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Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

On location: Cubs 3, Pirates 2

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (1-1) vs. Chicago Cubs (1-1)

Starters: RHP James McDonald vs. LHP Travis Wood

Time: 12:35 p.m.

Site: PNC Park

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s the Pirates’ lineup …

  1. Starling Marte, LF
  2. Russell Martin, C
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Gaby Sanchez, 1B
  5. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  6. Neil Walker, 2B
  7. Jose Tabata, RF
  8. Clint Barmes, SS
  9. McDonald, RHP

Here’s the TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Karen Price and I will be on the scene.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.


  1. KJX says:

    Still no Snider… Lincoln trade looks awesome

  2. Thundercrack says:

    I noticed that too. But I think it is more of a Righty / Lefty thing.

    Maybe Lincoln would pitch better in a Pirate uniform, but right now he is in the minor leagues as a Blue Jay.

    DK: Player sent away does poorly = “See? Good trade!” Player sent away does great = “Aw, no one thought he’d be THAT good! Who could have known?”

    Not really talking about what you have here, TC, but every once in a while, it’s refreshing to see trades analyzed from the simple standpoint as to how well the player is faring who was acquired. Such as Wandy Rodriguez. That’s a good deal simplly because he’s done well since arriving.

  3. JAL says:

    At least Snider still on MLB roster, Lincoln in minors

  4. The Gunner says:

    So much for my Gaby-Jones theory. Joggin Joe is starting in RF today and Jones sits against a lefty.

    Can’t wait to see how young Tabata performs today.

  5. Yet another DVR Special!!
    Time for TWO-LINE THURSDAY!!
    Let’s open the window, and as always this is just for fun and entertainment purposes.

    Max “wager” is 100 units on each separate line.
    All “wagers” must be divisible by 5.
    Please reply in this box, makes it much easier for me to “book-keep” that way.

    LINE #1
    Total HITS + WALKS allowed by James McDonald in today’s game
    LINE is 8.5

    LINE #2
    Total HITS + WALKS + RBI’s by Pedro Alvarez in today’s game
    Line is 3.5

    Anyone can play, and everyone should try!
    What’ll ya have? What’ll ya have?

    **The Window is on twitter,, feel free to follow**

    Thanks to all for playing and good luck!!

  6. tdb1977 says:

    100 on the over on line 1
    100 on the under on line 2

  7. Thundercrack says:

    I agree with your point DK. But I believe another part of evaluating a trade is the “acquisition costs.” When you factor that into it, the Wandy trade looks even better and it takes the sting out of the Snider trade- for now (even though I would like to see Snider actually play in 2013)

    Oh my…did I just use a NH term……

    DK: You make trades to get better players to help your team win more games. That’s the purpose. The Wandy trade has done that (and you’ll recall that on the very day it happened, I praised it). Very, very few others have.

    Throwing everything else into the equation is generally done when the trades did NOT achieve the above.

  8. Jason81 says:


    I’ll wager 100 on the OVER for Line #1, and 50 on the OVER for Line #2. Thanks!

  9. I’d take Lincoln in a heartbeat. Still see the look on Thome’s face.

    Presley has more potential than Snider IMHO.

  10. 21sthebest says:

    I don’t know how to analyze a trade other than by looking at both the production you’re getting and the production you’ve give up.

  11. gregenstein says:

    I wouldn’t unless you can convince me he’d become a starter. Relief pitchers are a dime a dozen. Not that I love Snider, but I’d rather have a chance at a starting position player than a relief pitcher.

  12. fellocolonial says:

    100 on the over on line 1
    100 on the under on line 2

  13. It seems like Wandy actually benefitted by playing in the WBC. I never thought I’d hear myself say that.

    Hope he doesn’t flame out in August because of it.

  14. KJX says:

    Line 1: 75 \ OVER
    Line 2: 50 \ UNDER

  15. Seems like outfielders are a dime a dozen, too. Mediocre ones especially.


  16. NMR says:


    Lincoln pitched well for three months and bad for six years.

  17. Lincoln could have been part of the package to land Headley last summer. That is what makes the Snider trade sting to me.

  18. Milo Hamilton says:

    I really don’t believe they’ve given up on Snider completely. I think were at the point of a player/manager relationship that I call the getting his attention stage.

  19. He was “developing”.


  20. gregenstein says:

    In baseball, generally the team acquiring “name brand” player does better. It’s not true 100% of the time, but look at what NH has done. Most of his trade successes have been of the guys you’ve probably heard of variety like Burnett, Wandy, and Derrick Lee. Most of his sucky trades have been losing guys like Bay, Freddy Sanchez, Javy Lopez, etc. There’s a couple exceptions on both sides, but mostly the team acquiring the brand name does better.

  21. Brad, Indiana PA says:

    Did he win anything for it? I don’t think anyone really said way back when if the WBC gives out trophies, medals, Subway coupons, Tyler Kennedy bobbleheads that don’t bobble? Who even won the WBC? Not even sure why I’m worried about it, but since you mentioned it…

  22. Now Snider is healthy (no pun intended) and Headley started the year on the DL.

    But you’re right. Hindsight on that one is priceless. He was hotter than Drew’s sidewalk the last half of the season.

  23. The DR won it. Wandy got a pin inscribed with Neal’s face.

  24. Thundercrack says:

    Lincoln is a “Littlefield guy”

    Yes. I went there.


