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Friday vacation thread

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

On vacation all week. Next column is Sunday, but I still might catch Pirates-Reds tonight.

The floor, as ever, is yours …

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.

Comments

  1. DK, if you do go to the game can you please grab me an AJ t-shirt ;)

    Thanks.

    DK: Assuming you’re serious, those don’t generally get distributed to the media.

  2. tom p says:

    Just a typical Pirates move, with the team BA around what Alvarez’s total Ks will be this season, another offensive dynamo will be added to the roster. Besides not hitting a lick in ST, being hurt most of last year, little range on defense, and just plain being old, what did this group see in Brandon Inge?

    Another reason to wonder why Hurdle and Huntington were asked to return in 2013.

    This team may not even win 70, and i can see the team being in a “real bad place” as this month continues. If they are withing 8 games out of 1st place or wild card, i would be quite surprised.

    When Alvarez’s BA finally dips below his waist size, no problem, Brandon Inge is here to save the day!

    Good lord, this team is in trouble. It’s nice to know they will be back in the top 5 draft pick status in 2014.

    And this rant is coming from a fan of the team since 1971. What a despicable organization they have become. What a shame.

  3. DemonDachshund says:

    Just wanted to comment on the posts on the Pirates’ pitching depth that came up yesterday. I’m moving my family out to Austin this week, so haven’t been able to keep tabs.

    I get the idea that Sanchez could be considered option #10 or so in the rotation, and as such, it’s hard to conclude that they lack depth because they have no better option than him right now.

    On the other hand…

    They KNEW that Morton and Cole were not going to be available until June or so.

    They KNEW that Liriano was injured and a dice roll even if healthy.

    They KNEW that Karstens was an injury risk, as that was justification for their non-tender of him.

    They KNEW that JMac was inconsistent.

    They KNEW that Locke and McPherson were young and untested.

    They came into the year with two dependable pitchers … who are 34 and 35.

    Oh, and Karstens and AJ walk after this year. Morton, Liriano and Wandy walk after next year.

    Yes, I am concerned about the pitching depth, and I do hold the FO accountable.

  4. Boise Bucco says:

    Who would win in a fight, Douglas Murray or Carlos Quentin? This assumes no hockey pads, also Murray is pitching and he didn’t hit Quentin on purpose. And Quentin gets to leave his helmet on, because it obviously doesn’t matter to Murray.

  5. theplanisworking says:

    Oh come on, guys (and gals)………… why all the anguish over our Bucs?

    neal is the smartest man in any room…….. he knows what he is doing.
    Sanchez? Dont you all understand vets are important?
    Inge? He meets the yearly quota for dumpster-diving. ;)

    This has been a wash, rinse, repeat scenario for the past 21 years.
    What is much more maddening now, is that this GM/FO talks incessantly about building through the draft………. yet they sign washed-up veterans who are destined to fail, and trade for other organizations failed suspects…err, prospects……….. all the while failing on their stated goal.

    Wake me up when this crap is over.

  6. tom p says:

    might as well stay in bed, its going to be a long summer, in the burgh.

    What are you guys going to do when the Pens get knocked out in the 1st or 2nd round?

    Wait for the steelers to open up training camp?.

    That is a big LOL!!!.

    I am reconsidering re upping my MLB extra innings(1st year without it since 2007), just to see how this train wreck plays out on a nightly basis.
    I vowed not to renew it if Huntington returned in 2013.
    But his inevitable firing, and the way Bob Walk sugarcoats it, would be must see tv.

    Might as well do a 2008 scenario again and clean house, and reload with prospects, that may be major league ready, by 2016.
    And by all means, DO NOT offer Walker a long term contract.
    He apparently still has some type of back issue, and is not the same player he was last year before this stuff happened.

  7. JoeyBats says:

    The owner is cheap.
    .
    The current PREZ & GM have been on scholarship since they started their reign. They are incompetent.
    .
    The plan is not working.
    .
    :-(

  8. JosePagan says:

    This is what annoys me as well. All we hear from the folks at the corner of General Robinson and Shambolic Avenue is the build from within/Pirate Way mantra.

    But yet there is a revolving door with the likes of Bobby Crosby, Aki, Inge, Jonathan Sanchez, Matt Diaz, etc passing through. And to your point about the pitching, for all of the Sabertoothed Metrical Quantum Leaping Statistical Analysis done to measure the exact second a player is ready to be promoted from Extended Spring Training, little thought seems to be given to the actual Current Level of Need and doing something about it.

    Is it too late to petition MLB to move Houston BACK into the NL Central?

    Jose

  9. Drew71 says:

    Holy Crap.

    Who’s the bold font guy? And what’s he doing on our blog?

    After midnight. On a vacation day. Whatever that is.

  10. JoeyBats says:

    Prospect Report: (games played thru April 11)
    .
    #3 prospect in the system…OF, GREG POLANCO is playing at high A Bradenton and has played in 7 games so far. Here are his stats: 26 AB, 4 R, 7 H, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5 SB, .269 AVG, .333 OBP
    .
    #4 prospect ….SS, ALAN HANSON, who is also at Bradenton. Has also played in 7 games and has delivered the following line. 33 AB, 5 R, 7 H, 0 HR, 2 RBI, 3 SB, .212 AVG., .235 OBP.
    .
    Bradenton is currently 0-7 in their league.
    .
    #2 prospect….JAMESON TAILLON is scheduled to pitch his 2nd outing tonight against Harrisburg.

  11. Drew71 says:

    I don’t know, guys.

    Coming off a day in which they didn’t lose, which so far is one of the season’s highlights, I thought we’d be in a pretty good baseball mood this morning.

  12. Thundercrack says:

    I’m sure a guy like Fedko has a trunk full of giveaways.

    And my guess is that he doesn’t stay long at the game.

  13. Thundercrack says:

    I think they should trade Polanco and Hanson – before they get to game 14 of the season.

  14. Thundercrack says:

    Yep, they certainly gambled. And two times through the rotation it is not looking so great.

  15. Poz says:

    Nice game for new players last night. Only drawback was the penalty kill. Letang skated well. Good to Crosby watching. And I think I read somewhere that Martin was cleared to start skating and will join the team. Realize the past playoff failures make discussions today moot. But I’m surprised they are playing so well with all the injuries. There are positives signs.

  16. Dave G says:

    Dejan only gets bobbleheads.

  17. Drew71 says:

    There are Dejan bobbleheads??

    I will pay any price.

  18. JAL says:

    JAL’s Why Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-b3jLorlms4

    GENERAL DAILY UPDATED BASEBALL SITES

    1- MLB Transactions

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

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

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

    3 Go Buccos- Pirate News (from external sources)

    http://gobuccos.com/pittsburgh-pirate-news/

    4 Pittsburgh Pirates Stats

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AsjN0zO-DxI0dHVOMzdPYm9wUEJtdVJ0WWUzVWhFc2c#gid=0

    BLOGS and such

    5—Pirates Prospects

    An Early Look at Alen Hanson’s Defense

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/04/an-early-look-at-alen-hansons-defense.html

    Martin’s Role Could Be A Key to Success

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/04/martins-role-could-be-a-key-to-success.html

    6 Bucs Dugout

    Big days for Josh Bell and Jarek Cunningham, while Nick Kingham gets roughed up

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2013/4/11/4215194/big-days-for-josh-bell-and-jarek-cunningham-while-nick-kingham-gets

    7 Pittsburgh Sporting News

    Baseball is his love, but Russell Martin is no stranger to hockey

    http://www.pittsburghsportingnews.com/baseballs-his-love-but-russell-martin-is-no-stranger-to-hockey/

    8 The Green Weenie

    The Young and the Restless

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-young-and-restless.html

    9 Rumbunter

    A Pittsburgh Pirates Tragedy Starring Clint Hurdle

    http://rumbunter.com/2013/04/11/a-pittsburgh-pirates-tragedy-starring-clint-hurdle/

    10 City of Champions

    Pedro Alvarez: It’s time for Pirates fans to back off El Toro

    http://cityofchampionssports.com/2013/04/10/pedro-alvarez-its-time-for-pirates-fans-to-back-off-el-toro/

  19. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Rant Sports

    The Pittsburgh Pirates’ Ace Isn’t Who You Think It Is

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2013/04/11/the-pittsburgh-pirates-ace-isnt-who-you-think-it-is/#

