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Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Full text of Kyle Stark email

From: Stark, Kyle

Sent: Thursday, June 28, 2012 5:22 PM


So what do we need to get done in the second half?

Over the last four days, we’ve reconnected with our WHY — turning boys into men so that we can re-bond a city with a baseball team and change the world through baseball. We’ve refocused and clarified our HOW — relentless, systematic and cohesive. All of these discussions have been tied to the ‘one thing’ that we need to move forward in the second half – we’ve trained them up, now we need to help them trust it and transfer it on the field. Which brings us to our WHAT …

As we talk about turning boys into men and developing them as PROs, this requires a few key characteristics. Those characteristics match our PRO values and are vividly captured by Bernie’s story about Olympic thrower Mac Wilkins and his views on what makes an Olympic champion. Mac explained that gold medal winners live by three golden rules — Dream and be creative like a Hippie. Have the discipline and perseverance of a Boy Scout. Be crazy and take risks like the Hells Angels. …

1. Dream like a Hippie — PASSION — Elite people have big dreams, are driven by those dreams, and believe that they can achieve them.

2. Prepare like a Boy Scout — RELENTLESS — Elite people have extreme work ethic, train exhaustively to get better, and prepare fully so they can be their best when their best is needed.

3. Trust like a Hell’s Angel — OWNERSHIP — Elite people trust their preparation, own their strengths and weaknesses, know what they do best and build conviction around it, and compete with reckless abandon.

The biggest impact we can have in the second half is developing more Hell’s Angels. We are really good at working before games. We excel at developing Boy Scouts. However, men play in the Big Leagues and that requires the reckless abandon of a Hell’s Angel. This is a mentality that is developed. It is a harder mentality to develop with less control, more gray area, and less science.  However, it is the separation between good coaches and great ones, good development systems and great ones, and good organizations and great ones.  Training guys to unleash what they’ve got is an art and needs to be our WHAT in the second half.

As you do some research on the Hell’s Angels, you come across three main qualities that set them apart and symbolize their mystique:

1. Swagger — There is an extreme confidence in themselves, their brothers, and what they’re about. They carry a chip on their shoulder and dare others to knock it off. They have an edge. Do our players have an edge? Do we have an edge? What are we doing to develop that edge?

2. Reckless abandon — Not only do they have an edge, but they live life on the edge. They’re described as free-spirited, which can be defined as somewhat irresponsible. They risk. They have no fear. They have a care-free and “care-less” attitude. You could argue that on one hand they care so much about who they are and what they do, but on the other hand they could care less in some areas such as what others think of them, of potential risks, of probabilities, etc. They’re more focused on possibilities than probabilities. They’re not consumed or swayed by what others think. They sell out to their purpose and live life fully and in-the-moment (“this pitch”). There has actually been a leadership book written about this approach to life, i.e. living life, experiencing it, and learning from your experiences. Their name comes from World War II fighting squadrons known for their extraordinary and dangerous feats of aviation. Do our players play with reckless abandon? Do we have reckless abandon? What are we doing to develop this mentality?

3. Bound by brotherhood — At the end of the day, they are fiercely loyal to each other. It is about the group and the bonds that exist between members. They can fight with each other, but someone external better not say anything negative about them. They love each other. Are our players bound by brotherhood? Are we bound by brotherhood? What are we doing to develop this bond?

As the calendar turns to July, we are selling out and committing to this approach. We’ve trained them. We need to train their trust now. Our focus should be on developing Hell’s Angels. That requires …

— Building confidence (helping players know what they do well, perfecting those traits so we’re not just working on weaknesses, speaking greatness into them, etc.)

— Encouraging risk (pushing players beyond their comfort zones, putting them in risky situations, viewing the risk as success rather than its result, celebrating risk taking, etc.)

— Going alongside them (being a ‘guide on the side’ rather than a ‘sage on the stage,’ asking questions rather than giving answers, celebrating aggressive failure and the lessons that come from it, etc.)

— Adding chaos and intensity to our training (get them out of their comfort zone, add stress, add competition to the work day, etc.)

— Preparing them to compete rather than training all the time (get the focus on the competition, shift our purpose to preparation rather than working a physical technique, outward focus rather than inward, etc.)

— Getting them outside of themselves and into the team (care about someone else, take care of each other, have each other’s back, etc.)

For this to happen, we must get out of our comfort zones and flex our own Hell’s Angel muscle. We must be extreme in our commitment to these ideas. This is ultimately about developing a mentality and a culture where this becomes our identity. A culture of risk and less control is unsettling for us control freaks!  However, it is the answer to letting skill out and WHAT we need to do in the second half.

LB and Bernie will be following up with more details as we move forward. Sell out and commit to this. Coach with swagger, reckless abandon, and bounded by brotherhood and we’ll see those same traits in our players.

HOKA HEY — It’s a good day to die!!!


  1. Thundercrack says:

    Is this real?

    If so: Holy Crap.

    DK: Fully authenticated.

  2. Marty Caridi says:


    I have been going back and forth in my head whether anyone should lose their job over this collapse. I could make points for and against. After reading this, it’s time for heads to roll. I would imagine Bob Nutting is not pleased at all. Hopefully, his anger is not directed toward you for writing this, but rather at the parties involved with this utter joke of a development system.

    DK: I don’t care if any of them is mad at me. I answer to the Trib and to you. That applies to all columns, not just this.

  3. Drew71 says:


  4. Justin says:



  5. Drew71 says:

    “Are our players bound by brotherhood?”

    Who knows? But can they bunt???

    I can dream like a hippy: “Fire him, man”

  6. T.S. says:

    Wow, what a bunch of horsesh#t. Thanks, DK.

  7. Corey says:

    So what?

  8. YinzerInExile says:

    This is . . . I don’t . . . Wha-???

    Stark has thrown every dotty, hollywood-esque “motivational” pitch into a blender and whirred away with all the resounding success of a sardine-avocado-turnip-chocolate shake.

    Dude done lost his damn mind.

  9. Matt says:

    what a freak!

  10. Hurdled says:

    This sounds a lot like the sermons David Koresh used to give.


    Did the Hell’s Angels believe in bunting?

  11. Dan1283 says:

    What a flippin’ joke. When I read those things, I think of the Steelers, not the Hells Angels. And guess what? The Steelers are right next door. Shake some hands, nurture the relationship, take advantage of modeling yourself after a premier sports franchise that operates a block away! Instead, Kyle Stark seems to be like another Todd Graham.

  12. Hurdled says:

    Our players are bound by brotherhood.

