didn’t do something this juvenile. Nobody considered that thing a real newspaper when I lived there. Even my friends who root for the Philly teams used to mock it for being so low class. Winning a Pulitzer no longer carries as much prestige in my mind after learning that.

  36. JohninOshkosh says:

    Thanks, Milo. Steve Blass is 70!

    Now I officially feel old. Hope I am as fit (and present) as him when I am 70. Maybe I should take up golf again-it must do a body good.

    Happy Birthday to a great Pirate.

  37. Corey says:

    @NMR – Philly Inquirer and Philly Daily News are different. The Inquirer is a real paper. The Daily News is the equivalent of the NY Post. One step above the National Inquirer. They are both owned by the same company, but serve very different roles.

  38. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Echo Milo and John. Finally, a person older than me.

  39. JohninOshkosh says:

    Color me impressed. Someone at the Daily News knows how to photoshop. Ridiculous.

  40. NMR says:

    Thanks for that, Corey.

    My fault.


    re: Jagr

    While I respect your humility, Dejan, I still stand by your initial reaction to Jagr’s signing in Philly. Not just because my reaction was similar, but because I think you called it fairly at the time. The Flyers had just shipped off their top two centers and banked their playoff hopes on up-and-coming players and a goaltender with a questionable track record. Pittsburgh was a healthy Sidney Crosby away from Cup contention. If you were playing the odds, you’d have picked Pittsburgh every time. If all other things [that you can deposit in your bank account] were equal, do you still think Jagr would have chosen Philly?

    I harbor no ill will towards Jagr and I am glad that he was able to find a good fit in the Flyers organization. However, to say he went to the better team? I still think the better team is facing elimination. But, that’s playoff hockey…

  42. Milo Hamilton says:

    I thought the Daily News cover was pretty funny. They deserve everything they get right now.

  43. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Good points, R_F. What about the “chemistry” with Jagr? Was that the problem Shero had with him or his line placement? Not knowing much about hockey, those are questions, not sarcastic statements.

  44. Milo Hamilton says:

    How deliciously ironic that Shero would have been worried about the Penguins chemistry when balking at signing Jagr.

  45. Jandy says:

    RELENTLESS I agree with your logic re: Jagr, but I DO feel betrayed by him.

  46. Jandy says:

    Milo, are you and Sarcastic Sword the same person? With the same IP address????? ;)

  47. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Milo, you sock puppet/blog troll, I didn’t say Shero was worried about chemistry, I just asked the question. That’s a notability issue, right? (Kidding)

  48. Jandy says:

    LOL Lucky! You and me aren’t sock puppets! Nor blog trolls!

  49. Milo Hamilton says:


    After the other day, all of my alters have been integrated.

  50. LuckyNKentucky says:


    But we ARE increasing in notability. On it is defined as a notable or prominent person.

  51. CWalton_67 says:

    The NHL as an organization has lost all credibility. The quality of officiating has now hit rock bottom. And THAT is what has this league at an all time low. Inconsistency in rule enforcement starts on the ice and is caused by either outright incompetence or tacit agreement among teams/players and officials. Players have long taken matters into their own hands when they felt necessary, but the lack of respect among players/teams/coaches caused by poor officiating is now out of control

    Hockey is a physical game and needs to stay that way. Nothing wrong with a hard, clean check to an opponent who is not in a defenseless position, but It does not have to be violent. Violence is for battlefields. Hockey can also be a beautiful and graceful game, and needs to stay that way too. I’d much rather see players skating and creating rather than clutch and grabbing, or delivering uncountable cross checks and slashes to one another.

    Only the owners can save the league at this point and that is to start over completely. Bettman and all of his cronies must go. On ice officials need to either be sent on their way or completely retrained in a new standard. Penalties must be called as they are written in the book. Remove hard shelled personal equipment from players–especially, shoulder and elbow pads, and excluding helmets, and shin guards. Remove eye shields from helmets. Give linesman the ability to blow a whistle and call a penalty. Ban all headshots–automatic 5 game suspension for the player and $100K fine to the team, or whatever causes real pain to the organization.

    We are in what is supposed to be the best time of year for NHL hockey, yet we’re all sitting around waiting for videos talking about why a player was suspended instead of enjoying the fastest, most intense game on earth. Cultural change needs to happen and it must start with the owners, otherwise the NHL will find itself on the level of credibility of the WWE.

  52. Jandy says:

    Milo, that’s good to hear, now you don’t need a shrink. ;)

    Lucky, Mother Teresa is ALREADY a “prominent” person!

  53. Milo Hamilton says:

    If I ever get back into fantasy football my team is going to be called the Blog Trolling Sock Puppets.

