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Final: Cubs 4, Pirates 3

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (72-65) vs. Chicago Cubs (52-86)

Time: 7:05 p.m.

Site: PNC Park

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here is the live box score.

And here is the Pirates’ lineup vs. Chicago RHP Jeff Samardzija

  1. Brock Holt, 2B
  2. Starling Marte, LF
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Garrett Jones, 1B
  5. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  6. Alex Presley, RF
  7. Clint Barmes, SS
  8. Rod Barajas, C
  9. James McDonald, RHP

Comments

  1. Eric Bowser says:

    Always nice to see accountability in the form of another Rod Barajas start. I mean, what else does this coaching staff need to see that everyone else has known all season.

    McKenry is a good man, so he’s not sitting there wondering why not me, that isn’t like him but since he won’t, I will say it for him…. what the heck!

  2. Drew71 says:

    New thread; new game.

    Now I feel better.

    Well. Except for the 8 hitter.

  3. Dave says:

    I hope they finish below .500 so Hurdle, Huntington, DUI Coon, and Scrooge McNutting can get fried by the media over another collapse. Otherwise they’re going to be considered winners by local media and fans when in reality they’re possibly the worst management team in baseball.

  4. Drew71 says:

    Wait. I get the strategy.

    JMac can hit a little.

    So Barajas is the giveaway out.

    I guess it’s a National League rule. Have to have one.

  5. Drew71 says:

    I wish I had some Wheaties cause I really have to, well, you know

  6. Dave says:

    @ Drew71

    Are you Rod Barajas? Do you need your Wheaties so you could actually throw, hit, or field the ball? It’s a good thing you can teach a wipeout slider that only works for about 45% of the season.

  7. Bizrow says:

    I could aswore I just saw Barrabas placekicking for Penn State???

  8. pattonbb says:

    Barajas again? Re you kidding me? Is Clint even paying attention? In case he’s not, please allow me to remind him of something; WE ARE IN A PLAYOFF RACE. PLAY THE BEST 8.

    Having said that, hope Hot Rod goes 3-4 with a few rbi’s tonight. If he doesn’t, the asylum might get ugly tonight.

  9. Dave says:

    With Hurdle’s infatuation with Rod Barajas and Clint Barmes. It has me wondering who is the better manager. Hurdle or Huntington’s sock puppet John Russell.

  10. tdb1977 says:

    When Indy’s season is over, will they bring up Tony Sanchez and see what he can do? Or will they continue to trot out Slow Rod everyday?

  11. Eric Bowser says:

    The good news, Barajas starting today means tomorrow my son and I should see McKenry in the lineup.

    I’m more than a little disappointed that Walker isn’t in the lineup again. I’ve back problems, so I understand how difficult it can be to do much of anything but I didn’t get the sense his issues were so bad he would be out this long.

  12. Reading says:

    The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Barmes/Barajas equals rock solid leadership.

  13. radio wave says:

    Only day I like “cryan ryan.” (dmac)
    It’s got to be better tonight,right?would be nice to have a catcher who could throw runners out.

  14. Eric Bowser says:

    Of course, I’m here wondering about accountability, yet this is the same organization that didn’t publicly address on their own about team President Frank Coonelly’s DUI arrest or worse, continued to employ the man after his admitted guilt.

    Then during the season, a minor league scrub like Navarro is arrested in DUI… nothing, still has a job and spot on the 40-man roster.

    So yeah, I guess I shouldn’t be very surprised that an overweight catcher hitting below .200 is in the lineup.

    Amazing

  15. Bizrow says:

    I think Milo, and if I’m wrong, sorry in advance, posted that he thinks Slick Frank will move on during the off season.

    I will be there if needed to help him pack his stuff

  16. Drew71 says:

    Yes. Look where they are leading them.

  17. Drew71 says:

    I started off feeling better with the new thread.

    Wha…wha happened?

  18. Eric Bowser says:

    Many people didn’t think Frank “The Tanked” was going to be in Pittsburgh for long, so him leaving after this season is probably best for him and the team.

  19. Bizrow says:

    Trying times right now

    At least that darn 80 degree humid weather went away

  20. Bizrow says:

    The Slickmeister has, you gotta admit, been very, very consistent, but in a totally unacceptable manner

    CMon Barrabbas, nail this kick

  21. Bizrow says:

    That was not even close, he’s thrown closer to second, a couple of times anyways

  22. Karen22 says:

    This is lunacy to the Nth degree! Now I KNOW Barajas must have something on Hurdle. NO OTHER EXPLANATION!!

  23. Drew71 says:

    Biz, his last name is gonna get mispronounced.

    a LOT.

    and he won’t even get credit for the excitement he created, bring the thrill back to the extra point.