    Until they reach their final year of arbitration……

  13. Elle says:

    OMG. Am I right in saying that the word “baseball” appears twice in this entire desultory litany of platitudes, metaphors (mixed and unmixed), and utter drivel? How this has ever been acceptable?! I’m angrier now than I was after tonight’s (Thursday, 9/20) game, because on top of it all, I, as a life-long Pirates fan, am insulted. In 20 years, I may have gone through the 4, 5, 7, 12, however-many stages of grief, but I’ve never felt insulted.

  14. Kraig K says:


    I hope we can get #hokahey trending on Twitter.

    P.s. More important, my sympathies on your loss.

  15. Corey says:

    Yeah, it’s a little hokey. So is the “Zoltan” thing.

  16. T.S. says:

    Another great column, DK. Kyle Stark is literally out of his mind. And he looks like a punk with an attitude in that picture.

  17. Suckmeter says:

    It sucks the word ‘baseball’ was only used twice in this insane man’s crazy diatribe. What a joke.

  18. Yack says:

    This is incredible. It reads like a chain letter. Anyone else notice the word “baseball” doesn’t appear after the first sentence? And besides the “this pitch” phrase, nor does any other baseball-related term.

  19. T.S. says:


    Um, you’re clearly missing the point. But I’m not here to explain it to you. Look at the last five years, since NH was first hired. Add that email to all of it, and it’s way beyond hokey.

  20. Bucsfan612 says:

    Funny how HOKA HEY comes out tonight, when the Pirates finally slid below .500 once again. I can see Cutch going out to the batter’s box to hit his 30th to cheers of HOKA HEY from his teammates in the dugout. See ya Stark…idiot.

  21. Corey says:

    Seriously, what’s the big deal? Is there a single person who hasn’t been yelling for the last month that the Pirates need a little more fire? Wasn’t everybody outraged last week that the front office wouldn’t come out and say they expect more from the team?

    It’s not like he e-mailed everybody and said “Well, heck, we’re developing fine young men. Who cares if we win or not?”

  22. JRay3 says:

    Our second half summed up by let’s take our guys out of their comfort zone…14-31 nicely done that bicycle gamy approach worked wonders.

    This team is so Mickey Mouse.

  23. Hurdled says:


    Imagine you get an e-mail like that at work from your boss.

    It’s more than just a little off-putting.

    Unless in fact you are a Hell’s Angel.

    In that case my apologies.

  24. Corey says:

    So, before the groupthink gobbles me up, let me ask a substantive question:

    To whom was this e-mail addressed?

  25. josh says:

    He needs to be fired and set up with a good shrink.

  26. Zack says:

    If I was a recipient of this, I’d immediately lose all respect for Stark as an assistant GM. This baffles me, no wonder the system is mocked

  27. Jaime Banz says:

    If Tomlin sent this email out to his coaches and players, we’d all be praising him for instilling the warrior mentality into the Steelers.

    It’s not like he put the kids through weapons training, he ran them through a boot camp, one that personal trainers around the nation run for housewives, engineers, etc. on a daily basis.

    I actually think it’s pretty awesome. Helps build comradery amongst the young kids. My college coaches used to run similar programs for us during pre-season training camp.

  28. Jaime Banz says:

    Everybody forgets that this team was only projected to win 72 games (according to Vegas, which I promptly took the over on and will be collecting my winnings…maybe some of you others should have too…then maybe there wouldn’t be so much awful and negative energy).

    We’re in a good place right now, we’ve got Cole coming up next year, another year of growth for Marte, McCutchen, Pedro, McDonald and Walker, some good things to come from McPherson, Wandy and AJ. Plus we’ll have a chance to make a splash this off-season at the C position (there’s gonna be some solid depth there) and maybe even find an upgrade on Barmes (who FanGraphs had as the 2nd best fielder in the majors this year, and who has been, dare I say it, acceptable offensively over the last 6 weeks or so).

    Enough of the negativity fellas…our future as Bucco fans is bright.

  29. Thundercrack says:

    Jaime, did you read DK’s article that detailed the type of training they did? It wasn’t like any training that a personal trainer would put a housewife or engineer through.

    What would be really interesting would be to see NH going into Bob Nutting office to tell him how one of his pitching prospects -the high priced draft pick- cracked his shoulder running on the beach while carrying a telephone pole.

    DK: See below, TC, for the same commenter using a second name and making the same points. Same email, same everything. I’m publishing these for a reason.

  30. Arriba Wilver says:

    This kind of reminds me of Franz Leibkind from The Producers:

  31. Double-D says:

    I know it’s certainly not DK’s intention in publishing it, but I really hope this helps get Stark fired. He is so clearly out of touch with what matters in the game of baseball it’s a joke. This isn’t some kind of Tony Robbins motivational business. The goal should not be “speaking greatness into them” and “getting them outside of themselves”, how about teaching them to bunt, teaching pitchers to speed up their delivery from the stretch, throwing to the right base, hitting the cutoff man, and all the other parts of the game that the organization’s young players glaringly and regularly lack. It’s more embarassing than ever to be a fan of this team right now.

  32. JB says:

    @ Hurdled:

    No, it’s not a “imagine you get that email from your boss” situation…that doesn’t apply here. I don’t know Start, but I’m pretty sure if he were in charge of a bunch of biological engineers, he wouldn’t be sending an email like this out…but he’s in charge of a bunch of coaches and professional athletes…many of whom haven’t gone to college, or gone through a maturation process. My old football and baseball coaches used to put me and my high school and college teammates through a lot worse (and used to say a lot crazier shit to us too), and we weren’t getting paid to do it! We volunteered to do it! These guys are getting paid to play baseball, I think they can go through a 3 day working designed to be, what looks like a pretty cool bonding experience.

    Also, I noticed, Dejan, that you snapped at someone on twitter about this article and told them that they didn’t know “how much reporting” went into this story? Are you actually reporting, or are you editorializing? Seems to me like you had this one served to you on a silver platter from someone inside the Bucs…plus, this story, and really most things you write seem to be really one-sided…you say that others around the league agree with your belief that this is absurd, were there any who said it seems pretty cool, and like a great experience for the kids?

    I was 5 the last time the Bucs had a winning season, and I want to see them win more than anyone…but I’m not going to shit all over the guys who have put us in the best spot to win over the last 20 years, which is what everyone around here seems to want to do.

    I hope you all do “throw out your Bucs gear” and stop going to games…they don’t need fans like you. Ever think that maybe your negativity has an impact on their struggling performance. I go to 20-30 games a year, and for the last 2 years I’ve heard this one fan heckle the shit out of Pedro on and off throughout the season, I know he can hear it too…ever think that has an impact on his performance, and everyone else who hears the boos when shit hits the fan.