  25. Kevin says:

    And it’s not even multi-line Monday. Mr. Playoffs, sir, I’ll take the max under on both lines. (#1 – 100 under, #2 – 100 under)

    It’s hard to knock the pirates after a shut-out win yesterday but I’m going to anyway. I wish they would finally learn to be more patient at the plate. They all swing at alot of balls. The most tragic one was Garrett Jones’ swing at a ball that bounced 10 ft in front of the plate. We were already up by 3 at that point. Why not sit back and wait for your pitch?

    By the way, waiting for your pitch is not the same as not swinging until you get a strike called on you. What I call a Jason Kendall batting practice. It’s annoying seeing every pirate look at the first strike right down the middle. That may seem totally hypocritical to what I say above about sitting back but its different I swear.

  26. NMR says:

    Part of that vaunted stocked cupboard.

  27. Lincoln was definitely a wanted man last year at the deadline. Just seemed odd that someone like him, that so many teams were after got traded for someone who had yet to show much of anything in the majors. But the we heard those magical words “years of control” and it all made sense.

  28. Arriba Wilver says:


  29. Joey Mellons says:

    Line#1 40 units/over
    Line#2 50 units/under
    Hope I’m wrong on both.

  30. JHadar says:

    Speaking of Player/Manager or player/coach relationships — could that have anything to do with why Lincoln pitched well for the Bucs but not for the Jays? — Just speculating.

  31. JRay3 says:

    @ Playoffs – stuck in conf. But want to get in on today, so with no time to research i will cautiously go:

    Line 1 – 25 on the UNDER
    Line 2 – 25 on the UNDER

    Thankd and let’s take the series today.

  32. Jandy says:

    Spunky, I love it when you’re “spunky” ;)

  33. Stuart says:


    75 Saltamachios on the Under for each of the two.

    Thanks, Stuart

  34. Karen22 says:

    1. 50 – OVER

    2. 50 – UNDER

    And I, too, hope I’m wrong on both.

  35. NMR says:

    So if Robbie Grossman goes on to become an above average outfielder for six years and Rudy Owens finds a spot as a solid starting pitcher the Wandy trade is still good because the team won a couple more games in 2012 and 2013?

    Just doens’t make sense. You ALWAYS have to consider what was given up.

  36. Brad, Indiana PA says:

    lol + lucky. I’m shocked. I thought the baseball hotbed of the Italian peninsula would have taken it.

  37. New league. Somebody tinkering. Could be anything.

    The argument could be made that Neal dumped him at his highest value, too. I won’t make it but some may.

    I don’t know if he’ll be a starter, like gregenstein was saying above, but he throws heat and that’s what most like in a set-up/closer type.

  38. Or the Netherlands. :)

  39. JAL says:

    Agree with Dejan, you evaluate trades on what they brought to the team. The purpose of trade is usually improve the team. Salary dumps may be an exception.

  40. NMR says:

    So then why don’t small market teams sell the farm for one star?

    Or spend half their payroll on one player?

  41. Jandy says:

    Playoffs, I’ll go with 50 on the under for line 1 and 50 on the under for line 2
    JMac is gonna do ok today.

  42. Thundercrack says:

    I think there are many extremes and exceptions to this way of evaluating.

    But if Robinson Diaz had developed into a .275 hitter and steady defensive catcher, was the Pirates starting catcher, and the Pirates had won more than they lost in any of the last few seasons, would you still evaluate the trade of Jose Bautista for him as a good trade?

    And let me be clear, I am always more concerned about what the Pirates got in return in trades and how it has made the Pirates better.

  43. JHadar says:

    I thought the Lincoln trade was a good trade if you look at future vs future — but not so good as a “let’s win now” trade. I think I commented at the time (or at least strongly agreed with someone else who made the comment) that it was the kind of thing you’d like to see during the off season more than a deadline deal.

    You can’t disagree with DK’s statement that you make trades to get better players to help your team win more games. But how a trade helps or hurts may be influenced by dozens of factors that have nothing to do with the deal. Is our bench better with Snider instead of Presley? But a year from now, however you answered that question may change. Snider might see something, hypothetically from watching McCutchen or learn something from listening to Hurdle that would make him much better, or Presley could be super-motivated by being sent back to AAA. Hypothetically again, a team could also improve by getting rid of a clubhouse cancer — even though the player they bring in could not be as good as the one they let go.

    And how do you evaluate losing Lincoln when you’ve shaken up the bullpen completely and you have five starting pitchers in the wings (Cole, Liriano, Karstens, Morton, and Taillon) who could force some of our starters into long relief roles, take those roles themselves, or be dealt for position players?

    It all gets so subjective that in the end instead of evaluating individual trades you evaluate the GM on whether or not the whole club improved.

  44. Arriba Wilver says:

    Line 1. 50 on the Over

    Line 2. 50 on the under

    Pedro does well in day games, but it’s a lefty.

  45. NMR says:

    Really hope Neil Walker can reverse this awful trend against LHP.

    Does anybody remember whether or not he’s always switch hit as a pro?

    Can’t imagine he’d do much worse against LHP as a LHB than he’s been doing for the last year as a RHB.

  46. Dom says:

    Besides the Brian Giles VS Billy Wagner incident as DK brought up in his chat, what other PNC moments top the charts?
    -The Rob Mackowiak multi homer double header on the day his son was born, was up there.
    -That extended inning game where we were down to Vogelsong (who stunk at the time) as our last pitcher and he went something like five innings and only let up one run on the last one. Jose Castillo countered in the next ½ inning w/ a homer to tie it up again and we won it the following inning.

  47. pants-n-at says:


    50 on the under on both


  48. pants-n-at says:

    Correction. 50 on the OVER on line 1

  49. The Window is officially closed for today. Thanks to all who played.

  50. 50 over LN-1
    50 under LN-2

  51. Dom says:

    IF it is not too late,

    100 on the over on line 1
    100 on the under on line 2

  52. Dom says:

    Oh, so close.