    12 USA Today

    The oddest entrance video in the MLB belongs to Jason Grilli

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/gameon/2013/04/11/jason-grilli-pirates-entrance/2074993/

    13 Beckley Register Herald

    Popovich had fine major-league career

    http://www.register-herald.com/todayssportsfront/x237744158/Popovich-had-fine-major-league-career

    14 Cincinnati Enquirer

    Joey Votto: “I’m headed in the right direction”

    http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20130411/SPT04/304110072/Joey-Votto-m-headed-right-direction-

    15 Waterbury Republican American

    Price of admission

    http://blogs.rep-am.com/worth_reading/2013/04/11/price-of-admission/

    16 CBS Sports

    Cincinnati-Pittsburgh Game Preview

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/gametracker/preview/MLB_20130412_CIN@PIT/redspirates-preview

    17 ESPN

    Designated hitters for everybody

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/9158659/mlb-designated-hitter-spread-nl

    18 PBC Site

    Strong Pirates system doesn’t stop with Cole

    http://pittsburgh.pirates.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130411&content_id=44505964&vkey=news_pit&c_id=pit

    SPORTS WEBSITES

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    Fantasy Mailbag Be Patient with Struggling Blue Jays

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=20202

    20 Fangraphs

    The Continuing Rise in Strikeout Rate

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-continuing-rise-in-strikeout-rate/

  20. Drew71 says:

    Yeah. Remember. Pedro also struggled at each level before being promoted.

    waittaminnit…

  21. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Possible Emmanuel Sanders departure will force Steelers to need Plaxico Burress to step up 2013

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/4/11/4211222/Steelers-Emmanuel-Sanders-Patriots-Plaxico-Burress

    Sanders spices up Patriots and Steelers situation through social media

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/4/11/4210350/Steelers-Emmanuel-Sanders-Patriots-Twitter

    22 Steelers Depot

    - Sanders Extension Not likely Even if Offer Sheet Is Matched

    http://www.steelersdepot.com/2013/04/extension-for-steelers-wr-emmanuel-sanders-not-likely-to-happen-even-if-offer-sheet-is-matched/

    Soccer(football)

    23 Daily Telegraph

    FC Basle 2 Tottenham Hotspur 2 ; agg 4-4: (pens 4-1): match report

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/tottenham-hotspur/9988112/FC-Basle-2-Tottenham-Hotspur-2-agg-4-4-pens-4-1-match-report.html

    24 World Soccer Daily

    Di Canio repents, but denial smacks of insincerity

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/columnists/di-canio-repents-but-denial-smacks-of-insincerity

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links
    25 Sports Illustrated

    Jokinen has 2 goals, Pens beat Lightning 6-3

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/hockey/nhl/gameflash/2013/04/11/30978_recap.html

  22. JAL says:

    Why Fleetwood Mac 1973 From Mystery to Me, their 8th album and the last album with Bob Weston. Group for this album was Bob Welch, Bob Weston, Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, and Christine McVie singing lead. Buckingham-Nicks did not join the band until their 10th album.

  23. cherokee23 says:

    Ya, that was pretty funny last night. The first time I’ve seen Murray smile was after going to the box last night!!

  24. BFD says:

    Why all of the negativity?
    It’s a great trinket weekend!
    Today – Free shirt Friday
    Saturday – FIREWORKS!
    Sunday – Raise the JollyRoger Flag give-away!

    What more could you ask for?

  25. TJA says:

    to answer your question BFD: For me: A hometown team that plays baseball…in October…in Pittsburgh…@ PNC Park. Hooey on the give-a-ways

  26. The Gunner says:

    Tom

    I, too, remember well the 1971 team. Unfortunately, that train left the station a looooong time ago. My prediction is the 2013 Pirates will win 72 games at a max. They are just a train wreck every which way you turn. What you have is an owner who is a very good businessman and just wants to fatten the bottom line, a team president who has been extremely low profile as of late, and a GM who is a condescending, incompetent dolt-like nincompoop. The field manager is a nice guy but he has very little to work with.

    The Bucs are going to be very hard to watch this year. They’ll be lucky to win one game from Stinkcinnati this weekend.

  27. The Gunner says:

    Demon

    You are right, there are way too many question marks with the pitching, particularly the starting pitchers. We can all hold the FO accountable till Kingdom come but, nothing will change.

    This is what comes from an owner who only cares about the income statement, a low profile usually tanked team President who is an embarassment, and a nasty little man for a GM who is a condescending, incompetent dolt-like nincompoop. Hurdle is a decent guy but he is doomed to failure with the Bucs.

  28. Jandy says:

    Careful what you wish for!

  29. Jandy says:

    His sneer is even better than his smile ;)

  30. Jandy says:

    tom p if the Pens are out in the first round I will hold you personally accountable! :P

  31. Jandy says:

    Yes they are positive signs, Poz. Was nice to see the comfort level of the new guys on the ice last night. They are really fitting in.
    Also Duper did a great job of stepping up as well. Kudos to him.
    Jokinen with a 3 point game. Love this addition to the team.
    Morrow all over the place, knocking people around.
    Murray kicking ice LOL.
    Tanger picking right up where he left off.
    This team will be scary when Sid/Neal/Martin return.

  32. Jandy says:

    free beer?

  33. SJB says:

    You didn’t get the sarcasm?

  34. I figured as much.
    Just joking ;)
    If you go, enjoy the game.

  35. Dave G says:

    Jokinen may be the key pickup this season for the Pens.

    He’s meshed well, and he’s affordable extension-wise.

  36. BillyBaduka says:

    Like much.

    Sing it from the mountain tops.

    LET’S GO PENS!

  37. Jandy says:

    I hope he stays, seriously. What’s not to like?

  38. Jandy says:

    Trust me, you DON’T want to hear me sing ;)

  39. BillyBaduka says:

    Love the addition.

    Hard to say he’s been more important than Vokoun or Eaton but its a fun conversation to have.

    And as long as all three keep up their contributions, I’m fine with whomever one wants to call top ‘add’.

  40. Jandy says:

    It’s Fridayl ya’ll need to relax :)

  41. BillyBaduka says:

    DK is not the only one who listened to the Dead Kennedys.

    If I can listen to Jello Biafra, I can stand any voice as long as content is good. :)

    One of the tenants of that style is you don’t have to be good, just have conviction.

  42. BillyBaduka says:

    Like

  43. SJB says:

    Would be nice to see Eats and Joki resigned regardless of how far they go in the playoffs. Players like that are every bit as essential to a team’s success as the core superstars. Frankly; there’s a lot of other players I’d rather see let go after this season starting with Kennedy, Orpik and Glass…and in that order.

  44. BillyBaduka says:

    I would like to see them with the team next year too.

    I think Jokinen is under contract next year with a portion paid by Carolina.

    Should be able to keep him just by letting TK go.

    Gotta resign Duper too. I think he is FA after season.

    I gotta get to work.

  45. BillyBaduka says:

    My job, not work on Pens FA.

  46. Jandy says:

    Oh I have conviction. I’m convinced I’m legally insane ;)

  47. Jandy says:

    LOL Work is a dirty four letter word. Have a good day, BB :)

  48. Jandy says:

    Keeping Duper is going to be a huge one to tackle.

  49. TJA says:

    Oh, I sure did get it SJ…no problem there. But, I am just stating my point, too. I am an old guy who goes to the yard to watch baseball. I completely understand marketing and p.r. stuff from the organizations viewpoint, but just saying, for me, I want to see baseball in October, like a million other Pirate fans.

  50. Sarah says:

    I think also key is the vet leadership. Something to stabilize the team in playoff pressure and hopefully avert meltdowns and loss of discipline such as we saw last spring.

  51. Jandy says:

    Someone needs to tell Malkin to pay attention ;)

  52. Jandy says:

    This is taken from Josh Yo’he’s column this morning:
    Morrow had a couple of confrontations with Bishop, which led to some fireworks in the third period.

    “He introduced me to his trapper,” Morrow said. “I let him know that if I’m in the blue paint, it’s OK. But if I’m not, then I will be upset.”

    Love this guy!

  53. SJB says:

    Yup, letting players play through their contract year is a double edge sword. You can get the most out of them because they want a big contract, but then you gotta give them a big contract to keep them if they do perform.