    DK: Apologies to all for allowing the vulgarity. We usually don’t. But it doesn’t take an ace detective to figure out you’re potentially getting yet another look inside the organization right here.

    It’s someone brand new — I had to clear the post, as with all first posts — and yet it’s someone who had no idea what my role was at the paper but somehow, in the middle of the night on a weekday, found this blog. What a coincidence.


  33. manny _sanguine says:

    How did they ever win the Series in ’79 without this carefully designed military/corporate character/team building mumbo-jumbo? Oh yeah they knew how to play baseball.

    The phrase “us control freaks” sums it up nicely.

  34. BarryVanBonilla says:

    What a look inside the organization will reveal is a creepy, control obsessed group of people who couldn’t identify a ballplayer on their best day. They are very good, however, at intimidation, propaganda and circling the wagons when questions are asked. Ultimately, this is Frank Coonelly’s responsibility. He hired Huntington, and he has been in charge of the franchise’s badeball operations of his own volition. Bob Nutting depends on him to manage the franchise. If Huntington and Stark and Smith go, as they must, then any potential replacement worth hiring will insist on freer rein than Coonelly is prepared to give. If Bob Nutting trusts Frank Coonelly’s business acumen, he has an out. He can keep him on as COO and allow the new person to clean out the Augean stables. That is assuming any of them is still in place by next Monday.

  35. Doc says:

    Although DK had to clear my post 2 days ago, rest assured I do NOT work with the pirates, nor even live in Western PA. For that matter, I’d fire Starks oct 7

  36. Steelreign says:

    No sane individual actually invests time in writing that kind of craziness and then hits send and thinks it was a good idea….except this jamoke. I’m guessing this is one decision Neal Huntington wishes he could have back now. With the talent that is in the system, the search to replace this clown needs to be thoughtful and thorough so the next individual can get the talent developed and get it to Pittsburgh in a timely fashion to help this team contend.

  37. Joe says:

    Stark needs to be fired

  38. Drew71 says:

    Or committed.

  39. Mike says:

    As crazy as this guy comes off, and as out of touch he seems with the reality of what is baseball, he does have a point. Somewhere along the way (I say it was the Reds series in the beginning of August) the team lost focus. They lost the will to fight. Their record both before and after that series reflects it. Stark seems to have “read” what the characteristics of a winning team are, it’s just the fact that he lives in a dream world in terms of how his team gets there that is concerning. The organization needs a shake-up. Lets see if it happens.

  40. madturk says:


  41. jandy says:

    O.M.G. They’ve been held hostage by a mad man.
    WTSH is going on in this organization?
    How can an owner be so blind?
    Or ..and I use this word intentionally…stupid.

  42. Cajun Thunder says:

    If this email needed to be sent to the Pirates developmental staff to get them motivated to prepare the minor leaguers for the second half…well, then, we hired the wrong people for the developmental staff.

  43. Luiz Mello says:

    I barely couldn’t finish reading it, so embarrassing it is to who wrote it. Uneasy reading.

  44. Drew71 says:

    Watch the Sam Hill references, little lady.

  45. Drew71 says:

    Cajun – Great point.

    Mello – You enunciated exactly how I felt but didn’t put nearly so well. Or so succinctly.

  46. MrB says:

    You have got to be kidding me…”qualities of the Hell’s Angels”????

    Kyle Stark admires a gang of thugs, whose “qualities” include surrounding and beating people to death with pool cues along with a switchblade to the neck during a rock concert…and that isn’t even scratching the surface.

    I’m beyond astonished…

    Trivia Question: What do hippies, boy scouts and Hell’s Angels have in common?
    Answer: Kyle Stark.

  47. Tim says:

    Good god.

  48. TJA says:

    Maybe I’m missing something, but I didn’t see anything in here about how to bunt and move runners forward or how to steal a base or how to throw to a cut off man or…… Anyone see that in here?

  49. Rocco says:

    Just absolutely absurd. Maybe (and I am REALLY stretching the maybe), this would be a somewhat acceptable letter for a football team, just because that game is inherently violent and military (and I guess criminal if you want to go there) analogies kind of go hand and hand with the game. But for a baseball team? If you want a team building event go to a ropes course or something – don’t make the guys run through SEAL training.

  50. Naje says:

    And now we know….the rest of the story.

    Well done DK… I’m sure there’s more of this brand of absolute, what, insecurity(?), stupidity(?), early onset of some type of delusional effect on the brain(?)

    Stark seems to try to make himself out to be something he isn’t: a molder of young men.

  51. Ryphia says:

    This accompanied with the last two months of unraveling, will set back indefinitely the image and reputation of the Pirates among players around the league. I would think that earlier in the year Bucs were really starting to be viewed as OK or even cool with young talent tasting success. That has gone in a matter of weeks and is very troublesome.

  52. alan says:

    Well, you can’t argue that some of the players and coaches have been performing like hell’s angels in that they don’t care what others think about them…namely us fans. The brotherhood was never on display more than when AJ jumped out of the dugout and every one else was glued to the bench.

    I only see one solution here – no wasting time on fundamental baseball, we need more gimmicky speeches and emails!

  53. Mark says:

    Does Kyle Stark realize that most of the guys in his “system” only have high school diplomas, if that .. 3/4 of the system will likely stop reading after the first two sentences because they can’t or they don’t comprehend. Wow. Talk about not knowing your audience.

  54. LuckyNKentucky says:

    Has everyone involved with the Pirates lost their mind or just a select few?

  55. Thundercrack says:

    I now have to laugh at my at my post at the top (#1, 11:33pm).

    Of course this is real.

    DK is a very good writer….but he ain’t this good. Even HE couldn’t write something like this.


  56. KramJr says:

    Only someone who has zero military background could even conceive something this preposterous. Somehow, someway, we have achieved a new level of incompetence. The Pirates deserve the laughs. DK – I think you may be letting Nutting off the hook here (hear me out). If you are this INVOLVED in an organization, and cannot root out this kind of complete and total incompetence – what does that say about you? He is the captain of this ship, and look who he put in charge. Running a major league team is a little more difficult then inheriting a small town newspaper empire.

  57. Patrick says:

    Couple things guys:

    1) The same team that you are vilifying for failing in fundamentals of baseball is the same team that has been tied for the division lead halfway through each of the past two seasons, in large part because they did execute the fundamentals well. You either can or cannot. There is no “sometimes”. If there is, that’s on the players, not coaches, management or staff.

    2) I see a lot of gripes about bunting, rightfully so. Let’s remember that is a basic, amateurish skill that all of these guys should have learned loooong ago.