  54. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Jandy, Milo, CW67,

    Great posts, all 3.

  55. Jandy says:

    Milo, you’re killing me. My co-workers think I’m nuts. I AM! ;)

  56. Jandy says:

    CWalton, while I agree with you in my mind on most of your post, I really don’t see any change or improvement happening. This league will continue to be a garage league BECAUSE IT IS MAKING MONEY. It’s all about the money.

  57. Dan1283 says:


    I feel your pain. It’s not Dejan’s fault, but it is kind of ridiculous to click through the trib’s site to find this blog. I have it bookmarked on some of the computers I use but every once I have to hunt the place out. They could take a hint from the other paper and link all of their sports blogs on the sports page.

    DK: I do believe that’s part of the upgrades we have in store. I still ask patience. First step was installing actual software, and next is adding features.

    I’ve actually had a hard time myself in finding our blogs, so I’ll sympathize. But again, our people are working on it.

  58. Jandy says:

    JAL and Dan1283, if I’m not mistaken I had the blog pulled up on my hubby’s cell phone just by typing in the search “dejankovacevicblog”. I’m almost positive. I’ll try it again. My cell phone sucks lol.

  59. Jandy says:

    DK, we’re blog-trolling, sock puppets! We don’t have any patience ;)

  60. AJS says:

    From teh sports page it is one extra click of the “All blogs” Link and they are all right there as opposed to right on the sports page. Not sure that is such a big change.

  61. AJS says:

    In fact you don’t even have to go to the sports page, just click on “Blogs” on the home page and they are all right there. Dejan’s is usually within the first two since he updates regularly. I don’t find it any harder to find the blogs here than I do at the other site.

  62. CWalton_67 says:

    @Jandy–agreed. It will take some long term vision to understand that the current state of the NHL will eventually result in a drop in revenue. I doubt I would ever turn away from the game, it’s been a part of my life for too long. However, the casual fan can easily turned away by all the shenanigans. Maybe that won’t be the case. Maybe the NHL can succeed and be happy as the on-ice counterpart to the WWE. But I sure hope not.


    LuckyNKentucky: I don’t think the chemistry was as much of an issue as other factors. Shero has been historically against keeping older players in the organization if he doesn’t feel they can contribute. Bill Guerin is a perfect example. He was willing to come back at a discount and could have easily helped on the PP, but Shero wasn’t willing to bring him back as a role player. I think there was legitimate concern over how effective Jagr really could be during the course of an 82 game season (remember the KHL has a significantly shorter season). Not to mention, Shero would have exhausted every inch of his available cap to sign him. Shero likes to keep a bit in reserve just as a contingency.

    Jandy: I felt a bit betrayed at first, to be honest, but it was Jagr’s agent Petr Svoboda who was most responsible for the hype… and the expectations. I don’t think it was Jagr who played Pittsburgh nearly as much as Svoboda.

  64. Jandy says:

    RELENTLESS ~ you have a point re: Svoboda, but Jagr pays him. Plus, Jagr himself said he’d love to come back to Pittsburgh, not once, but several times. You’re more forgiving than I ;)

  65. Jandy says:

    CWalton, agreed. This has got to be the worst I’ve seen the NHL since the pre-lock-out era. Then again, I thought we were going to be better with discipline with Campbell out and Shanahan in, but Shammy’s just as big a joke as Colin. The inconsistencies are ridiculous. I can’t wait to see what Torres gets for his hit on Hossa.

  66. Milo Hamilton says:


    Shero was very nervous about adding the Jagr dynamic to that locker room. Turns out they didn’t have to add Jagr for that room to be a mess. Funny thing about irony, it’s just so darned ironic.

  67. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Relentless and Milo,

    Thanks. I get the picture, in focus. Forgot about the cap, too.

  68. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Is this picture of Crosby really a big deal or even a surprise from anything in Philly? I personally don’t care, the way the Pens have played they deserve such a picture. Why not go after the teams biggest star? Though it is classless by a newspaper, no doubt.

    Nice win last night by the Buccos. All-in-all, 4-7 in this early season against this type of competition, isn’t all that bad.

    Karstens injury should pave the way to get Burnett in the rotation without having to demote anybody. If he was scratched from the start because of this soreness, it wouldn’t be that big of a deal but, to be pulled out in the early beginning of the game, makes it seem a little worse than inflamation.

  69. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    5 runs on 11 hits, I’ll take that.

  70. Milo Hamilton says:


    In their 1st 11 games, the Pirates faced 6 starters (of the 12) that got NL Cy Young votes last year. They went 3-3 in those games. Unfortunately, they’re 1-4 against the jabronies.

