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Final: Pirates 5, Tigers 3

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (32-20) vs. Detroit Tigers (29-21)

Starters: RHP A.J. Burnett vs. RHP Anibal Sanchez

Time: 7:05 p.m.

Site: PNC Park

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s the Pirates’ lineup …

  1. Starling Marte, LF
  2. Neil Walker, 2B
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Garrett Jones, 1B
  5. Russell Martin, C
  6. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  7. Travis Snider, RF
  8. Jordy Mercer, SS
  9. Burnett, RHP

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Rob Biertempfel is on his beat.

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 more, including 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 top four columnists in the country -- highest circulation category -- by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the top three columnists in the country by the National Headliners Awards. For 2013, he was named top columnist in the state by the Keystone Awards and second-place by the Pennsylvania AP Managing Editors.


  1. Ok, not a bad lineup and AJ is due for a W

    • Glad to see Mercer in there after the night Barmes had last evening. You mentioned on the previous thread the three 1-0 wins in past nine games, what a difference a year makes.

      Seems like last year Cutch was carrying the team to victory early on and this year it is the pitching that is doing so.

      Really would like to watch a stretch where both Cutch and Alvarez start tearing into the ball.

    • This is probably the best offensive lineup the Pirates can put out there , at this point of the season.

      As long as Inge remains on the bench, unless he is needed to get HBP, i would prefer he doesn’t take any AB’s away from Alvarez, Walker, or god forbid, anyone in the OF.

  2. THIS IS A DREAM SEASON !!!!!!!!!!


  3. go pirates! lets get AJ some run support this time.

  4. I think I read or heard somewhere that Allie was player of the week with a .4something batting average?

  5. This is my favorite lineup. Let’s hope Anibel has a let-down after his last start, which was stellar, if I remember correctly.

    • There really aren’t any holes in this lineup. If anyone disagrees, please advise where.

      • I kind of have the same issue with the posters that are already saying that NH needs to add at the deadline. Add who, and subtract who?

        • There may be something he can add, but I think sometimes the moves you don’t make are the best ones.

        • I really don’t know who will be available but if there is an all-star caliber OF or 1B then I’d say go for it. Maybe we can use another reliever but beyond that I really don’t see where we can add talent.

        • Shortstop is the obvious spot to improve.

          Asdrubal Cabrera or Jimmy Rollins could be veteran options if their teams fall out of the race. Everth Cabrera might also be an option once the Pads inevitably throw up the white flag.

          Speaking of the Pads, I’d be much more comfortable with Chase Headley 3B.

          Seattle and Kansas City are the wildcards as both GM’s could be close to losing their jobs. Never know when that could trigger a firesale. A guy like Mike Morse would improve RF.

          • Matt Morris?

          • I like Morse as well. Making 9mil though. Another guy to consider for RF, depending on what their team ends up doing, is Alex Rios of the White Sox. He’s only making 12 or 13 mil…

            • Ha, I was just looking at him. Well done.

              • I was looking yesterday from our conversation. There was another guy out there, don’t remember who.

            • Reality, there isn’t a lot of options out there for RF improvement, as of now anyhow.

              I’m sure somebody is due for a hot streak to raise his trade stock, similiar to your Chase Headley last year.

          • Pads new ownership (and mega cable $$) …they will NOT trade Headley. They need to build somewhere.

      • I agree, strongest Bucs lineup in at least 10 years. The holes are there, just not based on potential/talent/ability/track record. Marte has cooled considerably and the offense needs him getting on base at a greater clip….Cutch has had some quiet series lately, especially with runners on… Pedro is, well, Pedro… Martin hasn’t had an RBI in a long time… etc….. that said, this is the best lineup we’ve had in a while.

        So the next question and fun blog-fodder is… put your “deadline duds” on… if you are GM, who specifically (did I say SPECIFICALLY?) do you go out and get to plug into the lineup…and what are you willing to give up for him?

        Personally, my choice is Alfonso Soriano. I’d pay all the rest of his salary and give the Cubs anyone outside of Cole/Taillon/Heredia/Hanson/Polanco/Bell.

        • Call me crazy, but Soriano is the LAST guy I would want on the team.

        • That’s risky, don’t you think cmat? That guy is a disaster in the field. One of the unseen beauties of this Pirates team, IMO, and a big reason we don’t get the respect we are due right now, is that we take a lot of hits away in the field. It doesn’t show up in a stat line, but I believe it is a big reason for our success. If we plug in an awful OF to this team, that guy better hit so well that he makes up for his butchery in the field. And, he is a LF. We have a stud there already.

          • Risky, yes. Making deadline deals (and the blog will indeed be clamoring for major moves, no doubt about it) is inherently risky…not only in what you give up, but in the player(s) who have been busting tail for you in the 1H that you will put on the bench or back in AAA. I tend to be more on the “dont mess up a good thing” team but I also recognize the lineup is not on par with who we are contending with. And, we will not be competing with the 2012-1993 Pittsburgh Pirates.

            Soriano has his shortcomings, no doubt. But he is a solid RH bat with power and I think he can be had. But I am looking for other candidates … Giancarlo Stanton aiming too high? That will definitely require Cole or Taillon. Josh Willingham?