  53. pants-n-at says:

    That was said (written)…I remember….but don’t rememeber who said (wrote) it

  54. NMR says:

    Giles was my first thought. Mack was my second.

    Personally, Pedro’s extra innings walkoff in 2010 would be next. If one moment could sum up the far off feeling of hope, that had to be it.

  55. pants-n-at says:


    Thanks again

  56. JAL says:

    Because 1 player is not enough to have a winning team and one super high contract makes it difficult to build a team, as Texas learned when they had A-Rod

  57. NMR says:


    Meaning that the acquisition costs MUST be considered. Just about everybody would agree to this if weren’t wrapped up in this good/bad trade narrative.

    DK: Agreed on acquisition cost. I guess what I’m describing is tailing that acquisition cost after it’s gone. To me, that’s largely irrelevant. It’s just for fun. The cost is the cost only at the time of the transaction.

  58. Milo Hamilton says:

    Whew. And here I thought the Robinzon Diaz trade sucked because Jose Bautista has hit 141 homers since we traded him. I feel a lot better knowing that doesn’t matter.

    Hey Cubs fans, it doesn’t matter that Lou Brock ended up in the Hall Of Fame. That Ernie Broglio was a really good guy, wasn’t he ?

    DK: Oh, mercy. For a writer, I’ve never done a good job of explaining my thinking on this.

  59. NMR says:

    Psh, in that case, we absolutely agree. None of this look-how-bad-Jason-Bay-is-now bologna.

    DK: It happens. Better question: When we’re talking about BS, is it baloney or bologna? To me, the BS transcends the food in this case.

  60. Arriba Wilver says:

    He has always pinch hit as a pro. He actually was talked about at the beginning of last year as getting better from the right side (not better than the left, mind you) but that seems to have gone by the wayside.

  61. Drew71 says:

    I was also thinking Pedro HR against Colorado in 2010.

    Besides the obvious reason:

    1. I was in town staying at a downtown hotel and walked to every game of that series. Except THAT one. My wife and I were walking up Duquesne Blvd looking at the stadium lights and we heard the cheer, saw the fireworks, i looked at my wife, and said, why do I keep making bad choices?

    2. After that game, Dejan asked if that was a sign that the Pirates had hit bottom on their way to recovery or something like that. The Pirates went on to lose the next game (I was there), like, 74-0. It was one of those monthly Maholm blow-ups. They started a losing streak and ended the season with 57 wins. And Pedro hit .013 in 2011 with no extra base hits. And for asking the question, Dejan was tarred and babushka’d and driven out of town. That’s how he became Winnipeg’s beat writer.

    How can you beat THAT???

    DK: I’m chief of the Trib’s Manitoba bureau. Get it right, Drew-man.

  62. NMR says:

    I think you just swayed me, sir.

    And that’s no baloney.

  63. Milo Hamilton says:

    If this is how they’re going to make mediocre pitching look this year …

  64. SteelAg70 says:

    Come on Buccos…let’s not waste a good start by J-Mac today!

  65. Drew71 says:

    So everyone else in line took a giant snow shoe step backwards when they asked for volunteers, huh?

  66. SteelAg70 says:

    Once again, our lack of impact bats pokes it’s ugly head…

  67. NMR says:

    Thanks, AW. That does sound vaguely familiar.

    I haven’t paid close enough attention to spot it, but seems like teams have picked up on something and are pounding it.

  68. Drew71 says:

    Travis Wood. Cy Young candidate.

  69. NMR says:

    My thoughts exactly. These guys love April, don’t they?

  70. SteelAg70 says:

    So Neil, explain to me why we don’t want to trade prospects for impact players again??

  71. 21sthebest says:

    “The cost is the cost only at the time of the transaction.”

    If I understand you correctly, you’re referring to the player(s) given up. Shouldn’t you also consider the same for those acquired?

  72. NMR says:

    Remind us who pitched last night?

  73. NMR says:

    Offensive positive out of the first series may just be Clint Barmes.

  74. SteelAg70 says:

    EXCUSE me NMR…..impact bats….geezzz

  75. Milo Hamilton says:

    Just hang in there. Roberto should be around shortly to tell us everything that’s right.

    DK: (Like)

  76. Milo Hamilton says:

    Or what’s wrong with everyone else. A little comparative self denial goes a long way.

  77. SteelAg70 says:

    Think it might be time for Walker to hit lefty exclusively….

  78. MadTurk says:

    Nah he just predicted he would not get it.

  79. Arriba Wilver says:

    So I remember that Pedro is hitting against a lefty, but TOTALLY ignore who JMAC is pitching to. Uh-huh. Just call me Neal.

  80. NMR says:

    He always starts out so nice…

  81. SteelAg70 says:

    We are making this guy look like a HOF’er!

  82. Arriba Wilver says:


  83. Brad, Indiana PA says:

    If Tyler Kennedy were traded, that would be a fine salami.

  84. Dom says:

    Who would have thought Jmac would be having such a good game.

  85. John Lease says:

    Maybe the Cubs will throw it away late?

  86. Jandy says:

    He doesn’t like me. ;)

  87. Milo Hamilton says:

    Thank you Dale Sveum.

  88. NMR says:

    Wow. Wood couldn’t have thrown more than 80 pitches, did he?

  89. Milo Hamilton says:

    Just checked – 85.

  90. NMR says:

    eh, debatable, I suppose.

  91. NMR says:

    Good lord. Did Hurdle really just bunt Gaby?

