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Thursday Wakeup Call: Happy Mel Kiper Day

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Morning, lunatics …

>> The weekly chat is today at noon, right here in the post that will pop up above this around 9 a.m. Once that happens, you’re free to submit entries at any time.

>> Before we get to the NFL Draft that’s going to consume the day of much of American society — no kidding, NFL Network’s preview stuff starts at 6 a.m.! — I want to point out a couple social media outlets we’ve developed for the new WPXI-Trib Sunday night sports show called ‘The Final Word’ …

IMG_1180

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WPXIFinalWord

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Final-Word/129748933881370?ref=br_tf

I’ll remind that the show debuts Sunday at 11:35 p.m., with Alby Oxenreiter and Bill Phillips of WPXI, Rob Rossi and myself from the Trib … and you! That’s not just a line. We’ll have a Twitter scroll running throughout the show. If you follow either of the above accounts, you’ll be asked for your input on the same topics we’re discussing. Regardless of when you enter it, it can be used.

>> I’ll be covering the NFL Draft from the Steelers’ headquarters on the South Side, undoubtedly deep into the night, since that’s how the NFL sees fit to conduct its first round beginning at 8 p.m.

I’ll put up a fresh post here after the Pirates-Phillies matinee for all our draft updates and discussion.

Here’s the Trib’s draft-day preview, by beat man Alan Robinson.

Here’s the Trib’s mock draft by Mark Kaboly.

Here’s the Trib’s local angle, by Scott Brown and Jerry DiPaola.

If you missed it, this was my Wednesday column on the topic.

>> The Penguins are in Newark for their, ahem, pen-ultimate regular-season game, and it’ll probably be most intriguing to see where Sidney Crosby, James Neal and Paul Martin are health-wise than anything else. The latter two sound at least possible to participate.

Columnist Joe Starkey finds a different intriguing angle: What to do with the power play?

>> Yet another gutted-out, get-one-from-a-pitcher-you-shouldn’t-beat victory for the Pirates last night in Philly, with Wandy Rodriguez turning in another solid start and the near-perfect bullpen pair of Mark Melancon and Jason Grilli tirelessly finishing it off.

I’ll repeat from the Monday column: What they’re doing right now — even Brandon Inge, for crying out loud — is commendable. I just wonder whether it’s sustainable given the pitching.

>> Hope to have you in the chat.

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. flizr6 says:

    Nice win tonight by the Buccos. Always feels good to beat Philly. Big day for the Steelers Thursday…too bad most of us will be sleeping by the time they pick!

  2. blazer says:

    Can’t wait to see how the new show goes DK. Also thanks all for the great posts that keep the hometown fans that had to move away updated!

    DK: Welcome to the blog.

  3. Stuart says:

    DK,

    Curious about why Sunday night at 11:30. Is there some big demographic reason, or maybe a “ratings ploy” for the TV station?

    I’ll tune in, as I always enjoyed your appearances on the other show which I watch regularly.

    Stuart

    DK: Thanks, Stu. I’m not a TV guy, so I won’t have a firm answer. I can say that NBC has the highest rated show on TV in Sunday Night Football, so that could make a good lead-in, to use one if their terms. Other than that, maybe it’s just because that’s when the other two stations in town have done theirs. Don’t know.

  4. Stuart says:

    Thanks. Frankly the other format is getting a little stale. My wife calls them the “screamers”. Looking forward to something fresh and different.

    I’ve had a twitter account for about three years, but have tweeted only once at the beginning. I think I’ll reserve my comments for the blog!

    Stu

  5. Ghost says:

    I’m also looking forward to checking out the new show. It airs at a more amenable time where I am, too.

    “I just wonder whether it’s sustainable given the pitching.”

    You’re Monday column concern will unfortunately stand the test of time. Too many things have to go right with JMac, Sanchez, Locke and/or Liriano, Karstens, Morton. Because we KNOW the injury bug is bound to strike someone (and Karstens doesn’t count — his was/will be a given). Harold Reynolds was asked about the Pirates and he declared that he’s “through with them.” The Bucs have let him down too many times after he went out on a limb and said “this is the year” for them. Reynolds also said that the Bucs don’t have enough bench depth, by the way. Sounds like he’s familiar with your writing.

    (Speaking of which, a belated but BIG congrats on having your prose cited as an example in the American Heritage Online Dictionary. Super cool.)

  6. KenKopp says:

    First off, love your writing. Read the article yesterday and it makes too much sense. Yep arms are going to tire and not much depth in the system. Another angle if I may. I’ve spent the last 20 years watching my favorite Pittsburgh team lose. Right now I’m pumped more than I have been in long, long time. Watching guys on the bench being into the game and knowing it could be their turn to contribute at any time. Watching ACTUAL execution of basic baseball situations. I truly believe Clint has his team, and the players are playing for each other. Good things can happen with that dynamic.

    Not telling you how to look for your future articles, but you just might to want to start to consider how tell the rest of the country how this Laughing Stock of a franchise has the best record in baseball entering June.

    Of course that might not be the case, but as I go lay my head on the pillow for my early alarm, I’m trying to figure out ways to get the score of tomorrows 1:05 start. Sucks I gotta work. But ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS that I care.

    Keep up the good work man. Hope you get to go to your favorite Canadian city real soon. Good matchup for the Pens.

    DK: Welcome, Ken. Happy to have you.

  7. Ghost says:

    Part of me says, “Hey, TBMTIB is actually getting better and making better decisions of late.” But then the other part of me says, “We’ve been down this euphoric road before. Not only last year, and the year before, but 2008 when we went into the All-Star break with a rousing victory over St. Louis and a club house full of players that really were fighting for each other and thought they could do it. Only to be broken up within the month.
    I’m not saying this to rehash the Summer of ’08 trades and their supposed pros and cons. OH, PLEASE NO. What happened, happened. But while I’m am one who places a high value on that special *something* when guys in a club house genuinely come together, our front office does not. In fact, for a while there I could swear they were jealous of even a whiff of its presence (but that’s a whole other discussion for a whole other thread).
    Anyway, what the players and Clint Hurdle have done so far is clearly special. “IF” they do sustain it, whether they then get the support they need from the front office — that will be a huge factor. I’ll leave it at that.

  8. Ghost says:

    I did a sloppy job of conveying Harold Reynolds’ intent. It was a quick, offhand remark amidst an longer assessment that was generally fair. He wasn’t mocking or disdaining the Pirates; he really seemed to sound like a number of us lunatics in here who want to believe in the team, but have seen them turn into pumpkins too many times before.

  9. Brandie says:

    Another win for the Pirates. I am happy for the team. I hope nothing is done to disturb the chemistry they have going. I hope the FO tries to find key pieces to only enhance the product (ie less recycling / reclamation projects) both through the draft and through free agency. Make the club a destination players find attractive.

    As for the Steelers, don’t just draft any old individuals yo fill holes. Use all tools available to evaluate skill sets, personalities, and make sure those you do draft are worth the money. Please no more Chris Rainey’s. He obviously had severe problems. I wish him well in addressing those issues.

    Happy Mel Kiper Day DK. Can you get your hair to do that? I know I can’t.

  10. Drew71 says:

    No. He does the Donald Trump thing.

    “RF. You’re Fired.”

  11. Drew71 says:

    How many parts do you have?

    I have 57.

    I have two that are feuding.

    Part 6 is out booking World Series travel.

    Part 20 just poked 6 in the eye and said something snide about Epic Collapse III.

  12. Drew71 says:

    You know, it’s not working.

    I’m trying to photo shop Dejan’s avatar with a Donald Forward Comb Over and I keep ending up with Thunder’s avatar.

    hmmm.

    and ewww.

  13. theplanisworking says:

    +1

  14. theplanisworking says:

    Drew, you are correct.

    Fandom is a crazy thing………… you want to pour your heart out for your team, but you are worried it will get ripped out.

    The Pirates have ripped our hearts out for 20 straight years, and many are just tuned out. We still root for them, but a wait and see attitude is what many people have. Rightfully so, I may add.

    If there is an epic collapse 3, boy, that will be a tough thing to take. Its just that , given their history, I just have a rough time thinking the braintrust of the Pirates will do the right thing. But I will still be a fan of the team………….