  54. Sarah says:

    That used to be Gonch

  55. theplanisworking says:

    +1

  56. SJB says:

    Bishop not very smart if he thinks he’s going to get the better of Morrow. Obviously there’s a reason he hasn’t stuck with an organization yet.

  57. Brandie says:

    Guess that would make the on field product more palatable. Free beer Fridays…sell outs every time.

  58. Jandy says:

    yup. Now we need a new one to kick him in the pants.

  59. theplanisworking says:

    With all the sorrows associated with our Bucs, they may run out of beer !!!!!! :(

  60. Jandy says:

    Good to see ya back, Brandie. Glad we didn’t skeer ya away last night :)

  61. Brandie says:

    Is the plan really working? Hmmmmm.

  62. theplanisworking says:

    @BFD:

    Free Corndogs! ;)

  63. theplanisworking says:

    Yes, I am off to work soon……… ;)

  64. Brandie says:

    Getting my comments in now…will be away this weekend. Hunting the elusive Green Weenie. :-)

  65. Drew71 says:

    I’m not.

    I Want A Dejan Bobblehead

  66. Jandy says:

    Ahhhhh the guys will adore you! Have fun!

  67. Iceman says:

    Crankshaft is the man. I am so excited by the Murray pickup. Might be my favorite of all the late season additions (although I have to say that right now I am pumped about all 4 of them). I can’t say that I have ever seen a player play the way Murray does. He is slow as molasses, but seems to still always be in position. It seems like half his big hits happen when someone comes to check him and he just stands up tall and the other players bounce off of him. Not to mention, he is constantly where he needs to be to clear the opposing team out of the crease. Fleury and Vokoun have to be thrilled to finally have a player that is willing and able to push anybody else out. Love it!

  68. Jandy says:

    How does it feel to want?

  69. Jandy says:

    like I said, work is a four letter word…

  70. Dom says:

    I know I brought this up a few days ago but I have been very impressed with Stetson Allie since becoming a hitter.

    Now, in 30 at bats, Allie has .333 AVG, .412 OBP, two doubles, and two homers.

  71. Jandy says:

    Murray IS slow so it seems he learned to play positionally, much like USS Hal Gill. I’ve watched him exclusively a lot during games, and he’s rarely caught out of position. It happens, but it happens to every d-man. All the negatives that San Jose person who posted on the blog here when we picked him up, I’m not seeing. That guy said he’d be back…has anyone seen him? ;)

  72. Iceman says:

    First of all, great game for the Pens last night minus the PK. This needs to be fixed immediately. The PK cannot rely on the goalie to stand on their head every PK to be effective. Vokoun had a good game last night, but the PK did not help him out.

    Second, I’m going to throw a suggestion out there that I myself find a bit crazy. Is there a possibility that resigning Cooke and Dupuis may be more important than signing Malkin? I know that both Dupuis and Cooke are getting old and Malkin still has plenty of good years left in the NHL, but Dupper and Cookie have some intangibles that I don’t want to have to replace. They are two of the top penalty killers on the team and they both play 100% all the time (I’m not entirely sure that can be said about Malkin). I don’t know if I’m sold on this suggestion yet, but it is something for Shero/HCDB to think about.

  73. Drew71 says:

    You remember I’m married, right?

  74. Drew71 says:

    I live it every day

  75. Brandie says:

    I am trying to get another job so that my plan will finally work. Been a tough year. Any good vibes you all can throw my way would be greatly appreciated.

  76. Milo Hamilton says:

    Wait a minute – Mike Leake pitching on free shirt Friday ? Priceless.

  77. Naje says:

    Finally a PBC organizational move about which we can all say, “well done.”

  78. Jandy says:

    I had lines and lines typed in here and deleted them all. I don’t want thrown off the blog! :x
    But Drew Dahling, would a Dejan Bobblehead make it all better? really?

  79. Jandy says:

    ::sending lots and lots of good vibes::

    A word of caution: Stay away from the Pirates. Very few good vibes there ;X

  80. Jandy says:

    Wow, Ms J…I kinda like that… :)

  81. Jandy says:

    Dom, I saw your post from before. Amazing, isn’t it?

  82. CWalton_67 says:

    Not sure what happened with the PK last night, but I thought they played with tremendous effort. Kunitz tracking down and breaking up the breakaway opportunity with a three goal lead was a statement. This team is on a mission.

  83. Milo Hamilton says:

    Suzie McConnell-Serio will be the new coach at Pitt.

  84. Jandy says:

    ehhh…I’m not sold on Malkin being traded. Period.
    I love Duper. I doubt he has a bigger fan than I am. I drive my son-in-law insane sometimes with my fan favorites. But I generally end up right.
    I called Letang, Scuderi, Malone, and Duper as being more than they were perceived to be. Letang had so much raw talent but made so many mistakes his early years. I said he’d get it straight. He still isn’t perfect, but I’d take him over any d-man in the league.
    Depres is also in that category.
    Sometimes it’s how a player is being used/not used.
    Malkin needs linemates that can play with him. Like Kunitz and Neal. Crosby simply makes anyone look better and can generally play with anyone. Malkin not so much.
    But no, no way do I trade Geno. I doubt Shero will, either.
    I’m betting Duper will make a deal but he’ll still need a raise. Cookie will make a deal. it’s all up to Shero to make it all fit.

  85. Jandy says:

    Wow!

  86. 21sthebest says:

    Suzie McConnell-Serio taking the Pitt job.

  87. Naje says:

    Great to hear that she’s moving into that role. Hoping her greatness can continue to flourish.

  88. 21sthebest says:

    Wow!

  89. Bizrow says:

    Likes all around on this thread, keep it coming ++++

  90. Pens ALWAYS get the most out of Dupuis, regardless of contract situation.

    And he performs!

  91. DemonDachshund says:

    That might not work out so well -

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/10_Cent_Beer_Night

    The Pirates lose enough as it is… The don’t need help.

  92. Kevin says:

    I will agree that the 1st round will be a tough test (they’ll probably have to play a desperate-out-to-prove NY team). But when they win that, the rest of playoffs will be easy by compare. Kinda like what happened when the penguins beat the capitals in 7 and then swept the hurricanes the series after. Atleast, thats how I see it in my head.

  93. Down covered chicks and baby bunnies are cute at Easter too.

    But they grow up to be a pain. And who cleans up that mess they leave?!

    Don’t be depressed at Josh Bell’s lack of production thus far, and don’t get worked up over Allie’s numbers. He has also struck out 10 in 30 ABs.

    Give ‘em all half a season before the pompoms come out.

    Now . . . . Pedro, on the other hand . . . .

  94. Kevin says:

    I like all the contributions they are getting from their trade pickups. Jokinen looked like a mad wizard out there on that 2nd goal. (like how Crosby used to look with his deflections before all the concussion business)

  95. Maybe your best insight ever, Milo!

  96. Jandy says:

    tar and feathers??? ;)

  97. cosmo says:

    agreed

  98. Hey Najemo,

    Congratulations on the Louisville win!

  99. Jandy says:

    Looks like another big Duper fan, just like me, I’m in looovveee!!!! <3

  100. Jandy says:

    YIKES!

  101. GREAT move for Pitt!

    I’m sorry for Duquesne.

    Athletics on the Bluff is a mess! Starts with the AD.

    DK: Emphatically agreed with all three.

  102. 21sthebest says:

    It starts with the President up there. He’s a trainwreck.

  103. . . . and all that stuff left at the bottom of the baby chicks’ box!

  104. John Lease says:

    If the Pirates get pummeled by the Reds, will Neil resign in disgrace?

    Oh my, my fantasy life is taking over…

  105. Matt Gajtka says:

    I know we’ve got some “footie” fans on this board, so here’s a link to an interview I did with Riverhounds CEO/midfielder Jason Kutney: http://cityofchampionssports.com/2013/04/11/q-a-with-pittsburgh-riverhounds-ceomidfielder-jason-kutney/

    The ‘Hounds make their Highmark Stadium debut Saturday night.

  106. Jandy says:

    LOL ewwwww!

  107. TJ says:

    Couple things from last night…

    Jokinen has been tremendous thus far.

    Murray… love the fact that he drops the gloves and takes off the helmet. Basically told the other guy to be a man and lets really fight. Of course the other guy didn’t take his off and good thing he didn’t cause the side of his head would have been smashed in

    TK is playing like he knows he’s going to soon be a healthy scratch.

    Morrow seems to be finally finding his game on this team. Iginla…. paging Mr. Iginla.