    DK: Actually a really good call. Cubs’ third baseman was five miles back. Would have been a single if it had stayed fair.

  92. Milo Hamilton says:

    In that case I want Sanchez to knock the run in. If he doesn’t, then steal 3rd with the next batter up. Especially with Sveum bringing a lefty in, Cutch should steal 3rd 95% of the time. That was inane, no matter whose idea it was.

  93. Milo Hamilton says:

    88 mph fastballs are knocking the bat right out of Pedro’s hands right now.

  94. NMR says:

    Normally that would say something about Hurdle’s confidence in Gaby, but I think he’d bunt Pujols in the same position given the chance.

  95. NMR says:

    And there’s your steal. A batter late.

  96. Milo Hamilton says:

    I’ll bet you the drink of your choice he did it on his own. By Hurdle’s reaction alone.

  97. TJA says:

    i am a purist and favor low scoring great pitching games. Just checked from work on the score and see only 3 hits total for both clubs. What is going on today…is this really a pitcher’s duel? Or is this a lousy game?

    DK: Yes.

  98. SteelAg70 says:

    Puncless effort by the Buccos….nothing less…

  99. MrB says:

    McCutchen should be 0-2 on stolen base attempts this season. I don’t see any noticable improvement in his base stealing other than he’s getting lucky.

  100. Baywatch says:

    What is this? I lay down for a nap in the 5th, figuring I’d get back up and we wouldn’t be anemic anymore? I just knew Walker was going to bang Cutch in just then. Too close to take that last one? It did look to be off the plate a hair.

  101. scapper says:

    Reason #1,309 why the Pirates continue to be legendary in their sucktitude:

    One run game, 7th inning, man on second, no one out, clean-up hitter at bat…and they have him first try to bunt the man to third followed by three soft hacks trying to move him to third base. The CLEANUP hitter. With a man in scoring position. And he’s trying to move him over.

    Here’s the Job Description of a cleanup hitter: MOVE MEN ACROSS HOMEPLATE, NOT TO THIRD BASE.

    Simply exasperating.

  102. kr70 says:

    Dejan, SPOILER ALERT…Do not look at the new Sport’s Illustrated a full page picture of something you detest!!!

  103. Patrick(RI) says:


  104. Milo Hamilton says:


    The cleanup hitter’s job is not to leave it up to the next guy.

  105. TJA says:

    Thanks, Dejan and Steel. Appreciate the replies.

  106. BFD says:

    What a powerful line-up. It is a good thing that Nutting didn’t authorize an increase in spending to bring in some offense.

  107. Jandy says:


    look at my comment when I made my wager lol

  108. NMR says:

    Appreciate the play-by-play, DK.

  109. SteelAg70 says:

    Remember…the organization does not believe in acquiring impact bats…..

  110. Milo Hamilton says:

    Can’t wait to see what Greinke & Kershaw do to them.

  111. Milo Hamilton says:

    Pinch hit for the guy with the hit.

  112. SteelAg70 says:

    I see a possible no-hitter or two in the Bucco’s immediate future…

  113. SteelAg70 says:

    Looks like the starter’s may be able to sue for non-support this year….

  114. Patrick(RI) says:

    Don’t know if they are correct, but cub announcers say a lefty is doing pitcher a favor

  115. SteelAg70 says:

    Especially if it’s Snider who is hitting…DOH!!!

  116. Milo Hamilton says:

    The most entertaining aspect of today’s game so far is the lady in the 1st row behind home plate chowing down a corn dog. Could we get that on the AGH cam ?

  117. radio wave says:

    Gutsy steal by the Cubs.

  118. SteelAg70 says:

    Game, set and match…

  119. Milo Hamilton says:

    Classic 2nd guess on my part, but you would think a left hander would have made sense with Rizzo & Schierholtz batting.

  120. SteelAg70 says:

    Remember Milo…these are the Buccos we are talking about…

  121. Jandy says:

    at least we’re not skunked

  122. Milo Hamilton says:

    Another Gaby bunt ? This should be fun.

  123. Jandy says:

    I hope he wallops a homer.

  124. Milo Hamilton says:

    Oh my.

  125. Jandy says:

    I’ll take a single…fine..fine..

  126. Jandy says:

    Jeez…El Toro

  127. Milo Hamilton says:

    You can’t let Walker bat left handed here.

  128. Frankie says:

    Pedro ….you suck

  129. Milo Hamilton says:

    Maybe you can.

  130. Frankie says:

    Neil Walker … suck

  131. Jandy says:

    hey now

  132. Frankie says:

    Pittsburgh Pirates…. You suck

  133. Jandy says:

    Make up my mind!

  134. Jandy says:

    Why do you watch them then?

  135. SteelAg70 says:


  136. TJA says:

    Just saw the final score. So, for conversation sake, who do all want to fire first? I know they have only played 3 games. I know, I know. But, I figure someone will want to start a conversation on who they’ll fire first, so I launched that volley….

  137. MadTurk says:

    Blysma, no Dixon, no Tomlin ah what the heck fire everyone

  138. theplanisworking says:

    Even ourselves? ;)

  139. TJA says:

    By the way… I say no one. It IS only 3 games…Yes, we get so darned frustrated, but…let’s just see for a bit

  140. Arriba Wilver says:

    Especially ourselves.

  141. Milo Hamilton says:

    On our way. 10-22.

  142. TJA says:

    As I said, Frankie…I get frustrated, we all get frustrated but, I agree with Jandy and Steel below…not that language…

  143. MadTurk says:

    Before all else.