  15. theplanisworking says:

    Happy Mel Kiper Day?

    You mean, Happy Hair Day? ;)

    The Steelers have a very important draft this year. They have to make great picks, as they have many needs. Good Luck, Mr. Colbert!

  16. JAL says:

    JAL’s It’s Raining Again Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZUE4_PtOk0

    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

    Prospect Watch: Pimentel With Another Shutout Start, Bell Hits Third Homer

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/04/prospect-watch-pimentel-with-another-shutout-start-bell-hits-third-homer.html

    Stolmy Pimentel’s Stuff is No Match For Double-A Hitters

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/04/stolmy-pimentels-stuff-is-no-match-for-double-a-hitters.html

    6 Bucs Dugout

    Pirates come back to take another from Phillies, 5-3

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2013/4/24/4263704/pirates-come-back-to-take-another-from-phillies-5-3

    7 WHYGAVS

    Game 21: Pirates 5 Phillies 3

    http://www.whygavs.com/pittsburgh-pirates/april-2013/game-21-pirates-5-phillies-3.html

    8 The Green Weenie

    Bucs Battle Back For 5-3 Win

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2013/04/bucs-battle-back-for-5-3-win.html

    9 Rumbunter

    Look Out Everybody, Pedro Alvarez Is Heating Up

    http://rumbunter.com/2013/04/25/looks-out-everybody-pedro-alvarez-is-heating-up/

    10 Raise the Jolly Roger

    Pirates 5 Phillies 3

    http://raisethejollyroger.com/2013/04/pirates-5-phillies-3/

  17. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Chicago Tribune

    Pirates Team Report

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/sns-rt-bbo-pirates-teamreportmtze94ps7w03x-20130424,0,3914878.story

    12 Rant Sports

    Andrew McCutchen Needs To Start Hitting For Pittsburgh Pirates

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2013/04/24/andrew-mccutchen-needs-to-start-hitting-for-pittsburgh-pirates/

    13Express Times

    Philadelphia Phillies bullpen falters in 5-3 loss to Pittsburgh Pirates

    http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/sports/index.ssf/2013/04/philadelphia_phillies_bullpen_4.html

    14 Delaware Online

    CR grad Ian Snell happy simply playing baseball again

    http://www.delawareonline.com/article/20130425/SPORTS05/304250021/CR-grad-Ian-Snell-happy-simply-playing-baseball-again

    15 Houston Chronicle

    With two doubles, Robbie Grossman dazzles in MLB debut

    http://blog.chron.com/ultimateastros/2013/04/24/with-two-doubles-robbie-grossman-dazzles-in-mlb-debut/

    16 CBS Sports

    Pirates-Phillies Game Preview

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/gametracker/preview/MLB_20130425_PIT@PHI

    17 SB Nation

    Pitching Our Next Great Baseball Movie

    http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/4/22/4232580/baseball-movie-ideas-unmade

    18 PBC Site

    Patient Bucs wait for Phils’ bullpen, stun host

    http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2013_04_24_pitmlb_phimlb_1&mode=recap_away&c_id=pit

    Notebook: Coming through with RISP work in progress for Bucs

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130424&content_id=45691414&notebook_id=45705598&vkey=notebook_pit&c_id=pit

    SPORTS WEBSITES

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    The BP Wayback Machine: There is No Divide

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=20359

    20 Fangraphs

    Matt Harvey’s High Fastball Dominance

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/matt-harveys-high-fastball-dominance/

  18. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    2008 and 2005 Steelers rank among lowest all-time Super Bowl champions

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/4/24/4262540/nfl-all-time-super-bowl-champions-steelers

    Jarvis Jones Mocks Himself to Pittsburgh

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/4/24/4260584/steelers-draft-jarvis-jones-comments

    22 Steelers Depot

    - 2013 Steelers Mock Draft Final Version

    http://www.steelersdepot.com/2013/04/2013-steelers-mock-draft-version-5-0-final-edition/

    Soccer(football) Will T

    23 Daily Telegraph

    Luis Suarez banned for 10 matches by FA after Liverpool striker bit Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/10015574/Luis-Suarez-banned-for-10-matches-by-FA-after-Liverpool-striker-bit-Chelseas-Branislav-Ivanovic.html

    24 World Soccer Daily

    World Soccer Daily: 10 stories you need to read, 24th April, 2013

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/247/world-soccer-daily-10-stories-you-need-to-read-24th-april-2013

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links

    25 Pensburgh

    Hollywood’s Image of Hockey Needs an Update

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2013/4/22/4207900/hollywoods-image-of-hockey-needs-an-update

  19. JAL says:

    It’s Raining Again Supertramp 1982 Made it all the way to number 11 on the US chart

  20. Ghost says:

    All the rainy whether is getting to me, JAL. I need a break in the clouds:
    http://tinyurl.com/d6ehy5

  21. Ghost says:

    And so’s the rainy “weather.” (And probably Chris Rainey, too.)

  22. Ghost says:

    ON what kind of dish would you bestow the name “Epic Collapse III?”

  23. KenKopp says:

    Fandom is a crazy thing. Can’t agree more. But man ain’t it fun. If Epic Collapse 3 happens it would hurt for sure. But I’m sure any Cub fan would trade places with us right now. Hope has lasted longer the last couple of years than in a long time. Who knows how long this year. A cold night game in Pittsburgh in late October? Yeah, Fandom can make even a rational person think some crazy thoughts.

  24. theplanisworking says:

    Very catchy little tune, JAL.

    Supertramp, another underrated band……

  25. theplanisworking says:

    Preferably, no dish at all.

    Being I am so skeptical of this FO, and I am a Hippo, does that make me the blogs’ Hoka Hippo????? ;)

    Off to seize the day.
    Will check back with the fellow nuts later.

  26. MadTurk says:

    +2

  27. JAL says:

    Thought it was a catchy tune too

  28. kr70 says:

    maybe comparable to getting a gold glove??

  29. kr70 says:

    In July if the pirates are still contending just turn the club over to Ray Shero.

  30. Ghost says:

    Hippos practicing their wisdom on these blogs must first swear to the hippocratic oath. Or at minimum, you have to swear to the Pippocratic Oath. (A bottle of Geritol for anyone old enough to get that last reference.)

  31. Drew71 says:

    Cool

  32. Drew71 says:

    Almost ran over a turkey vulture. While it was FLYING.

    That woulda been weird.

  33. Joe D says:

    Great win by the Bucs last night. Regarding the sustainiblility, according to Baseball Prospectus they are only outperforming the underlying statistics by 1 win. I won’t feel comfortable though until they reach 82.

  34. gregenstein says:

    “IF” they do sustain it, whether they then get the support they need from the front office — that will be a huge factor. I’ll leave it at that.
    —————————–
    Last year, the FO acquired Wandy Rodriguez. Trouble is, IMO, deadline deals rarely are the tiebreaker. The team largely will sink or swim on the backs of Cutch, Alvarez, GFJ, Burnett, Wandy, and a likely to be overworked bullpen. The trade deadline won’t change that.

  35. scapper says:

    My favorite part of Draft Week is how you always hear the following crackerjack analysis by Joe Fan: “That guard they got from Rutgers in the fourth round? He’s supposed to be pretty good.”

    Really? You mean after countless hours and beaucoup dollars devoted to this thing, your team drafted a guy who is SUPPOSED TO BE PRETTY GOOD? Wow. Your front office really lives out on the proverbial limb.

  36. Naje says:

    I think he also said that they, in the past, didn’t have enough bench depth but that this year they have a stronger bench…

    Yeah, he likes the Bucs… the prior two years he was predicting good thing but the wheels came off. Different team this year…going to need the pitchers to come through.

  37. JHadar says:

    You must have disturbed it while it was dining.

  38. gregenstein says:

    I wouldn’t rely on things like run differential during the season. I can recall several years running now that the Pirates’ run differential always seemed to indicate they were roughly on target, only they’d collapse and that stat would still say that, based on their run differential, their record is about right.