    3) It isn’t Kyle Stark’s responsibility to teach fundamentals or advanced baseball skills of any kind to anyone. It IS his job to identify and locate people who can. If we want to fault him for having those men teach players to be Hell’s angels rather than MLB outfielders that’s fine, but let’s not directly blame Stark for not explain to a pitcher that he needs to cover first on ground balls to the right.

    4) And mostly guys, this is actually not that out of line, for any business. In any big business or corporate environment you find nonsense like this. I’ve read it, been a part of it. At times I’ve even been asked to write some of it. It sounds hokey and crazy talk, but guys, this is the way American business is done at its highest levels. Its how “they” talk. I guarantee if you went to a fortune 500 retreat, seminar, convention or whatever they might call it you would find a power point presentation that sounds every bit as ridiculous as this.
    Everyone is disappointed right now. Everyone should be. We all have the right to be. But the same nutcase who wrote this also was the guy who was in charge for the first half of both of the last two seasons. I don’t think nonsense like this email is the reason they were so successful, but I don’t think it’s the reason they failed either.

    They aren’t selling life insurance. The Pirates don’t operate a chain of high-end retail stores or develop real estate. Its baseball. You either CAN or CANNOT. There is no “sometimes”. The same group of guys that was 16 over did NOT suddenly forget how to pitch, hit or bunt. This collapse is indicative of something else entirely other than a misguided farm system, or its obviously insane director.

    I’m not defending Stark. I’m not going to defend anyone after such an insulting display of baseball since August 1st. But let’s not crucify Stark just because he only said “baseball” twice among this lump of idiotic rhetoric, I would hope everyone he sent this to would know he is talking about baseball. If they don’t, well then, maybe they’re a problem too. I guess all I’m saying is he should not be a scapegoat. He isn’t the sole perpetrator of this insulting performance for the last two months. He might not be the solution, but he certainly is not the cause.

  58. AB says:

    couldn’t help but think of Billy Madison when I read the email (slightly tweaked)

    Mr. Stark, what you have just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent email were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this blog is now dumber for having read it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

  59. Corey says:

    Oh, man. Someone else is posting under the name “Corey” on this blog as well. I realize it’s a common enough name and that I don’t post on here all that often, but now people will think I’m the guy who though SEAL training was a good idea for baseball players.

  60. Hurdled says:

    Oh JB, how sadly delusional you are.

    I played hockey in college for 2 different coaches.

    One tried the whole control freak, military style, propaganda and fear approach. We finished in 5th and 4th place respectively. It mattered more to him what we wore before games, and how we all fought for him and the team.

    The next one came in and let us play. He coached up our weaknesses and taught us a system rooted in fundamentals. We won our conference in back to back seasons, and I can honestly say that I learned more about how to win and how to win as a team from those 2 years than from anything else in my life.

    Funny thing is, I’ve been able to transfer what I learned in those 2 years into my professional life as well. It taught me how to deal with bosses and co-workers. Fear and making people do “crazy sh!t” only gets you so far. It doesn’t get you respect. Coaching up weaknesses and stressing fundamentals is what wins in any setting.

    I think you and your cadre of “control freaks” forgot this a long time ago.

  61. jandy says:

    Drew, Sorry! Don’t make me wade thru the sand pit, please!

  62. Vote4Pedro says:

    To me the military training and desire to build comraderie isn’t as big of an issue the intent is good, the execution was horrible) as publicly stating that you want your organization to be more like the Hell’s Angels. He writes that he did research on them, well he must have stopped on the first paragraph and did not finish the article. It seems more like he watched “The Wild Bunch” with Brando.

    Why would anyone want their organization to be run like a biker gang who has been involved in multiple murders, weapons and drug dealing charges, prostitution, bribery, etc..the list is too long. Sure they have each others back, they kill people who disrepect them. This is the equivalent of a GM saying they want their organization to be more like The Bloods, The Cripts, The Latin Kings, MS13, etc

  63. Corey says:

    The Pirate Parrot is very excited about the plan to model the organization after the Hells Angels. He’s been itching to get back into the drug business after he was tried and convicted in the 80’s.

    Wait, that isn’t what the email was referring to?

  64. Karen22 says:

    Cultish, CREEPY, and downright cringe-worthy from a certifiable, crackpot control freak. Beyond all that, I am speechless.

  65. Boise Bucco says:


    Seriously, I’ve been off the internet for 2 days, and I come back to this…?

  66. Cfjohnsn says:

    I’m not sure that anyone noticed the date of the email but, on June 28, 2012 when it was written, the Pirates were at 40-35 and just one game out of first place.

    The team was playing fairly good baseball with the pitching being extraordinary and the hitting coming into its own. Very few of us cared about bunting at that time even though it was a pet peeve to all of us when we saw it done poorly.

    The email appears to me (without the luxury of any previous emails to go off of to gain full context) to be addressing a specific topic that was raised in a specific order;

    “Over the last four days, we’ve reconnected with our WHY…..HOW….and now our WHAT”

    It would appear that the baseball items were previously addressed and this was speaking towards another topic in the chain which was teaching these kids to be willing to figuratively go to war for their teammates.

    This uproar seems to be much ado about nothing when I think about it in that context/manner.

    If I’m wrong, I will change my opinion when enough information is provided to help me see that my initial impression of the context is wrong. Until then….carry on, there’s nothing to see here is closer to my thoughts on the matter.

  67. Boise Bucco says:

    I’ve been on the receiving end of the whole basic training routine–it “does” work, but it takes a whole lot longer than 3 days. The purpose of it is to break you down, and build you back up in the mold of the military man (or woman.) You do learn a lot about teamwork, but definitely not in the first three days–that doesn’t come for a while. Even the old-school USAF basic training was 6 weeks, and we still hear about it to this day that our basic training is so short (even though they’ve now got it up to 8 weeks.)

  68. Cfjohnsn says:

    Also, FWIW, this is my take on the SEALS training topic:

    This team has shown a complete lack of ability to stay focused for extended periods of time, the lack of ability to have each others’ backs (someone in a Cincy uniform should have been pegged immediately after Cutch was nearly decapitated even if they would have been ejected and suspended) and they certainly need more players with the ability and willingness to step up and lead.

    With that said, for three days they will be taught some of these very lessons along with some physical exercises that will push them in ways that normal baseball exercises won’t/don’t. I want to stress that one more time…FOR THREE DAYS!

    I understand that these guys haven’t been able to be taught effectively (or weren’t able to grasp what was being taught) about the fundamentals of the game, but is a three day hiatus from those drills really going to affect them that much?

    If it does, they were either horribly out of shape physically and needed the training in the first place or they aren’t capable of getting the fundamentals down anyway and three more days isn’t really going to make that much of a difference.