  24. RobertoForever says:

    Wait, so Barajas playing again is Frank’s fault?

  25. Drew71 says:

    No. They’re both failures SEPARATELY.

    One bonehead move has nothing to do with the other.

  26. Drew71 says:

    Here comes the obligatory “protect my boss” post

  27. Dave says:

    @ Roberto

    Yes, he allowed Huntington to sign the contract. Barajas’ contract signing caused Frank to go out and celebrate and get his DUI :)

  28. Eric Bowser says:

    @RobertoForever – Organizational accountability is the responsibility of everyone, the issue with Frank “The Tanked” is that he’s prime example of what is wrong with the franchise.

  29. mayhay22 says:

    With a day game tomorrow, Rod was going to catch either tonight or tomorrow regardless.

  30. Eric Bowser says:

    Eric Fryer is a better option to start than Barajas right now.

  31. Bizrow says:

    Nope, I don’t like or respect the Snake Oil Salesman, Slick Frank, whether Barrabbas plays or not.

    No correlation at all, except it would be a good PR move, and more than that, better for the future of the PBC if they both were gone in 2013

    @Drew, I thought the same with the name, my heart goes out to the kid though

    Thats sports though, I guess

  32. pattonbb says:

    On a different subject – Tulane safety Devon Walker broke his neck after a collision with a teammate during the Tulane/Tulsa football game. He stopped breathing. Medical staff performed a tracheotomy right on the field and brought him back. Without a doubt, the scariest thing I’ve ever watched during a “game”.

  33. RobertoForever says:

    Failures defend by what standards? Winning the WS? Sure. I agree, they will probably fail at that.

    But, sorry, few business people, or even baseball people would rate 3 straight years of significant improvement as failure.

    The Pirates would not be winning 6 of 10 with McKenry playing 7 of 10 starts. Its just not possible.

    This team is losing because a first half MVP candidate, 2 first half CY Young candidates are all three playing like average to below average. The SS and the Catching start ratio is about 9th and 10th on the list of issues.

    If J-Mac struggles tonight, the o/u on calls to demote/DFA would be set at 30. And the over will probably win.

    #toast

  34. Arriba Wilver says:

    tdb—Neal said a week or so ago that there was no chance Sanchez would be up in September. None. (unless I dreamed that)

  35. Eric Bowser says:

    @Arriba – I thought I read that too.

  36. Bizrow says:

    Significant improvement?

    That depends on what you call significant

    As well as where you start from

  37. Cmat0829 says:

    To whomever posted above that Barmes shouldn’t be playing…..did you WATCH that defensive lunacy last night????.

  38. The Gunner says:

    I am on vacation in Myrtle Beach and missed last night’s debacle. What the hell happened? It better not happen again tonight.

    I see a lot of Frank “The Tanked” Coonelly comments. Let’s hope he leaves, he is really an empty suit.

    The bottom 3rd of the line up looks weak, JMac better be on a short leash tonight if he starts an early meltdown.

  39. patrick(RI) says:

    It has to be admitted that while this team played well above expectations for a couple of months, it is now executing below expections (closer to reality than earlier). I am comfortable with this team not making the playoffs, as it seems to me they are not deserving. I would be happier about the future if there were more evidence the management had better sense in short-term player evaluations. To wit, there are four ex-pirates playing interesting roles for other teams that could have been making contributions(Ciriaco, Doumit, McClouth & Pearce). I am NOT arguing it was a great mistake to let them go — but it sure looks kinda stupid that we got zip in return. If we keep making these kinds of short-term decisions, it may not matter if the long term draft choices turn out well. I really think this is the weakest link of all. BTW, who is this Mercer guy who pinch-hit last night?

  40. JRay3 says:

    Seriously we did not see enough of Barajas last night or the first 125 games for that matter? Clint continues to outdo himself.

    Thankfully I am going to the ASU / Illinois game tonight at Sun Devil Stadium, look forward to getting a recap of this game from the comments. Bring it home asylum.

    Go Bucs!

  41. The Gunner says:

    @ Patrick

    We all complained about Ryan Doumit while he was a Buc. Last time I checked, he had a .283 BA with 15 HR & 64 RBIs with the Twins. Also, an OPS of close to .800. Granted, he was often injured here however, he is better than what we have behind the plate these days for sure.

  42. Cmat0829 says:

    Please let’s not start on the “we shouldve kept” mclouth, pearce, ciricaco, et al. Tis asylum was unified in begging those players be dumped.

  43. JMB says:

    Three straight years of significant improvement?

    2010 57-105.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/PIT/2010-schedule-scores.shtml

    What was significantly improved that horrible year?

    Or have I been sleeping and it’s really Sept. 2013 already?

  44. patrick(RI) says:

    @Gunner

    Even that guy we got for Bautista could throw out a runner every so often.

