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Final: Giants 4, Pirates 0

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (76-53) vs. San Francisco Giants (57-72)

Starters: RHP A.J. Burnett vs. RHP Ryan Vogelsong

Time: 4:05 p.m.

Site: AT&T Park, San Francisco

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s the Pirates’ lineup …

  1. Jose Tabata, LF
  2. Neil Walker, 2B
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  5. Russell Martin, C
  6. Garrett Jones, 1B
  7. Andrew Lambo, RF
  8. Jordy Mercer, SS
  9. Burnett, P

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Travis Sawchik is on the scene.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and 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.

238 Comments

  1. Big game today.

    Brewers are up 2-0 on the Reds.

    After today the Cards play 13 consecutive games against the Reds and the Pirates. We should know a lot more after those games. That being said all three teams will probably be seperated by a game or two.

    Top 5 teams in the NL are now seperated by 3 games with the Braves losing all these games to the Cards and Dodgers struggling a little against the Marlins and Red Sox.

  2. SUNDAY PICK ‘EM!!!

    ******PLEASE READ WHAT IS WRITTEN BELOW******
    PLEASE PLACE YOUR “WAGERS” AS REPLIES IN THIS COMMENT BOX
    Makes my job a helluva lot easier when I don’t have to hunt to find everyone’s “wagers”

    STANDINGS WILL BE UPDATED THIS EVENING

    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.

    NEW PLAYERS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME & ENCOURAGED!!

    Today’s Pick ‘Em Line
    Total PITCHES THROWN by AJ Burnett in today’s game
    85 or Less (DOUBLE ODDS)
    86 – 98 (EVEN ODDS)
    99 – 111 (EVEN ODDS)
    112 – 124 (DOUBLE ODDS)
    125 or More (TRIP-TRIP-TRIPLE ODDS)

    GOOD LUCK!!!

    76 Down, only 6 more to go!!

    Anything is possible if a person believes
    Mark 9:23

    KEEP CALM & BREAK .500

  3. Finish this roadtrip strong with a win. The Pirates haven’t won consecutive series on the road since the end of June. After today they have 17 home games and 15 road games.

  4. Take a look at the HOME/ROAD splits of the 6 teams in contention in the NL.

    HOME
    Braves +26
    Pirates +20
    Reds +19
    Cardinals +16
    Dodgers +12
    D-Backs +10

    ROAD
    Dodgers +11
    Cardinals+7
    Pirates +3
    Reds -1
    Braves -1
    D-Backs -6

  5. I must have missed it. Has Vogelsong been injured this season? He’s only 2-4 with a 6.29 ERA.

    If so, hope he gets well tomorrow.

  6. Not looking for help from the Braves today….a pretty broken down line-up. But they have jumped out on top of StL 3-0 in the second

  7. Vogelsong still owes the Pirates for his suckitude here.

    I’d like to bat around in the top of the first, please.

    And get Lambo out of here, and bring back Presley, ASAP.

  8. DK: The insecurity of Pittsburgh’s baseball fans is unmatched in our town. Guess that’s understandable, to a degree, after 20 years, but it’s no less depressing.

    It really, truly is possible to root for the Pirates without denigrating the other teams in town. If seeking guidance on this, check with those who primarily root for the other teams in town.

    I think I’m mostly kidding here, but maybe I’m not. Seriously, every time I tweet on another topic, I get these hysterical responses about DON’T YOU KNOW THERE’S A GAME IN SAN FRANCISCO? And the reaction among some here isn’t all that different. I wrote 11 of 12 columns on the Pirates at one point last month, and I heard from insecure baseball fans complaining about the one that wasn’t.

    Lighten up a little. No one’s taking the baseball team away, and no one’s ignoring it. There just happen to be other things in town, including two teams that are more popular. That’s how it goes. Doesn’t diminish what the Pirates are doing in any way.

    (Off soapbox, back to Monday column on Steelers.)

    • I must have missed something big being as I was camping in the middle of nowhere. In any case, I am Pittsburgh to my core and wish all my hometown teams all the best in their sporting endeavors.

      DK: Nothing big. General thought. Been annoying me for a while now. Thought I’d annoy everyone else with it, as well.

      • I was thinking the same thing. But I’m not a tweeter, so I guess that’s where the issue lies

      • The seeds of this were planted in 2009/2010, when the Pens won the Cup, and the Steelers went to another Super Bowl. It almost reeked of jealousy, and bitterness………….. the Bucs lost 105 games, and the other 2 Pittsburgh franchises were going to their respective title games.