    /soapbox rant

  69. Cfjohnsn says:

    Oh, on both of my novela posts,

    I realize that the target of Stark’s motivational initiatives is the MiL players, but a lot of the guys this season on the ML team came from this same MiL system and those traits are what I feel that they lacked as they traversed the levels up to the big club.

  70. Corey says:

    I understand the argument that 3 days of SEAL training isn’t going to really hurt anyone, but what is it going to help?

    This reminds me of all the team building garbage that I’ve had to do at my job. They take you away from the tasks you should be working on to go through these team building exercises, but nobody changes as a result of them. We all spend a day or two going through the motions of whatever silly games they make us play, and then we spend the next few days ticked off that we are behind on our work and have to play catch up. All it does is give some yahoo in upper management something that he can report as an accomplishment, despite the fact that it accomplishes nothing.

  71. Dan Finnegan says:

    Being a former member of and retired from the military, I can see to a point where the activity described could be beneficial to the players, like the little trips the ML players take to Coronado when they go to San Diego, but does it detract from the important task of instilling good baseball fundamentals in the players the team is trying to develop?? That’s a question Bob Nutting is going to have to ask himself when evaluating this situation.

  72. HuntingtonsSameColorTShirtAsPoloShirt says:

    If this guy isn’t on medications – he needs to be. Wow – very creepy.

  73. JB says:

    Actually DK, I’m a twitter follower of James S, you know, the kid you told to “go to hell,” last night…yeah that’s why I decided to chime in for the first time, because you jumped all over a fellow journalism student just because he called you out (and rightfully so), for being so one-sided and not reporting a complete story…do you always jump to conclusions that align with your beliefs/points? Seems like a dangerous combination for a news reporter.

  74. KramJr says:

    this SEAL team building exercise is indicative out of a man with zero elite military OR athletic experience. Im laughing, but the joke is on us as Pirates fans – because the guy who hired NH and KS and is so involved in this team isnt going anywhere.

    -someone who was part of a d1 team at Annapolis

  75. Jandy says:

    JB, DK isn’t a “news reporter”. There’s a huge difference between a columnist and a news reporter. Just sayin…

  76. wally says:

    As Bugs would say- what a maroon…what an ultra maroon.

  77. Ron says:

    I guess he is a Sons of Anarchy fan!

  78. geckofest says:

    The main point here is, in my opinion, a bit deeper.

    Here we have a baseball team drawing heavily on some combination of Military and Motorcycle Gang analogies in order to try to fix its problems. What if they worked? Was management going to claim these techniques as bringing the Pirates back, and then we’d have all other teams copying these techniques, Moneyball-style?

    I do not want to root for such a team.

    When I was growing up, the Military was inspired by Baseball, not the other way around. People fought in wars in order to be able to go to baseball games, and be inspired by a country that rooted for such a sport. If members of gangs wore baseball caps, there was something of a connection to civility about that — however small.

    When did we get this so backwards that this kind of thing could even happen at all?

    This is in a similar vein to the horrible “Pirates Charities” sign in right field. Of course it’s a good thing to give to charity. But, I don’t need to be reminded when I go to a ballgame, or think that my team is somehow superior to another because they put up such a sign. It’s transparent that the owners are using the venue to try to think of themselves as good guys. Most people do such things in public when they feel guilt about something else. Others don’t need to put up such a sign — they just do it.

    There should be enough good in the sport to inspire without all of that stuff — and there is, if they would take all of this ego-driven Moneyball, Military and Charity stuff out of the equation.

    As for that Moneyball stuff, anyone can see it is a zero-sum game once everyone starts to play it. The innovators gained some things — some. But that is only when it was new. Now, the stats-driven computer programs tell everyone pretty much everyone the same things — and no one is thinking about the individual, human element anymore. The next round of innovators will do just that.

    Notice how the Reds stuck with Votto when he went through so many personal problems? Think that sent a message to those Reds? Think the Buccos would have done such a thing?

    As for DK being so one-sided. I was at the game where James McDonald blew the seven run lead in a single inning. I left that game with a “this is over” feeling — only to read DK’s twitter message(which someone forwarded to me) that fans were in a panic for no reason.

    I’m not in a panic anymore.

    I’m deeply saddened that such an important franchise in such an important sport to our country could be getting everything so backwards.

  79. Ron says:

    This season has gone from hope to excitment to dejection to embarrassment!

  80. TCPenguin says:

    What a joke this organization has become. Joe Brown must be turning over in his grave after reading this. Maybe Sid Thrift is avaialble to be a GM again.

  81. TCPenguin says:

    Maybe this is why Kyle Stark is an ASSistant GM…:)

  82. NYJohn says:

    I get this..

    I actually do.

    You asked last week Dejan, who had passion… who had urgency… who had fire?

    Kyle Stark.

    Yup, I said it… and I know I am right.

    Unfortunately, that kind of passion, urgency and fire has to come with credibility… and with that credibility, people will follow… without it, you will be leading no one… and you will look like a fool, and clearly that seems to be the judgement of the masses.

    Right Idea…
    Wrong Messenger…
    Poorly Executed.

    But ‘Passionate Crazy’ is better then ‘Apathetic Skilled’. Its easier to contain the crazy then it is to excite the apathetic.

    I’d say to keep Kyle Stark, invest in him… grow him… focus his passion.

    But clearly that won’t happen. shame too.

  83. NYJohn says:

    OK, if you are hitting the gym at least 3 times a week, as I assume you would if you were a professional baseball player… none of these exercises should scare you. In fact if you were worth your salt, you’d be excited to break the monotony of your regular routine.

    • Pushups and sit-ups

    • Serpentine on the grass

    • Crab walk

    • Running along the beach with a telephone-type pole, carried by five or six players

    • Pushing a truck tire through the outfield for 90 feet, then flipping it

    • Being sprayed by a hose

    • Diving into a sand pile

  84. SJB says:

    I nominate Corey for the soon to be opening Pirates Assistant GM position. They clearly are looking for more sharp thinkers like Stark who simply don’t get it.

    I’m assuming outside of being a delusional crack-pot, some kind of tribal tattoo is required for this important job?

  85. SJB says:

    And NYJohn can be Assistant to the Assistant. Got the tat John? It’s required.

  86. Jandy says:

    NYJohn, all of this training would be fine, IF…they could only execute the fundamentals of baseball plays. These guys have trouble fielding simple grounders, running the bases properly, and batting effectively.

  87. gonfalon says:

    I can’t decide which is more incredible: the disconnect between Stark’s email and what most outside observers would agree are the main responsibilities of a MLB team’s Director of (Baseball) Player Development; or the statement “As you do some research on the Hell’s Angels”, since clearly Stark did very little (original) research here.