  45. Drew71 says:

    “The Pirates would not be winning 6 of 10…”

    A Question: Do you just make this stuff up?

    Their winning percentage today is 52.6%. Did you learn rounding in math class?

    And the way the Pirates are sliding the past five+ weeks, they are playing their way closer to 5 of 10, not the other direction.

    So I guess I answered my own question.

  46. Thundercrack says:

    Last night did Jeff Banister take Barajas out because double switch or did he pull him because he had seen enough. (which we all have)

  47. Arriba Wilver says:

    Roberto lives in the future.

  48. patrick(RI) says:

    @Cmat0829

    My major complaint is that they were not worthless, as is now apparent,even to big spenders from NY — we just cut em loose, apparently because we had better choices, like Navarro. et al! And got nothing in return.

  49. Thundercrack says:

    Doumit is better than Barajas when it comes to the bat. But I don’t think with the glove.
    I haven’t forgotten all those balls that clanked off Doumit’s mitt.
    That doesn’t happen with Rod B. And neither is great throwing out runners.

  50. patrick(RI) says:

    Doumit is certainly more valuable in the DH league. Did NH try to move him last year?

  51. Eric Bowser says:

    Trust me, my comment last night about missing Doumit was more about the pathetic state of the Pirates catching situation in the majors and minors than wanting him back.

    As much as Dejan correctly criticizes the team on their inability to scout and acquire middle infielders, especially SS, the same should also be said for catchers.

  52. Thundercrack says:

    So FC gets a DUI.
    Navarro gets a DUI

    And that makes Rod Barajas think “hey what the heck, I can just let myself go and play like crap”

    I’m following along now.

    And they probably thought it was OK to commit 7 errors last night too.

  53. Thundercrack says:

    Eric,
    I think if you search the internet, you will probably find a lot of articles and comments from “experts” and scouts mentioning how thin the talent level is all around baseball at the catcher and shortstop position. Majors and minors.

    I’m not saying ours shouldn’t be better, but I am just saying.

  54. Bizrow says:

    At least Barrabbas does not have an option for next year, there is an option but its the BMTIBs call, 3 million, no buyout either

    IMO kinda shows you that Barrabbas was not getting knocked over with offers this past off season

    @patrick(RI), am not sure, but I would think Doumits options pretty much made him a rental player at last season’s trade deadline

  55. JMB says:

    Re: catcher

    I don’t know if this was already posted, and it is a roto column. However, I found it moderately hopeful.

    http://www.fangraphs.com/fantasy/index.php/keeper-strategy-2013-impact-rookies-catchers/

    Tony Sanchez, Pirates (Triple-A)
    “24-year-old isn’t going to live up to being the No. 4 pick in 2009, but he’s still a strong defender with a future in the majors.”

  56. Arriba Wilver says:

    On Doumit, I also think he was on the DL most if not all of June and July last year.

  57. Bizrow says:

    Slick Franks problems with the law is not an issue with me, one can check, but I’m pretty sure I’ve never brought that up.

    Frank’s character as a leader/face of the franchise or lack there of is another matter.

    With the DUI, many, many people make that mistake, I learned better when my youngest sister lost her boyfriend in downtown Pittsburgh due to someone making that mistake, Wood Street if memory serves me, back when the Gateway Clipper’s home was on the Burgh side of the Mon

    My utter dislike of Slick is based on his body of work

    Its time for fresh air on Federal St

    BEAT EM BUCS

    We need this one pretty bad tonight, Frisco is up 1-0, so they are doing their part

  58. T.S. says:

    It’s official. Clint Hurdle just doesn’t get it.

  59. patrick(RI) says:

    In fairness, no matter how competent a GM is, luck is huge. Can’t control for Morton’s ligaments, nor Bedard’s loss of effectiveness(even after getting lucky with his injury proneness). On the other hand, competence should win out if the luck evens out. The best luck NH has had is to fall into a second base player from heaven, when his choices to replace Freddy were so godawful. I will stop this silly rant since I cannot figure out how to stop.

  60. woomer says:

    I certainly hope that we’re only seeing Barajas tonight because Clint doesn’t want to start the same catcher Saturday night and then again Sunday afternoon….

    And he’s probably assuming that JMac will pitch up to (I mean, down to) his second-half form. So he will instead use the Fort tomorrow — in a game the Pirates have a better chance of winning.

  61. patrick(RI) says:

    I think DK should get a dog and name it Barajas, so he could get a better result when he says “Sit Barajas, . . .Now!”

    DK: Woof.

  62. Bizrow says:

    I’m taking my five month old dachsy, Abby, to obedience/charm school, the latter, she charms anyone she meets, the former…

    It takes treats

    Now I know Clint likes bubblegum……

  63. Drew71 says:

    Careful, Patrick. When I do that with one of our poodles, it does more than just, um, sit.