    I have to say this about the Pens… its funny to me that they bring in guys like Eaton and Jokinen who no one wanted and they immediately pick up their game. It goes to show what a team with a winning attitude is like; they push you. If this was the Pirates Jokinen would have put on 15 pounds and Eaton would be our cleanup hitter.

  108. Milo Hamilton says:

    :)

  109. I thought our discussions couldn’t get any lower than our talking about chicken and rabbit droppings.

    However, now we get linked to a “sport that must not be named” article.

    It’s a bad, bad day on the Vacation Blog!

  110. TJ says:

    I can’t find this on the PG site or Trib.

  111. Naje says:

    Thanks Groaty… a terrific championship game… a really good team to support. I can understand a non-fan getting overloaded on the various storylines, but the city really supports the university and all the teams. It’s a college town, for sure, but for the fans these teams are our pro teams.

  112. TJ says:

    I don’t think NH understands disgrace. Based on the lines he’s fed fans this year alone he’s proven he’s willing to do or say anything to keep his job

  113. Naje says:

    Do we re-visit the Chapman incident in this series? Does/should Burnett hang one on Phillips or Votto or Bruce?

    Though I have a long-term dislike of the Reds, they play the game well. Though Phillips is a volatile guy, he’s a player…and a really high-end one at that. He may well be a jerk/jagoff/what-have-you, but he can play.

    I’d love to see us drill a few off of Chapman, if the situation presents itself.

  114. Bizrow says:

    The only thing that Neil feels disgrace about is the stupid PBC fan base that knows nothing about his greatness.

    Its all OUR fault, folks, just ask NH ;-)

  115. Matt Gajtka says:

    Hey, take it or leave it. I know where you stand now. :-)

  116. Bizrow says:

    +1

    But once again, like last time, the FO will tell the club not to respond

  117. 21sthebest says:

    That’s what happened?

  118. tom p says:

    If they have to face the Rangers, Snivelin’ Sydney and the boys in the black, can stage their golf tourney in early may.!!

  119. John Lease says:

    Phillips should have gotten drilled with all his BS against Hughes last year, but the meek Pirates did nothing. Get him first, then Aroldis.

    My prediction though, the Pirates will continue to turn the other cheek.

  120. Jandy says:

    Ahahahaha! What planet are YOU from? Sniveling indeed…fits you well :)

  121. Milo Hamilton says:

    Hate to stir the pot (yeah right), but what will be the Pirates excuse tonight when they refuse to drill Votto or Phillips or anyone for that matter ?

  122. AL says:

    Not too worried about Iginla. Last week it was paging Mr. Morrow so these things even out over the season. Plus he had a pretty good one-timer last night.
    I’m just amazed at the noticeability of all 4 new guys. All 4!
    Pirates are noticeable too but let’s not go there.

  123. Jandy says:

    Phillips would be my target of choice!

  124. Jandy says:

    “Daddy said no”

  125. Naje says:

    Biz… with what happened in San Diego last night between Greinke and Quentin, I’m not sure now is the right time… stinks, I know. I also know that Chapman is a punk… and he had no business doing what he did to Cutch. But Dusty did the right thing in the game following the incident: he gave the Bucs a chance to hit someone before plunking Harrison in the top of the 2nd…and thus, both teams were warned and he protected his players.

    In the grand scheme of things, karma will get the Reds over this…just hope it comes at our hands and sometime in this decade.

  126. Milo Hamilton says:

    Sorry about that guys. Should have refreshed before I posted.

  127. 21sthebest says:

    Hughes hit him on September 10th. Both benches were warned.

  128. Jandy says:

    Iginla is doing fine. He’s hit countless posts…the goals will come. He’s playing well, making room for others.

  129. Naje says:

    Easy one is to point to the Greinke/Quentin dustup from last night… really easy. But it will come. And I can’t wait till the Reds convert that punk to a starter…

  130. 21sthebest says:

    Cutch said Chapman didn’t throw at him. Cutch also said both teams were warned before the next game, not after Harrison was plunked.

  131. Jandy says:

    hey Matt, good to see you :)

  132. Jandy says:

    A Boss sighting!

  133. Milo Hamilton says:

    I can wait for it to be served cold. It just needs to be served.

  134. JohninOshkosh says:

    Cleaned many chicken coops in my day. Might be the main reason I never returned to the farm. Awful places.

  135. SJB says:

    Just for fun I’m going to pick one line combo that I really like right now and wouldn’t mind staying together.

    Dupuis/Jokinen/Morrow

    Now everyone can give their ideas on what should be the rest of the playoff team line combos based around that. Not easy.

  136. 21sthebest says:

    They played 6 more times after Chapman hit Cutch. Why should this continue into this year? You don’t need to be warned to be tossed from a game.

  137. Naje says:

    Well, if they were warned before the game, why didn’t the Reds starter get tossed? Harrison got plunked and then they got warned.

  138. Naje says:

    “oooooh yeaaaahh”
    nod to the macho man…

  139. SJB says:

    lol That made me think of the movie The Factory, I just saw last night.

  140. Milo Hamilton says:

    May he & the lovely Elizabeth rest in peace.

  141. AL says:

    And speaking of room for others, I hope they rotate Vitale in soon to keep his game sharp. Same for Jeffrey. I’d like to see a few different healthy scratches once in awhile as the playoffs draw near.

  142. 21sthebest says:

    I know, it was odd. That’s what Cutch said, and he said the warnings weren’t publicized, but maybe he was wrong. I thought Gorman issued a warning after Harrison was hit and that’s why Hurdle argued. Maybe Cutch meant after the next game?

  143. Jandy says:

    LOL!

  144. Iceman says:

    This!

  145. Jandy says:

    The lines now and the lines for playoffs will likely vary with players returning. I may be optimistic, but I see Sid and Neal returning.

  146. Kevin says:

    I think thats part of the problem with Iginla (if there is one). And maybe I’m reading too much into this. But, Iginla should never need permission to shoot first… I get the feeling he was put on Malkin’s line and was afraid to step on Malkin’s big russian toes.

    I expected Morrow’s first goal to be a cleanup the garbage at the net goal like Malkin’s goal the other night or like Glass first goal of the season. Instead he scored a goal scorer’s goal.

  147. Jandy says:

    You don’t have to sell me on Vitale. That guy gives 100% every game. He’s very good on face offs. AND he’s physical.

  148. Kevin says:

    Agree on rotating in Vitale. Can’t remember the last game he played.

  149. Jason81 says:

    The Rangers are so offensively incompetent, Crosby could play goal it that series and the Pens could win it.

  150. Iceman says:

    By no means am I at all sold on trading Malkin. I think he and Shero need to have some serious conversations this off season to see what Malkin is thinking. If it appears as though Malkin wants to be paid what he is worth (which I’m not sure the Pens can afford), I would much rather trade him in this off season instead of letting him walk in the next off season.

    Hopefully Shero can make it work and Malkin will take a Sid like discount, but I’m not certain that’s going to happen and I’d hate to lose Cookie and Duper this year only to have Malkin walk next.

  151. SJB says:

    Pretty sure Sid will be back before the playoffs.

  152. Jason81 says:

    You apparently haven’t seen what our fearless leader will be writing about for Sunday.

  153. Iceman says:

    I love the line right now, but I cannot see moving Dupuis off the top line once Sid is back.

  154. Iceman says:

    I have not heard any updates about Neal and what symptoms he is experiencing. The fact that I have not heard anything makes me a little nervous.

  155. Patrick says:

    I cant believe the clown from TB didn’t take his helmet off after he initiated the fight. Murray was skating away and Crombeen asked for it. And then ducks behind his helmet for two minutes.

    Candy***.

  156. Jandy says:

    I think Iginla is just a first class player and hesitated to step on anyone’s toes. That’s why as time goes by, and guys mesh, things will work themselves out.

  157. Jandy says:

    i follow your thinking, but I’m sure the Wizard of DaBurgh is on it!

  158. Iceman says:

    With it being as far out from the incident as it is, I’m not sure anything should happen. If something were going to happen, it should’ve happened right away. Nothing happened, move along.

    What I would prefer is that AJ strikes out 15 in a complete game with an emphatic STFD after the game (wishful thinking and not going to happen, I know, but isn’t ok to dream?)