    I’ll say this though. I don’t expect Marte to continue to be a .300 hitter (or Snider for that matter), but I also don’t expect Cutch will continue to be a .240 hitter or that Alvarez will stay below the Mendoza line. So, I think the guys carrying the lineup may change but will result in overall similar or slightly improved production. The pitching staff…I have no idea where to go with that. If anyone knows what to expect from JMac and Locke, please enlighten me. Sanchez gets 1 more chance, flops, and then we live with Gomez, Mazzaro, Irwin, or John Smiley’s nephew’s former roommate until somebody comes off the DL.

  39. gregenstein says:

    I know. Nobody ever got a pretty good guard from Rutgers. :-)

  40. Jandy says:

    Indeed, that is awesome, Dejan. So, when are you coming to Altoona?
    I need to get your autograph :)

  41. Patrick says:

    Pirates banter, Mel Kiper analysis, turkey vulture vehicular homicide….you really do have multiple parts that are fueding this morning.

  42. Jandy says:

    Ken, if you list your hometown, Bizrow will make sure it’s added to the Lunatics’ Asylum list.

    :)

  43. Nate83 says:

    DK,

    I actually liked the column on Monday a lot. It was a really good read. I just don’t see the starting pitching as horrible as you do. Locke and JMac are about what other teams are throwing out there for their 4 and 5 starters. Their combined ERA is probably pretty much in line with averages for back end rotation guys across the league. Very few teams (even good ones) have 5 solid starters. I really only see it as a Sanchez problem and a fixable one at that after 2 more starts. I would be starting Wilson myself or even Erwin if he isn’t injured.

    DK: I called it horrible? Or even bad?

    Good Lord.

  44. TJ says:

    I found this portion of DK’s article interesting

    I asked Colbert on Monday if all the upheaval of veterans puts more pressure on this weekend.

    “No, every draft has been the same,” he answered. “We did have a few more departures than usual, but we still have eight picks. Every year, we expect ourselves to get the right 7-8 players. When we do, great. When we don’t, it hurts. But it’s really no more critical than any other year because I don’t see anyone coming in and being immediate impact players. I think if we lined up today with what we have, we’ll have a chance. We want to continue to add to that and let these players develop at their own pace.”

    Yep its Steelers talk; but I’m curious does NH make that comment and not get blasted by the fan base? I’m not trying to turn this into a baseball chat here; all I’m trying to do is point out that Colbert and crew have had a very good run but their drafts as of late have been lacking in quality. This kind of comment just irks me even though its what you do expect from the Steelers.

    DK: Laughable comparison, TJ, with all due respect. Those two things are hardly equal.

  45. Dom says:

    I respectfully disagree with the Trib’s mock. IMO, it is hard to imagine that Ryan Nassib will go so early in the first round and ahead of guys like Geno. I also don’t think the Steelers will go WR in the first round. I think they should go with Vaccaro if he is available.
    I have the Steelers grabbing the following:
    Round 1. Alec Ogletree-ILB-Georgia
    Round 2. DeAndre Hopkins-WR-Clemson
    Round 3. Travis Kelce-TE-Cincinnati
    Round 4. Chase Thomas-OLB-Stanford
    Round 5. Will Davis-CB- Utah State
    Round 6 A. TJ Barnes-DT-Georgia Tech
    Round 6 B. Rontez Miles-SS-California PA
    Round 7. Knile Davis-RB- Arkansas
    This isn’t to say that I want Steelers to take Ogletree, that is who I think they will take. I have to be the only one think the Steelers will grab him.
    Here is my full mock: http://www.ourlads.com/nfl-mock-draft-challenge/mock-draft/89058

  46. Brandie says:

    Enthusiastically seconded.

  47. TJ says:

    I think Sunday was a logical choice; I’m not sure DK is quite ready to step in for Leno. Close; but has to finish the SEAL training first.

  48. You mean the hippocritic oath?

  49. Bizrow says:

    + 1

  50. NMR says:

    Goosebumps reading that Grossman article. Thanks for sharing, JAL.

  51. Jandy says:

    BOOM!

  52. Jandy says:

    YIKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  53. Jandy says:

    Heck heah!!!!!!!!!!!!

  54. Jandy says:

    Awesome indeed. I am happy for him. Saw him in Altoona, and I remember liking him.

  55. Jandy says:

    Drew, good thing you missed, would have done more damage to your car than your wife does.

  56. JHadar says:

    On April 8th we were tied for third place in the Central Division. Since then we’ve been 10-4 and still we went into the game last night in fourth place. Milwaukee finally lost, though so we have third place all to ourselves.

    Our 7-3 for the last 10 games is only third best in the division. Miwaukee is 9-1 and Cincinnati 8-2. Tough division +6 vs .500

    So I looked at how the divisions compare at the moment.

    ALE + 7
    NLC + 6
    NLW + 2
    ALC – 2
    NLE – 6
    ALW – 7

    And the Astros are seven under.

    The above is fairly meaningless at this time of year, but this next week ought to provide a gut check with St. Louis and Milwaukee on the road. Let’s see, if it’s MacDonald tonight, then we open in St. Louis with our give-up pitcher and bullpen. Should be mighty interesting.

  57. Naje says:

    Not bad for a 6th round draft choice from the 2008 draft… who partially netted Wandy Rodriguez.

    Will Huntington get credit for drafting and developing Grossman and then getting Wandy Rodriguez for him?

  58. NMR says:

    I find the whole “is this sustainable due to the pitching” question completely pointless.

    Nobody, especially the team, thinks it is sustainable. If the team did, they wouldn’t have three starters and two relievers scheduled to join the team within the next month and a half.

  59. In a couple years when Wandy retires, we’ll all be squalling that we could have Grossman. You can bet on it.

    Neal actually signed him over slot at 1 million, which was a stretch then, but I’ve seen him play, too, and it was a good signing. (Did I say that?)

  60. AJS says:

    I think it is funny how to start the season everyone was talking about how this is the best starting rotation teh Pirates have had in years. And when you look at it now it appears to be more of their biggest weakness than their greatest strength. I said from day one outside of Burnett and Wandy they have nothing. I’ll take the 4 reliable guys they had last season over the 2 studs and nothing they have now. And to call them studs is a stretch.

    AJ, Correia, first half JMac, and Bedard, and the head case sometimes referred to as ground chuck vs. AJ, Wandy, current JMac, and Locke and Sanchez?

    No contest.

  61. Drew71 says:

    You mean the vulture forgets to put oil in our car?

    And generally annoys?

  62. likeabugonarug says:

    Beautiful day for a ballgame here in Philly today. Sunny and in the low 60′s. Leaving in about an hour to head on down to CBP to hopefully witness Buccos taking the series. Looking forward to watching JMac have a good game. Hope he goes at least 7, though, because the pen has been working real hard over the past week.

    Beat ‘em Bucs!

  63. Bizrow says:

    To me, Charlie Morton and Liriano are question marks as well. They might work out, they might not. Kartsy will be a help as long as he stays healthy

  64. 21sthebest says:

    Well the current rotation has a .13 better ERA than last year’s rotation, also last year’s staff has gone about half an inning deeper. Guess we’ll see how it plays out when the Blue Cross/Blue Shield crew comes back.

  65. tomp says:

    I disagree with your analysis on Marte , not being able to keep the average above 300.

    You can see the confidence in this guy, and his speed, and ability to put the ball in play will help with a few hits, here and there.
    Snider?, i am still not sure about his consistency at the plate, but i feel Starling can and will be a 300 hitter, or better this year.
    Cutch hitting in the mid 200′s, and his quality of Ab’s in the last week or so, has me perplexed.
    I am sure he will snap out of it sooner or later,he is too good a hitter.
    I just really hope a good hitting SS is targeted , if this team is in contention at the trade deadline.
    They are going to need to score 4 to 5 runs a game, just to give that bullpen some time off.
    And finally, Walker should scrap batting from the right side.

  66. Nate83 says:

    Apples and oranges. Correia, Bedard and JMac were not injured at the beginning of last year like Morton, Karstans and Liriano are this year. You are comparing a pitching staff that will only be in place for the first 25-30 games. It will be completely differant after 40 games. It’s no more a stretch to call them studs then to call any of the 4 you mentioned as reliable as being reliable at the beginning of last year.