    Of course that would make it all seem very very similar.

  64. scapper says:

    Patrick…that was hilarious. Thank you.

  65. Eric Bowser says:

    Maybe someone in the clubhouse should give Barajas a “STFD” t-shirt and take his equipment.

  66. RobertoForever says:

    Patrick,

    Nice! And a favorable response by the head lunatic. Well done!

  67. Bizrow says:

    In defense of Barrabbas

    He’s been a decent major leaguer.

    Someone calls you and offers you 3.5 Mil to do what you love

    You are on the downside of your career and kinda out of shape,

    What would you do?

    I don’t know if Barrabbas gives a darn or not about playing, I kinda think he is an honorable person so he cares, not like Burnitz

    But, bottom line is, what with no catching other than the Fort coming back from last season, who we got for peanuts from Boston,

    I don’t blame Barrabbas for taking the money, what I question (hope TC is here) is the logic of thats what the BMTIB did to go into this season with at the catching position

    Just sayin

  68. Thundercrack says:

    Biz
    I don’t know what they were thinking in regards to the catching position. They had to know that their depth was thin (not Barajas though). I’m not sure what else was available…and in their price range (always a factor)

    I posted this last night and I don’t know if anyone replied: I thought when they signed Barajas they said he would be good for around 80 games. He will now be over 90 I think.

  69. RobertoForever says:

    JMB,

    Fair enough. I should have said steady improvement over the last 3 years. Certainly an improvement that has not been seen in 15 years, no?

  70. RobertoForever says:

    Thunder

    Barajas has started 85 games, appeared in 6 others as a PH.

  71. patrick(RI) says:

    @scapper & roberto
    Thanks. I do feel a bit guilty since RB has two of the attributes I admire most in an athlete: he is articulate and pleasant. I concur with Bizrow, there is no reason he should not have taken the money.

  72. Eric Bowser says:

    If I’m the Cubs hitters, I don’t swing at a pitch until I have 2 strikes

  73. Eric Bowser says:

    Now THAT’S a defensive gem by the Pirates, great dive & catch by GFJ!!

  74. The Gunner says:

    @ Patrick – 44

    I guess you are referring to Robinson Diaz – I think he is now in the Rangers’ chain. Looks like JMac had a good 1st inning – let’s hope it lasts.

  75. Eric Bowser says:

    McCutchen beaned with fastball into hip, that’s not going to feel good.

    Jones 4 pitch walk.

    Bases loaded… PEDRO time.

  76. tdb1977 says:

    Come on Pedro!

  77. Eric Bowser says:

    nice, Pedro goes down and hits it into right CF for 2-run single.

  78. tdb1977 says:

    Nice job Pedro. Bringing in two runs with that single. Bucs up 2 and still in business in the first inning.

  79. The Gunner says:

    Pedro does it again!!!!

  80. Reading says:

    Take that Golden Domer! You’re still going to get drilled when you come up!!

  81. Eric Bowser says:

    and Presley goes down swinging, two outs. We’ll know the Pirates are on their way, when they have better options for 4th and 5th outfielders than him.

  82. The Gunner says:

    @ Eric – 81

    Presley, despite his limitations, is a better option than Scabata

  83. tdb1977 says:

    And here comes the bad JMac again. If he gives up another long ball, he needs to be pulled quickly. I don’t care if it was a solo home run Bob Walk – its still a home run and he has given up way to many the second half.

  84. Eric Bowser says:

    Soriano sitting on that one, hammers a line drive HR to LF.

    2-1 Pirates

  85. Eric Bowser says:

    @The Gunner – They are about the same to me, dead wood.

  86. The Gunner says:

    TDB1977 – 83

    You are right TDB – JMac needs to be on an extremely short leash. That friggin Soriano kills the Pirates.

  87. Reading says:

    They plant one in our superstar’s backside. We give up a Jack to their first batter. I’ll hold my breath waiting for ND guy to get drilled.

  88. Eric Bowser says:

    Another hard hit off J-Mac… he goes from crisp to crap in one inning far too often this second half. That’s called lack of focus, lack of preparation with a “veteran” catcher behind the plate doing an admiral job to stop it, or not.

  89. Eric Bowser says:

    @Reading – This team doesn’t understand the unwritten rules of the game.

  90. tdb1977 says:

    I dont know what is up with all the WOOOOOO’s but it is so annoying. Come on people, you sound stupid and dumb.

  91. Reading says:

    Way to have Cutch’s back. Don’t care if a guy was on third. Get the number 9 guy.

  92. Eric Bowser says:

    @tdb1977 – Must be the same idiots who go to the Penguins games at CEC. Cannot stand it, really hope I don’t hear it tomorrow.