  71. JRay3 says:

    Repost from late last night out here in the West and very early out East:

    Wow I witnessed an offensive breakout from the club today! What a win for the team maybe the type of win that brings some momentum that can carry over to the next few games. Today I got there early and spent time watching the pitchers during pre-game. It was interesting to see AJ Burnett long tossing after pitching for Indy Monday with JMac and they appeared quite chatty with one another. Jared Hughes tossed me a ball which was great, little did I know he would be thrust into early action. I will say this Burnett not the most fan-friendly player I have come across but it always impresses me with Neil Walker and how classy he is as I got a brief chance to speak with him at dugout before the game. How he interacts with the fans is a joy to watch, but in defense of Burnett he is paid handsomely to pitch well and he maybe asked to do that a bit sooner than expected due to tonight’s developments. On to the good and the bad.

    The good – Cutch what a night and what a leader, huge 2 strike, 2 out AB in 9th and he stayed on a very good off speed pitch to loop it into left. Garret Jones should have had four hits and hit an absolute bomb. McGehee pinch hit in 9th to keep inning going. The bullpen major kudos to Hughes, Watson and Meek for holding down the fort to give team chance to win they really carried many innings. Cruz earning his first save since ‘09 with a nice mix of offerings, we seem to have success finding bullpen arms. Neil Walker has his bat going right now…and was large part of our 3-4-5 hitters contributing 10 hits.
    And yes, even Alvarez, his bomb robbed by Chris Young was hit 400′ and was a shot that should have been gone. Contact all night, a step hopefully in a better direction and nice defense at 3rd.

    The bad – 8th inning nightmare…Walker’s base running gaffe took away a potential bases loaded no out situation and gave Jones a FC on what should have been a single. Grilli giving up a solo shot to .167 hitting John MacDonald at the time took the wind out of the sails. Barajas and Barmes the bottom third of our order is practically automatic outs at this point. Karstens only going one inning with shoulder inflammation, the only puzzling thing to me was he still took his at bat in the bottom half of the second and actually struck out swinging, which I found odd with the shoulder ailment.

    One last tidbit with the Pirates down 3-1 Garret Jones tossed a ball to me in the stands which I gave to a five year old boy in the row in front of me. I told my buddy I believe in Karma and watch giving the ball to a young Dbacks fan would help turn the tide and promptly the Pirates tied the game. Coincidence of course but I still thought it great and I think I even helped convert the child over to a Bucco fan to which I say welcome aboard!

  72. Milo Hamilton says:

    The Pens have called up Simon Despres for tonight’s game.

    No word on any Pirates roster moves. Expect Correia to be in the bullpen today.

  73. LuckyNKentucky says:


    They actually, had 13 hits (not trying to knit-pick you), some of which could have been plated (8th inning, first and second, none out), but you already know that. I’d settle for 5 runs and 11 hits every night, too. With the pitching they’ve gotten, that would translate into a lot more W’s.

  74. aglebagel says:

    With a warning for foul language, if you haven’t seen this yet, you must:

    (sorry, don’t know how to make it a link, but you can copy and paste)

  75. JRay3 says:

    Also, thought I would pass along some updates for today’s game as it is a great opportunity for the Bucs to take a series on the road from the defending NL West champs.

    The Dbacks will most likely be playing short-handed as Justin Upton has his thumb scoped to relieve some joint pain and is expected to still miss a couple of games. Chris Young who took that hit away from Alvarez last night and is tearing the cover off the ball himself has an MRI scheduled for today and is not expected to be available. Neither has been placed on the DL so that leaves Arizona with a depleted bench and one new call-up from AAA to replace Blum who pulled a muscle in BP yesterday and was placed on the DL.

    Couple all of that with Hudson off to a shaky start, Montero probably getting the day off in favor of Henry Blanco and this is the perfect recipe to take 2 out of 3. Just need JMac to pitch deep to help out the bullpen and all the innings they logged.

    Let’s go Bucs!

  76. aglebagel says:

    Hey, it made it a link!

  77. Milo Hamilton says:


    Glad you got to see a win. Classy move with the baseball. That kid will never forget that.

  78. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Milo-My bad, last I saw it was 11. I didn’t get to watch the game. Stuck in marketing class…oh how the Pirates PR guys fail at marketing.

    I agree that some more could’ve been plated, no doubt. It was nice to see Cutch, Jones, and Walker come through. And nice to see Pedro put wood on the ball, if he contiunes that, they’ll fall.

  79. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Also, I knew the stat about the pitching, if they would’ve seen Lincecum in SF, it would’ve been 7.