        Now, that the Bucs are finally winning after 20 years of darkness, those same people just cant let go. Almost like they are saying “put in the spotlight 27/7/365.” I hope the Bucs win the WS this year, but DK runs a blog with 7 different sports to talk about. Pragmatism says it cant always be about the Bucs.

        And I am not saying there are thousands of these people. It seems to be a “core” of about 50 or so that hate the Steelers and Penguins. I always thought Pittsburgh was big enough for 3 teams, and their fans. Guess not. Silly me.

        DK: Well put.

        • This is all a bunch of baloney.

          • Let’s see here.

            I have a choice on who to believe………….

            I can listen to the owner/moderator of this blog, who correctly sees what I wrote was correct, and I get a “Well put”,

            OR

            I can listen to a huge troublemaker for me, who has done so for 4 years and counting, who I had to have a hug blowout with to get you to finally stop, and he says “This is all a bunch of baloney”.

            What to listen to…………………

            If my post is a bunch of baloney (nice misspelling of that word), prove so. Tell us why. Tell us what is baloney. You are just enraged that I would dare put the truth out there for people to ponder.

            I know you have posted stuff to me to get me to respond to you. I was doing so good not to respond to your attempts to bait me. But when DK says this is “well put”, and come scurrying by after the fact just to cause trouble for me yet again, I will respond to you. It was so nice when you didnt respond to me, things were peaceful. Go back to not responding to each other. Life is too short for you to keep causing trouble here.

            • You just make things up as you go along.

              http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/baloney

              • The correct word is Bologna.

                MW’s definition even says its a derivative of Bologna.

                I do not make things up as I go along. I pointed out you misspelled Bologna.

                You really just cannot help yourself, can you?

                Stop responding to my posts. It was so peaceful when we didnt respond to each other. Really. But I know, you will stomp your feet, and cry no one will tell you what to do, even if someone tells you to stop causing trouble. You are so sad.

              • My response was meant for you and Dejan.

                I like Dejan and I like reading and listening to his opinions. My opinion is that he makes a lot of over the top comments and criticisms of the Pirates front office and the fans and has for over a year now, and I’m not even referring to his columns regarding SEAL training which I think was probably his best work at the Trib. I also think he has developed this reputation for himself of being over the top. So I don’t think he should make broad based generalizations about Pirate fans as he has in this thread based on comments he’s hearing from folks on Twitter and I don’t think he should be surprised with respect to those comments.

                I think if he had a similar style toward the Steelers or Penguins or their fans, he would experience the same result.

                DK: What’s ‘over the top’ up there?

                I appreciate the kind words, by the way.

              • And what you wrote is not correct or the truth, and Dejan did not say it was correct. You wrote an opinion. I just disagree with it. Dejan agreed with it. This is life.

                DK: Indeed, I did not endorse. Thought it was well put. And even if had endorsed, whoop-de-doo. It’s hardly like I say something and it’s official. I’m one voice here among many.

              • It’s BALONEY >>>

      • Thanks for the explanation and the annoyance, DK.

        DK: I exist to annoy. Raison d’être, if you will.

        • Hi Brandie.
          Jandy was asking about you yesterday.
          Hope you had fun in the sticks.

          And hope you survive the “bold”………… ;)

          • A bold reminding let’s me know the boss is real, and not just a figment of the Trib’s collective imagination.

            BOOK EM’ PLAN-O!

          • We went to Austin, PA for The Dam Show. Great festival. Quite small. Took place in a town with the second worst flood story in PA. In fact, this town has been beset by 4 natural disasters in it’s existence and it just won’t die. It makes me think that there is something really spooky going on in Austin.

            • Yeah, read about Austin. Sad story.
              Glad you and da hubz had fun.
              Those small festivals are sometimes the best.

              • You said it. Everyone was so friendly. I missed you guys. Good to be here!

              • There is a small concrete park in the downtown of my hometown, where they have a different band play every weekend. They set up a few tents, food booths, stuff for the kids, and the band plays for 2-3 hours.

                People that have gone to it have said it is the best thing…………. free admission, just pay for food, and souvenirs. All ages attend……… all ages get along.

              • We need much more of that!

        • Thank you once again for the response. Gotta love the rapier wit of the HSAIC, or Head Smart A$$ In Charge!