  93. The Gunner says:

    JMac shut em down. He better get it back together real quick next inning.

  94. tdb1977 says:

    @Eric It’s been going on since Monday. Out of the blue they just started going WOOOOOO and it didn’t stop. Thought it would be better Tuesday, while I was there. Nope. Same thing on Wednesday. Was sitting close enough to some of them Wednesday that I wanted to go and smack them upside the back head. And now, you can hear them on the TV field tonight.

  95. pattonbb says:

    For some reason, the crowds have adopted the Ric Flair “Woooo!”.

    Hot Rod showing off that warning track power.

  96. pattonbb says:

    Should they just let Campana take second now?

  97. Eric Bowser says:

    ANOTHER hard hit ball off J-Mac… if I’m Hurdle, I get another pitcher up and throwing now.

  98. tdb1977 says:

    I swear sometimes Hurdle doesn’t remember how to get to the phone in the dugout to get hold of the pen. He leaves the starters out there to long sometimes. And tonight has the feel its going to be one of those outings. JMac is getting crushed on the balls that are hit into play. Including the one hit at Jones in the first.

  99. Reading says:

    Good!

  100. tdb1977 says:

    Wow. JMac hit Rizzo.

  101. pattonbb says:

    Hurdle’s trying to build J-Mac’s confidence. He wants to give him an opportunity.

    Good for J-Mac. Rizzo, Castro, or Soriano deserved to be plunked. We’re even now.

  102. Eric Bowser says:

    Coming into the game tonight and post All-Star break,

    Barajas: 17 hits, 7 walks, 6 RBI, and .493 OPS in 103 at-bats
    McKenry: 25 hits, 10 walks, 21 RBI and .841 OPS in 93 at-bats

    I know the more important number
    Barajas: $4 million
    McKenry: $484,000

  103. Eric Bowser says:

    Cubs tie it, 2-2 game.

  104. Eric Bowser says:

    Pirates are paying $9,680 for McKenry’s 25 hits post all-star break and $117,647 for Barajas’ 17 hits. We know why Barajas is in over Fort.

  105. The Gunner says:

    is JMac starting to turn into JSuc?

  106. pattonbb says:

    Barajas tried.

    That’s all you can really ask for.

  107. Eric Bowser says:

    ho-hum, another stolen base against the Pirates.

  108. Reading says:

    This one’s not looking good. NDer is settling in. JMac- not sure yet.

  109. Eric Bowser says:

    @pattonbb – Humberto Cota tried, this is just getting absurd with the running game against the Pirates. I can’t question the effort, I’m questioning the need to punish the team with a vastly better option sitting on the bench.

    Yes I know everyone, I’m beating an already dead horse.

  110. Eric Bowser says:

    Pedro with a gift double.

  111. Reading says:

    Dude just got schooled on that laser.

  112. tdb1977 says:

    Nice shot there Pedro. But to bad you are going to be left there on second with Presley, Barajas, and Barmes coming up behind you.

  113. RobertoForever says:

    JSuc? The bad J-Mac?

    He is 2/3rd’s the way to a quality start. I would think we would be happy with this.

  114. tdb1977 says:

    Or your going to have a dumb baserunning blunder.

  115. DemonDachshund says:

    Barajas is showing his Warren Morris level power tonight.

  116. Reading says:

    Have to admit, other than the laser throw gunning the guy down at second a few weeks ago, I have not been impressed with Marte’s fielding. That looked catchable.

  117. Eric Bowser says:

    yaaaaaawn, another stolen base.

  118. Dave G says:

    They’ll be stealing home soon.

  119. Dave says:

    Let’s see JMAC sucking again, Barajas and Barmes are a combined 0-4, the Cubs have stolen 2 bases off Barajas already, and the Pirates are losing. What a shock. I’m glad our manager likes to have the best 8 players out there, other wise I might think we were trying to lose.

  120. Eric Bowser says:

    Can’t really criticize Barmes’ inclusion in the lineup after last night’s atrocious blunders but instead of starting Harrison, maybe give Mercer a game or two. Once Indy’s season is over, Chase d’Arnaud needs to see a few starts as well.

    At this stage, Mercer and d’Arnaud should get the starts and late in the game with leads put in Barmes for the defensive replacement.

  121. Eric Bowser says:

    Get J-Mac out of the game, mentally he’s out to lunch.

  122. Eric Bowser says:

    here comes the double steal, gotta be coming.

  123. Dave G says:

    Hurdle can’t pull JMac til he gives up a couple more runs.

    Here’s Searage. That’s JMac’s cue to give up a go-ball.

  124. Dave G says:

    Wow. Can’t believe Hurdle is actually pulling the plug!