  80. Johnnie Ray III,

    Thanks for the game report. I really enjoyed your perspective.

  81. Jandy says:

    JRay, did you see my post after yours from the game blog? Milo kinda said it too. Good job on giving the ball to the kid and bringing karma our way :)

    aglebagel, good job!

    Milo, I was hoping Depres would get a call…I want to see if he can do any better than some of the other D-men.

  82. Jandy says:

    hey G2M where ya been friend?

  83. Jandy says:

    OMG Aglebagel, that is hilarious!!!!! I gotta share it LOL!

  84. JRay3 says:

    @ G2M – Thanks I appreciate that. @ Jandy – No went back and looked but did not see it…certainly wanted to do everything and anything to get the Baseball gods back on our side:)

    @ Milo – You are so correct and that is probably the best part….his parents waited for me to finish yelling my congrats to the team as they walked off the field and told me how appreciative they were as it made their sons’ night and gave him a lasting memory.

    Now I don’t want to be greedy but I really would like to witness another win this afternoon and have the team head back home on a two game winning streak!

  85. Jandy says:

    JRay, be greedy all you want!

  86. Milo Hamilton says:

    This from Elias – Jamie Moyer has pitched to 8% of all major league hitters in history. I want him to keep going, he’s the only guy left older than me.

  87. Here’s a serious question: which gets completed first . . . . . .

    1/ The fountain at the Point——the arial shots look naked without it
    2/ The front of the Hilton—nee, Grand Windham Hotel, which has such a prominent position when entering through the tunnels
    3/ The upgrade and improvements on this and the Trib’s blogs

    Will Garrett Cole pitch for the Pirates before the Trib blog upgrades?
    Will Pedro Alvarez lead the National League in HRs before the Trib blog upgrades?
    Will Dejan move to the McKeesport Daily News before the Trib blog upgrades?
    Will the Penguins win another Stanley Cup before the Trib blog upgrades?
    Will Ike Taylor have 2 interceptions in a game before the Trib blog upgrades?
    And . . . most importantly . . . . . will the Pirates finish with a .500 record before the Trib blog finally improves and upgrades?

    I fear the answer to all the above is a resounding, “ALL will happen before the Trib produces those frequently promised upgrades.’

    I’ll be glad to pen a mea culpa column if I’m wrong!

  88. LuckyNKentucky says:


    You left one off. Will Jandy and Leah complete their vows and become the true, married, Mother Teresa twins before the Trib blog upgrades?

  89. Mattygabe says:

    April 18th, 2012 – 8:01 am
    …Not a shot at you Dejan, just extremely annoyed with people using the annonymous sources to make statements like that. Coming from wanna-be shock jocks and people that ticked off the Pens and are no longer covering them on a daily basis.”

    I assume the “people” you refer to are journalists such as Dejan. To which I’d say it’s probable that you are mistaking the intent of the aforementioned “anonymous sources” to be cowardice. It’s not, and really the professional system that journalists operate within is designed to maximize the value of these sources. For whatever reason, they have information that they want to get out (hopefully not for personal gain), but they are unable to tie a source to it for a good reason (would most likely get fired, could not be trusted in same position ever again elsewhere, etc.). Through a channel such as Kovacevic, the information can be made useful generally. The journalist uses their professional judgment to deem if the information is valuable and has a strong enough anonymous source – and then prints it.

    Anonymous sources are not cowardly – they’re valuable in certain contexts.

  90. Mattygabe says:

    Anonymous sources aside, I was thinking when I get home tonight I’ll switch into all black attire, and treat the Pens game as a funeral – get my last goodbye in to this team, watch them for one last time until October (good God…), make my peace and move on after tonight.

  91. albatross says:


    CWalton, while I agree with you in my mind on most of your post, I really don’t see any change or improvement happening. This league will continue to be a garage league BECAUSE IT IS MAKING MONEY. It’s all about the money.”

    I also agree with CWalton, but feel that the Jandy’s excuse is flawed. Maybe they would make even more money if they cleaned up the game. Look how successful Olympic hockey is. I’ve always felt that all the unnecessary violence and ridiculously inconsistent officiating is the main reason that the NHL is the minor-est of the 4 major leagues.

    There’s nothing in sport more exciting than playoff hockey – when the players are allowed to show their skills.

  92. Kentuck Knob,

    What was that old Saturday morning cartoon, where the two touched rings and cried out, “Wonder Twin Power, Activate” or something like that?

    That’s Jandy and Leah.