  144. MadTurk says:

    Well Drew first

  145. diehard says:

    Dear Mr. Hurdle,
    Josh Harrison, Mike McKenry, and probably every pitcher sitting on the bench in the 9th are all faster than Gabby Sanchez. Not to mention 2/3 of the crowd in attendance. PINCH RUN! Cutch is on 3rd – you really think they’re going to try to throw a guy out at 2nd and risk him running when it’s 1st and 3rd with ZERO outs? Most likely, Pedro gets an IBB, you have bases loaded and no out – if not Walker does. Still, loaded and 1 out.
    Thank you.
    dying harder

  146. diehard says:

    Can a 10-22 start get Neal fired? Please? If so, I’m all for it.

  147. theplanisworking says:

    Ok, I just fired myself.
    Whats next? ;)

  148. Jandy says:

    I wanna beer!

  149. theplanisworking says:

    Now you want me to drown our sorrows because I fired myself?

  150. Jandy says:

    nah…just wanna beer, I’ve busted my tush all day and my head hurts :/

  151. Jandy says:

    Drew’s ALWAYS first ;)

  152. Drew71 says:

    So passes Denethor, son of Ecthelion.

  153. OZ says:

    Does anyone else cringe when Pedro comes up in crunch time? Is there a less “clutch” player than him?

  154. theplanisworking says:

    After Neal’s many, many fiascos, I am not even sure if an 2-30 start would get him fired.
    Heck, he may get secretly extended again !!!

  155. Arriba Wilver says:


  156. theplanisworking says:

    Ok, I will send you beers. I dont drink, so you can have mine also.

    I will finish off some leftover Cadbury eggs…… ;)

  157. TJA says:

    you guys and girls always give me a good laugh! this is a great blog.

  158. Arriba Wilver says:

    Right now I cringe when anyone comes up in crunch time. All we needed was a sacrifice fly from Pedro or Walker. It was frickin’ Andrew on 3B with NO outs!

  159. Jandy says:

    lol life is too short to be too serious. But I did have a stressful day. Gonna go home and have hubby take me to Sheetz for a Serious Dark Roast coffee with french vanilla creamer YUM!

  160. Jandy says:

    that makes me want more beer!

  161. theplanisworking says:

    Serious Dark Roast Coffee?
    Do they have a Joking Light Roast Coffee too?

  162. MrB says:

    Alvarez’s approach to situational hitting is completely ass-backwards. He’ll come up to the plate with no one on and first-pitch swing….usually at a junk offering out of the zone and immediately be behind in the count. Now he comes up with men in scoring position, the game on the line and the opposing pitcher needing a first-pitch strike….and he decides to TAKE the first-pitch strike one right down the pike. Once again, he’s in the hole…once again, he fails miserably by swinging at a strike three, which requires a hoe or shovel to hit!

  163. Jandy says:

    I love how you ask Dejan an either/or question, and he gives you a yes answer. LOL!

  164. Jandy says:

    what, did you fart?

  165. theplanisworking says:

    With the Pirates, it may be a matter of hearing/semantics.

    For example, when someone says “crunch time”, they hear “lunch time”, and they leave. Just sayin’

  166. Jandy says:

    Was Snider first one out of the park? ::laughin::

  167. Arriba Wilver says:

    Gaby was not too shabby.

  168. Jandy says:

    Now, watch it buddy, you’re knocking my favorite coffee :P

  169. Jandy says:

    It’s strong enough to put hair on your chest ;)

  170. Jandy says:


  171. Jandy says:

    You’d think the hitting coach would be up on this, no?

  172. Karen22 says:

    I’ll drink to that! Red vino is my beverage of choice!

  173. Jandy says:

    RIP Roger Ebert

  174. theplanisworking says:

    You know, this is life as a Pirate fan.
    McDonald pitched well enough to win, but the bats were out to lunch.
    Other times, we score enough runs, but the pitching explodes.

    This has happened for the better part of 20 years.
    Someday, it has to come together.
    But as long as TBMTIB is around, I just dont see it……..

  175. Everyone likes you.

  176. theplanisworking says:

    Just saw that.
    Cancer re-occurred. How sad.

  177. 21sthebest says:

    Maybe because he’s less flabby.

  178. Jandy says:

    indeed :(

  179. Arriba Wilver says:

    And as Teke pointed out, a DP by Pedro ties it up.

  180. theplanisworking says:

    I think the Joking Light Roast coffee would go well with the Cadbury Eggs………. ;)

  181. Jandy says:

    Gotta love wine!

  182. Karen22 says:

    More wine for moi! Abhorrent at-bats in the 9th with Andrew standing there waiting for ANYONE to hit the damn ball out of the infield! I have serious agita!

  183. Have him buy you some sushi there, too. Might as well get supper while you’re there.


    Gas station sushi and a bag of chips with your big-girl coffee.

  184. Jandy says:

    lol ya nut! :P

  185. Jandy says:

    No Sushi at Sheetz, Spunky. They have killer cheese sticks tho…mozzarella cheese sticks.

  186. theplanisworking says:

    Never really pais attention to his movie reviews.
    But I was always struck by his passion for his work.

    We could all learn a bit from how Mr. Ebert did his job.

  187. Jandy says:

    This was for the plans cadbury eggs and joking roast lol

  188. Jandy says:

    it’s catching!

  189. Jandy says:

    OK I’m out for now…have a wonderful evening everyone :)

  190. theplanisworking says:

    They have had many hitting coaches, and NONE of them are “up on this”……..

  191. Drew71 says:

    T. You forgot the T.


    You have to know the scene. Totally appropriate in the light of the end of the Cubs series.

    Denathor, his body engulfed in flames, falls a thousand feet to the city below.