    Now if you are saying Correia, Bedard and Morton are better then Wandy, Liriano and a third pitcher (Morton, Karstans or Cole) then I can see what you are saying. I do not think Bedard and Correia evan come close to being reliable unless Correia is considered reliable because you know he will go 6 and give up 4 runs.

  67. Nice, Dom

    Just 2 questions. Ray Graham all the way to round 7?

    And where is Tino? ;)

  68. Nate83 says:

    Agree 21

    If you take out Sancez which they will after 1 or 2 more starts what does that ERA become. Seriously Locke and JMac have been about what most teams could expect from a 4 and 5 starter.

  69. tomp says:

    The tackle Anthony Davis of the 49ers, is pretty good, does that count, even though he’s a spot away from the guard?.

  70. Bizrow says:

    +1

    Bring back a win ;-)

  71. tomp says:

    Tino will be selling insurance , this time next year.

  72. Naje says:

    DK…
    Can you please explain how a passed ball is factored into pitch framing? I’m still laughing at that.

    By the way, you’re in Whitlock’s league…there are times he mails in his stuff and other times where he’s really solid and yet other times he’s just promoting his cause. I do like him, especially when he writes about basketball and race (the only African American writer who gives it to you straight). Finally, wanted to know if you’re doing any sulia posts…

  73. Arriba Wilver says:

    Alan Robinson had an interesting article in yesterday’s Trib about Colbert’s drafts. DK linked it yesterday.

  74. tomp says:

    Phillies are a -170 today, which i think is kind of low.

    I truly can’t fathom the idea of Sanchez starting 1 more game for this team.
    I am sure the 8 guys wearing gloves behind him aren’t too thrilled about it either.

  75. Dom says:

    Maybe Graham will be more of a 6th rounder. Maybe I should have had the Steelers taking him as they have a tendency to draft local guys in later rounds.

  76. Nate83 says:

    I didn’t put horrible in quotation marks so I wasn’t claiming those are your exact words. You said they have 2 starting pitchers. That is not exactly a glowing review of the other 3 pitcher. It essentially doesn’t even acknowledge their existance. But if you want to split hairs and show me somewhere in that column where you didn’t imply everyone after Wandy and AJ is bad be my guest.

    Good Lord(:

  77. SeanAY says:

    Well, besides the fact that Kevin Colbert has earned himself a LOT more leash than Huntington, for a number of reasons…

    Although, to be fair to your point, no general manager can ever “count on” rookies coming in and making an impact. You wouldn’t be doing yourself much of a service if you were always saying, “It’s OK, we’ll find some players in the draft, we’ll be fine next year.” You always have to prepare as if they won’t. It’s an honest answer, in my opinion.

    The problem isn’t in whether you expect them to contribute, it’s whether or not they actually do. The NFL, unlike MLB, is a sport where you can pretty much get all your major pieces via the draft. Quite frankly, because of the salary cap you have to.

  78. NMR says:

    Nobody, not a single person, was saying that AJ-Wandy-Jmac-Sanchez-Locke will be the best starting rotation in years.

    Nobody.

    It sure is easy to make a point when your argument is completely fabricated.

  79. Arriba Wilver says:

    JMac is not a 4 or 5 in our rotation.

  80. NMR says:

    Exactly.

    Still can’t understand the logic in predicting impending failure down the road of a rotation that won’t be together down the road.

    Makes about as much sense as worrying about your car breaking down three months after trading it in.

    DK: What if you check the garage inventory and aren’t remotely confident in the replacement parts at hand?

    That’s been THE argument all along.

  81. NMR says:

    He will be when Kartsens/Liriano/Morton are in the mix.

  82. 21sthebest says:

    If Charlie has his health problems completely behind him and is truly 100%, I really feel like he can be very good for us. Maybe not as good this year but going forward.

  83. 21sthebest says:

    Hey Arriba,

    FYI, I like really crisp dollar bills!

  84. I was just yankin’ your chain. Graham may not even be drafted.

    I think Tino will be a coach somewhere. There are enough insurance salesmen and ladies.

  85. Arriba Wilver says:

    Will he?

  86. Patrick(RI) says:

    No one in here, this a.m.. speaks of the role of “luck” in our recent success. Suppose Marte had gotten down the bunt last night — what would have been the result? Or, if Hurdle had not “changed his mind” on the Snider bunt attempt (which I would argue nearly got Tabata picked off)? If the old buntmeister had his way, what do your suppose would have been the result of Inge’s grounder? Some silly, unanswerable questions, but they do seem to show a bit of luck at play.

  87. Which one do you see first? DK said Morton may take longer than everyone is hoping. Liriano got shelled in AA and Karstens hasn’t thrown a pitch since Feb.

  88. Jandy says:

    Well, it generally annoys.

    We have them here in PA too. But not your wife.

  89. 21sthebest says:

    A.J. got shelled in his rehab starts last year. Obviously, Liriano is no A.J. but I’m just saying that I’m not a fan of looking at minor league numbers in these instances (see Brandon Inge, for now!).

  90. NMR says:

    Are we talking arbitrary number assigned or order of best pitchers?

    Hurdle might continue to call him the #3 but there’s no question in my mind that Karstens and Morton absolutely are better pitchers than Jmac right now with Liriano anywhere from best to worst on the whole staff.

  91. Agreed. I just wondered who NMR had penciled in first to replace JMac at number 3.

  92. NMR says:

    DK never said anything about Morton specifically.

    Lets make that clear.

    DK has made several general comments about pitchers returning from TJ and applied them to Morton.

    And all these guys rehab starts are their spring training. NO sense whatsoever in looking at the numbers.

  93. 21sthebest says:

    Frankly, I’m not worried about who our No. 3 starter should be until the playoffs. Until then, first person back replaces Sanchez, obviously. Then, next one ready replaces either JMac or Locke, obviously again, depending on what makes the most sense at that time. Can’t make that decision yet.

  94. NMR says:

    That’s your opinion, Dejan.

    One can make just as logical of an argument that Karstens, Morton, and Liriano absolutely are competant replacements, or at the very least improvements, over Sanchez, the bad Jmac, and the two bad Locke starts.

    DK: And that’s YOUR opinion, which I respect. See, not so hard?

  95. I know. No sense in looking at any numbers. And we won’t look at wins and losses either, except after 162 games.

  96. Arriba Wilver says:

    DK said counting on Morton for anything in 2013, based on his TJ surgery, was unrealistic. That was pretty clear.

    DK: And I meant that literally, as in “counting on” or being sure that you’d get something. Anything Morton brings, in my view, is a bonus. Only fair to the athlete.

  97. “the bad JMac”

    Excellent. :)

  98. JohninOshkosh says:

    This is very cool, thanks Poltergeist.

    Dejan criminally still does not have a Wikipedia entry (Smizik has one), and is not listed in “notable alumni” on the Gateway High School Wikipedia entry.

    DK: Well, get to work, bud! What do they pay for those things?

  99. Nate83 says:

    Arriba

    NRM said exactly what I would have. He clearly is back end last 2 in the case of any of those three returning. He may even be out of the rotation all together and in long relief.

  100. Brandie says:

    Saw about five of those things when I was transporting kids. So ugly, they’re oooooooogly. Glad you are okay.

  101. SJB says:

    This just in: Crosby seeking medical clearance to shave.

    Seriously though, what are they gonna say about his jaw? “Sorry Sid, looks bad now, but in another day you’ll be good to go.” Unless he’s thinking of playing without the extra protection – which would be stupid – I can’t see how it matters, or how his jaw is going to set up any better now, versus in a few days. That’s the one benefit of putting a plate and screws in there. It shouldn’t move even if it isn’t fully set. Not unless he gets hit in the face with a puck again that is, and that’s why we’ve heard accounts from doctors who’ve said they’ve had players go out the very soon after and play with a similar injury. Granted, he doesn’t need to play in meaningless games if it can be avoided but he should at least be out there practicing with the team being this close to the playoffs, even if he has to wear the red sweater.

    If his whole intention through all of this was to simply wait until the first playoff game to play again, then he better skate like his feet are on fire when he does, or maybe have someone actually light them on fire, if he thinks he going to magically get up to playoff game speed come the drop of the puck on May 1st.