  159. AL says:

    As for Iginla, I think it’s understandable that when you start a new job, you don’t want to come in and think you own the place. Whether it’s hockey or the business world it would really tick some people off (like myself). It’s good to be a little humble at first and realize that you’re not in charge yet….you’re the new guy even though you might also be the oldest guy. As time goes by I think you’ll see these guys gel as linemates and this whole permission thing will be a thing of the past.

  160. Jandy says:

    +100000000000

  161. Pucknutz says:

    negotiability of all 4 new guys. All 4!

    Pretty cool ain’t it !!!

  162. Patrick says:

    I think they will all be watching very closely. I’m sure AJ will pay attention to who gets pitched and how/where. Anything inside to a Pirate will probably be viewed differently than simply “trying to establish the inner half”

  163. Jandy says:

    We think alike :)

  164. Pucknutz says:

    noticeability

    Spell check got me!

  165. Bizrow says:

    Thats what I heard 21, and I think it was in writing too.

  166. Jandy says:

    ^uss^ was my name for him….friggin ^uss.

  167. Bizrow says:

    Yeah, Naje, you are most probably right.

  168. Milo Hamilton says:

    Especially with Leake. He hit 3 guys the very next night after the McCutchen/Chapman incident. He likes to nick with you a breaking pitch & then claim it just got away from him. What a weasel he is. And a kleptomaniac weasel at that.

  169. Bizrow says:

    But like I posted above I did hear/read that the FO told the club to not retaliate

  170. Patrick says:

    He is going to have a rreeeaall hard time getting ice time. When sid comes back who do you sit? Sutter? Jokinen? Vitale’s biggest problem is that he doesn’t play on the PK. If he could get on the pk unit he would replace Glass, I think.

  171. Milo Hamilton says:

    :)

  172. Bizrow says:

    Injuries are treated as “secret squirrel info”, they will not say anything

  173. AL says:

    I was shocked to read your response because I didn’t see it until after I submitted mine! You said the same thing as me only in alot fewer words.
    Jolly good show!
    ( I’m not British….just felt like saying it)

  174. SJB says:

    I agree they will try putting that Crosby line back together. I just think it’s smarter to go with what’s working best heading into the playoffs, rather than reshuffling everything all over again to make it what it was, or was going to be 3 weeks ago. I guess it depends really on how early everyone can get back. Don’t want brand new lines for the 1st playoff game. Not ideal at all.

    If they move Dupuis off that line back to the Crosby line, I guess I would like to see Cooke in there in his place, but Joki and Morrow seem to be a good fit regardless and should stay together. The question is; what to do with Sutter.

  175. Patrick says:

    Disgrace? For what?

    The process is working! Don’t you realize how many baseball people really like what is going on in Pittsburgh right now? If only Pittsburgh fans were as savvy as Red Sox fans.

    If you have a check for 10 million, I’m sure NH will listen. It’s not like it’s the 1927 Yankees.

    THE REDS ARE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE!!

  176. SJB says:

    I agree. I have more faith in Sid getting back before Neal at this point.

  177. SJB says:

    Yup. Wuss move for sure and the worst part is, everyone in the NHL knows about it now. The fans can think what they want but he’s a wuss in the eyes of his peers now. No slap on the a$$ for that limp-wristed display. Gonna have to have his a$$ handed to him like a man sometime soon to get any respect back if he even deserves it.

  178. Patrick says:

    Pfft. Leake. Hes as tough as the nut job playing second base behind him, and thats all. Dude has a neck like a stack of nickels. Nothing drives me crazy like guys that act as tough as the biggest guy standing in front of them.

    In some ways I wish baseball was like hockey. Not really, but it sure would put and end to this throwing at each other BS if the pitcher had to answer to the batter and him alone.

    And in case you forgot….I do umpiring :D

  179. Milo Hamilton says:

    It’s because of that incident that Phillips needs hit again. And again …

  180. CWalton_67 says:

    Have been listening to the conversation on Pens lines when Sid returns. I think it’s clear that Kunitz needs to play with Malkin and Neal. Iginla with Dupuis and Crosby. While both Geno and Sid elevate the play of line mates, Sid is clearly the more flexible player and there is every reason to believe he will play well with Iginla. Give Morrow a shift with one of those two lines occasionally. He’s the guy the Pens have needed for the past three seasons.

  181. Baywatch says:

    LOL! The Drewmeister!

  182. Baywatch says:

    I know she was getting old but I hated to see Christy McVie retire. She always carried me away. Especially on that “Songbird!”

  183. JohninOshkosh says:

    Post of the Year.

    Only thing that could make the promotion more perfect is if Macy’s was the sponsor.

  184. Patrick says:

    I know. I get the idea of it. Sometimes you have to stand up and prove you wont be intimidated when you are getting beat, that they may beat you on the scoreboard but they wont take your pride, too. Hockey is a macho, lumberjack, psuedo-caveman sport that way.

    But if you are going to try and show that you are going to pay a price, to send a message that you wont be pushed around in your own building, then how do you leave your helmet on? And of all people….WHY DOUG MURRAY? For gods sake Im sure Tanner Glass would have obliged, and god knows DB was sending him out there often enough to get his first point.

    I dont know…challenging the toughest guy on the other team while he is skating away is dumb. Doing it in such a manner as he did defeated the whole purpose of doing it. It didnt inspire anyone or give the fans something to feel good about. Just pointless.

  185. JohninOshkosh says:

    Groat:

    So I take it you won’t be at Highmark on Saturday Night.

  186. kr70 says:

    Altoona Curve has “Thirsty Thursdays” beer specials not free but waaaayy better than what’s at PNC

  187. Patrick says:

    Jokinen will only cost 2.1 mil next year. Very reasonable. A bargain if he keeps producing the way he is. but he is a 40-50 point penalty killer, and 2.1 mil is a good deal for that player.

    Duper will be back. Sid loves him, Duper loves Pittsburgh. There is always the chance someone throws a bag of money at him, but with the cap shrinking I doubt 33 year old wingers will be at the top of anyones wish list.

    Matt Cooke will probably be gone. I think that’s what Jokinen was brought in to replace mostly. And I have a very, very bad feeling after last night that I might see Cooke in orange next year. Just a gut feeling..

  188. SeanAY says:

    +1

    I’m not a fan of the caveman logic. The best revenge is to calmly go about your business and kick your opponent’s butt.

  189. Patrick says:

    Most elite hockey players are like Malkin. Skilled players overcoming rough spots is actually the norm, not the exception.
    Has anyone seen Tomas Vanek since early February? He jumped out to the lead in points but has vanished for over two months.

    Where was Ovie for the first two months?

    Anyone seen “the best hockey player in the world” Claude Giroux lately? Mmmrigght…he’s trailing Kunitz and Dupuis in Goals, Points, Wins and Cups….clown shoes..

    Why all of a sudden has Gaborik decided to play? The hotel rooms in Columbus nicer than his townhouse in NYC?

    Most superstars have a hard time dealing with adversity, mostly because they never had to before, and its hard to learn that kind of mental discipline when you are already a professional.

    Its what makes Sid who he is. His skill set isn’t unique. His mental toughness is his greatest asset.

  190. SJB says:

    So that would have us for the top 3 lines:

    Crosby/Iginla/Dupuis
    Malkin/Neal/Kunitz
    Jokinen/Morrow/Cooke, or Sutter/Jokinen/Morrow?

    Who goes to the 4th line, Cooke or Sutter? Tough choice. I will say this; Jokinen and Morrow are looking perfect for the 3rd line and combined with Cooke that would be a fearsome steamroller of a checking line, not to take anything away from Sutter, but I’d rather see Sutter center the 4th if the choice had to be made.

  191. Jandy says:

    Do you go there often, kr?

  192. Jandy says:

    Well said, Patrick, but this stuff from Malkin is getting old. The boneheaded penalties persist from last season and beyond. Time to suck it up and learn some discipline.

  193. Thundercrack says:

    I think the FO may have told them not to retaliate last year. They were in a pennant race. And why would you risk a pitcher getting suspended.

    And someone will have to explain to me why we need to retaliate this year for something that happened last year.

    Lets just concentrate on winning the games.

  194. JohninOshkosh says:

    I say they plunk Dusty Baker when he comes out with the lineup card.

    Baker has the distinction of choking with the management of three teams.

  195. Jandy says:

    Ewwwww on Cookie. I sure hope not.