    See? Almost to a, well, T.

  192. MrB says:

    I don’t think the new hitting coach knows his personnel that well yet…especially when under the gun.

  193. Cheese sticks. My favorite fruit.

  194. Drew71 says:

    I forgot to say, Denathor was the insane Steward of the ancient province of Manitoba.

    Steward was sort of like mayor. Or bureau chief.

  195. Drew71 says:

    How can we?

    Season is essentially over.

  196. Karen22 says:

    Boo-birds are already out in force for Travis…Wonder how long it’ll be before 0-for-three-games (includes throwing out baserunners) Russell Martin will hear it. Ghost of Rod Barajas haunts.

    (But I am going to be a bit more patient with each…for awhile).

  197. Drew71 says:

    That would be Tabby.

  198. Drew71 says:


    That’s all.

  199. 21sthebest says:

    Do we know if the infield was up?

  200. MadTurk says:

    Didn’t we just fire him as well?

  201. 21sthebest says:

    You’re being ridiculous. I’m waiting to see what happens tomorrow.

  202. Drew71 says:

    New Pirates slogan!

    Agita. It’s Catching!

    Under a picture of their new 58 year old SS clutching his chest.

    Too crass?

  203. Arriba Wilver says:

    We know he struck out on a pitch in the dirt from a right handed pitcher who was struggling. I’m just going by Teke. Put the ball in play.

  204. Drew71 says:

    Where’s Roberto?

    I need to feel better about this.

  205. Drew71 says:

    Where were you on my honeymoon, Roberto.

    Wait. That’s weird. Even for me.

  206. Arriba Wilver says:

    We knew that.

  207. 21sthebest says:

    Absolutely put the ball in play. But if the infield was up, not much of a chance of them not coming home on a ground ball.

    Maybe I should assume the infield was back since Teke made the DP comment. Then again, he did inform us yesterday before the game that it would be difficult for Wandy to pitch if he chose to put a glove on his throwing hand to keep it warm.

  208. MadTurk says:

    Not from what we have heard

  209. diehard says:

    And pinch running for Gabby with pretty much anyone lessens the chance of the DP anyway. (Yes, you might have an issue finding a 1B for the 10th, but play to win!)

  210. scapper says:

    Unbelievable writer. Just an awesome talent. I still re-read his reviews and will pick up his books and read a section just for the writing.

    Monster talent who deserved his Pulitzer.

  211. Thundercrack says:

    I still don’t understand how JMac gets the loss.

    And another beat writer wrote that JMac was dazzling.
    I didn’t see the game but was that the case?

  212. Thundercrack says:

    With my MLB TV subscription I got the At Bat app. It is great.

    I followed the bottom of the 9th with the gamecast on the app. That was nerve wracking.

  213. Arriba Wilver says:

    He had a tie on during a day game. I’m going with what he said. :-)

  214. BFD says:

    Hey – why the negativity? There was new and exciting food and drink choices and it was a beautiful afternoon at the ‘ol ball park………..

  215. BFD says:

    let me save you the trouble of tuning in….. another Loss

  216. Brother, I know the scene, quite well. “Scene” it many times. Walter from Fringe, the actor, John Noble. Excellent.

    I think the flames are a bit much already, Drewster. Maybe when we’re 10-22 like Milo has predicted.

    OK, Theodun, Horse Master?

  217. Drew71 says:

    You heard? You were there, too?


    Someone else who heard me crying.

  218. One could argue that this lineup:

    Presley, Mercer, Pie, Sands, Inge, Hague, Goedert, Tony Sanchez, Dejesus (Indy’s opener tonight)

    could bang out more hits than the one the Bucs fielded today. At least through the first 8.

  219. BillyBaduka says:

    Nice! :)

  220. Karen22 says:

    Thought you were a beer lady!

  221. Karen22 says:


  222. MadTurk says:

    I wasn’t going to tell anyone about the crying (more like wailing) and thumb sucking? Oops just I just say more then I should have?

  223. TJ says:

    True story…

    Arrive back to Pittsburgh from Tampa this afternoon. Get out to my car and who do I see waiting to catch a bus to the terminal but Bob Smizik. For one split second I thought about running him over; but then I realized if I did that Bazzini and his buddy BFD would bring their tired, repetative stand up routine to this blog on a consistent basis.

    I took one for the team and passed on the hit and run.

  224. TJ says:

    Inge on a rehab assignment already? I’m ready for him, and Contreras to bring that “winning” mentality to Pittsburgh.

    1st and 3rd and no one out and can’t score a tying run. Nutting probably had a smirk when Walker grounded into the DP thinking there went 250k off that extension.

  225. TJ says:

    Thunder I was actually on the plane following the 9th and kept refreshing cause I saw the Pirates had runners on base; thought there was something wrong with my iPad.

  226. Drew71 says:

    Not a thu…

    No. Even EYE have standards.


  227. BFD says:

    Bob Nutting. evict him from our ball park

  228. BFD says:


  229. TJ says:

    Exactly how I feel about ya BFD.

  230. TJ says:

    Actually amazed you can post something without mentioning Bob Nutting. Congrats. Your evolving

  231. JohninOshkosh says:

    I don’t have any real media connection to Pittsburgh rather than Dejan and some of the Pirate beat writers, but three media people get torched here all the time, and I have to admit that I don’t really know why.

    Bob Smizek, Mark Madden and Pierre McGuire get kicked around here like a rusty can.

  232. John Lease says:


    See, it didn’t take long. That was for Snider. If you can’t spell Snider with a Y, you’re hiding something….