            • Soriano can definitely hit, and he says he will go to a contender if asked this year. I like Willingham, but I can’t remember his contract status. If we were to trade for Stanton, we would need to give up a lot. It is tough, and I agree with you that I am usually on the “don’t mess up a good thing” side of things. I think more things will come into focus in terms of both our needs and what is available in a month or so.

      • No, but this Sanchez is a handful for any lineup.

      • I think this is a matter of perspective.

        This lineup, by Pirate standards, is as complete as we’ve seen in 20 years.

        This lineup, by NL Championship standards, is still sub par.

        • Just a question. Who do you substitute, and with whom?

          • Shortstop is the obvious spot to improve.

            Asdrubal Cabrera or Jimmy Rollins could be veteran options if their teams fall out of the race. Everth Cabrera might also be an option once the Pads inevitably throw up the white flag.

            Speaking of the Pads, I’d be much more comfortable with Chase Headley 3B.

            Seattle and Kansas City are the wildcards as both GM’s could be close to losing their jobs. Never know when that could trigger a firesale. A guy like Mike Morse would improve RF.

            • Nice suggestions – all of them. I think the Chase sweepstakes will be too expensive for us.

            • I agree SS is the biggest need.

              As I mentioned yesterday, I’d like to see a little more production from RF as well. I used the term power yesterday, which everyone assumed I meant HR’s. So production is a better term.

          • I also think they’re one above average starting pitcher short of matching up well with the other NL playoff contenders, and that is assuming Lirianio maintains his good start.

        • I would just say that when we talk about adding to a lineup, we have to remember that hitting is only part of the equation. Guys have to play the field also. It is easy to forget the parts of the game that don’t show up in the boxscore.

    • didnt anibel almost have a no-hitter last outing? or am I thinking of someone else?

  6. Proof of Bigfoot near Altoona

    Hey, doesn’t Jandy live near Altoona??

    Just sayin, coincidence ??? ;-)


    Max “wager” is 100 units on any single line.
    All “wagers” must be in multiples of 5 units.
    Play as few or as many lines as you’d like.
    As always, this is for fun and entertainment purposes.

    Total Pitches thrown by AJ Burnett in tonight’s game
    0-85 (TRIPLE ODDS)
    86-100 (EVEN ODDS)
    101-115 (EVEN ODDS)
    116 or More (DOUBLE ODDS)

    GOOD LUCK!!!
    No Decision

  8. IMO this is the strongest lineup Hurdle can write down. That said, a professional hitter with some thump in his bat would look really good in RF. I know there is value (potentially tremendous) in waiting for Snider, Tabata, et al. to develop, but I see a big problem running them out there while the Reds and Cards run out Jay Bruce and Carlos Beltran.

    I think Torri Hunter would be great as a Pirate, not that he’s going anywhere. If I were the Pirates, I might finally be ready to let Alfonso Soriano keep RF warm until Polanco is ready.

    • Carlos Quinten, Josh Willingham, also upgrades. Padres, Twins, and Cubbies all might be willing to wait for a Snider, Tabata, et al. to develop…

      • no thanks on oft injured carlos quinten. willingham yes and twins need pitching. but is he the 2nd coming of ryan ludwick 2011? im sure the stats say no, but not sure it is a nobrainer, huge upgrade in RF pickup.

      • I disagree that Quinten and Willingham are upgrades. They are high priced .220 hitters….no thanks.

        Quinten might benefit from leaving SD, but I’m not interested, though they both should be pretty cheap

        • Willingham is only hitting .212, but with lots of 2b & HR. And he has so many BBs that his OBP is .366. I would not give much up, though. I think Snider is coming around.

          • by “lots” of doubles you mean the same total as Travis Snider? Snider’s OBP is almost as high as Willy’s.

            Also, TS has 9 less RBI’s hitting out of a “non” production spot in the lineup.

            I don’t make a deal for Willy.

            • Unless it is a truly big splash stud player (Headley), it is tough to prove most moves would be upgrades to this lineup, especially for what you have to surrender. The sum of our parts seems to perform better than the individual pieces.

              • I agree. Now there are upgrades out there, no doubt. Offensively, I’m looking at 2 places, RF and SS.

              • Anybody know when Tabatha will be healthy enough to play again after this latest ailment? The guy finally starts hittting again, and suddenly a strange injury puts him on the pine again.

        • Willingham is actually at .212, so I get your point.

          I just think an upgrade in RF will go a long way in keeping the Pirates closer to the top of the division.

    • Why is everyone assuming that bats will be the teams greatest need.. It might very well be pitching. Locke, Liriano and Gomez could easily return to what they were. Two months is a long time.

      • I’m not saying RF is the biggest need. More just pointing out the gap between Snider/Tabata and Beltran/Jay Bruce.

        To your point though, inserting a strong number 3 makes the options at 4 and 5 much stronger

        Number 3

  9. Still scratching my head over why Hurdle had Sanchez in the lineup these past 2 days.

    Actually, the bigger head scratcher was why Josh Harrison was promoted ahead of Alex Presley. You had 8 games (starting with Verlander) coming up where you’re scheduled to face a Right Handed starting pitcher…and your 4th OF just got hurt. Let’s promote a light hitting utility infielder and force us to decide which poor hitting player we’re going to play (since Sanchez hits righties like my grandma).