    For context, note that Olympic discus thrower Mac Wilkins first won a gold medal in 1976, or two years before Stark was born. As such, Wilkins’ three golden rules come off as dated at best, and should probably be taken with a grain of salt (or better yet not taken at all, some 30+ years later).

    I’ve never been responsible for the development of baseball players (sadly, my 5 year old son doesn’t have any interest in baseball, yet), but it seems obvious to me that not every leadership book will apply to the development of fundamentally sound baseball players. And by that metric, Stark should be fired immediately.

    All that said, I will agree with Stark that the Pirates could use some “reckless abandon”, at least when opposing players like Ryan Braun or Brandon Phillips are digging in at home plate. :D

  88. JoeBucco says:

    So, I’m a technology professional who’s work relies heavily on statistics and analytics, and my current work project is with the most well known American motorcycle company here in the U.S. (take a wild guess). Yep, a bad-a$$ computer nerd.

    Does that make me pretty much over-qualified to be an assistant GM with the Buccos?

  89. Jandy says:

    JoeBucco, can you work with reckless abandon??? If so, you’re hired!!!

  90. gonfalon says:

    Re: Corey @ 71 (clearly not the same Corey as earlier in the comments), I completely agree. These “team building” exercises don’t accomplish much given the time they waste.

    And Jandy @ 87 — absolutely agreed.

  91. Plenty of Hope says:

    jimeny Christmas.

    They still haven’t proven to me they can teach these boys to play baseball professionally, successfully.

  92. Jandy says:

    gonfalon, I was happy when (who was it, Hughes) hit Braun last night, seriously happy. My bad.

  93. SJB says:

    “Here we have a baseball team drawing heavily on some combination of Military and Motorcycle Gang analogies in order to try to fix its problems. What if they worked?”

    Ummm, other than for those in the military and gangs, why would it? The Marines and SEALS laugh at Stark’s gibberish and I’m sure so do the Hell’s Angels.

    What if they worked? Sadly for you and thankfully for the young players who thought they were learning about baseball and not being inducted into a cult/gang/soldier of fortune nightmare, I’m sure we’ll never find out. ;(

    I’m also sure when these kids were in little league, they dreamed of someday being on a team manically groomed to be baseball’s version of a tightly organized fascist commando unit.

    Next time let’s just have the young recruits from the Pirates farm system take on the Taliban. They’ll have all the tools and when they are killing time between mission, they can play a little pitch and catch or some stick ball…as long as know one asks them to bunt…they haven’t figured out that devious tactic yet.

  94. gonfalon says:

    no worries Jandy! I hadn’t even realized they (Resop) hit Braun last night… I was so disgusted, I didn’t even bother to check the box score this morning.

    Sadly, that could very well be the final Pirates highlight of the 2012 season.

  95. geckofest says:


    It seems you mis-interpreted what I wrote.

    My point was that, if those things worked, then there could be highly undesirable, secondary consequences.

  96. buggee says:

    Hey DK, thanks for laying this out there.

    I think this shows us a little of the stuff that happens behind the scenes at the developmental level, which has come under heavy fire–and rightly so!

    TBMTIB lays out their typical non-confrontational spin (“Yes, they SHOULD know how to bunt and hit the cutoff man”).
    The players lay out their own spin, which sounds like well-rehearsed non-answers (“Just couldn’t get the bunt down… that pitcher was dealing!”).
    Hurdle–the player’s buddy–lays out his own spin (“They just have to execute.”).

    But what kind of spin comes from the development team as these guys come up through the system?
    Well, there it is, courtesy of Mr. Stark.
    And out of that absurd diatribe from Stark, there was nothing about the game of baseball. Nothing.

    > Why do these guys suck when they get to the Show?
    > Why does this team continue to trot out sub-par players like Barajas?
    > Why does this team continue to acquire dumpster-dive free-agents?
    > Where the hell did Stark come from? Cleveland?
    > What the hell does Smith actually do?

    C-ya Stark. Huntington should be following soon… And right about now, I couldn’t care less if these shuttlecocking jagoffs Raise It or not. They’ve tanked. Again. This is a bad end to what was looking like a great season. Thanks for the good times DK. you DA MAN

  97. Corey (the independent thinking one) says:

    I get it. Everybody’s upset that their hopes got dashed. So am I. But making mountains out of molehills ain’t gonna solve anything.

    Here’s a little more rational response. Kyle Stark may very well deserve to lose his job, but not for this non-event:

  98. Hurdled says:

    JB runs to the defense of a fellow hack.

    How noble.

    Get back to studying and maybe you can be a real reporter one day.

    Kind of like how Pinocchio became a real boy.

  99. JB says:

    My bad Hurdled, I forgot that rationale and logic need not apply.

    When I become a “real reporter” Hurdled, I’ll be sure to present complete information, as much that’s available, to deliver a story, not just a single side to the story. I don’t know what the young players would’ve said about the SEALs training, but I’d like to hear from them (did they like it, did they take something out of those three days or maybe they hated it and felt like they were at risk of serious injury, but can we at least hear more input?). You’d think someone who’s connected enough to get an email leak would be able to talk with an A-level player about the three days with the SEALs and here from them. Again, when I become a “real reporter” based on whatever standards you have Hurdled, I won’t just take advantage of the emotion of my followers, I’ll deliver a story, in a manner that shines light on all reputable angles, not just those that align with my personal beliefs or motives. Corey’s got it right, the collapse sucks, hopes were dashed, but making mountain out of molehills isn’t going to make 90 Ws show up next year.

  100. I want to clear something up that JB said about me.

    JB claims that Dejan “jumped all over a fellow journalism student just because he called you out (and rightfully so), for being so one-sided and not reporting a complete story.”

    Looks like that was referring to me. This is the tweet I sent about Dejan’s column:

    “A much better column from @Dejan_Kovacevic on the #Pirates’ odd development plan. Little narrative, good reporting:

    Does that sound like someone who thinks Dejan is one-sided and not reporting a complete story? No, I was complimenting Dejan and linking to the story so that more people would check it out.

    JB, I appreciate you following me on Twitter. But I do not appreciate you putting words in my mouth.

  101. Hurdled says:

    Seems like I hit a nerve there, Pinocchio.

    A real reporter never let’s his emotions get the best of him.

    Study harder in class, and spend less time on twitter defending your fellow wannabes.

    By the way, a real story has come out already about how many minor leaguer’s hated the “training” they got.—hells-angels—–navy-seals–minor-league-training-methods-become-mlb-joke–.html

    Good luck with your schooling Pinocchio.

    Get better.

  102. Theplanisworking says:

    Stark really needs to switch to decaf!