    I dropped my taxes at the post office last night with 44 minutes to spare (like Dejan, Scott Boras, and Neal Huntington I work best with a deadline)——hence my absence for a few days——and got home just in time to see the Bucs almost snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    Walker, Jones, and McCutch just would NOT allow that to happen!
    Also, impressive bullpen work, with a 2nd inning entrance and Hanny not available.

    I’m worried about Karstens though.

  93. LuckyNKentucky says:


    They do that on Storage Wars, too, with the married couple. Now that you mention it, I saw Dejan, Boras and Neal in line at the post office last night dropping off their returns. There was a guy dressed like Uncle Sam with drool running down his mouth as he took them. Wonder what that was about?

  94. Jandy says:

    Lucky and G2M ~ YIKES! No rings or vows for this Mother Teresa, I’m waaaayyy too irreverent ;)
    G2m, oh well, you’re forgiven then, if you were doing taxes…I feel for you.

    albatross ~ re: it’s all about the money…I surely a flawed…a Mother Teresa who is too irreverent…I’ve said in this blog before that it’s all about the money, and certainly with malice. And I stand by it. Another issue is the flow of the game. After the lock out, it started out ok…now it’s back to where it was, if not worse. I don’t see it getting any better, either.

  95. Jandy says:

    errr that is to be surely AM flawed…point proven! ;)

  96. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    What are the odds of Cutch staying this hot?! Obviously slim, but it would be nice.

    Jones showing some of that power off.

    Again, Pedro and Jones need to be in the lineup on a nightly basis. A break from time to time is fine, but not just because of a lefty/lefty match up.

  97. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Karstens DL and Brad Lincoln freed from Indy, per 24/7.

  98. JAL says:

    Karstens to the 15 day DL and Lincoln recalled. Lincoln could releive today and still start Monday or Tuesday.

  99. JRay3 says:

    Probably the best move with Lincoln as we are sure to be shorthanded down in the pen today and JMac has history of high pitch count very early in games. Also, shows that the organization wants Burnett to still get a start in down on the farm and will not rush him back.

  100. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    I figured they would’ve dragged the Karstens injury out a little longer than one day to bring in Burnett. One thing this GM doesn’t do, is rush things. Good thing he’s not a fan.

  101. JRay3 says:

    Pirates Lineup: 7 Presley 6 Barmes 8 McCutchen 4 Walker 3 McGehee 9 Jones 5 Alvarez 2 McKenry 1 McDonald

    No Tabata for second straight day maybe a good opportunity with off day tomorrow for him to regroup. Like getting the hot bat of McGehee into lineup.

  102. With bullpen pitching 8 innings last night and Hanrahan still out today——any chance Lincoln gets to Phoenix in time for the 3:40 puck drop?

    JAL, where is Indy now; where is Lincoln flying to Phoenix from? When did Lincoln pitch last?

    I know 24/7 {nicely bestowed handle, Milo—not the terrible and non-laconic baseball announcer} is saying Lincoln will start Tuesday night, but Buccos might need him today!

    I’m still not sure that James McDonald is aware that Little League games go 6 innings but Major League games go 9.

  103. ragjag says:

    Who cares about anything that is said or done in a city where vomit-spewing is the top sport.

    What is so great about a Pulitzer Prize. The man it’s named after was a yellow journalist. It’s like Charlie Manson handing out good citizenship awards.

    Those Steeler jerseys are an embarassment to the players who have to wear them and to fans that have to look at them. Shame on Art Rooney for subjecting fans to that.

  104. LuckyNKentucky says:


    Indy is at home.

  105. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Playing right now, scoreless in the 3rd.

  106. Arriba Wilver says:


  107. Jandy says:

    Lucky, Milo, is that another blog-trolling sock puppet?????

  108. Milo Hamilton says:

    Miguel Batista pitching for the Mets. He’s the only remaining player to play on a winning Pirates team.

  109. Ryan (Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    Who’s playing right now??

  110. JohninOshkosh says:


    Can you think of any, besides Moyer, who even played against a winning Pirate team? No allowed!

  111. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Jeff Locke’s pitching well for Indy today. No runs, 5 hits after 5. Also 6 K’s and only 1 walk. Shame that didn’t translate to MLB at the end of last season. Indy up 4-0.

  112. Ants Marching = = = = = = = = = = = =

    DK: Ants!

  113. LuckyNKentucky says:


    It seems it is.

  114. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Bryan Morris had a wonderful outing today for the Indians. Faced 3 batters, gave up 3 hits and 2 runs, so far. Gave way to Doug Slaten. Early ERA is over 12.

  115. Leah Backus says:

    Mother Theresa was a nun so…yeah. Not so much. With the Penguins being the way they are, I need to have fun somehow.

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