      • Brandie,
        I posted something about the Riverhounds here on the Pirates thread. It got deleted.

        I have no idea what has been going on on twitter or other threads.

        DK: You clearly want this to have something to do with soccer, but it doesn’t. A Steelers post was removed from a Pirates-specific thread yesterday.

        This has nothing to do with anything other than respecting all readers who choose to come here.

    • I see that my post has deleted.

      Fine. But lets be clear, I feel your use of the word “denigrating” is way over the top.

      And I’ll speak for myself, I am not an insecure Pittsburgh baseball fan. I hope the Steelers, Penguins, Riverhounds, and the college teams win all their games. But if they don’t it won’t make me depressed. And it wouldn’t stop me from making jokes about them if I choose to. I just won’t make them here.

    • DK – always enjoy your baseball work, but I don’t think all, or even the majority of Pirates fans are insecure, maybe some are a very small vocal minority, I for one am not but placing this entry here seems like it could speak to all since no fans were named. As an out of town Bucs fan I come here to enjoy the camaraderie of other fellow Baseball and Pirates fans.

      Just like I think there are a few that just like to be negative and only pop around when something doesn’t go right. But that group neither speaks for all Pirates fans.

      I am a Rams fan, so don’t get in the way of Steelers talk although some of my family is part of the labeled “Steeler Nation”. And I have no problem with what amount of time you spend on their camp, and dedicate to pre-season games and the like.

      I am not a soccer fan, and am unsure of what level of competitive soccer is even being played in Pittsburgh as it is not MLS, but once again would not stand in way of those people that do follow and would not ever question what amount of time you devote to that. It is your job to decide what you feel either compelled to write about or told to write about from superiors.

      I think all the talk on who is the most popular team in Pittsburgh continues to be one of the silliest dialogues that gets brought up. Who cares? When I was in Pittsburgh in July for the Mets series with 38,000 + it appeared the Pirates were the most popular at that time. When the Steelers kickoff come September I am sure they will be the most popular on Sundays and Mondays.

      I just don’t think insecurity is a fair label for all of us Pirates fans who are just enjoying this magical season and the national recognition this club is starting to garner. And I believe the majority (as I have seen many of them and shared experiences with many in Arizona, Anaheim, San Diego) would not fit that description at all.

      Once again keep up the good work, as I look forward to your continued narrative as this pennant race plays out.

      DK: Thanks for that and for your candor, JRay. This is neither a novelty not a rarity, though. I get this stuff round the clock. And I don’t get it — I mean hardly EVER — from Steelers or Penguins fans.

    • DK, it’s not difficult to identify the causes of the wave of emotional insecurity afflicting Pirates’ fans this summer. The 2012 edition of “Currents Diseases and Diagnosis,” identifies insecurity about the outcome of the first pennant race in two decades as “Pittsburgh Playoff Psychosis” and recommended treatment is supportive care, a reduction in alcohol intake and regular attendance at home games against losing clubs like Milwaukee and Chicago. Other suggested treatments include temporary increases in the doses of anti-depressants and regular rest with the help of sleeping pills. Victims are urged to be told to “Keep it in the Day” and to remember “It’s only a Game” and, when the Bucs lose, “That’s Baseball.”

    • Oh how I love getting lumped in with the general rabble that trolls on Twitter.
      Thanks, DK!

  9. A rare post by DK the blogger instead of DK the moderator.

    • DK I wish you would stop talking about the Pirates. The endless talk about them is really getting old fast. Don’t you know that there is a 4th preseason game to play and the trading away of Niskanen. Not to mention Pitt and Penn State getting ready for their first game. Really when you think about it the game today for the Pirates is 1 of 162. No big deal. Why are we talking about it at all?

  10. Glad to be home, everyone!

  11. Down for the pre-game victory nap!

  12. A win would great, but a loss = a 5-3 West coast roadtrip, which is not a bad result for a somewhat banged-up squad.

  13. Announcing the lineups. Let’s Go Bucs!!

    I’m by the Giants bullpen. Beautiful day by the bay!!

    I love this city.

    Rtcoul on instagram for pics

    DK: Great place, great ballpark! Enjoy!

    But one question: How can thoughts like this even cross your mind without knocking the other teams in Pittsburgh? How is it that you’re just able to enjoy the Pirates having the season of a lifetime?

  14. Final

    Brewers 3
    Reds 1

    Milwaukee takes 2 of 3 AT Cinci!