  103. MBS says:

    Wow, had Stark just watched Jerry Maguire before composing that email? To use Hells Angels as something to strive toward and emulate? Are you kidding me? Try finding winners in the draft or acquiring them through free agency or trade.
    Last week I was critical of DK blasting the SEAL idea because I thought it would be more team building motivational stuff like what the Pens did. But to hear they were carrying telephone poles around? What does that do for a baseball player?

  104. JB says:

    Ah…JS, my apologies…did not mean to misconstrue your message. I apologize for misinterpreting “go to hell”…

    DK: Just like you apparently misinterpreted “team employee.”

  105. Richard Roberts says:

    This guy is a freaking nut and should be fired yesterday. How about instead of worrying about developing characteristics associated with Hippies, Boy Scouts and the Hells Angels, they worry about learning how to:

    1. Move a runner from second to third with none out
    2. Lay down a sac bunt
    3. Learn the art holding a runner on base
    4. The correct foot for touching the bag on a force out
    5. Actually hitting the baseball instead of striking out on average 10 times a game
    6. Throw out a runner trying to steal a base

    Maybe, based upon reading this garbage, it’s a credit to the team that it was once 16 games over .500. I mean with guys like this nut bag leading the way it’s no wonder they haven’t developed much talent.

    How does a guy like this land such a key position in the first place?

  106. Marc Andrews says:

    Back in the early 80s there was a local drug store that had a billboard asking where the best deal on drugs were in Pittsburgh. A wag wrote on it “the Pirates dugout”. Guess times have changed. The answer would now be “the Pirates front office”.

  107. Eric Bowser says:

    For the first time in twenty years, Pirates baseball began to get national attention and more importantly, respect. The positive reviews towards the return of quality baseball lasted until August 1st, where some of their own players started to doubt themselves because management didn’t invest, didn’t go all in, didn’t believe and didn’t finish the job to put the major league club in a position to succeed over the final two months of the season.

    The negative reaction by some that the best the team could do to improve the 25-man roster was trade one of their best relievers in Brad Lincoln for outfielder Travis Snider. A player that had issues staying healthy, played in the minors, and lacked power to boost the team’s production was saying, “we’re more interested in control than high risk, high reward to win now.”

    Moving Gorkys Hernandez for Gabby Sanchez made sense as it was an attempt to improve the bench strength but that was offset by the insane decision to deal infielder Casey McGehee and cash to the Yankees for reliever Chad Qualls, a pitcher who was released by the Phillies and was reported to be on the brink of another pink slip in New York.

    What General Manager Neal Huntington did was remove a valuable bench player and team leader off the roster for a pitcher who couldn’t get anyone out in either league. He weakened the bench and made the bullpen worse.

    The lone positive for Huntington during the trade deadline season was his decision to trade Rudy Owens, Robbie Grossman, and Colton Cain for Wandy Rodriguez. It was a deal for the here and now that addressed a hole in the rotation and a lesson learned from last season when the rotation wore down and faltered.

    This solitary success is outweighed by the mess that was the deadline but even worse was the offseason moves to sign Erik Bedard, Clint Barmes, Rod Barajas, and Nate McLouth for over $15 million.

    And now, we’re talking about prospects being herded together and pushed to the brink by Navy Seals demanding them to exhaustion, all in the name of team building and making them men.

    There’s very little that I can add that hasn’t already been written regarding the deplorable decisions by this management team to risk the health of their prospects to satisfy the ego of a man humming military jargon that insults the men and women who have trained and fought for this country.

    Where I want to take this crazy horse trail (see what I did there?) is ask you this, if 2012 wasn’t the year to go all-in and finish the job, then what year is it? You are 16 games over .500 and within reach of your first potential playoff berth in twenty years.
    Instead, the management team failed, the scouts failed, the minor league development personnel failed, the major league coaches failed, and the major league players failed.

    Since 2012 is now not the year, not the time to go all-in, to finish the job… or whatever cute cliché Clint Hurdle and the Pirates will inundate this fan base with, then when is it?

    Look at this roster, does anyone really think the 40-man roster is capable of catching the wave of positivity and win baseball games at a clip this franchise hasn’t done in twenty years.


    The franchise needs to find a starting catcher, another starting pitcher, two quality relievers, two or three bench players, and seriously contemplate a replacement for Clint Barmes at shortstop.

    How many teams go into an offseason with that kind of desperate need for an upgrade and think they have any chance of winning and playing into October?
    The teams that think like that, they have the ownership means to go deep down into their pockets to spend the funds to sign the talent needed to compete at the highest levels of the sport.

    That isn’t an option in Pittsburgh, not with an owner who doesn’t have the ultimate disgust to lose but worse than that, an owner that doesn’t realize the sporting world mocks their franchise. Who with any competitive fire and self-respect wants to have their name attached to jokes by comedians with a national audience?

    When you remove any possibility of impact promotions in 2013, outside of maybe pitchers Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon, with the reality of little money if any to spend, the respect that some players started to think was coming back is gone.
    No one will want to consider the Pirates under their current management regime if they value Navy Seals training over baseball instruction. No one will want to take a signing bonus if it means risking their career lugging a telephone pole on a beach.
    Remember all of this, when 2013 offseason begins and the Pirates are standing at the altar with their pockets hanging out and all the impact talent has been signed in free agency or traded to other teams.

    Expectations are not reality for 2013, they are not going to win, and they are not going to play into October.

    2013 will be a repeat of the last twenty years because when the time came to change the course of history and do something about it, these wretched Pirates sank their own ship.

  108. Hoss says:

    They are remodeling McKechnie Field in Bradenton to be completed for the begining of Spring Training 2013. I think they should also start to “remodel” people from Huntington to Stark and get real baseball people to run this team. Enough is enough !!!

  109. keebbuc says:

    I thought the pirates were a stat based team when they evaluated potential signings, making up reasons to start rod barajas, stupid field alignments, etc. So why the new age, catch phrase mentality/insanity when it comes to developing prospects? At least they had supposed facts to back up their stupidity before. I will say the stark line of motivational posters would look way cooler than the “reach for the stars” or kitty “hang in there” types from my childhood.

  110. Reagan's Dad says:

    No wonder Boras advised Appel to reject the Pirates offer. This email only adds credibility to the impression around the league that the Pirates do not know how to groom players to be major leaguers. We all laughed at Appel and wondered how he could turn down the money and the chance to start his career. But is this how to start your pitching career, rolling in the sand?

  111. Rick Miller says:

    Raze the Jolly Roger!