    Presley’s no world beater, but he’s an adequate 4th OF, and he certainly could have served as DH or played any of the 3 OF spots for a day to give maybe Marte or Cutch a “half day” off.

    • I think Clint has a soft spot for JHay. Who else would put him in RF for a bunch of games last year? Even Clint had to know that was a disaster. I think he wants to make him our Don Kelly. I’ve liked almost everything Clint has done this year, but I’ll never get Harrison.

      • I prefer Harrison over Inge any day of the week.
        Of course Harrison isn’t in his mid 30′s, and can still get a base hit on occasion, which obviously Inge cannot.
        I just don’t feel Inge brings too much to the team, in terms of being a useful bench player.
        He had a few big hits, when he first joined the team, but that was like a month ago.

        I just hope Mercer stays on this team, whether he gets limited playing time, or not.
        At least with Jordy, i get the feeling he can actually do something with the bat, unlike the feeling i get when Inge, or John Mc Donald stroll to the plate.

        • I’m not advocating for Inge. He and his Red Wings jersey can shuffle out of town right now as far as I am concerned. I just don’t think Harrison is much of a player. Back-up middle infield may be the position where we really do need to add. I’d love to replace Barmes, but it is hard to grab a good SS.

        • We’re starting to see the problem you inevitably run into when you give Clint Hurdle an aging veteran. He just does not know when to pull the plug.

          Inge came through large in his first few weeks with the team. Won them some games. But at this point, what reason is there to give him roughly as many at-bats as Jordy Mercer?

    • I had way, way less of a problem with Clint starting Gaby against RHP the last two days due to the DH than Clint starting Gaby against RHP the last two months. Not sure who else you’d put there.

      Harrison continues to be a mystery. Still have no clue how he’s a better ballplayer than de Jesus. And your Presley call is a good one.

      • My guess is that offensively they feel JayHey => Presley at this point. Can’t really argue that , so close enough. Therefore, since Marte/Cutch are gonna play everyday, and Snider is lefthanded, they go with JayHey because he can also play 3b/2b…and maybe they like his energy/intangibles better. Presley really didnt show me anything here outside of his great start in Toronto (was that 2010? or 2011?)

    • What is the opposite of “FREEALEXPRESLEY”… i’ll have that please.

    • JHay can play the infield and Presley cannot.

      And JHay can play the corner outfield spots if needed.

      • JHay has played the corner OF spots, Thunder. I would debate whether he CAN play them adequately. Don’t you remember him in RF turning back and forth on a ball over his head last year? It wasn’t a difficult catch but he played it into a costly 2b or 3b. Unless he has secretly been taking a lot of balls in the OF on off days in Indy, I want him confined to the infield.

        Someone advocated for DeJesus as a back-up infielder. I agree with that one, and wonder why he has not gotten a shot given the lack of viable options.

      • I’d use the term “play” very loosely when talking about JHay.

  10. I’ve mentioned this before, but what about rescuing Brad Lincoln from Toronto to pad the bullpen at the deadline?

    He has been an absolute disaster for the Blue Jays. Considering he’s out of options next season and presumably not making the best of impression, the Jays might be willing to send him back for a gift certificate to Tim Hortons.

    • Who knows? Maybe Lincoln got his “regression” out of the way and is ready to pitch well for us again.

      • (Gonna play DK here): “Got his ‘regression’ out”

      • He is living off of a BIG strike out of Thome. You’d swear he was Elroy Face around here.

        • Yeah.

          That AND a 0.50 ERA ,10 K/9, and 2 BB/9 over 35 IP as a reliever for the Bucs last year.

          • You’d still rather have him than Snider?

            • Oh hell no. The Snider trade was a steal from the start.

              But to hypothetically get Lincoln back for a song and a dance in hopes he finds his Pittsburgh mojo?

              I’ll take two of those over this years Chad Qualls.

              • I’m in on a return of BL for BP reasons.

              • Most relievers go up and down in terms of performance from one season to another. I guess that is why every team always tries to have “too many” of them, because that is the only way to have enough.

            • With his 5.82 ERA, 1.477 WHIP, 4.2BB/9, over 43.1 IP

              • Perhaps you aren’t familiar with the story behind this Melancon guy that seems to be doing alright for the Pirates.

              • The name rings a bell. Good point. I guess I was just reacting to te whole Lincoln thing. Last year in was nauseating , with the people thinking they traded away Rivera

    • Wasn’t he a “Littlefield Guy?”

    • No to Lincoln. Not the 2013 Brad Lincoln. That seems risky even for that gift certificate. I equate that to people wanting Victorino last year which is fine except that the 2012 version of him wasn’t very good and I’m not banking on a player coming out of something they’ve been in for four months. There has to be better bullpen options out there than Lincoln, even at a low cost.

      • ok ok ok…juts trying to throw the crowd a bone.

        Kelvin Herrera would be my serious bullpen target. 100 mph fireballer just demoted by the Royals after catching the homerun bug this season.

      • There may be better options at AAA than Lincoln, but on the cheap, I’ll take a chance on him again.

  11. Anibal Sanchez threw 130 pitches in his last start.

  12. Welcome Lunatics, if you don’t see your current location below, please add a reply to this post

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    358 locations represented in the blog,
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    • Going to make it a mission to have someone from the Steelers listed as an honorary member. Rocky Bleier? Go through what he went through and still be able to come back and play football?