  15. I’m not sure why we all don’t pull for any club that plays in the burgh

    Its our hometown

    Just sayin

  16. Your 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates . . Drama . . . Excitement . . . And . . . Strikeouts!

  17. Final

    Phillies 9
    DBacks 5

    Chance for Pirates to back up 10.5 games for playoff spot.

  18. Man, last night and today, all the bloops, bounces and luck has been with SF.

    If Vogelsong beats us today, I will fall off my ledge, onto the bridge, then into the water !!! ;)

  19. Big double play ball induced by AJ there and escape the inning.

  20. Braves up 5-1 now in the middle of the 8th

    This could end up being a really good day. Now if we could just get DK to do a column about it tomorrow we would be all set.

  21. Rack of Lambo with a nice, juicy hit!

  22. To bad we couldn’t get a hit there. Tabata and Mercer with the 3rd and 4th best averages on the team behind Cutch and Marte. Which is both weird and scary.

    Just think in late June, SS and RF where black holes offensively. Even Barmes has been somewhat productive over his last 60 at bats or so.

  23. Is it too much to ask these guys to learn how to start swinging the bat with two strikes to at least protect themselves from striking out so freaking much? It may also help get the pitcher’s pitch count up and get him out of the game earlier.

    • I agree. Mercerm Martin and Cutch when he is on are very good at working counts and extending at bats. The rest of the team could be better at it. I beleive they are doing better this year at getting pitch counts up for opposing pitchers but it still is an area they can improve on especially with Alverez, Marte and Jones in the line up.

  24. Jose Tabata follows up his first at-bat of the game where he swung at the first pitch and flied out by not swinging at all and strikes out looking on a 3-2 pitch with a RISP. Quality work so far.

  25. I’m not watching the game, but following on MLB.com.
    Is Volegsong baffling the hitters with good stuff? Tabby’s the 2nd batter (Martin) to take all 6 pitches in an AB and be called out on strikes?

  26. Cards lose 5-2.

    Kimbrell with a 4 out save. I guess the Braves really wanted this win.

  27. As I stated earlier, SF getting all the breaks.

    Need to invest in some rabbit’s feet, maybe?

  28. Giants show good things can happen when you put bat on ball.

  29. AJ’s pitch counting gettin up there quick. Hopefully we can get 6 out of him. Top of the order. Let’s get him some support.

  30. Does it seem like AJ has most of his little meltdowns with 2 outs? I don’ t trust this observation much. Just a hunch

    • Well it’s your observaton so you should trust it. It seems as if he does have trouble getting the last out sometimes. He also seems to relax sometimes after we get up 3 or 4 runs when he is pitching. He’s also has had some blatent mental mistakes defensively this year.

  31. Opening the door, peaking around the corner, CLEAR! as he rolls into room with I-Pad drawn. No shots yet. Must be safe now. :)

    Lets get to Voglesong right now boys!

  32. Does anybody want to guess what Vogelsong’s career ERA is? Hopefully they didnt’ show it on the broadcast today.

    • His ERA is 4.50. Not exactly that type of stuff that makes you start kicking yourself for ever letting that guy slip through your fingers. I think all fans of all team not just the Pirates see a guy they traded away have a good year or two and that is what sticks in their minds. They instantly think their team would look really good with that guy on it right now when in reality it would probably be about the same in most cases.

  33. You would think that Walker, with his limited speed and power would learn to go with the pitch, instead of constantly trying to pull outside pitches and rolling over on them to hit weak ground balls to second.

  34. Getaway day effort so far.

  35. Nice quick inning for Burnett.

  36. Voglesong has found his inner Cy Young against us – yet again. Come on Bats!!!!

  37. Lambo gets thrown out trying to steal second with 2 outs by 10 feet.

  38. Does Walk object to blue bubblegum?

  39. I’m not watching the game. Was it a hit and run or a staight steal. I have to think it was a hit and run but there is no reason for the pitcher not to pitch carefully to Mercer with Burnett do up next so a hit and run was probably not a good call if that is the case.

  40. Burnetts best chance to win this game is to hit Vogelsong in his pitching arm while he’s batting.

  41. I’ve gotta stop with the “obervations.” Starting to feel like Nostradamus.

  42. Volgelsong has hit the ball harder than most of the Bucs today in both of his plate appearances. So far the team looks like they just want to get out of here. AJ loads the bases after getting the first two outs – just in time for Belt who has hit very well in August.