  233. TJ says:


    If you ever went over to the smizik blog you’d understand why. Its more of a bridge and tunnel crowd.

  234. Officer Mancuso says:

    JMac’s outing’s got my hopes up. It’s the moral equivalent of Pedro going 3 for 5 with two home runs and 5 RBI against a #5 starter (the analogy is to the hapless Cubs offense). This guy may turn out to be one who, next time hitters adjust, becomes a head case and tanks. Or not. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, he looks like one of Nealapolean’s better moves.

  235. BillyBaduka says:

    I agree with Lucky that its early in the season to use the “Pyre of Denethor” reference. September 2012, perfectly appropriate.

    But, nice Tolkien reference nonetheless.

    Lucky – it’s Theoden. Still liked your retort though!

    Thank you both for the Toklien banter.

  236. Milo Hamilton says:

    I like the 1st two, John. Smizik was the Pirates beat writer when I was growing up. Very old school. I think he gets a bad rap now not so much for what he writes, but the same old tired arguments that take place on his blog. I like Madden too, but you have to understand it’s an act & not take him so seriously. I have no use for Regis. He got where he is by getting Scotty Bowman his coffee.

  237. BFD says:

    yes. and you are so rationale and level headed…………..

    You seem to have a personal issue with my posts since they differ from your sunshine and rainbow views

  238. TJ says:


    Its not a knock on what Smizik writes but rather his treatment of those who respond to his blog. But considering some of those who post there and here I can see why he might be cranky

  239. BillyBaduka says:

    He’s evolving?

    You just posted that you thought of running some one over with a car that you disagree with.

    We’ve all got a lot of evolvin’ to do. Me included.

    I know the point of your post was to take a shot at BFD and Daq. I just think that joke went too far to get a shot at them.

  240. TJ says:

    I’ve never said anything about sunshine and rainbows; it speaks to your inability to read. I posted earlier my unhappiness with todays game. You on the other hand continue to beat the same drum over and over and over again. I wish you’d put your efforts toward building a group of investors that could actually afford to buy the Pirates rather than sit and complain about the owner over and over and over and over again.

  241. TJ says:

    Your personal opinion. I never said I disagreed with Smizik. Does anyone here read an entire post before responding?

  242. BFD says:

    if you don’t like my posts….. scroll past them

  243. Milo Hamilton says:

    I check out the stuff he posts, but rarely if ever read the comments. Madden used to call him Bozo the Columnist.

  244. TJ says:

    I like reading the same thing over and over. Reminds me why I despise the Pirates.

  245. TJ says:

    Ya know BFD things could be a whole lot worse. I just prefer someone to give their actual opinion on subjects rather than the same opinion on one subject over and over. C’mon man I know you can do more than complain about Nutting.

  246. TJ says:

    Its like a communist country. You disagree with the dictator your humiliated in public and have no choice but to grin and accept it cause he deletes any rebuttal that does not line up with his.

  247. TJ says:

    Whats ironic BFD is I find myself complaining about Smizik’s blog as much as you complain about Nutting. At least yours is a worth while purpose

  248. BillyBaduka says:

    I read your entire post. And the follow ups.

    TJ – 7:34

    Your evolving.

    It’s you’re.


    So, you don’t like Smizik because of the way he responds to some posters. You say this in a post below.

    Ok, now running over a guy standing at a bus stop is much funnier.

  249. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    TJ – I’m going to ask you one more time….Is this your blog? Have you taken over Dejan?

  250. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    Sounds like the Nutting Regime….

  251. BFD says:

    what do you want to hear? The team has no offensive power and no hope for becoming a descent offensive team.
    Pedro’s at bat sounded (I listened) awful….

    I see the starting pitching as having potential to be average or slightly better but I also see them falling apart (Again) because they will be asked to carry the team and win 2-1 or 2-0 games.

    It’s the same story over and over and over again………. which is why I have to repeat the same thing over and over again (as you claim)

  252. 21sthebest says:

    As it turns out, the infield was playing up.

  253. BillyBaduka says:

    My evolve statement is childish.

    I apologize TJ.

    Your/you’re is a common mistake I make all the time.

    I also read JohninOshkosh as ‘Josh’inOshkosh. Hey it rhymes.

  254. BillyBaduka says:

    This is something we agree on.

    All sincerity, no snark intended.

    Have a nice evening TJ.

  255. TJ says:

    Actually BFD thats exactly what I like to debate. I don’t know about you but all I’ve seen this team do is take one pile of rocks and move it from one side to the other. 5 years ago they were good offensively when they had Bay, Nady, Sanchez etc but couldn’t pitch to save their lives. So what do they do; they shuffle the offense out and bring in pitching. So now you have some decent pitching and a lousy offense again.

    They haven’t stacked anything; their so called depth in the minors is a joke.

  256. TJ says:

    Ahh Billy we all have our bad days and this is probably one I shouldn’t be on this blog. After a long day of traveling and watching the game on gamecast on the plane was even more painful.

  257. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    It’s always nice to see someone consider “murder” on a public blog.
    Very nice of you.

  258. TJ says:

    Milo who would you rank as your favorite sports personality in Pittsburgh? Other than DK of course. Announcer; writer… you name it.

  259. WVStarship says:

    To annoy you.

  260. TJ says:

    Best you can do Bazzini? Weak.

  261. TJ says:

    C’mon Bazzini your kind of lame tonight. You should try harder

  262. TJ says:

    Really letting me down tonight Bazzini. Lame attempts tonight.

    DK: This will be the very LAST of the personal stuff. The only individual anyone can attack around here is me. You’ll have to settle for that.