    But I do hope you’re right about Duper. He’s one of my favorite players, just because of his work ethic and his heart.

  196. Milo Hamilton says:

    No one is making any kind of a move at Augusta this morning. It’s shaping up very well for you know who.

  197. Milo Hamilton says:

    So you’re saying he’ll be the next manager of the Pirates ?

  198. Jandy says:

    You can’t get on the PK unit if the coach doesn’t give you a chance to play there.

  199. SJB says:

    Have Johnny Football throw the 1st pitch and that just might happen. ;)

  200. Kevin says:

    SJB, how does your equation change assuming Neal isn’t yet back. Do you then put Cooke on the 2nd line with Malkin and Kunitz?

  201. Jandy says:

    lol…I applaud you as well :)

  202. Jandy says:

    but I followed ya ;)

  203. Jandy says:

    You’re no fun TC. The Buccos should retaliate just because Chapman is a dorktard :P

  204. Thundercrack says:

    Does anyone know if Greinke hurt his shoulder because he (stupidly) lowered his shoulder into Quentin , or did he get slammed to the ground?

  205. Milo Hamilton says:

    Or Denard Robinson.

  206. JohninOshkosh says:

    Baker is smart of enough to go to teams with an establish nucleus of talent. Pirates not there yet. Baker prefers to save his choke jobs for the playoffs.

  207. Jandy says:

    Only problem with that is, what chance do the Pirates have of kicking CIncy’s butt?

  208. George Contis says:

    DK: Would love to hear your thoughts (PRE vacation please) on the Grienke – Quentin rhubarb last night (and resulting Grienke injury) and whether MLB should do anything to prevent bench clearing brawls.

    I say 15 games automatic suspension for leaving the dugout / charging the mound and if a P throws a headshot (regardless of intent), he’s out 15 games as well. P’s cans till have the brush back (but not a throw to the noggin). The brawls are getting downtight ridiculous.

  209. I’m waiting to go see the “chicks” play football!

  210. Jandy says:

    Milo agreed with me last night!! :)

  211. Vette60 says:

    Regarding Murray and the fight last night – helmet off, hair out of eyes, swing away…

    But, I think there is a some sort of goofy NHL rule that if you have a visor and the other guy does not, you must loose your helmet or there’s an additional penalty…other guy should have dropped his though too.

    I might be making up that rule, but it sounds good.

    Murray is one big dude – glad to have him clearing the crease…

    Randy in RVA.

  212. Naterosboro says:

    Some sporting thoughts today…

    * Big series for the Buccos this weekend. If they can take 2 of 3 from the Reds here early on, it could provide a boost to the team after their 3-6 rough start.

    * 2 of 3 from the Reds would put the Buccos at 5-7. Thats not too bad after 12 games.

    * I nominate Justin Wilson to get the spot start if Wandy cannot pitch on Saturday. He’s certainly earned it with his work out of the bullpen.

    * The “new guys” for the Pens (Jokinnen, Iginla, Morrow, Murray) have all settled really well. I initially thought that Crosby’s absence would be a big deal for this team, but they’ve been able to carry the load.

    * I think the important thing is getting Paul Martin healthy for the playoffs for the work he has done this year on the penalty kill.

    * I think I’m 1 of the strange NFL fans that doesn’t got all batty for the draft. The Steelers are going to pick someone. I trust their judgement. So the only thing really for me is to see when the draft is over to see the names of the guys the Steelers have taken. I don’t get the months and months of speculating who is going to take what players. Maybe it’s me….

    * I DO NOT WANT James Harrison to sign with the Bengals. Not that I think he’d wreak havoc against the Steelers. I just couldn’t stand to see him in those awful uniforms. Joey Porter in Dolphin colors I could take. Deebo in orange and black with stupid tiger stripes?! [an emphatic] NO!

    HAVE A GOOD DAY ALL :-)

  213. Thundercrack says:

    Nate,
    I would bet that Wilson is one of those pitchers that can be really good facing 3-9 batters.
    After that, the wheels tend to fall off.

  214. Thundercrack says:

    You hockey fans are all the same. :-)

  215. Jandy says:

    All Crombeen did was make an utter fool of himself. And unmanned himself in the process.

  216. SJB says:

    Yeah, that could screw the pooch. I think it’s easier just to assume Neal will be back. If not, probably back to Crosby/Kunitz/Dupuis, Malkin/Iginla/Jokinen and Sutter/Cooke/Morrow.

    At least it makes the most sense based on what we’ve seen so far.

  217. Jandy says:

    ZING!

  218. SJB says:

    I think he did it pulling Quentin’s pud too hard.

  219. Iceman says:

    1%, but a man can dream…

  220. Patrick says:

    yea its one thing to not produce. To take stupid penalties is realllyy annying.

    If you arent going to help, dont hurt…

    But then he goes out and scores a goal and assists on another…

    You take the good, you take the bad,
    you take them both and there you have
    The Facts of Life, the Facts of Life.

  221. Jandy says:

    Dream on …

  222. 21sthebest says:

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Quentin suspended until Greinke comes back.

  223. Jandy says:

    +10000000000

  224. Let the boys be boys.

    Let them take care of things themselves. Few ever get hurt: heck, few punches ever land.

    What happened to Grienke is just a possibility, not a probability. Heck, Liriano got hurt worse bumping into his bathroom wall! Are you going to ban ballplayers from going to the bathroom?

    John Smiley got hurt worse shutting his hand in a cab door (wink, wink). Are you going to ban ballplayers from taking cabs?

    Too much legislation and statistics just put too many uppety ups controlling a game they know little about.

    For reference: see Frank Coonelly!

  225. Jandy says:

    That’s what makes us so great :P

  226. Jandy says:

    ::snicker::

  227. Jandy says:

    In between I still give him a swift kick in the pants with my size 9 wides ;)

  228. Arriba Wilver says:

    What I saw was he lowered it into Quentin. But Quentin’s been hit more than any other player since 2008, the count was 3-2, and the Dodgers were leading. As Mattingly said, no way were they throwing at him. Not sure, though, that Greinke didn’t yell something to Quentin that set him off.

  229. JohninOshkosh says:

    I’m pulling for Sergio. If the guy could handle Martina Hingis, he can handle Amen Corner. Plus, I do regard him as the current holder of the Best Player Without a Major.

    I like Zach Johnson and Jason Dufner too. Always follow Wisconsinite Steve Stricker, another guy without a major.

  230. Thundercrack says:

    Really Groat?
    Getting hurt at home or in a cab is in the same category of another player charging at the pitcher? One happens on the playing field – and the others don’t.

    I think Quentin is in the category of players that don’t realize the game situation and if they were actually being thrown at intentionally.

  231. Jandy says:

    pud???????????????????

  232. Jandy says:

    “What happened to Grienke is just a possibility, not a probability. Heck, Liriano got hurt worse bumping into his bathroom wall! Are you going to ban ballplayers from going to the bathroom?”

    LMAO! Priceless.

  233. CWalton_67 says:

    Tough choices, but I think Jokinen to the fourth line, even given his tremendous play since arriving. Despite the lack of offensive stats, Sutter has been extremely solid and is a long term piece of Pens future. So, Morrow-Sutter- Cooke. 4th line, Adams-Jokinen-Bennett. Glass and TK sit.

  234. Patrick says:

    - I think the series will tell a lot about the fortitude of this team more than the W/L record. If they lose all three, but show a lot of heart doing so, and they haven’t show much to date, I will be ok with it. I want to see some will to compete. I want to see someone throw their batting helmet after grounding into a DP. A fist pump after a big SO. SOmething….
    -Not even Shero could have predicted that all of these players could step in and play this well. Morrow is a beast. Iginla is everything I had hoped. Murray plays like he hates humans. And jokinen…well…right now there are some very angry people in Raleigh to say the least.
    -After the last 4-5 years of drafts…i no longer trust the Steelers judgment. The reason they are in such problems is they had to keep extending older players cap hits, and they had too because the young kids couldn’t step into starting roles. # of the 7 players they drafted JUST LAST YEAR aren’t even on the team anymore!
    -James in Cincy doesn’t worry me. He is a one trick pony at this point and that trick is old news to Pittsburgh. I actually hope he goes to Cincy because that will be one less player we have to worry about when we play them twice. For sentimentality sake I would prefer he just retires…but his accountant probably disagrees.