  43. 1 hit against suckwad Vogelsong is UNACCEPTABLE. C’mon for cripes sakes, hit the frigging ball.

    • In 2011, he was one of the best pitchers in the league. In 2012, he was well above average. This year he has been injured. Your description best applies to pre 2006.

    • The Pirate hitters are overmatched by pitchers who throw a fastball and a slower ball for strikes and work around the plate. They aren’t patient. They don’t go the other way. And they can’t hit different speed strikes. They are awful.

  44. On another note, Japan just tied it up at 4 in the LLWS in bottom 5.

  45. Dodged another bullet there, now get some freaking RUNS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  46. WE HAVE ONE #@!*?!** HIT OFF RYAN VOGELSONG!! REALLY??!!

  47. US now losing 6-4 in the bottom of the 5th. And we are now out of the inning after another horrible bunt by AJ to turn into a DP. As usually the walk by AJ was the only run scored by SF today so far. This is sad. If they haven’t been scoreboard watching they need to open their eyes and notice that the three teams in the playoff race behind them – STL, CIN, and ARZ have LOST,s o WIN THE GAME. Three more innings to try and get at least one run to tie this thing. If they keep letting Vogelsong do what he has been doing they will not get to the bullpen today to score their runs – the main MO of this team this year.

  48. If we lose to Ryan Vogelsong and his almost 6 ERA, words wont suffice to describe it.

    One hit so far.
    One walk so far.
    One HBP so far.

    !@#$%^&*()!@#$%^&*()_+!@#$%^&*()_ !!!!!

  49. If we lose today, I swear……
    I’m not watching them tomorrow!

  50. Burnett’s been pitching around his own mess the whole game and he’s only given up 1 run in 6 innings. Show a pulse offense.

  51. Now, do something!

  52. US loses to Japan again 6-4.

  53. At last, a second hit. And an error. C’mon Pedro.

  54. Why is Cutch not on third after that flyout to right. Come on a passed ball scores you from third. Come on Martin you are way due.

  55. Yeah, a really lousy pitcher.

    • Pirate announcers said this is his best outing this year BY FAR !

      The rest of the year, he has stunk, save for a decent outing or 2.

      We are making him look much better than he is, sadly.

  56. That’s what happens when you give yourself one pitch to try and hit – you swing and miss. Sad! Sad! Sad!

  57. PATHETIC

  58. Games like this really hi-lite why the Pirates need to trade for a hitter. It’s not that one hitter is going to magically make the Pirates a better hitting team, but they need someone that can at least pretend to be a number 5 hitter. The fact Martin is batting there shows how bad Jones and Sanchez have been and Martin is definitely not a 5 hitter. He really should be hitting seventh.

  59. Burnett gave up 1 run in 7 innings on the road and is going to lose this game. bs.

  60. Another typical AJ start – a walk comes around to score the only run, and the Bucs offense doesn’t show up after AJ pitches a quality start. six more outs to get something going. How about showing up today GI Jones! All we need is one to tie at this point.

  61. No excuses, but Vogelsong has been getting some nice calls by the ump that doesn’t know fair from foul. Clearly he doesn’t know strike from ball either.

  62. Okay, it is time for my almost daily hitless wonders comment. This is my attempt at reverse psychology. Every time I post this they suddenly start hitting.

  63. I said it a week ago and I will repeat. Jones needs to sit for a week. The pitcher has a better chance of getting a hit than Jones does and right now Sanchez has a lot better chance than Jones to get a hit against right handed pitching.!

  64. Go Bucs! Just got home from my fantasy football draft. I still have TMS (too many Steelers). 4 out of 16. What the heck. Live or die with your team.

    We need to hit the ball. A.J. pitches his butt off all year. 3.01 ERA and a 6-8 record. Don’t make no sense. If he can get through the 8th maybe we can have a big 9th. Frustraitiny to watch.

  65. Its not quite over yet

    We get 27 outs, don’t we?

  66. Can we order some smelling salts for the top of the ninth? This offense need to wake up in a hurry.

  67. Listening to the game on the radio…seems like SF likes all the loud music & sound effects between batters and pitches.

  68. One last post about Voglesong. Scutaro said of his last start that he was back to the way he pitched last year, when “he was out most effective pitcher in the post season . . . Painting the corners ” . . . Etc. his start today is the 4th since he got back from a broken finger. Era in last 28 innings is 2. This guy can pitch, for sure.