      • Need three to list, I make two, thoughts lunatics?

        And don’t forget any HOF is automatically on the list, so we have a ton of Stillers honored.

        Crap, we should have done that on Memorial Day, although there is a difference from Veterans Day

        • I agree Biz; there are a ton of Steelers because of the HOF but someone from there is worthy of being singled out like Mario. Team has meant so much to the city.

          • Heck even the “Steel Curtain” should be considered; you can pretty much go any where and people would know what your talking about if you mention the Steel Curtain. How many teams have that kind of symbolic part of their team history?

  13. My wife put me on the 15 day DL today after a poor performance last night

  14. Love all the Trade Deadline traffic today. On May 29. Better than talking about a hockey game that is still 5 days away!!

    If you want to really know who Neil Huntington will pick up at the deadline (think last year),
    then spend some time perusing all the AAA rosters for shortstops who were failed #1 picks, a la Travis Snider.

    You know Neil———always looking for a bargain whom others picked high and who has years of service time available.

    • So does that rule out the possibility of a blockbuster to add Giancarlo Stanton from the Marlins?

      • Johnnie Ray III,

        I would LOVE to have Giancarlo Stanton here. I would also like to have Chase Headley, Mike Trout, Robinson Cano, and Tim Lincecum. Ain’t gonna happen.

        1/ Too much prospect outlay
        2/ Too much money outlay in salary upcoming

        • You want the Lincecum of pre 2012 I am assuming. ERA over 5 last year and ERA near 5 this year.

        • Yeah one could wish…outside of that the one true position the team could upgrade is SS and maybe add an additional OF bat who could play everyday if needed or provide a bench threat.

          You have to figure the team is pretty set at CF, LF, 3B, 2B, 1B and C. So it will most likely be about finding the right piece to mesh and build around that.

          On the arms side of things, still think we will need another SP and RP before all said and done, Gomez can’t possibly pitch at this level all year can he? And as good as Locke has been still need to keep an eye on him as year progresses. Pirates pen has thrown third most innings in majors so far this season so may need to find a fresher arm to replenish and give more options to.

          The one thing to remember is projections now have the Pirates as 88-74 team unlike last year when the team was playing above projections, which could also change the strategy this season as we approach deadline if team stays on course.

      • That would take a Cole or Taillon plus Palanco… I’d rather keep them personally

      • I think so. But, if we asked for Mike Stanton, we might be able to sneak him away from them before they figure it out.

    • I’m actually more curious about how they are going to use their 2 high draft picks this year. One mock I saw had them taking a catcher with one pick that they said had defensive skills that were major league ready but a suspect bat. The other was a 1B/3B who was projected to be taken with a comp pick between rounds 1-2.

      I’m not sure how their first pick for this year works; meaning if they fail to sign the guy they drafted with the pick they got for failing to sign Appel do they get another pick next year? If so we could be looking at a Tony Sanchez pick with that pick.

      • I’m pretty sure they both are protected.

        The catcher McGuire is supposed to be the best prospect at that position. I’ve read they are looking hard at college bats, but you know NH’s love for high school pitchers

      • I’ve seen the Pirates linked to prep C Reese McGuire a left handed stick with above average arm and quick exchange.

        The other name I am intrigued with that I have seen at times linked to the Pirates is LHP Sean Manaea who hits 96 on the radar, not as polished as the top two college pitchers Appel and Stanek but a power southpaw intrigues me.

        I have read the true value in the opening round is 10-20 so the Pirates seem to be in a good spot at #9 and #14 to get some value.

        • Manaea makes sense . NH loves power arms.

          • Manaea has struggled immensely this season, dropped like a rock to the point some are saying he should complete his senior season and not sign.

            From a top 5 to perhaps out of the first round to some.

            So with NH, its a possibility

            Personally, I want sticks

            • Manaea still went 5-4 in 73 IP with 93 K’s and .190 opponent average this year…had heard his stock did slip a little but has a very high ceiling.

              Bucs also rumored to like DJ Peterson a college bat out of New Mexico who some say is best pure hitter in draft and plays 1B and 3B.

              • The fastball lost its zip

                Or so I have read

                And yes, DJ is supposed to be in the mix if he drops that far

          • Is he the Indiana State guy?

    • You can always find a good treadmill, at a yard sale. Then give it away next year.

  15. A rare appearance from DARYLE makes me happy.

  16. Anyone think it’s time for AJ to get some run support?! It’s just wrong!

  17. Oshkosh b’gosh,

    Did you see any of the Pacers/Heat last night? Pacers apparently haven’t read the papers that they are supposed to roll over and die in from of the glorious Lebron!

    Great TV sports night last night:
    1/ Pirates win late into the lnight.
    2/ Kings/Sharks put on quite a show. That Quick guy scares me.
    3/ Pacers took it to the Heat, not wilting at the end when Heat typically decided to play in the 4th Quarter. Cheap (but correct) call on Lebron for his 6th foul, but Pacers did not back into that win! They took it!!

    Pacers versus Spurs would be delightful!!

    • It was a cheap foul, but you had to love Lebron having to exit.