    Sorry but I don’t envision it happening and I see everyone on his line having to adjust their game to his getting comfortable again which is NOT what you want to have in that situation. If he doesn’t play at least the last two games of the regular season, he will have a negative impact in the first game or two of the playoffs. Honestly, at this point, I’d rather have the team play without him in the first round, or until he’s had a few days of solid practice in, before he does play. They need him to come in and have an immediate positive impact, instead of a him going through a longer than needed period of getting his feet wet.

    DK: This is terribly inaccurate. See my reply to you below.

  102. Bizrow says:

    He’s been pretty inconsistent throughout his career, but yes, he could be very good, or he could end up what we’ve seen so far.

  103. Who said anything about him being OK? We’re talking about Drew, here.

    :P

  104. NMR says:

    Pretty clearly based off of no specific information regarding Charlie Morton and his rehab.

  105. Bizrow says:

    I’m still a little surprised they didn’t put Charlie on the 60 day DL

    Not that it matters that much.

    I guess there is a rehab clock though? Something like 30 days, then you gotta bring him up/activate him?

  106. Patrick says:

    Cross sport comparisons are difficult and sometimes pointless. Almost never does a draft pick in baseball make an immediate impact. It takes 3-4 years. In football terms if it took 3-4 years to start contributing he would be considered a bust. Depending on where he was drafted if it took 3-4 years he might not even be on the team anymore. “Immediate” is a relative term to both sports.

    And KC has earned the right to miss a few draft picks. NH has earned nothing.

  107. Bizrow says:

    I guess Sid still has some teeth that need to be replaced.

    Maybe a question as to when Dejan thinks he may return will come up in the chat today.

  108. SJB says:

    Suppose Rollins wasn’t an idiot.

  109. NMR says:

    When a pitcher goes through the type of transformation he did between 2010 and 2011, does their old style really matter moving forward?

    Works both ways, too. If AJ Burnett suddenly lost feel for his curveball, would it make any sense to use his past as a predictor of his future?

  110. Nate83 says:

    Would you agree that at least the parts look as if they could be used compared to last year. Last year it didn’t look like anybody was capable of even coming close to pitching in the majors if we had injuries. Locke and McPhearson were pleasant surprises as the year went along but hardly considered pitching depth at the beginning of the year.

    We only need one of these replacement parts to emerge out of the 4 to have what I believe to be 5 starters that belong on a major league staff. If we get 2 or 3 to emerge it’s just a bonus and we can start moving some quality pitchers in JMac and Locke to long relief.

  111. PetroSteel says:

    DK: “I’ll repeat from the Monday column: What they’re doing right now — even Brandon Inge, for crying out loud — is commendable. I just wonder whether it’s sustainable given the pitching.”

    Yea, they stink, DK! Just lucky! Your right…oy vey!

    For crying out loud (your words), Maybe they have a really good team this year and in-spite of the (starting) pitching that you say isn’t very good, they keep winning.

    Have you noticed the bullpen?
    Have you noticed that many of the offensive players haven’t got going yet?
    Have you noticed that the defense has been good?
    Have you noticed that we are stealing bases and throwing out potential runners trying to steal?

    Do we have to be soo negative and pessimistic? For crying out loud, even when they are winning, people complain…Maybe, just maybe, they have finally put the right pieces together. I’m going to believe that until they prove me wrong.

    Lets Go Bucs!!!

    DK: If you understand, Petro, it’s not a matter of being optimistic or pessimistic. I’m looking at what’s there and trying to make a judgment off it. The hitting, for example, DOES look sustainable. In a couple cases — Alvarez and Walker — it’s going to get even better. But pitching’s the name of this game, and no rational person could look at the way this pitching breaks down at an individual level and see it as unilaterally sustainable.

    I’m not here to either cheer or boo any of our teams along. Just calling it as it is, to the best of my ability. If you want cheerleading — or booing or whatever — you’ve got options.

  112. Patrick says:

    I’ve been hoping for a solar eclipsing NT in the mold of Hampton, but apparently I am the only person on the planet that thnks that position is essential to the 3-4. Or maybe everyone has more faith in McClendon and Ta’amu than I do.

    Safety in the first round is always a gamble pick. If they take Vaccaro no one could really argue the logic. But as its been said many times, this draft is CRITICAL, and safety doesn’t really change much this for 2013 or even 2014.

  113. CWalton_67 says:

    Some very good points here, but I think having Sid on the ice is always a positive. That said, I am very surprised that it appears that Pens are not attempting to get him into at least one game prior to the playoffs. Or am I reading the tea leaves wrong?

  114. Brandie says:

    Okay for Drew, I mean.

  115. 21sthebest says:

    I think he has been much more consistent since he got the mechanic overhaul. I pretty much ignore his numbers pre 2011.

  116. Patrick says:

    I kinda thought the same thing. I stopped for a moment and wondered if I missed a weeks worth of blogs in which everyone was excited and gushing over the opportunity to see Sanchez and Locke.

  117. Nate83 says:

    Nice post. I also will beleive this is the year that all the pieces come together. unfortunately most will say they beleive they will eventually lose until they prove them wrong.

    I really can’t argue with that logic with a team that has lost 20 years straight. It’s fair to look at things that way I just choose not to.

  118. SJB says:

    Yeah but I didn’t know you needed teeth to play hockey. Actually, evidence would prove just the opposite. Guess he wants to look good for the cameras…being the face of the NHL and all.

    Also, if anyone wants to discuss the myth that you should lose weight on shakes versus solid food, I’ve got a high protein, high calorie shake recipe that if you don’t exercise properly, will pack on pounds faster than a diet of Mickey D’s and pasta ever would.

    DK: The largest issue post-oral surgery isn’t “looking good.” It’s avoiding serious infection that can be caused by having loose parts in the mouth.

  119. SJB says:

    Nope, that’s what I’m getting from it too.

  120. NMR says:

    Unfortunately, it will be very hard for Marte to hit .300. It’s a numbers game at this point.

    Right now, Starling is hitting .329 overall and .441 on balls he puts in play. That .441 number is about 150 points higher than Major League average and 50 points higher than last years league leader. Maintining that kind of success would be record breaking.

    Once that inevitably drops, he won’t make enough contact right now (25% k rate) nor draw enough walks to sustain an overall batting average over .300 for the course of the season.

  121. JohninOshkosh says:

    I wish I had Mel Kiper Jr’s life.

    Only needs to work three days a year while interns do all the elbow grease with research. Does not have to be correct about any of his views, and no one will ever hold him accountable by reviewing his work three years later when its validity can be ascertained. All while being held up as the industry standard for NFL Draft analysis.

    In case you can not tell, I can’t stand the guy.

    The NFL Draft is one of the things that built ESPN. Years ago ESPN was wise enough to make it a television event and it attached the network with the juggernaut that is the NFL. Long before ESPN even televised NFL games. If one is trying to build a brand or enterprise, you can not do any better than attaching yourself to the NFL. Might bode well for Dejan’s new project when the games start.

  122. Patrick(ri) says:

    as one whose recent post is probably a bit of an anti-Hurldle whine, I would defend DK on this one. Can’t lose if you have luck(eg, Rollins and Manuel gaffes) and DK on your side. i believe “commendable ” not = “luck,” per se.

  123. NMR says:

    I think it’s pretty funny to see DK mock the pitch framing metric after running with some Bill James made up statistic that showed Russell Martin was one of the worst defensive catchers last year. In a column, no less.

    The epitome of cherrypicking.

    DK: It’s actually the exact opposite, NMR. The pitch-framing metric unnecessarily — and irresponsibly, I think — separates one small part of catching defense. The Bill James metric takes ALL of them into account.

  124. Drew71 says:

    Count your lucky vultures

  125. NMR says:

    Especially when you consider that last years numbers were put up while hurting too much to throw his bread and butter sinker/curveball combo.

  126. Naterosboro says:

    Just some Pittsburgh sports thoughts on a Thursday….

    * The Steelers success this year will hinge on the development of guys like Ziggy Hood and Cam Heyward (and Woodley getting back to being Woodley) as much as the success of their draft picks. If the veterans brought back don’t pick up the slack, it’s not going to be a very successful season.