  125. pattonbb says:

    well what do you know….Hurdle actually pulls J-mac BEFORE he allows any further damage.

  126. The Gunner says:

    they need to shut JMac down for the rest of 2012

  127. Eric Bowser says:

    @Gunner – Do you think he’s injured or tired?

  128. pattonbb says:

    Nice job by Watson. Lets get a couple runs here boys!

    Enough of this moping around BS. We’re down by 1 run.

  129. Eric Bowser says:

    …me thinks J-Mac is going to be a surprise trade piece for a hitter this offseason.

  130. tdb1977 says:

    Personally Root Sports, I dont give a flying pig’s @$$ about the Pitch Probability thingy your now showing on TV. Its just more clutter that you can throw up on the screen.

  131. Eric Bowser says:

    @tdb1977 – They are doing their job to distract the viewer from the bad product on the field. This second half, for second year in a row, is stuff that earns general managers, coaches, and players a pink slip.

  132. Dave G says:

    Plus they keep showing the new rainbow lights on that building beyond center field.

    Not attractive at all.

    Looks like one of those Playskool donut stacking toys.

    DK: “That building?” That’s the Gulf Tower.

  133. tdb1977 says:

    Someone should be shown the door with the way they have played the second half of this year. Bedard should not be the only one that should be given their walking paper. This has been a disgrace to watch the second half. To be 16 games over .500 at one point this season and nothing to show for it. Yeah, only 1.5 games back of the wild card is great but they had things better in hand. Then it all went down hill. Its snowballing fast. 7 errors last night. Getting embarrassed by several pitchers who have no right to be in the majors. Blowing a 7-1 game. I could go on, but it just makes me really mad to think about it.

  134. Dave G says:

    Wasn’t sure, Dejan.

    But the rainbow doesn’t add any beauty to the skyline.

    DK: They’re currently doing some experimenting up there to see what works. My guess is they’ll end up with the traditional flashing red that was up there for a half-century. But not sure.

  135. Reading says:

    Hughes is all in. Schooling Soriano and getting a weak grounder from Castro. How about some hits?????

  136. Reading says:

    Looks like the 8th will have to be the inning.

  137. tdb1977 says:

    And the bats have gone on vacation AGAIN!

  138. Reading says:

    Barajas, the rocket foul ball master.

  139. tdb1977 says:

    Is Castro crying? There is no crying in baseball!

  140. Reading says:

    We never make errors like that. Time to cash in.

  141. Reading says:

    Now we’re talking!!!!

  142. tdb1977 says:

    And we just did cash in with that error. You can continue to cry now Castro. Clement with a rocket shot off of the wall to score Harrison from 2nd.

  143. Arriba Wilver says:

    Happy for Clement.

  144. Thundercrack says:

    Me too AW

  145. Thundercrack says:

    Root Sports produces the worst baseball telecast in the history of TV.

    Enough of the crowd shots & fake fan responses

  146. pattonbb says:

    Very happy for Clement

  147. tdb1977 says:

    I wish another TV station would out bid Root Sports for the TV rights.

  148. Thundercrack says:

    Nice throw from Alex P

  149. tdb1977 says:

    7 errors last night. 4 stolen bases tonight. Geez!

  150. Reading says:

    Samardijamamama basically laughing at us. Disappointing performance at the plate again.

  151. tdb1977 says:

    The finally threw someone out!!!

  152. Dave G says:

    OMG— Did Fort just throw someone out?

  153. Eric Bowser says:

    breaking news: runner caught stealing via throw by catcher….. guess who…. McKenry!

  154. Reading says:

    Note the time!

  155. tdb1977 says:

    If Pedro doesn’t do anything, then this is going to be another L.

  156. pattonbb says:

    Barajas would have given it his best shot. He tries.

  157. Dave G says:

    Yes, but it’s only ONE loss.

  158. Eric Bowser says:

    Losing two games… to the Cubs…….. not acceptable in a playoff chase.

  159. pattonbb says:

    120 pitches for Samardzija tonight. Wow, I guess it doesn’t really matter though since they’re shutting him down.

  160. The Gunner says:

    another great effort by the Bucs………………………..NOT!

  161. JMB says:

    72-66

    10-14 to finish with a winning record.

    The team would have to play around 15-9 to make the playoffs. Maybe 13-11 gets it done, but I doubt it.

  162. The Gunner says:

    forget the playoffs

  163. Dave says:

    Nice to see Barajas have a -3 difference in total bases tonight. 0-3 with a reach on error along with 4 SB’s allowed. Good thing we’re not holding guys accountable or we might actually bench him.

    Go Clint for Worst Manager of the Year Award!