    • The Spurs to me are like the NBA’s version of the Steelers. Not flashy; go to work and win. Amazing how many titles they win and have stuck together and added a piece here or there to compliment what they have all while remaining true to their game. Popovich does not get enough credit for the work he has done with that team and playing in the western conference all those years dealing with the Lakers, Mavs, the Suns for a period of time.

      • If that organization was located in New York rather than San Antonio. There would be currency with Popovich’s picture on it.

    • I hear you, Groat. But, do you really think ESPN and the NBA are going to allow Indiana into the NBA finals? Vs. San Antonio, no less. That is a corrupt league, IMO, and LeBron is getting to the finals.

    • I did not see any sports last night.

      I like that Pacers club. Would love a Spurs/Pacers final!

      Happy to see Coach K continue with Olympics gig and, further, saw your Dukies capture the Lacrosse title.

      Had a discussion with my brother and I’ll present the question to you: If Tony Parker played for a high profile big media team, would he be an automatic HOF’er?

      • I don’t think there would be any question about Parker ESPN would have him on every day.

      • I watched the Quarters in lacrosse, where Duke came from behind to beat Notre Dame, and I saw about 1/4 of the Championship against #1 Syracuse. National Champs!

        If folks here in Pittsburgh would watch a lacrosse game, we would NEVER have another discussion about “the sport that must not be named”!! Even JAL would give it up!

        If the Spurs played in Chicago, New York, or Atlanta, we would be tired of hearing about them!!

        Tony Parker would be King of New York. He already IS an automatic Hall of Famer. Along with his tall swimmer friend!

  18. Not to get off the Pirates talk but I just saw on ESPN that Gronkowski needs back surgery. Man this guy is falling apart like someone who was juicing.

  19. If the rotation continues to pitch the way it has; do you bring Cole up and use him out of the pen?

    • I’d keep him in Indy until September, If that happens

      • If he is not coming to bolster the rotation, than I agree see him in September.

      • Listened to Clint on the podcast today, or whatever that is, was a link to a radio spot with Clint. They asked the question…with Morton and Cole coming, how do you figure out the rotation moving forward? Clint just laughed and said “we’ll figure it out”… he didn’t backpedal and say that Cole won’t be ready or Morton is injured, etc…. I have a feeling that Cole is coming and he is gonna start…Gomez goes back to being a helluva long man in the pen. The open question to me is what to do with Cholly…. Hard to bump Locke with the way he is performing but can’t see Locke in the pen either. As others have said, good problems to have.

        DK: “Whatever that is” is our TribLIVE Radio, which has a monthly sitdown with Hurdle that’s usually very good.

        Here’s a link to the video …

    • I don’t have a problem with Cole moving to the pen at first. Build his confidence at the MLB level first.

      Think David Price.

  20. You know, for some reason, I’m thinking this will be a relatively high scoring game

  21. I’m so happy Gabby is wearing some pine tonight.

    I’m almost giddy.

  22. What happened to Steve J. Smith?
    Haven’t seen him around these parts in awhile now….

  23. Up here, Everybody! (reposted from the old thread after I realized AIN’T NOBODY THERE ANYMORE!)

  24. I case you had forgotten, Jim Leyland & Jason Grilli don’t exchange Christmas cards.

  25. Who do we pull for tonight Blackhawks or Red Wings

    I’m worried about both of them

    But my daughter (in law) is from Detroit

    Its gonna be a wild ride, successfully I’m sure, then lets see what the Bucco ride brings

    Life is good, right now

    • Go Wings.

      Hawks a much more complete team.

      But, as always………….

      GO PENS !!!!!!

    • I’m rooting for a great game and though I figured Chicago would win series, I cannot see Detroit lead by Mike Babcock, Jimmy Howard, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen and Niklas Kronwall losing three straight games.

  26. Chalk one up to the Umps blowing yet another call, even when they all get together to confer.

    The screams for more replay get louder each day…just imagine if that catch was in a World Series game and could have been a deciding out.

  27. Snider caught that ball… hard to see for umpire… all the more why MLB needs to have instant replay.

    What the… Hunter was dead to rights and Burnett doesn’t react quick enough at all to pick him off. yikes…..

  28. Umps off to another good start.

  29. Pirates have done a good job pitching to Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder over the first two games in Detroit and first at-bat for Cabrera against AJ Burnett.

  30. Miguel Cabrera versus Pirates pitching so far in the three games: 1-10 with 5 K’s, wow! Talk about shutting down the games best hitter.

  31. Should have been strike three well inside the pitch trax zone, can anyone on this crew call a game behind the plate?

  32. Looks like a good crowd. Why isn’t it a great crowd? A.J., Leyland, 1st place Tigers. Piates hot. What the hell does it take?

    • This is a good question.

      Is it the economy?
      Pittsburgh a bad baseball town?
      20 years oF losing?

      I am not agreeing with the above, just asking.

    • I’ve been saying for a while now that the collapses, predominately last years, have scared people away. But we won’t know for sure until school lets out. It’s always been that way here.

    • A lot of people have been burned by too many promises. I for one am going to enjoy epwhat has been going on with this team and hope that the FO does not do anything to muck up the works. I also hope that the weaknesses of the team (lack of offense) will get worked out over time.