    * I don’t get all the draft hype. Teams will pick who they pick. Mel Kiper and Todd McShay should be working for NFL teams in their scouting departments, not just making up lists of who they think teams will draft. While I credit individuals for making a living however they do it (as long as it’s legal, and maybe even there we can stretch the rules…), I think “draft expert” is the biggest scam going.

    * Anyone know the status of Brooks Orpik’s injury?

    * While I wasn’t that pumped for a 48 game hockey schedule, I am pumped for these playoffs. I’m on record with friends saying that I’ll only “count” this as a legit season if the Pens win the cup. So,…….WIN THE CUP!

    * (In the Deion Sanders voice) I love me some NHL Playoffs!

    * I want 3 of 4 against the Phillies. I can’t stand these people (Philadelphians…I’ve lived out here (Delaware Valley) all my life. Such fraudulent fans).

    * I said (somewhat facetiously) at the beginning of the season that Jason Grilli wouldn’t let this team lose. I’m starting to actually believe that statement.

    * The Pirates will remain a scrappy bunch this year. Playing teams tough until late into the season. I still don’t know if they have enough to keep it together all year. I’ll leave that on the back burner of my mind, though, and just focus on the here and now. 12-9, with a chance to take 6 of 8 from the NL East. In the immortal words of Mr. Nike: “Just do it.”

    HAVE A GOOD DAY ALL!

    DK: Much appreciated all around, Nathan. Good stuff.

  127. Thundercrack says:

    I am trying to look on the bright side that Locke will have ‘flipped the switch’ with his last start and will become a dependable 5th starter who can give us at least 6 solid innings each game and keep us in the game.

  128. Naterosboro says:

    whoops, ended up in the wrong spot! O well, I’ll leave it there, you people (WHATTAYA MEAN YOU PEOPLE?!?!) are smart enough.

  129. Bizrow says:

    I personally like the fellow and am pulling for him, but you never know.

    Pirate website has a story noting his return should be “mid season” for what that is worth

  130. Drew71 says:

    Not me. That’s how I met my wife.

  131. tpbco says:

    Having had this type of injury, I can say that they are handling this the way they should. It’s my understanding that there wasn’t a clean break, but multiple breaks – which adds to the complexity of healing, inspite of the plates and screws – and more dental work means he will be down for prob 2 days after that. I am here to tell you first hand that this type of injury (AND the repair work) REALLY sucks.

    Regardless of whether he takes a hit there by accident or on purpose, in a game or in practice, he is at least starting over. This would likely lead him to being out for the rest of the season/playoffs.

    The guys, like Rick Tocchet, who came back early, certainly did so understanding that risk.

    So the $8.7 million dollar question is, balancing that risk vs. the team’s line adjustments and playing style…a legitimate concern, particularly given Geno’s return against Buffalo – was it just a down game? Or was it Geno’s presence and the adjustments to him. They played a much different style and it was not good.

    There is no way I see him playing in the last 2 games and then there is a week until the playoffs start. Without knowing more specifics, I can’t say what the right answer is, but I do believe that Geno is the key. If he starts playing up to his standard, they can be a lot more conservative with Sid and ideally getting him back to full bore practices, as you suggest, prior to game action, even if it means missing the first couple of playoff games.

    Tough call.

  132. Drew71 says:

    First, I’d like to say this is kind of a weird thread.

    Second, I’d like to say I’m sorry.

  133. NMR says:

    Saw that as well. Same story that says Kartsens will be back in May, right?

  134. Bizrow says:

    Like someone wrote recently, the draft, years ago was 30 rounds and they got it done in one day

    But thats one reason why the NFL is a money making machine I guess

  135. Arriba Wilver says:

    Nate—what was your pre-season prediction for the record?

  136. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

    Go Riverhounds!

  137. 21sthebest says:

    She only slipped you $1?

  138. Baywatch says:

    Morning, Loonies!

  139. Dom says:

    I agree that finding a solid NT is essential and maybe McLendon is that guy but the argument against grabbing one in the first round is that position is only on the field for so two downs. Some argue that it is more beneficial to draft someone who will be on the field for all three downs with a first round pick.

  140. Baywatch says:

    (This is about the time my Mother would say, “Pot can’t call the kettle black!”)

  141. JohninOshkosh says:

    You know how rubes are.

  142. Nate83 says:

    I didn’t make a prediction. But I was thinking anywhere from 78-85 wins. I thought a lot hinged on JMac, Marte, Snider and Gabby because they are the 4 players I really didn’t know what we have with them. The rest of team including Alverez and Martin you can pretty much predict with in 10% +/- what they will do for the year.

    I really think the weakness of the pitching staff will works itself out in the next month and we will have a better idea of how this team will be. It’s still way to early.

  143. Naterosboro says:

    But his name is STARling Marte. I think he’ll break a few records in his time.

  144. Arriba Wilver says:

    Funny you should say that. After Sanchez’s last start Clint was interviewed, and he was talking about how they had been working with Locke, Gomez and Sanchez on some things all season( and before). I believe it centered around repeating their delivery, but there was more. He said While they all had worked hard at it, Locke had succeeded in getting it. Jeanmar was improving and was close to getting it, and Sanchez just didn’t have it yet. I’m thinking ” Locke, seriously?”

    Next thing you know Locke had his successful start. Makes you wonder if these baseball professionals might know more than us sometimes. :-)

  145. Dom says:

    Is it time to promote Stolmy Pimentel to AAA?

    Yesterday he let up no runs in 6 innings and had 8 strike outs.

    He has and ERA of 0.39!

  146. Arriba Wilver says:

    I only asked because when we’re evaluating things our expectations matter a lot. And, like you said, those can and do change over time.
    I agree it’s early.

  147. Jandy says:

    Tino will be going door to door to drum up intererst in that sport no one watches (except rednecks)…you know…hockey…

  148. Nate83 says:

    This will be the first year in the last 10-11 that I will be disappointed if they don’t get to .500. Obviously I was disappointed last year but going into the year I thought they needed things to go right for them to make it to .500.

    Unfortunately all those things went right the first 108 games and then like an avalanche all the bad stuff happened at the end.

  149. Patrick says:

    Kiper is such a bag of air. To this day he still refuses to back off his assertion that the Texans made the wrong choice on Reggie Bush. Even though Reggie is more famous than dating a mock celebrity and Mario Williams is the cornerstone of a defense since whe was drafted.

    He is the EPITOME of ESPN. All style, no substance and almost no actual value. For very Hoge or Schlereth that make sense there are 5 Skip Bayless’ and Kiper’s that make a mockery of their “Profession”.

    Unless their profession is making a mockery of all things sports related. If that’s the case than the offices in Bristol might as well be the Clown Shoes Hall of Fame.

  150. Jandy says:

    Dorktards :)

  151. Naterosboro says:

    ++

  152. Jandy says:

    Hi Bay Dude, how the heck are ya?

  153. Nate83 says:

    He still has a lot of walks I think. Although that is very encouraging. It never hurts to have pitchers in waiting.

  154. Patrick says:

    Am I the only one that gets hungry for a salad from Aladdin’s Eatery every time I hear the name Stolmy Pimentel?

    Sorry but that name sounds like some weird salad with a vinaigrette served in a bread bowl…or something…

  155. theplanisworking says:

    +2

  156. Thundercrack says:

    Sometimes.

    :-)

  157. theplanisworking says:

    Colbert — 2SB Championships, 1 other SB appearance.

    Huntington — Um, well, geez……………. years of control and cost certainty.

    Nuff said.

  158. You were the sunshine, baby, whenever you smiled
    But I call you Stolmy today
    All of a sudden that ole rain’s fallin’ down
    And my world is cloudy and gray
    You’ve gone away
    Oh Stolmy, oh Stolmy
    Bring back that sunny day

    Classics IV. Now the Santana one…….

  159. theplanisworking says:

    Tino might NEED insurance this time next year.

  160. TJ says:

    With all due respect DK; I’m not trying to compare NH to Colbert. I’m trying to simply ask why is it that based on his recent performance in drafts does he continue to get free passes? Sure the comparison to NH is laughable but the intent is to ask WHY does Colbert keep getting the free pass on drafts.