  112. JB says:

    “Trib Total Media continues to grow in Allegheny County and throughout the region. While we are conservative newspapers in terms of editorial content, we maintain an objective voice when it comes to hard news. Our reporting is unbiased, honest and fair. Our job is not to persuade, but to inform. It is our responsibility to report the truth and hold people accountable. We are watchdogs. We ask the tough questions so that you get the whole story. That makes us the right newspapers for our city, our time and especially for you. Make the right choice and get it right. Now.”

    Well you got it half right…

    DK: The part that I don’t understand, man — and I can’t begin to imagine how much clearer you can make it that you’re with the team, though I’ll inform our readers I can’t be sure — is why there would be such shame in something you after-the-fact claim is no big deal? Why turtle after it comes out? Why hurriedly take down the player development site? Why send people like you here and to Twitter to put up posts like this?

    It takes the creepiness of that email and just multiplies it.

    That said, it’s pretty clear you don’t know the distinction between a beat reporter and columnist. The latter gives opinions, similar to the “editorial” half you cite above.

  113. JB says:

    I still can’t believe your ego could be so big that you’d think anyone who disagrees with you must be from the team. Wake up pal, you’re not the know-it-all ace detective that you try to play to your readers. You can spin my comments and intents to align with whatever beliefs and motives you may have, at least that’s consistent with your overall approach.

    Of course you’ll have the last word again on this post to spin it however you want. Enjoy that power, keep abusing it.

    DK: What’s the percentage of people on this blog who have disagreed?

    It’s more than just you, right?

    The people with the power in this equation are a) Bob Nutting and b) the many people who have reached out to express how angry they are about the Pirates’ developmental methods. I’ve done little more to this point than function as a go-between. Not exactly powerful.

    The power thing apparently is your trip, not mine.

    Moreover, if I were to portray myself as some “ace detective,” do you think I’d go out of my way in that very same column to stress that EVERY SINGLE COMMUNICATION on this topic, from all these different people in different corners, was uninitiated.

    They came to me.

    I get that it would help the Pirates’ people in trouble if I were to have had some “motive,” as you call it, and went digging frantically for this stuff. There certainly are occasions where digging IS required on this job. This just didn’t happen to be one of them.

    I wonder if it ever occurs to the Pirates that they might actually be wrong here.

  114. cobra39 says:

    JB the mystery man. This just gets better and better.

    The Pirates’ front office initial reaction to anything embarrassing that comes out always seems to be deny or cover up. That’s not a healthy way to operate any business. It only engenders more distrust of those in charge.

  115. Hurdled says:

    Oh Pinocchio, you try so hard, yet fail every time, just like your bosses.

    When your bosses get fired in the next few weeks, I wonder what you will do then.

  116. Hurdled says:

    Deny and cover up.

    How did that work for Nixon?

    Paranoia and being a “control freak” seems like a winning combo.

  117. Hurdled says:

    @JamesSantelli started this whole mess.

    Another Pinocchio reporter……..shocker.

  118. JB says:

    Convenient that you get to ask the “percentage of people” question, on your blog, when you’ve made it clear above that you’re moderating the comments.

    Also, you can play dumb behind the whole “function as a go-between”, but let’s be honest, you’re better than that, you understand the power in being the deliverer, and you’ve even noted elsewhere that you chose this specific tone and delivery for these stories because you feel so strongly about the subject. If you were just a “go-between” then tone and delivery wouldn’t matter because the impact would be consistent across any of them. But that’s not the case, and you know it, you’ve said it.

    Here’s the big thing for me though. You’re connected, you have people that you know work with the team, you have “all these different people in different corners” who came to you, and yet your directing team questions to me, because you’ve convinced yourself that no fan would feel this way. That’s a joke. Why can’t you get answers from any of them, who were so willing to share uninitiated information with you?

  119. Hurdled says:

    Pinocchio, let it go.

    You some how think that your bosses know what they are doing.

    The standings year in and year out show us that they don’t.

    Shouldn’t you be studying? Class is in session right now, correct?

    Before you go, give us one more HOKA-HEY – It’s a good day to get swept.

  120. Hurdled says:

    @BarryVanBonilla, I’d love to hear you weigh in on this clown.

  121. JB says:

    Hurdled, your stubbornness and conviction have become comical to me, but you are right in that I should “let it go” because clearly your opinions are locked in. Keep believing you’ve got all the answers and have everything figured out. I’m sure it has, and will continue to, serve you well.

    “A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion…leave the presence of a fool, for there you do not meet words of knowledge.”


  122. Hurdled says:

    Pinocchio, wow, I think you may want to heed your own advice.

    What is the record of the team since your bosses took over?

    Seriously, what is the record that your bosses have amassed?

    I’ll wait, because as you say, I “should take pleasure in understanding.”

    And here is a quote for you Pinocchio.

    “Don’t go away angry. Just go away”

  123. PI Pete says:

    The attacks by JB against DK stand out like the proverbial “nose on your face” as supportive of the organization that might somehow produce the idiocy that Stark’s e-mail spouts throughout. There is little support anywhere within popular opinion in favor of anything that TBMTIB does, yet JB feels strongly enough to take on DK, who not only is far more knowledgable of the big-picture situation regarding the woes of the Pirates but also is the moderator of this blog. One might ask why. About the only answer I can come up with is that he is being directed to do so. Who would order such a thing? It DOES seem logical that someone within the group that DK is criticizing would order such a response from one of his lower level lackeys.

    How difficult is it to understand that DK is a columnist, not a reporter? Even as a modern-day college student, many of whom have a difficult time relating to reality in general, and even more who have no idea how organizational behavior works, you’d think you’d be able to understand that the columnist is supporting his position that is critical of TBMTIB.

    Any real Pirate fan would welcome the fact that DK seems to be the only Pittsburgh media member that is not apparently so frightened by Pirate management that he is willing to question those in charge of the organization that has produced the absurdly putrid performance of the Pirates for going on 20 years now. From your comments, JB, it sounds like you are more of a fan of Pirate managment than the fortunes of the team. That, my friend, makes you one of a very small minority. I have no way of knowing for sure whether you are part of the organization, but it sure sounds like you are.

    DK: I appreciate your kind words in there, but I promise you I most DEFINITELY don’t know as much about the Pirates as JB. I am an outsider.

  124. Rick Miller says:

    HOKA-HEY? How about “2012 Pirates: ‘SETA-RIP': We’re going backwards!”

  125. Meh Fekha says:

    Lookin at Kyle’s resume… how’s he qualified for this job? How’d he even get the job in Cleveland? You get what you pay for, Buccos.

  126. Roy Hobbs says:

    Sort of reminds me of that old baseball psychologist in “The Natural”:

    “Losing is a disease. . .as contagious as polio. . .”

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