  69. Bogle song has been living on the outside corner all day and the Pirate hitters have no clue how to adjust and go with the pitch. I wish Tony Gwynn had been a Pirate instead of Jay Bell. If we hired him as a hitting coach, he might be able to teach a couple to go opposite field.

  70. CH definitely let AJ in too long today, and now a very fine effort will go to waste by giving up some more cheep runs. A DP ball would be nice right now.

  71. Did CH leave AJ in too long, again?

  72. Game set match, and why was he still out there after 115+ pitches!!!!!? 3-0 and still tied for first place – 3 outs for us to go.

  73. Now he takes him out. Pitched a gritty game, too bad it ends this way.

  74. Terrible job by Hurdle. Burnett has pitched out of trouble the whole game and he is forced to go through the middle of the order for a 4th time. Gave away any chance of a 9th inning comeback, though it would have taken a miracle given the moribund offense.

  75. Why is he making his 115th pitch of the game in that situation. There is absolutely no reason for it. It was a nice jesture to send him out there in the 8th and give him a chance for the win if we socre a couple in the 9th but the first sign of trouble he should have been pulled.

  76. Well CH comes out about 5 pitches too late, but this is not on AJ at all, he gave a great start and the offense failed him once again. Other than Cutch and Lambo who stung the ball hard the rest of the lineup was lost.

    Wasted opportunity once again with everybody else already taking losses today. Going to end up with a split when team had two chances to win series with their top two arms, disappointing.

    Maybe NH will spend the off day seriously contemplating adding a bat to this lineup as with out Marte for another week, it is going to be a struggle.

    • Excellent points.

      neal will never go get anyone. Come on JRay, be serious.

      • Oh I don’t think he will, I am not naive to the situation the club works under, wishful thinking.

        For better or worse this is the group they are going with, so as I have said all along it will come down to pitching and defense with this team, and we will need to out pitch a lot of teams the rest of the way.

  77. AJ didn’t deserve 4 ER on the afternoon. One was all he needed to receive – especially since he walked the guy.

  78. Dejan

    AJ pushed it today, got an off day tomorrow

    Yes, offense stunk so far, Legend could not hit his way out of a wet paper bag right now.

    Hurdle, IMHO, went too far with AJ today.

    Not criticizing his overall body of work, just the way he handles AJ

  79. The Pirates scored 18 total runs in 2 games on this trip. In the other 5 games they have scored a total of 10 runs. This is the same team at the end of the trip that they were at the beginning of the trip. Scuffling and playing below average baseball. They turned a winning 4-3 road trip into the least enjoyable possible by losing the last two games, started by their two best pitchers, of a series against a last place team going nowhere.

    Before the all-star break the Pirates were 20-11 in the last game of series. Since the all-star break they are now 3-8. Those games are getaway days and show who really wants it. The Pirates since the break are a who gives a damn team, playing who gives a damn baseball.

    Maybe they will wake up soon and start playing good baseball. It’s been 3 weeks and they continue playing poorly.

    • It’s also August and they will be 11-12 after today. Generally they don’t play well in August and September. They need to change that September trend and WIN. The trend in the first half of the season was to lose the first game and win the rest, so the trend in the second half of losing the last games is probably a resorting back to the mean type thing.

  80. Here’s hoping for a Cincy win tomorrow night. At least that will put us up by 1/2 games over STL.

  81. Yes, NH has been silent, no guts at the trade options.

    Hurdle left AJ in too long, and he’s been doing that, IMHO

    • Sorry to all, responding to tweets

      • Dont apologize, you are speaking the truth.

        neal will continue to fiddle.

        If this team loses its pitching in September, we are doomed.

        Lets hope they dont!!!

        • They always had trouble winning in San Francisco, even when they had good teams. Our feeble offense sure doesn’t help.

        • It’s a pennant race kids. Second guess, third guess all you want. We have one of the best records in baseball and we are in first place on 8/25. I think they should burn every bat in that clubhouse or throw them in the Bay and get new ones for the rest of the season. The ones they are using now must have holes in em.

  82. I’m not usually “that guy” but unfortunately facts are facts. The Jay Bell experiment has been a total failure.

    • Maybe. But doesn’t that opinion create the assumption that Bell was given the proper, talented clay to mould by Neal.