  164. Drew71 says:

    It’s another in a long line of only-one-game losses as the free fall continues. The Pirates’ winning percentage drops from 52.6 to 52.2% with the loss to the lowly Cubs. And that means, with Roberto’s New Math, the Pirates are winning 6 of 10.

  165. DemonDachshund says:

    3-11 since the trading deadline in games decided by 2 runs or less plus the 19 inning win (which I will count as a close game since it went into extra innings and all). Yes, the Pirates have played some bad games, but the fact is they’ve been losing most of the close ones, and that’s killing them right now.

  166. Eric Bowser says:

    Pirates haven’t won 3 games in a row since they won 4 in row July 25-28 against the Cubs and Astros.

  167. Eric Bowser says:

    WOW.

    Just lost all respect with Kent Tekulve with this pathetic, lame excuse and explanation as to why McKenry sits and Barajas plays.

  168. Drew71 says:

    “He is 2/3rd’s the way to a quality start.”

    Ah. A new stat. Any stat, any invention, just to put on a happy face.

    Next outing, if he gets the first batter, he’s 1/18th’s the way there.

    At least this is a sign the Pirates are All In.
    Because it seems they pay their flunkies well.

    (It’s funny that I get bitter when the Pirates lose, and somebody else here gets bitter when they win. That says two things. One, I must not be a good fan. And Two, he must not be bitter very often.)

  169. pattonbb says:

    It’s just one game…it’s just one game…it’s just one game

    er….I mean, it’s just two games….it’s just two games….it’s just two games

  170. Eric Bowser says:

    Since trade deadline, Pirates went conservative and the players reacted with the same on the field. For the second year in a row, Hurdle has lost this team in the second half of the season.

    Pirates struggle early in 2013 and Hurdle is toast if he’s employed by a team that has some level of accountability.

    McCutchen, McDonald, Burnett, Barajas, Barmes… these are the important players, the veteran leaders… doing nothing for this franchise in second half. They are not playing up to their talent, screw potential, their talent.

    If it wasn’t for the run production of Jones, Walker, and Alvarez in second half, it could be worse won-loss record.

  171. Eric Bowser says:

    Jerry Meals at it again… nice guy and all but he’s not good enough for MLB.

    This is pathetic blown call, just as bad as Pirates blown call.

    http://twitpic.com/aslv7k

  172. Naje says:

    Eric… that experience got them to 17 over .500… the (lack of) talent got them to where they are now.

    I don’t know how Hurdle (other than playing Barajas) factors into this.

  173. Eric Bowser says:

    @Naje – All I know is, he’s not playing the best players in a playoff chase.

  174. Eric Bowser says:

    Let’s go Illinois, beat the snot out of the Arizona State Sun Devils (Todd Graham is their coach).

  175. DemonDachshund says:

    Let me see if I have this straight…

    A 35 year old pitcher throws at a near Cy Young caliber level until early August. He’s struggled over the last month. We’re now blaming him for struggling for the last few weeks, even though his ERA is better than it’s been since 2005.

    An outfielder carries the team through May, and then leads the team through June and July. His season OPS is 100 points higher than his career numbers. He’s #2 in batting average to a cheater. We’re now blaming him for struggling the past 6 weeks, even though he’s hitting over .300 in September and has an OPS of over .800 since the All Star Break.

    I’m sorry, I don’t blame Cutch and Burnett in the least. They’ve had to pull too much dead weight all season (I’m looking at you, Kill Us B’s) and I’m not going to pile on when they FO failed to get them the help they needed.

  176. Reading says:

    Unfortunately, the way this weekend has gone, you just know the Sun Devils will put up half a hundred, hammer down in the left lane, high octane beat down of a B1G school.

  177. Eric Bowser says:

    @DemonD – Yes, I think Cutch and Burnett need to be better than they have in second half for this team to have playoff shot. They are down the chain for blame but team needs more out of them.

    @Reading – Graham’s offense at ASU will look better because his QB isn’t Tino Sunseri.

  178. Arriba Wilver says:

    At least Virginia won today.

  179. Drew71 says:

    I didn’t know the state of Virginia had another college football program.

    Is this one new?

  180. Eric Bowser says:

    Just realized, ASU’s QB Michael Eubank picked ASU over PITT in 2010, now Graham has his guy by going there.

    A talent like Eubank is what Pitt hasn’t had in years…… years.

  181. JRay3 says:

    Just got back from the ASU game and witnessed that talent Michael Eubank, and had to watch Todd Graham use the ASU talent to run all over a Big Ten school in another blow out win, but I will leave that for another day.

    Well I see today was just one game, just one game where we lose yet again at home to the pretty pitiful Cubs. This team is done. The Management failed them, the Manager is failing them and the players themselves peaked and no longer have what it takes to win at this stage of the season with everything on the line.