    DK: Asking a question about Colbert is absolutely fair. Denigrating his larger body of achievement by comparing it to the Pirates isn’t.

    There’s actually been a ton written about Colbert’s drafts good and bad, including an Alan Robinson feature in our paper this week.

  161. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  162. theplanisworking says:

    You calling me again, Jandy? ;)

  163. TJ says:

    Patrick how many misses does he get though? We have no depth on this team why? We have aging FA’s leaving and no one replacing them why?

    This isn’t just a one or two year deal here; you can go through the list of picks that were wasted. I’m not asking for KC to be fired I’m simply asking why is it that there isn’t any kind of questioning of his recent drafts and how its taken its toll on this team.

  164. Arriba Wilver says:

    Boy, hadn’t thought about that song in decades. (See Drew’s post above about this thread). :-)

  165. JHadar says:

    Looks like the key word this morning is IF.

    Locke is essentially a rookie and they are working with him. Way too early to write him off.

    Liriano. Well Mr. Searage has a history of acquiring pitchers on the rebound and getting a little something extra out of them. And it wasn’t his pitching arm that was injured.

    Morton. I wonder Tommy John affects mechanics in that it slightly physically rearranges the arm. So many of the guys coming off it feel healthy but it takes awhile to get the mechanics back. A few are ok after an outing or two. We’ll see.

    Karstens is taking a lot longer to heal from the injury as it was described in spring, but it was a muscle if I remember correctly, not a bone or tendon. Should heal completely.

    And am I the only one wondering if there isn’t an arm or two in the bullpen that couldn’t be stretched out. Don’t most pitchers start their careers as starters, at least in high school or college? Now that they’ve got the stuff, you would think that one or two could develop the stamina with everything today’s trainers know about conditioning.

    Lots of IFs but the good news is that they only have to hit one or two.

  166. If you listen to the Santana version, it sounds like they’re saying “Stolmy”.

    The power of suggestion, I guess.

  167. TJ says:

    Again; where is our depth on this team right now? No one to replace these aging over priced veterans because of swings and misses on draft picks. We’ve all seen GM’s and coaches that have won titles get replaced. Everyone wants Tomlin fired after poor games but KC gets passes on missed draft picks.

    Lets compare Tomlins W-L record to Colberts missed draft picks. And then on Sundays this season we can decide who should be fired.

  168. Naterosboro says:

    Drove by 1 the other day that was feasting on some roadkill (in the MIDDLE of the road). It casually walked the other way as I slowed down to avoid the giant bird, and after I passed it went back to the carcass.

    I just thought…

    Isn’t that the life?

  169. Milo Hamilton says:

    There has been plenty of talk pro & con about the value of drafting a running back in the 1st round. 16 backs gained over 1,000 yards last year. Here is the breakdown on where (or if) they were drafted.

    1st Round – 6
    2nd Round – 2
    3rd Round – 4
    4th & 5th Rounds – 0
    6th & 7th Rounds – 1 each
    Undrafted – 2

  170. TJ says:

    Anyone see the supposed news out of KC that they are not taking Joekel #1. They are evidently taking Eric Fisher. In his latest mock Todd Mcshay has Joekel now falling all the way from #1 to #11. How in the world do you go from #1 to #11 based on the premium on tackles.

  171. TJ says:

    Anyone checked out Rashard Mendenhall’s twitter account lately?

    Was curious to see if he went off on Boston for celebrating the capture of the terrorist.

  172. Milo Hamilton says:

    I’m still waiting for someone to cite their franchise left tackle as the reason they won the Super Bowl. It will be a first.

  173. TJ says:

    If the QB is able to stand and accept the lombardi trophy as the MVP I’d say its a good way of showing that the tackle has earned his pay

  174. Interesting. Mendenhall is one of the six, right? Oh, wait……

  175. Arriba Wilver says:

    Naje– I’m not suggesting you would or should, but if you ever get the urge to compliment me, please resist it. :-)

  176. Dom says:

    No way does he fall past Philly.

  177. Naterosboro says:

    1 thing that was nice to see last night…

    The Phillies went out and got Mike Adams to set-up for their “$50 million (which could end up being $63million)” man, Jonathon Papelbon, and paid him 2yrs/$12million (or $6million per) for his services.

    Mike Adams (while he’ll be fine most likely, and has been mostly so far this year) didn’t record an out in the 8th inning last night.

    Mark Melancon was acquired in a trade for our All-Star closer and is making $521K this season. Jason Grilli signed a 2yr/$6.75million deal (or $3.375million per). They’ve been virtually lights out (believe Melancon has given up 1 run, Grilli 0), and were again last night in getting the W after the team got them the lead in the Top of the 8th.

    $80K (basing things on 75 appearances (So Adams makes $6million this season/75 appearances = $80K/appearance) spent to blow the game. Just a little over $51K spent to lock it down.

    Gotta love value.

    And just a little icing on my “I can’t stand the Phillies” cake.

    Let’s get 3 of 4 today!

  178. Naterosboro says:

    Jonathan Ogden.

    Certainly a key reason for the Ravens winning in 2000.

    They had Trent Dilfer back there for Pete’s (who’s Pete?!) sake!

  179. 21sthebest says:

    “Makes you wonder if these baseball professionals might know more than us sometimes.”

    Which number gin and tonic are you on?

  180. Milo Hamilton says:

    I met him at Camden Yards right after he retired at a Pirates / Orioles. We were in the nacho line together. He was really cool even when he saw my Pirates gear. And a great player.

  181. Arriba Wilver says:

    I’m with Milo, and we agreed not to discuss ##.

  182. NMR says:

    I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see the team take the same approach as they took with Kyle McPherson last year, except for more AAA time and less AA.

    Pimental has to be on the big league roster next year or else they’ll lose him to the waiver wire. That almost surely means he’ll get a cup of coffee in September as a reliever.

    You have to love the scouting reports about this guy early on, especially with him developing the slider. Sounds like that could be the “out pitch” he’d been missing. Even with walk issues, two plus pitches (mid-90s fastball and slider) can make for a pretty darn good big league reliever, at worst.

  183. Naterosboro says:

    I’d also maybe say Orlando Pace for the Rams. HOF Left-tackle that was a staple on “The Greatest Show on Turf” that kept Kurt Warner upright so he could sling it. Was also responsible for opening up a lot of holes for Marshall Faulk to run through. That said, those Rams teams were stacked on offense. Not sure they needed a HOF left tackle to win.

    But it certainly helped.

  184. TJ says:

    I can’t remember the guy that the Rams had… he was like the start of tackles going #1 overall. Believe he was out of Ohio State. Man oh man why can I not think of his name!!!!

  185. JRay3 says:

    Bucs lineup today: Marte Inge Cutch Sanchez McKenry Alvarez Tabata Barmes JMac. The right handed bats in versus Lee with Alvarez staying in. Time to take a series, and for JMac to build off of last start.

  186. TJ says:

    Orlando Pace. For some reason I think he started the trend of tackles going high in the draft. Amazing how it used to be RB’s and now its OL that dominate the top 10

  187. theplanisworking says:

    I dont see a Pirate thread.

    Am I just missing it?

  188. Milo Hamilton says:

    If we get that far, Tony Watson is closing today.

  189. Don’t know if we are getting a game thread today, so I’ll just post this here.

    TWO-LINE THURSDAY!!
    Let’s open The Window…What’ll ya have? What’ll ya have?
    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.
    Play as many or a few as you’d like.
    Please put your replies in this dialogue box, makes it much easier for me to “book-keep” that way.

    Line #1
    Total HITS + WALKS by Brandon Inge in today’s game
    Line is 1.5

    Line #2
    Total HITS + WALKS by Michael McKenry in today’s game
    Line is 1.5

    Anyone can play, and everyone should try!

    Thanks to all for playing and good luck!!