  33. To all those already complaining about the umpires with the Snider catch………….

    Based on what the system currently is, i.e. replay, his effort isnt reviewable. Now it should be, yes, and we should have expanded replay, yes, but…………..

    That catch was difficult to see. They did have a conference about it, but it wasnt so obvious that an automatic reversal was guaranteed.

    I get on the incompetence of the umps as much as anyone, but that call wasnt so bad that anyone should complain about it. If the situation was reversed for the teams, I dont think anyone here would complain.

    • The game just needs to improve, it should be about getting it right. Not taking anything away from the difficulty of call.

      • Agreed. It should be about getting it right.

        I was just addressing the “umps stink” calls here.

  34. Now remember, none of this should be happening. Twice. Fielder was also clearly struck out.

  35. Call the police…Snider was robbed. AJ’s strikeout of Cabrera was good, though. Let’s go Bucs. By the way…how about some offensive support for AJ?

  36. AJ Burnett with a #STFD as he gets five outs in the top half of the first.

  37. AJ just yelled at Jones coming off the field.

  38. Walker now 10-22 in his last six games as he continues to rake of late.

  39. AJ is pitching like a guy that never gets any run support. Oh yeah.

  40. Not much liking this game so far…from the abysmal umping (on both sides) to yet another start to an un-runsupport outing for AJ to sloppy stuff. It’s shaky in every which way.

  41. Bunting for a hit with 2 outs and nobody on is bad baseball.

  42. Mr. Do It All of late – Neil Walker with a solo shot, gives the good guys the lead 1-0. Now 11-23 in past six games, 3 HR’s in last five games.

  43. Walker – two hits on two pitches and the second another homer! 1-0 Bucs!

    • Steve, there were some posters earlier wondering where you have been. You were missed.

      • Wow, I will have to go back and review the other 200+ posts from earlier. That was how many I saw were there when I first got home tonight. Thanks for asking about me. I have been busy, but also just trying to shy away from posting my frustrations with the offense. I was in Pittsburgh for the Houston series and saw them win the two games and lose that other AJ start with no run support. Here’s to them winning another tonight.

  44. Cutch is making Al Oliver outs.

  45. So far the game at the Madhouse on Madison is as advertised.

  46. 1-1 now after a walk comes home to score with that double.

  47. double crap

  48. Reason #24 why you don’t walk the 8th hitter to lead off the inning.

  49. 3-1 now as Cabrera makes up for his bad series to this point. AJ’s fastball command not great tonight. Time to get more runs for him as he may need it.

  50. AJ showing up Marte very unprofessional. He’s unraveling.

    • Not getting his share of inside strike calls to left-handers has’t helped his attitude, either.

      • These umps and their personal strike zones. Has anyone of them read the rule book recently. Last I hear it was still letters to knees and the corners of that pentagon in front of them. It doesn’t say half of the plate or waist to the knees, or for some pitchers, an expanded strike zone since they are already so good at pitching.

  51. 2 walks to .193 Kelly suggests AJ not on his game, tonight.

  52. Is it me or has the last couple games this week had the other team scoring several runs to take the lead in the 5th inning on us. Seemed like a couple in Milwaukee were like that and the first game against Detroit. Come on RUNS!!!!!

  53. Pitiful at bat for Pedro.

  54. Pedro walking back to the dugout, unvelcroing the batting gloves, an all too familiar sight.

  55. Had forgotten all about J. McDonald until TV just showed the rehab assignment graphic.

  56. 7 Ks through 5 innings tonight so far, 14 Ks last night, 15 Ks the night before. I know the pitchers they are going up against are good, but they have really helped them out a lot with swinging at MANY balls out of the zone and NOT ones in the zone.

  57. hey Brandie, all work and no play makes for a dull girl…remember to play ;)

  58. The veteran infielder, not the pitcher.

  59. Garrett Jones should yell at Burnett for walking Don Kelly (.320 slg) 3 times and costing the team the game (to this point).

  60. Is 6 innings and 3 runs still considered a quality start? 3 runs to this
    Tiger line- up seems decent, even if AJ is out of sorts.

  61. For all those pitch counters out there, it doesn’t appear as if those 130 pitches Sanchez threw his last outing are having an adverse effect.

  62. A Dan Potash reporting during a Pirates game sighting.

  63. I was away, what happened with Marte?

  64. Ryan Zimmerman of the Nats with 3 dingers in the first five innings off of the same pitcher tonight. I noticed because I am against him in both of my fantasy leagues this week. Sigh….

  65. Good news is that the Indians are finally beating up on the Reds.

  66. KC just took the lead in St Louis. Time for our bats to wake the @#$# up!!!

  67. Pedro hit a homer against this guy in his last start with the Marlins last July.

  68. I’m waiting Pedro; what are you going to do?

  69. Come on Pedro – connect with something for a change. Hit the circularro und thing coming at you!!

  70. Pedro !!!!

  71. And just like that one swing Pedro with RBI’s 28 and 29 new ball game.

  72. Pedro!! Opposite field you may note!

  73. There you go Pedro, “Big knock!!”

  74. Wow!!!!

    Better late than never!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  75. Snider !!!!