      On the other hand, if Neal didn’t build a strong group of hitters, should we expect Jay Bell to turn them into the Cardinals?

      I don’t know. Really I don’t. But to be honest, I’ve always thought that a coach’s influence is overrated. ESPECIALLY at the MLB level, after 2-5 years of system development, following years of high school, little league, beer league, whatever.

      Is it Bell’s fault?
      Is it Huntington’s fault?
      Maybe the players. They should have some accountability, shouldn’t they?

      I really don’t know. But there’s no rule that it has to be A Pox On Both Houses. It is possible that one should receive more blame.

      But which one?

    • If Bell had some material to work with, that might help things.

  83. Today’s game didn’t count. It was for charity. To honor the blind guy who threw out the first pitch, they wore blindfolds while hitting. They’ll come back tomorrow and play for real.

  84. I am little concerned about our Bucs imitating the 1906 White Sox.

    This road trip had so much potential, going against the 2 bottom-feeders of the NL West.

    And, since the Bucs have now lost 54 games, lets not hear “this is one of the 54″ any longer. Every single game from here on out is crucial. I am also concerned about our pitching, which has been stellar all year. If it falters……………………….

    Yes, we did have a 4-3 road trip. Yes we are still in first place. But this trip re-enforced the same fears……… poor hitting, and now the pitching appears to be off.

    The Brewers represent a chance to build a cushion in the division. Lets hope we can do it before we engage in the pennant wars with STL and Cincy.

    GO BUCS!

    And sorry you cant watch the game tomorrow, Playoffs. ;)

    • Whew!

      I was afraid you were gonna say the 1919 Sox.

    • Like you pointed out, we went 4-3 on a West Coast road trip.

      Here are the amount of runs we gave up in these games:
      1
      1
      2
      5
      1
      6 (Liriano…not worried about him)
      4

      I am a little concerned about Locke because he isn’t giving us innings but overall I am not worried about the pitching. The hitting is way too inconsistent, and we still struggle a lot when we face a good pitcher.

      • I am concerned about Locke too.
        And Cole, due to innings.
        And AJ is having another poor August.

        We will need the pitching to be on its A game the rest of the year.
        I dont see too many hitting upgrades with the expansion to 40-man rosters.

      • We struggle when we face a bad pitcher. Check out the ERA’s on the 3 guys we lost to on this trip. Two of them over 5.00 & the other over 6.00.

        • Like the strikeouts, that’s been a multi-year pattern, pre-dating Hurdle even.

          On the bright side, other than the record, at least outings like Liriano’s last night where we are down 3 runs or more after the first inning are rare. Used to seem like it was every other game.

  85. For the first time in MONTHS, we have a NEW LEADER in the standings!

    CONGRATS to bman, the new points leader!

    Here are the current, up-to-date standings:

    TOP SCORES IN AUGUST
    bman ~ 650
    Irish ~ 375
    War Horse ~ 300
    kr70 ~ 300
    Jandy ~ 200

    CURRENT PARTICIPANT TOTALS
    bman ~ 2555
    Nor Cal Stlrfanrc (Ryan) ~ 2425
    JRay3 ~ 1875
    Nate83 ~ 1675
    blazer ~ 1600
    JUCOFan ~ 1375
    theplanisworking ~ 1250
    Dadtackular ~ 1200
    War Horse ~ 1065
    Pucknutz ~ 900
    Irish ~ 875
    KJX ~ 750
    fellocolonial ~ 700
    stickyweb ~ 700
    Bill Born ~ 680
    Ermine ~ 600
    tdb1977 ~ 585
    Chico ~ 500
    RobertoForever ~ 490
    Karen22 ~ 425
    BDHumbert ~ 400
    OZ ~ 400
    TCB ~ 400
    JohninOshkosh ~ 385
    Vette60 (Randy in RVA) ~ 350
    EricBowser ~ 325
    Boise Bucco ~ 200
    Evan ~ 200
    Hal Smith ~ 200
    JoeyBats ~ 175
    cherokee23 ~ 150
    A1C McG ~ 100
    Dom ~ 100
    Fish ~ 100
    kr70 ~ 100
    Matt hoffman ~ 100
    PetroSteel ~ 100
    The Gunner ~ 100
    MarkV ~ 50
    mlrgenuine ~ 50
    TJ ~ 50
    tmp444 ~ 25
    Arriba Wilver ~ 0
    Frankie ~ 0
    pants-n-at ~ 0
    steelercrazy ~ 0
    TK ~ 0
    Ruffian706 ~ -40
    Ben ~ -80
    absolute59 ~ -100
    Brian ~ -100
    Dcpinpgh ~ -100
    John in WM ~ -100
    Kevin S ~ -100
    buggee ~ -150
    Ghost ~ -150
    Jason81 ~ -150
    Keith ~ -150
    Brandie ~ -200
    cosmo ~ -200
    DemonDachshund ~ -200
    DormontGeorge ~ -200
    Ryan76 ~ -200
    stuart66 ~ -200
    radio wave ~ -225
    Joey Mellons ~ -300
    Steve J. Smith ~ -400
    cmat0829 ~ -450
    JaxBuc ~ -500
    Jandy ~ -675
    JMB ~ -700
    Lad9 ~ -700
    pattonbb ~ -1100
    Kevin ~ -1535
    JD ~ -1675
    Bizrow ~ -4900