    CURRENT PARTICIPANT TOTALS
    theplanisworking ~ 625
    Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) ~ 550
    fellocolonial ~ 500
    tdb1977 ~ 500
    RobertoForever ~ 490
    bman ~ 440
    JohninOshkosh ~ 425
    KJX ~ 425
    Frankie ~ 400
    Jason81 ~ 400
    radio wave ~ 375
    cmat0829 ~ 350
    Keith ~ 300
    Pucknutz ~ 300
    Steve J. Smith ~ 300
    TCB ~ 275
    EricBowser ~ 250
    JRay3 ~ 250
    Boise Bucco ~ 200
    TK ~ 200
    JoeyBats ~ 175
    JaxBuc ~ 130
    JUCOFan ~ 125
    Lad9 ~ 100
    PetroSteel ~ 100
    Joey Mellons ~ 85
    Karen22 ~ 75
    JD ~ 50
    mlrgenuine ~ 50
    TJ ~ 50
    tmp444 ~ 25
    Chico ~ EVEN
    Dadtackular ~ EVEN
    DemonDachshund ~ EVEN
    Ghost ~ EVEN
    kr70 ~ EVEN
    Nate83 ~ EVEN
    pants-n-at ~ EVEN
    stickyweb ~ EVEN
    Ruffian706 ~ -40
    cherokee23 ~ -50
    Dcpinpgh ~ -100
    Kevin S ~ -100
    pattonbb ~ -100
    steelercrazy ~ -100
    OZ ~ -150
    Brandie ~ -175
    Arriba Wilver ~ -225
    Dom ~ -275
    cosmo ~ -300
    Kevin ~ -300
    stuart66 ~ -500
    Jandy ~ -550
    JMB ~ -800
    Bizrow ~ -1200

    ***First Place at the end of APRIL will win:***
    (1) PITTSBURGH PIRATES BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996932466962432

    First Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) BRAND NEW PITTSBURGH PIRATES FITTED NEW ERA 59FIFTY HAT
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994233155485698

    Second Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) BRAND NEW PITTSBURGH PIRATES EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY HAT
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994373731794947

    Third Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH PIRATES LICENSE PLATE FRAME
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323994796970627072

    Fourth Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH STEELERS BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996576253087745

    Fifth Place at the end of the season will win:
    (1) PITTSBURGH PENGUINS BUMPER STICKER
    https://twitter.com/TheBuccoWindow/status/323996735837982720

  190. JRay3 says:

    Well there is a twist…Watson has been pretty solid in his last six outings. Lets just hope we see him.

  191. JRay3 says:

    Well greetings to the window from 35,000 feet. Great day for a series clinching win.

    On plane so tough to research so i will go with gut today.

    Line 1 – 50 on the OVER
    Line 2 – 100 on the UNDER

    Thanks playoffs and lets go bucs!

  192. Bizrow says:

    Line 1 100 UNDAH
    Line 2 100 OVAH

    Thanks Playoffs, once again

  193. Jandy says:

    Sorry, hope I didn’t interrupt anything ;)

  194. Jandy says:

    ZING!

  195. Lad9 says:

    Will go with 100 drachmas on the under for both lines. Cliff Lee is a tough nut to crack. Thanks Playoffs. Go Buccos!

  196. KJX says:

    Under has been strong lately…so I’m going with the trend.

    #1: 100 UNDER
    #2: 100 UNDER

  197. KJX says:

    Under has been strong lately…so I’m going with the trend.
    #1: 100 UNDER
    #2: 100 UNDER

    Disregard the post below

  198. pattonbb says:

    Line 1 – OVER for 100
    Line 2 – UNDER for 100

    Inge has seen a lot of Cliff Lee.
    Thanks!

  199. 21sthebest says:

    For me this would be the 21st consecutive year that I’d be disappointed if we don’t get to the playoffs.

  200. fellocolonial says:

    Line 1 100 on Under

  201. JohninOshkosh says:

    Line 1: 25/Over
    Line2: 50/Under

    Thanks

  202. Joey Mellons says:

    I here at CBP now. Very beautiful day f

  203. Joey Mellons says:

    For a ball game. Lets go bucs. Maybe ill bring JMac some much need luck.

  204. theplanisworking says:

    Not at all! ;)

    HOKA HIPPO !!!

  205. Jandy says:

    i don’t see one either. With the chat, Dejan likely didn’t get around to it. (almost said didn’t get it u….errrr…n/m) ;X

  206. Arriba Wilver says:

    Get ready for a perfect game.

    I’m going with 50 OVER on both lines.

    Thanks, Playoffs.

  207. Jason81 says:

    50 on the UNDER for both lines, please.

  208. Jandy says:

    lol I saw you and Brandie missed me last night, how nice :) Had company, it was the father-in-law’s birthday.

  209. theplanisworking says:

    I was cowering in fear of the sharpened size 9′s, lol

    Coming from a hippo that has 15EEEE shoes, that sounds funny, huh? ;)

  210. SJB says:

    This just in…

    Rashard Mendenhall sides with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects mother; Zubeidat Tsarnaev, that the bombings were fake and staged. ;)

    Later: More ramblings out of Philly after the Pirates win last night that devolve into Crosby bashing. Yes folks, I’m quite sure that even residents who get parking tickets in Philly curse Crosby’s name. Like Obama blaming in America, everything bad in Philly eventually comes around to Crosby and that stinking city of Pittsburgh. lol

    I love how much Philly hates Pittsburgh. It’s great to have that kinda power to piss people off just saying your from a certain city, like a certain team, or wear the team colors into the local supermarket and I’ll remember to give it back when I’m at the Phillies – Pirates game on July 4th.

  211. blazer says:

    First time betting so add me to the list please.

    I’ll take the over on each for 100 per.

  212. TK says:

    Line 1 – 100 on the OVER
    Line 2 – 100 on the UNDER

  213. Jandy says:

    LOL yeah….like I’d skeer anyone :P

  214. tdb1977 says:

    Going to make it easy. 100 on the Over for both lines. Will the real TDB, please show up. The one that was sitting at the top before two disasterous days.

  215. Joey Mellons says:

    Line 1, 50 under.
    Line 2, 25 over.
    I am coming to u live from CBP. Lets go buccos. JMac is looking very sharp on pre game long toss.

  216. Frankie says:

    50 under on both

  217. Welcome!!

    YOU GOT IT!!

  218. This gonna be another DVR’ed game for me.
    Gonna go off the grid now.
    Window will be closed once the first pitch to Inge is thrown.

    GO BUCS!!!

    Catch you all later!

  219. theplanisworking says:

    Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeester Playoffs,

    another good, thought producing line (s) today.

    Inge is hitting .372 lifetime against Lee, McKenry has done well lately.
    BUT, Lee doesnt walk many batters.

    So, I will wafflingly put the following……..

    Line 1….. 25 on the UNDER
    Line 2….. 50 on the UNDER.

    Thank You for making this Hippo think………..

  220. Jandy says:

    If I’m not too late, 75 for the over on line 1

    75 for the under line 2

    Thanks Playoffs :)

  221. TCB says:

    50 under on both.

  222. Jandy says:

    This is priceless (from the chat):

    Comment From Crankshaft
    When I get eat more people?

    1:03

    Dejan Kovacevic:
    Tonight, Dougie. Down, boy.

  223. OK officially closed now.

    Good Luck!!

  224. theplanisworking says:

    Pirate thread up now.

    HOKA HIPPO !!! ;)

  225. JaxBuc says:

    If I’m not too late, given me 30 turkey vultures on the UNDER for both.

  226. NMR says:

    Not to mention that it plays well to have a lefty facing the Phils only legit power threats, Howard and Utley.

  227. JohninOshkosh says:

    Maybe I’ll give it a try. Not sure how to get it done, though. And I’ve hated footnoting sources since before NMR was born.

  228. theplanisworking says:

    RAISE IT !!!!!!! ;)

  229. Ghost says:

    +100
    I was wondering what to make of Naje’s backhanded compliment/swipe, myself. Your remark will do nicely.

  230. CeehowUR says:

    I’m an armchair TV guy, so here’s a couple of reasons.

    -No Leno or SNL on Sunday night, so the local station owns the time.
    -There is lots of extra sports material that occurs only on the weekend vs the rest of the week. NFL, NCAA Football, Golf, Auto Racing, Triple Crown, etc. all provide a mix of different sports that can be incorporated into a weekend highlight or discussion show.

  231. KenKopp says:

    I was born is Sewickley, but have lived most of my life in West Melbourne, Florida. And would be honored to called a Lunatic. Thanks Jandy.

 
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