  76. Hooray X 2!!!

  77. Snider with a knock to get Pedro (Barely) home to take the lead – Just! Like! That! 4-3!!!

  78. It’s about time!

  79. My man Mercer

  80. Did I just see a squeeeeeeze? lol nice

  81. Take a smoke, Jim?

  82. Brilliant call by Hurdle….

  83. They FINALLY put on the squeeze and it is 5-3 and still one out!

  84. Gotta love it, suicide squeeze to perfection as CH pulls one out of the hat, four run inning as Bucs finally get to Sanchez…this is fun!

  85. Cannot believe this team… no offense all game through 6 and boom.

  86. Stolen Base Oh MY..It’s getting fun

  87. Small ball and big ball (so to speak). Nice!

  88. Jimmy has seen enough

  89. Maybe all those pitches last game finally caught up to Sanchez as he runs out of gas in seventh as Bucs capitalize. Have to feel good with the shark tank ready to close out.

  90. Neil Walker coming to the plate.

  91. Bob Hasis you brought the Bucs luck :)

  92. Does anyone else think that it might be time for Neil to stop switch hitting?

  93. Is it just me, or did the old skipper (emphasis on old) fall asleep there.

  94. Great inning. Still would have liked to have given the runs to AJ, but int he end, he probably knows he didn’t have his best stuff tonight (barring some bad calls by the ump). He would likely be happy if they just win the game. Here we go bullpen!

  95. Tuaosopo wha????

  96. Good inning by Tony. 3 more outs to go!

  97. Cutch has absolutely lasered the ball today.

  98. As soon as this game is over we need to start a nice long debate about what NH needs to do at the trade deadline.

    And then start one about how tired the pitchers are.

    And then we can talk about the WINNING

  99. Drew Smyly reminds me of a young Steve Avery. Speaking of 1992.

  100. The glow just left the squeeze decision — I would take lefty Jones over Inge, anytime.

  101. I dont listen to the babble , I turn the sound off..What just happened with the skike out/throw out?

  102. Gamecast says all 7 pitches to Inge were strikes. How about Seal training for these umps?

  103. Not sure what that mess was, but it is cheese time!

  104. That is even bad American Legion ball. A hit and run or a run and hit STILL requires the freakin’ runner to RUN as though he were serious.

  105. If Grilli does not have a letdown from ladt night, I will 2nd DK on his Cy Young nomination.

  106. Cutcj should have continued to run hard. But I wonder if he thought the home plate ump yell ‘Ball’. Would that have been ball 4?

  107. Here we go

  108. Raise it !!!!!!!

  109. Cy Grilli!

  110. Ballgame!!! Bucs WIn!!! Keep it going Cleveland and KC!

  111. Grilled Cheese does it again!

  112. Raise the Jolly Hippo!!!! ;)

  113. Behind back to back run producing doubles by Pedro Alvarez and Travis Snider in the four run seventh inning, three shutout innings turned in by the Bucs pen including a league leading 22nd save by Jason Grilli who remains perfect in chances, the Bucs down the Tigers 5-3 in the opener of the two game home set with Detroit and there was nooooooo doubt about it.

    With the win the Pirates are now a season best 13 games above .500 at 33-20, 18-8 in month of May, 4-2 in interleague play. The Bucs will go for the sweep tomorrow night when Jeff Locke toes the rubber for the Pirates.

    Let’s Go Bucs!

  114. Snider looks more and more comfortable out there

  115. Raise it. What a great comeback and Grilli is unreal. Woo hoo!

  116. I don’t know how but this team finds a way to win.

  117. Wow. I don’t want to say it; but I’m starting to believe. I feel like the last 2 seasons was kind of like saying I love you too soon and the other person not saying it back. I believed the last 2 years and the Pirates were not ready; I hope its changing this year. AJ fought all game; and this team that was striking out all game pulling off a suicide squeeze?? Jay Bell earned his pay tonight

  118. This is a four games series , isn’t :) We all know how it works. Lose the first and ….

  119. isn’t it **

  120. Ok so besides Grilli who on this team could be named an All-Star? Its amazing this team has the 3rd best record in baseball but other than Grilli I have a hard time saying someone should be an all-star

    • Marte, Martin

      • Marte is slumping; he’s down around .290 with 5 HR. Hard for an OF to make the team with those numbers.

        I’d have to check the catchers but Martin isn’t exactly tearing it up offensively.

        Guess what I’m getting at is that even though they are all-stars on this team they don’t have the super hero stats required to make an all-star roster

      • Love your optimism.
        Dont see it, but you never know.

      • Cutch has the reputation now… With Molina and Posey, it will be tough for Martin

      • I would say Melancon but they take nothing but closers any more for the bullpens.

  121. Greg Brown explaining the Pirates running up the opposing pitchers pitch counts. I guess your likely to do that when you average 10 strikeouts per game. But its good to know its all part of the master plan.

  122. I really think the unhealthy marriage to pitch counts cost the Tigers tonight’s game. And bully for that. The magic 100 pitch number has become the be all and end all. It’s completely taken managing out of the game. If Sanchez’s ball 4 pitch to Russell Martin had been pitch 102, do you really think he would have been left out there for the resulting shenanigans ? That game really got away from Leyland because the pitch count was so low.

    Disclaimer: I know Sanchez threw 130 pitches his last outing but I think we can all agree that was because he was chasing a no hitter.