    The Pirates are not close to being a playoff team and I am not sure they will even finish being a .500 team.

    #WaitTilNextYear

  182. Dave G says:

    Dejan

    I was completely unaware that the light display atop Gulf Tower is the KDKA Weather Beacon. (I just researched it)

    For those out of towners who were unaware, like myself: the building seen in straightaway center field at night is Gulf Tower and the colors lighting up the top 6 floors represent weather conditions in Pittsburgh.

    The Beacon was a staple in Pittsburgh until the ’70s, when the energy shortage caused Gulf Oil to shut down the lighting, as it was perceived as wasting energy.

    The Beacon was reactivated over this past 4th of July weekend with all-new energy-efficient lighting.

  183. Arriba Wilver says:

    Here’s the link for anyone interested about the Gulf Tower lights.

    http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2012/07/02/weather-beacon-to-return-atop-gulf-tower/

  184. Thundercrack says:

    It is obvious that last night’s loss was caused by Jason Grilli not liking the way ownership handled Frank Coonelly’s DUI incident. Heck, Grilli isn’t probably thrilled about the way Huntington handled the trade deadline.

    Neither does JMac or the Pirate hitters.

    Empty suits.

  185. Drew71 says:

    It IS the players, Thunder. And I don’t mean that (for once) in a bitter way.

    I’ve written before that over the course of a long season:
    “You are what your record says you are”, to quote Bill Parcells.

    They are playing themselves to what they are.
    -They are not the .600+ team they were for three months and that RF still thinks and recently wrote that they are.
    - They are not the .378 and dropping team that they have been for almost six weeks.

    I believe they are what they are becoming, the picture they are painting with the full season’s record.

    They’ll end up about .500. Give or take. Mediocre.

    That’s them. That’s it. That’s all. No more. No less.

    And as a fan, Regression to the Mean just SUCKS

  186. Thundercrack says:

    I agree with you Drew. I have felt all along that they are good enough to finish over .500 but most likely not good enough for the playoffs.

    I respect everyone’s opinion and view of the situation. But here is the way I look at it: The players were good enough to be 10+ games over .500 and at or very close to leading the division. Fast forward to this month and the results are as good.
    But EYE don’t go back and critique how the owner handled the FC DUI case, or what they did when Navarro got busted, or how Bob Nutting (or FC) is handling things. And I am way past the point of critiquing Huntington on what he did or did not do at the trade deadline.

    For me, at this point it is up to the players. Either they are good enough (just like they were a few months ago) or they are not. Sure, decisions by the manager are open for debate (but changing starting shortstops at this point does drive me a bit mad).

    When the season ends then I think it can be open season on critiquing anyone in the organization.

  187. Stuart says:

    I think that Hurdle’s approach to the every day lineup is a contributing factor to where we are. He puts out nothing in the 7, 8, and 9 slots in terms of offense, and as a result we have this huge void at the end of the lineup. Putting Barmes in the two-slot was something I liked. Clint is obviously going to play Barmes for whatever reason. Putting one of the outfielders in 7 or 8 fills the void a little. Unfortunately Presley has looked terrible the last few games, frequently merely waving at outside pitches that he used to take to left field. Marte, and Snider will eventually make them a better team. We won earlier in the season in spite of Hurdle’s lineups because Cutch was so hot. Here’s what I would put out there today:
    1. Marte 2. Holt 3. Cutch 4. Sanchez 5. Jones 6. Alvarez 7. Tabata 8. Barmes 9. Locke

    Holt is a prototypical #2 hitter. When Walker returns, I would move Barmes to second and bat him fifth or sixth.
    Stuart66

  188. Arriba Wilver says:

    I don’t comment on lineups much, but Stuart, that is one bad lineup. And it isn’t just because there’s no catcher. Although that is one way to solve the debate about McKenry/Barajas. But Marte is not a prototypical lead off guy, and Jones has been good at cleanup, and Gaby not so much.

  189. Thundercrack says:

    Do you think we could petition the league office to allow us to bat 4 outfielders and no catcher?
    If they saw the batting average of our catcher they would have to show mercy on us, right…

  190. Drew71 says:

    1. Cutch, 2. Cutch, 3. Cutch, 4. Jones, 5. Alvarez, 6. Jones, 7. Cutch, 8. Holt, 9. Burnett

    There. There’s mine. Every day.

    And before you say anything, mr. smartie pants, Holt’s the catcher.

  191. Arriba Wilver says:

    I don’t know what you’re talking about, Drew. I thought Stuart was 6/9′s (or 2/3′s) of the way to a quality lineup.

  192. Drew71 says:

    Perfect. Then he has a .600+ winning percentage. Just like the Pirates.

    Let’s use his. Thunder can catch if they make us have one.

 
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