  235. JohninOshkosh says:

    They have a history going back to Sox/Royals days. Sox got rid of him in part, I think, because of his attitude. Would not surprise me if synthetic substances were causing that rage, either.

  236. Iceman says:

    I love a good line discussion so after last night’s game, here are my new lines. First, if Neal comes back:

    Dupuis – Crosby – Iginla
    Kunitz – Malkin – Neal
    Jokinen – Sutter – Morrow
    Cooke – Adams – Glass (I hate putting Glass in above Vitale/Bennett, but a Cooke – Adams – Glass line gives you 3 good PK players not to mention that this would be a chore of a line to play against. Imagine the number of hard checks thrown with this line).

    If Neal is not back:

    Dupuis – Crosby – Iginla
    Morrow – Malkin – Neal
    Sutter – Jokinen – Cooke
    Bennett – Adams – Glass

    I know this is not what the lines will look like in either situation, but I like them.

  237. SJB says:

    I do like the idea of my first lineup with Sutter centering the 4th line. In the playoffs, if you can roll 4 lines of that quality and depth a center when most teams are lucky to have 3 or even 2 competent lines, it’s hard to top.

    Gotta think of it in that way versus just trying to build the very best top 2 lines. Balance throughout the lineup beats being top heavy, especially over the long haul when minutes start to take their toll on teams who can’t roll 4 or even 3 lines lines consistently enough, and start to have their top lines fatigued and wear down.

    The Pens should have the talent to beat any team over a 7 games series, it’s just making sure they have the wheels left to do it over 4 total series that could go 7 games each.

  238. 21sthebest says:

    Quentin also led the league in being hit the past two years so obviously it’s not unusual that he got hit.

  239. JohninOshkosh says:

    Groat-I would have agreed with you 25 years ago. But the Dodgers are paying Greinke the GDP of most developing countries. Padres aren’t paying Q chump change either.

  240. Arriba Wilver says:

    Don’t ask. ;-)

  241. Baby chick droppings happen.

    One of the worst rules ever instituted is umpires warning both benches BEFORE things have evened out.

    We don’t need more rules in baseball (other than a Salary Cap, which will never happen!) . . . . . . . . we need more players with non-Balko influenced cajones!!!!!

  242. Arriba Wilver says:

    At least with an injury there may be insurance coverage.

  243. JohninOshkosh says:

    Think of something that men value, Jandy, and think of how many words that have for “it.”

  244. PetroSteel says:

    I’m seeing a lot of complaining about the Pirates today…almost every day.

    So should they go out and find a number 1 or 2 pitcher? Wondering where they would find that unless they mortgage the future.

    This wasn’t the year they were going to compete.

    They have several pitchers coming in the next 30-60 days (Morton, Liriano, Cole, Karstans).

    The bullpen is strong, they will hit (even Alvarez) and help is on the way with the pitching staff.

    I just know what other options they have right now.

  245. “I don’t care too much for money;
    money can’t buy me love.”

  246. 21sthebest says:

    I think the rule was probably put in place to help prevent players from getting hurt which, IMO, is more important than evening things out, if that’s even the case.

  247. 21sthebest says:

    I wonder how an insurance company might view Greinke lowering his shoulder.

  248. SJB says:

    I’m assuming you meant Morrow-Malkin-Kunitz for the second option if Neal isn’t back.

  249. Patrick says:

    IMO..intent or not its the third time hes been hit by Grienke. The man had enough. Would be talking about suspending Grienke if he had injured Quentin? Even if it was the 4th time he had hit him? The 6th? Grienke spot in the batting order wasn’t up till the 8th inning probably, so he knew he wasn’t going to have to stand in and face live pitching again.

  250. JohninOshkosh says:

    I loved that movie. Patrick Dempsey’s finest work.

  251. SJB says:

    Better yet, watch the video.

  252. Yet the rule as it now stands allows a haughty or angry pitcher to throw at someone with impunity, since umpires will step in and not allow teams to “take care of it.”

    Higher chance for injury methinks.

    Ballplayers can tell the difference between “one that slipped” and one designed to hit you.

  253. Jandy says:

    I don’t like putting Jokinen on the fourth line…but I believe paired with Bennett, that’s a dangerous line anywhere. Bennett has the skill and the smarts to play with Jokinen. Adams can make them some room.

  254. “I want my two dollars!!!”

  255. Jandy says:

    Dear Lord, that’s the first time I’ve heard Willie called a pud LOL!

  256. 21sthebest says:

    Sometimes, probably.

  257. SJB says:

    I agree. I don’t know why anyone would feel the need to complain and complain as much as they do. There’s simply no basis for it.

    Not unless they expect a good team and a winner that is, but that’s just fantasy nonsense. If people want that kinda pie in the sky, unrealistic stuff, I suggest they move to NY or better yet, Oz, cause we don’t take kindly to that kinda thinking around here.

    :)

  258. Arriba Wilver says:

    Depends on what the policy says, but he had a guy rushing at him and it was his non-pitching shoulder. Sounds like a normal response. Is he supposed to stand there upright, run? ;-)

  259. Jandy says:

    OK watched it…and I’ve seen it all now. What kind of ^uss^ grabs another guy’s “pud” in a fight? ^ussY!

  260. Jandy says:

    If nothing else, I’m inquisitive LOL

  261. Arriba Wilver says:

    Willie who?

  262. 21sthebest says:

    Oh I absolutely think it was a reasonable response. I was just wondering, like you said, how those policies are written.

    I think it’s safe to say though that Greinke clearly has watched Troy tackle.

  263. Arriba Wilver says:

    “This wasn’t the year they were going to compete.”

    If you have that view . . . and you are OK with that, including retaining the FO at the end of this year . . . then there would be no reason to complain.

    That’s not acceptable to a lot if people, including me.

  264. Arriba Wilver says:

    :-)

  265. Bizrow says:

    + 10000

    Its time to win or hit the road

  266. Jandy says:

    Watching the video, I’d bet 100 Playoff units that Grienke said something he shouldn’t have.

  267. Jandy says:

    Amen!

  268. Pucknutz says:

    Murray plays like he hates humans.

    Sorry Patrick I like that one soo much I am going to use it in my next hockey discussion w/the boys. Of course I will act like I thought it up. Stealing it from ya! LOL

  269. Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) says:

    Friday vacation thread and I need a vacation…..even though I just had one…last week.

  270. Arriba Wilver says:

    And his reputation for leaning into pitches and leading the league in HBP since 2008 or even the last 2 years doesn’t factor in? Were you in favor of the Pirates” pitchers not pitching inside because they might hit someone (Ian Snell’s excuse)?

  271. Brandie says:

    When is striving for The Mendoza line ever acceptable? By the way…have a job interview upcoming. Thanks to all for the vibes. :-)

  272. The Gunner says:

    Tom

    Most likely what you say about a major Bucco house cleaning is probably true. That is the way of life for baseball in Pittsburgh.

  273. Patrick says:

    I watched it a few times. I dont think Quentin leaned in. And if i had to chose one side, i would think Grienke did it with intent. His body language wasnt confrontational immediately. Ive seen lots of pitchers throw at others from behind the plate. The ones that do it with intent dont turn to the side and look up in frustration. If they do it with intent they almost always immediately square their shoulders to the plate and take a wise stance. Besides that, only way he does it is if Mattingly tells him to. Grienke isnt one to do it on his own.If Mattingly wanted someone to throw at someone (presumably for the pitch thrown to Kemp earlier) he would bring in a bullpen guy, not his 14 million dollar pitcher.

    BUT…with all of that said…its still the third time he hit him. How many times has Quentin charged the mound after getting hit? Its not like he does this all the time. Ho many times should a guy get hit before he decides to do something about it? 4? 7?

    Carlos thought 3 was enough.

  274. Patrick says:

    I meant to say “And if i had to chose one side, i would think Grienke DIDNT DO IT WITH INTENT…DID NOT…”

    my bad

  275. “This wasn’t the year they were going to compete.”

    I cannot believe how much those words enrage me!!!!!!

    Please do NOT make those kind of heretical statements here!

    Imagine if the Penguin ownership took that approach.
    Imagine if the Steeler ownership took that approach.

    The pyramids were built in a shorter time than it is taking the Pirates to rebuild this team! BMTIB!!

  276. Knock ‘em dead, Brandie!

    Don’t try to tell them what you think they want to hear——tell them who you are and how you will help them be better!