  123. Cleveland beat Cincy.

  124. Ok, Great win!
    Tired Hippo!

    Off to bed……………. thanks to all that were here.

    Good night from the Pond.

  125. I’m watching Pavel Datsyuk; he reminds me of Festus on Gunsmoke

  126. I want to see Mercer stick on this roster. There is no reason he needs to be sent back to AAA. He should be the every day starter at SS.

  127. goodnight all ..Beat em Bucs

  128. The Seventh Inning Stranglers.
    The Bullpen Busters.

    Call them what you will, but this team is doing the little things to win games. And the more the bullpen gets knocked for overuse, the more the manager and the management discuss adding to the pen and conserving arms. Eventually DK will come around or the Bucs will fail. Or not. Win or be fired. Any way you look at it, the team is playing its best ball since 1992.

    • Not sure how anybody can’t enjoy the stretch of baseball the PBC has been playing first two months of the season, as you state best since 1992. At beginning of season it was schedule is too tough team would be lucky to win 12-13 of first 32.

      Team continues to overcome and is finding different ways to win, and more important os beating the teams it should and is now 13-5 versus teams that would be playoff teams today at the 1/3 pole.

      Just enjoying the ride.

      DK: Just remember the seat belt laws here.

      • Yeah, JRay… it’s just very good, very competent baseball. Their margin for error has increased and their level of play has improved quite a bit. And yes, their pitching has been terrific and the bullpen absolutely lights-out. Sure, they (the bullpen) will regress… and when it does, the team will adjust, or not.

  129. Yes, the I believe effect, sooo…I know this is cheesy (pun intended):
    or anyone need a Placebo? :-)

  130. An absolutely wretched call by over-officious idiots on the ice in Chicago.

  131. The freaking puck was already in the net when the idiot ref was waving his arms…. this is outrageous horse crap and again, who benefits? Yep, the Red Wings.

  132. WOW! Over 500 post.Is that a record?

  133. Did I see those stats:

    In his last 20 starts AJ is 4-11 with a 2.91 ERA?


  134. Worst part of that call? 20 more minutes of Milbury.

  135. Counting the Morning Java, there have been 1030 comments today! Unbelievable.

    • Nah, the Pirates–that third-rate pro team–are that good.

      And people care. A lot.

      DK: Who called them third-rate?

      I said third-most popular. Which is accurate to the extreme.

  136. Good baseball game. GREAT hockey game. Nothing like a game seven. Was watching it between innings though. Because the Buc’s are for real. Sustainability aside, with all due respect D.K.

    Last year on this date 24-25. This year 33-20. And they were not hitting in May 2012.

    I’ve worked 20 plus hours in the last two days, so I’m going to leave you Lunnies. Sweet Dreams. Would love to read DK’s articles and blogs World Series time. Oops, I’m falling asleep and dreaming at the computer. Ya never know.

    Jeff Locke tomorrow. A’int he been fun to watch. With his 5-1 record and 2.45……ZZZZZZZ

    DK: I’m already carving travel plans for the NLCS and World Series. I hear that if you pay cash up front, rates are lower, so I’m thinking of doing that, too.

    Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) ~ 1400
    Pucknutz ~ 1200
    theplanisworking ~ 1125
    JRay3 ~ 1000
    bman ~ 845
    tdb1977 ~ 785
    radio wave ~ 675
    Frankie ~ 625
    fellocolonial ~ 600
    RobertoForever ~ 490
    JohninOshkosh ~ 475
    KJX ~ 375
    EricBowser ~ 350
    stickyweb ~ 300
    Nate83 ~ 275
    Boise Bucco ~ 200
    Ermine ~ 200
    Evan ~ 200
    Keith ~ 200
    TK ~ 200
    Arriba Wilver ~ 175
    JoeyBats ~ 175
    JUCOFan ~ 175
    Bill Born ~ 135
    blazer ~ 100
    Karen22 ~ 100
    PetroSteel ~ 100
    TCB ~ 100
    cherokee23 ~ 50
    mlrgenuine ~ 50
    OZ ~ 50
    TJ ~ 50
    tmp444 ~ 25
    JaxBuc ~ 5
    Chico ~ 0
    DemonDachshund ~ 0
    Jason81 ~ 0
    pants-n-at ~ 0
    Ruffian706 ~ -40
    absolute59 ~ -100
    Dcpinpgh ~ -100
    Joey Mellons ~ -100
    John in WM ~ -100
    Kevin S ~ -100
    kr70 ~ -100
    steelercrazy ~ -100
    cmat0829 ~ -250
    Ghost ~ -250
    JD ~ -275
    Brandie ~ -375
    Dadtackular ~ -400
    Steve J. Smith ~ -400
    Dom ~ -475
    pattonbb ~ -500
    Lad9 ~ -600
    stuart66 ~ -600
    cosmo ~ -800
    JMB ~ -800
    Kevin ~ -1030
    Jandy ~ -1375
    Bizrow ~ -2400

    ***First Place at the end of MAY will win:***

    First Place at the end of the season will win:

    Second Place at the end of the season will win:

    Third Place at the end of the season will win:

    Fourth Place at the end of the season will win:

    Fifth Place at the end of the season will win:

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