  263. Milo Hamilton says:

    Always been a fan of Stan Savran. I’m a Tony Kornheiser loyal little. I listen to his radio show every day. I get my local fix here mostly.

  264. JohninOshkosh says:

    My best friend in Oshkosh is named “Josh”. People are always mixing us up here too. :)

  265. JohninOshkosh says:

    Didn’t mean to start a dust up, but thanks for the input guys. Nice to get some background on the charming world that is Pittsburgh. :)

    DVR’d the game. Wish I hadn’t. Oh well, go get em in La La Land.

    Dejan’s response to TJA was a classic. Made me laugh out loud.

  266. Only missed one letter. Didn’t even look it up.


  267. JohninOshkosh says:

    It was amazingly ill-advised what Chipper Jones tweeted about Mike Rice.

    Why he felt the need to chime in about Rice is beyond me. David Kaplan of WGN Radio called Jones a moron. You don’t see such pejoratives thrown around by reporters that often.

    Doesn’t take much detective work to figure out why Chipper knocked up a Hooters girl during his extramarital affair with her.

  268. JD says:

    Where can you get Kornheiser now? SiriusXM?

  269. Officer Mancuso says:

    There are people who feel good when they can denigrate someoone who’d done better than they have. I regard them as beneath contempt.

  270. JohninOshkosh says:

    You know, Officer, I’m slow on the uptake. I just got it that your moniker is from “Confederacy of Dunces”, is it not? You didn’t go with Ignatius J. Reilly!

    Read that book 20 years ago or more. I should read it again as I recall liking it a lot.

  271. BillyBaduka says:


  272. NastyNate82 says:

    Thats the spirit…keep it up!

  273. Jandy says:

    Not that person! ;X

  274. Drew71 says:

    Careful, Dejan.

    ThunderCrabby might read that.

  275. Arriba Wilver says:

    He’d a still scored. :-)

  276. So after another long day at work, The Window comes home and watches that entire game on the DVR…

    In the words of the late Ester Rolle when she played Florida on Good Times, “DAMN, DAMN, DAMN!”

    The UNDER wins for both lines today. Thanks to all who played.
    THREE-PLAY FRIDAY is on tap for the next game.
    Here are the up to date standings.
    If I made a mistake anywhere, please let me know. Thanks
    JRay3 ~ 275
    stuart66 ~ 225
    cmat0829 ~ 200
    Kevin ~ 200
    RobertoForever ~ 100
    PetroSteel ~ 100
    Bizrow ~ 100
    JoeyBats ~ 75
    Karen22 ~ 50
    Steve J. Smith ~ 50
    mlrgenuine ~ 50
    Jandy ~ 50
    KJX ~ 25
    tmp444 ~ 25
    Joey Mellons ~ 5
    Arriba Wilver ~ EVEN
    fellocolonial ~ EVEN
    radio wave ~ EVEN
    Nate83 ~ EVEN
    TK ~ EVEN
    Lad9 ~ EVEN
    pants-n-at ~ EVEN
    Ruffian706 ~ -40
    JohninOshkosh ~ -50
    TCB ~ -50
    TJ ~ -50
    Dom ~ -75
    tdb1977 ~ -100
    Pucknutz ~ -100
    JMB ~ -100
    Jason81 ~ -200

  277. Arriba Wilver says:

    Thanks, Playoffs.

  278. Officer Mancuso says:


  279. Jandy says:

    Depends how thirsty I am ;)

  280. Jandy says:

    JMac was fine. No one showed up to provide offense.

  281. Jandy says:

    Duh, it’s not murder, it’s slapstick comedy….get with it!

  282. Jandy says:

    Yeah I’m confused. First game I bet 100 units on the win…and am posted as having 50 points, and we won.
    This game I posted 50 each line on the under….the under won,and I still have 50 points?
    I am losted…

  283. RobertoForever says:

    Someone has to point out the positives. Otherwise, the quiet readers on this blog would eventually all commit hari-kari

  284. RobertoForever says:

    Except Roberto, he can be attacked and then cheered by the big cheese, lol.

  285. Went back and checked my math.
    Here is your breakdown:

    GAME 1
    LN1 – 50 under LOSS
    LN2 – 100 over LOSS
    TOTAL (-150)

    GAME 2
    LN1 – 100 win WIN
    TOTAL (-50)

    GAME 3
    LN1 – 50 under WIN
    LN2 – 50 under WIN
    TOTAL (50)

    Hope that helps.

  286. NorthPirateFan says:

    WRT to Dejan’s column “no panic in Pirates, yet, but”

    He’s right of course saying objective analysis should always avoid drawing conclusions based on small sample sizes, that’s true. However when the small sample size is a continuation of the larger sample size that preceded it, it’s simply irrational to assume it’s going to change significantly in the future.

    Sure some of the guys are going to get their hits as the season progresses but the reality is the Pirates have pretty much just picked up where they left off the last two seasons on the offensive side of the game and for the same reasons: the irrational lineups lineups from a manager who abuse and misuse of small ball tactics and a GM who failed to recognize the needs and conditions the team plays in and secure the right types of players.

    2013 will be very much like 2012 & 2011 when it concludes, good pitching unsupported by bottom of the majors offense because the roster is made up of too many light hitting, right handed players with sharp platoon disadvantages playing in home park that hinders those very types of players and a manager who seems utterly incapable of recognizing any of these facts.

    This season, another losing one, is all but over already and the best evidence of it were the lineups Hurdle sent out the first two games.

    Nobody making decisions in this organization has a clue what they’re doing.

  287. Jandy says:

    Yup, thanks Playoffs, I apperciate it :)

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