  277. Brad, Indiana PA says:

    “Strong Pirates system doesn’t stop with Cole
    Righty generating excitement on stacked Indianapolis squad while Pittsburgh waits”

    I didn’t even have to read the whole article to start chuckling. Thank you, Tom Singer.

  278. Patrick says:

    Its impossible to determine intent. Pitches get away from guys, especially in strange conditions. When its hot and humid and the ball is softer, hands might be sweaty..it happens

    But then so do batters going after the pitcher. Like Groat say very few pitches are ever thrown, even fewer land. Most pitches that hit a batter, even intentionally, only leave a bruise.

    Only time suspensions should be metered out is for repeat offenders, severe aggression (like kicking a guy on the ground) or using the bat as a weapon. If it turns into a wrestling scrum like last nights fight…who cares…let em go. They are grown men and professionals. Ive seen just as many cases where the batter going out is the one who gets hurt.

  279. Jandy says:

    Good luck girl!

  280. BillyBaduka says:

    Rots a ruck with dat.

    Lets go PENS!

  281. Jandy says:

    +100000000

  282. Patrick says:

    LOL..i stole it from a San Jose player that i cant remember. One of Murray’s old team mates said it first…

  283. Jandy says:

    hey, it’s Brad :)

  284. The Gunner says:

    It doesn’t matter who manages the Pirates – the results are pretty similar. We are on our 5th manager since Jim Leyland & Clint Hurdle has shown the most improvement as compared to Russell, Tracy, McClendon & Lamont.

    Clint will probably be canned sometime during this season & his replacement sure won’t be Dusty Baker.

  285. Jandy says:

    like

  286. Native American wisdom from Indian Brad!

    Tom Singer speaks with forked tongue. Or possibly empty head.

  287. Patrick says:

    I know. Who are these fans that demand a winning team once a generation? I mean sheessh…its not like their weren’t 2-3 outfielders in their prime avaiable in FA this past december or anything. And since the PBC is just SO BROKE….they had to cut their payroll back. THEY HAD TOO!

    It was part of the plan.

  288. TCB says:

    I saw the “incident” and did not think any retaliation was warranted then and certainly not now. IMHO, it was way overblown.

  289. Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) says:

    wasn’t Patrick Dempsey

  290. Arriba Wilver says:

    Carlos was being a little loose with the facts. He attempted to charge the mound in 2009 against Greinke but was restrained. There is definitely something between the guys, but it is at least 50% with Quentin based on what I’ve read.

  291. Nor Cali Ryan,

    Wasn’t that same movie?

  292. 21sthebest says:

    I don’t feel like it’s very strong but Baseball America has us 7th, John Sickels at MiLB has us 5th and “improving rapidly,” Jim Calis has us 8th, etc.

  293. Jandy says:

    I don’t know a whole lot about this feud. It’s obviously heated. but what kinda guy grabs another guys pud??? ;)

  294. Each one of them also talks about there being no depth in the system and it being top-heavy with talent———from drafting 1-2-3-4 so often.

    Heck, Bucs drafted #4 with Tony Sanchez (#32 ranked talent at time) and apparently screwed that up!

    Cardinals are usually drafting in the 20′s and they have the #1 ranked Minor League system, plus 5 guys from 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 on 25 man roster!

  295. John Lease says:

    I remember the brawls the Pirates used to have, back when they weren’t the Milquetoasts.

    The brawl with the Tigers in spring training, and with the Padres during the regular season, when the Pirates had Kurt Bevacqua the second time…

  296. JohninOshkosh says:

    You are thinking of “Better Off Dead” Groat.

  297. 21sthebest says:

    Well Groat, we complain when they’re ranked low, and we complain when they’re ranked fairly high. I guess that’s what we do.

    Sickels, for example, talked about the lack of depth as a weakness. He also talked about weaknesses of the teams ranked 1 through. 4.

  298. JohninOshkosh says:

    RIP Jonathan Winters

  299. Jandy says:

    RIP Jonathan Winters

  300. Jandy says:

    OK this is getting weird.

  301. JohninOshkosh says:

    Great minds, Dear.

  302. Thank you . I been rackin’ my brain to come up with it.

  303. Arriba Wilver says:

    It could be love.

  304. Bizrow says:

    Good luck, and do not worry, good things happen to good people.

    Just don’t let them know you are one of us ;-)

  305. Bizrow says:

    Crap, he was one of the very best in his business

  306. One of the funniest guys I have ever heard. Unique take on life.

    I have his book “Winters’ Tales”:

    “I can picture you 50 years ago and more playing alone,
    Creating invisible friends, speaking their dialogues, acting each role.
    I’m a lot like you.
    You taught me not to be afraid to be alone or unusual.
    You taught me to be proud to be strange.”

    Good words. Good man.

  307. Arriba Wilver says:

    My favorite comedian for many years. And, an original,

  308. Jandy says:

    Amen

  309. Jandy says:

    I said last week, they’re dropping like flies :(

  310. Jandy says:

    ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

  311. Milo Hamilton says:

    We have to find a new worst pitcher in the big leagues. Chris Leroux has been DFA’d.

  312. Arriba Wilver says:

    Those people who were telling Daq he was an “amazing talent” are going to be disappointed.

  313. John Lease says:

    Yes he was, he’ll be missed.

  314. JohninOshkosh says:

    His impact on postwar American comedy is immeasurable.

    I feel the same way about Carl Reiner.

  315. John Lease says:

    What? He’ll clear waivers though. We haven’t seen the last of him.

  316. Jandy says:

    Sucks to be them :)

  317. Milo Hamilton says:

    I fear you are right.

  318. Arriba Wilver says:

    I wouldn’t worry too much,

  319. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  320. Bizrow says:

    Morris is coming up.

  321. Arriba Wilver says:

    Did they bring up Inge?

  322. Bizrow says:

    Haven’t heard anything about that yet

  323. John Lease says:

    Shh, if we all pretend he isn’t hanging over our heads, maybe he’ll just go away.

  324. stickyweb says:

    “And two times through the rotation it is not looking so great”

    Really, 10th in MLB in ERA and 6th in WHIP for the pitching staff? If the hitters were anywhere close to those rankings in ANY category (other than K’s and shutouts against), Buccos would have a winning record.

    I’ll concede that the bullpen has been better than the starters so far, but we have any combo of Karstens, Morton, Liriano and Cole available in the next month or so. The pitching will be fine.

  325. stickyweb says:

    “Sabertoothed Metrical Quantum Leaping Statistical Analysis”

    ROTFL, well done Jose

  326. Drew71 says:

    Yes

  327. Iceman says:

    I’m an idiot. Yes and thank you.

  328. cosmo says:

    maybe that’s what tonight’s line will be at the window.
    which Red gets drilled?
    Votto, Phillipps, or any other player.

  329. Kevin says:

    baseball isn’t hockey though… its not football either. In hockey, every team wants to win. It’s their goal to win the championship. In baseball, its complicated by the whole small market/big market baseball-nomics. I dunno.. it just seems to me that for the pirates to win, they have to catch lightning in a bottle. The yankees can just go out and buy a better team. Plus, what motivation do the pirates FO have to pump in more money and lose when they can pump in less money, still lose, but end up richer. It’s all mixed up.

  330. Sisyphus says:

    Murray didn’t take off his helmet to be classy. He did it because he wears a shield, and he has to.

  331. Sisyphus says:

    Harrison batted second the next day, and Dusty had Leake drill him in the first, which then brought the warning, denying the Pirates a free shot.

  332. Sisyphus says:

    Oops, my bad, I looked up the wrong box score.

    Never mind.

  333. Pucknutz says:

    Ha, Jonathan still messin with our heads!!

  334. Sisyphus says:

    Do you believe for a second that Steelers management in their wildest dreams see a division title coming next year, let alone a Super Bowl?

  335. Kevin says:

    why not? they’re called dreams for a reason… I’ve dreamt of skating on Crosby’s line in the Stanley Cup Finals and I can barely skate.

  336. BillyBaduka says:

    There was a movie called “Can’t buy me love” 87 with Patrick Dempsey.

    The two dollars line is from “Better Off Dead” 85 with John Cusack.

    Both are teen romantic comedies and “Better Off…” Is better.

  337. kr70 says:

    6-10 times a summer and I see the spikes in state college too. But may skip them as they are now affiliated with the cards.

 
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