    ***The Most Points for the end of AUGUST 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

  86. Well, I see poor Biz needs to make a U-Turn in Playoffs standings.

    With the off day tomorrow, maybe the team can whip up a magic potion to cure the hitting ills. Hurdle did look upset when he headed into the clubhouse after the game.

    Good night everybody.
    We be in a pennant race!!! ;)

    • A few things i learned over this 4 game series with the giants

      Russel Martin should never hit higher than 7th in any lineup- the man K’s way too much!

      Garrett Jones pulled out of his slump for 1 single AB, and now he is flailing at every pitch that comes his way. Either get a bat, or let this guy sit and be the no.1 lefty pinch hitter off the bench.

      Jose (the dog) Tabata is not a lead off, or top of the order hitter. What a pathetic group of Ab’s he produced today. I am not a fan of this guy, and now that Inge is gone, he is my least favorite Pirate.

      The rest of this supposed offense was already on the plane to Pittsburgh, when this game began. They had everything to gain, and they came out like they were all drinking until noon. What a pathetic , overall effort from top to bottom today.

      Hurdle was a true jackass for letting Burnett start the 9th , since Morris was already loose and ready to go.
      Did he really need Burnett to get another complete game?. Seriously, stupid, bone headed decision, especially with the off day on Monday.
      How serious is this Marte injury by the way?. Doesn’t seem like a bunch of talk about it, but am i supposed to believe in 2 weeks he will be back to 100% , or is this something that will bother him the rest of the season, and the 1 game wild card game?.
      I realized that this team does not like to seize golden opportunities, like they had today. A marginal pitcher , like Kennedy, or Vogelsong, shuts them down, at will.
      This starting pitching is getting worn down, and i am afraid, if they can make the post season, it won’t be for long.
      No reason Huntington couldn’t have done SOMETHING, at the trade deadline, excuses don’t cut it!.

      DK: Sure they count. Never heard of an ‘A’ for effort?

      • I mentioned several days ago, AJ gets “special – as in different – treatment” from CH, as though CH has some fear of offending him. It appears obvious to me, and by some of these comments today, some of you are noticing as well.

        On another note, how is it that we blame Coach Bell for the hitting problems, and exonerate Coach Leyva for the base running snafus including Cutch’s today, always putting the onus on the runner?

  87. My God, Jeff Locke’s punting for the Vikings. No wonder he seems so tired.

  88. As I said, the bats are not there. NH will have to address this in the off season. That will be the test of the “all in” management promise. My fear is this is a one shot deal and the Bucs regress next year with AJ gone, Wandy out, Francisco comes back some and pitching is not nearly as good as this year. In addition, with out addressing the 1st and RF situation, Bucs may need another year to improve.

    DK: Yes, that’ll be quite some test, if they can address this in the offseason. You know, after this irrelevant season is over.

  89. As we know, AJ can react emotionally when being replaced in a game, especially if he has pitched reasonably well and is only one run behind. My guess is that Clint Hurdle was giving AJ a meaningful chance to sink or swim. If he gets through the 8th without giving up much, he still has a chance to win the game if the Bucs’ bats wake up in the 9th. Some wishful thinking, perhaps because it didn’t happen. Maybe AJ learned a lesson. Maybe not.
    I’m still waiting for a scouting report on how late some of these guys are staying out at night, how much they’re drinking, and how much restful rather than hangover sleep they’re getting on nights before a day game. Their weak performances at the plate cost them two of the seven games this trip.

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