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More thoughts on Steelers, then a week off

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Morning, Lunatics …

>> The Monday column from MetLife Stadium revisits Steelers vs. Other Jets and reiterates my stance on this team’s talent vs. its achievement level to date.

A few other random observations I set aside for the blog: There’s nothing Kelvin Beachum can’t do, apparently, given his many positional switches. But after performing “above the line” — Mike Tomlin’s words — in his first full duty at left tackle, you can be sure he’ll stick. And that he’ll improve. “I know it’s a tough position, and there’s a lot to learn, but I’m really looking forward to it,” Beachum was telling me afterward, just beaming. … You can forget about Levi Brown. Tomlin all but blurted out he’s done for the season. Injured in warmups before what would have been his first game. Yikes. … I’ll leave the high-intensity film dissection to our beat guys, but I saw an awful lot of good blocks by running backs. Credit them, but also Kirby Wilson. … Did you know 61 of the Steelers’ 73 rushing yards came in the second half? Ben Roethlisberger explained that he approached Todd Haley and said, “No more passes,” then challenged his linemen to kill the clock the old-fashioned way. Even against the NFL’s No. 2 defense, it worked. … Lawrence Timmons was insanely good. Just crushing people. … Is it good or bad that Willie Gay outplayed Cortez Allen at the job everyone had been hoping Allen could keep? … Can’t remember the last time I saw Kevin Colbert smile, but he had a healthy one in the locker room afterward. … I’ve actually always liked Ryan Clark. Didn’t enjoy ripping him in column. But man, he’s made a fool of himself this past week. … Two words you never, ever hear: Fernando Velasco. And that’s a good thing. … Loved this from LaMarr Woodley but couldn’t keep it in the final edit of my column: “We did what we were supposed to do.” … I asked Ben Roethlisberger what’s the mindset now, given the still-huge 1-4 hole: “The mindset is, ‘Congratulations, good job, but we’ve got a lot of work to do.” … It wasn’t just Beachum and Velasco. I liked what I saw on the line from both guards, Ramon Foster and David DeCastro, though not at all what I saw from Marcus Gilbert. We’ll see what the film shows.

In the meantime, here’s some of my talk on that topic with Foster …

And stuff from a bunch of other guys …

Here’s our full Steelers coverage, by Alan Robinson, Ralph Paulk and Mark Kaboly.

Here’s Jets news from the Newark Star-Ledger.

Here are official game highlights from NFL.com.

And don’t forget our Steelers photo gallery, by Chaz Palla and Chris Horner. In there you can find this pristine capture by Palla of Ben’s 10-yard run to the New York 2 and lowering of the shoulder …

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>> I’m taking a week off beginning today, and I’ll be back to cover Steelers-Ravens next Sunday. No columns, no blogging, no radio, no TV, no social media, no nothing for a little bit. It’s a spectacular job, but the past 11 days I’ve been to Paris, London, Paris again, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, St. Louis, Baltimore again, Pittsburgh, Chicago, St. Louis again, Chicago again, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, East Rutherford and soon back home again.

Not complaining at all. Again, it’s all great.

I will, of course, put up threads here in advance for daily discussion, as well as one for each game being played by our various teams. And there’s just about no way I’ll be able to stay away from Consol with all the young talent Edmonton’s bringing through Tuesday night, but I’ve promised not to work there, either.

Be good.

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. Drew71 says:

    The SEC bagged eight slots in the Top 25.

    That’s a record.

  2. Tom P. says:

    For any baseball fans still perusing the blog, one week ago, I noted (correctly) that the Cardinals had lost 5 of their previous 6 playoff games. Since then, the Cardinals have won 4 straight playoff games, allowing a total of four runs in the process. To paraphrase a comment that a co-worker made about goaltending and hockey, pitching appears to be 75% of the game if you have it, 100% of the game if you don’t.

  3. Jandy says:

    “Be good.”

    Uh huh ;)

  4. JAL says:

    JAL’s One Morning Links

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P6ekwuhHqXI

    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 Pittsburgh Pirates Stats

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

    BLOGS and such

    4—Pirates Prospects

    Pittsburgh Pirates 2013-14 Off-Season Contract Situations
    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/10/pittsburgh-pirates-2013-14-off-season-contract-situations.html

    Could the Pirates Have a $100 M Payroll in 2014?

    http://www.piratesprospects.com/2013/10/could-the-pirates-have-a-100-m-payroll-in-2014.html

    5 Bucs Dugout

    Bradenton season review

    http://www.bucsdugout.com/2013/10/13/4789184/bradenton-season-review

    6 Rumbunter

    Pirates Alex Dickerson Puts On Show, Takes Bowman Hitting Challenge NL Crown

    http://rumbunter.com/2013/10/13/pirates-alex-dickerson-puts-show-takes-title/

    7 KDKA

    Pirates Determined To Make 2013 Dawn Of New Era

    http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2013/10/14/pirates-determined-to-make-2013-dawn-of-new-era/

    8 The Green Weenie

    Summer To Remember Part 4 – September Stretch Run

    http://oldbucs.blogspot.com/2013/10/summer-to-remember-part-4-september.html

    9 IS Sports

    Pittsburgh Pirates: Season ends but the beginning is now

    http://isportsweb.com/2013/10/12/pittsburgh-pirates-season-ends-beginning-now/

    10 City of Champions

    Pittsburgh Pirates: Grading the 2013 First Baseman

    http://cityofchampionssports.com/2013/10/13/pittsburgh-pirates-grading-2013-first-baseman/

  5. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 Rant Sports

    The Pittsburgh Pirates Should Bring Back Clint Barmes

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2013/10/13/the-pittsburgh-pirates-should-bring-back-clint-barmes/

    Pittsburgh Pirates Should Move On From Marlon Byrd

    http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2013/10/13/pittsburgh-pirates-should-move-on-from-marlon-byrd/

    12 CBS Sports

    World Series Remember When: Bill Mazeroski walks off

    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-baseball/24077239/world-series-remember-when-bill-mazeroski-walks-off

    13 Boston Herald

    David Ortiz slam keys dramatic Red Sox comeback

    http://bostonherald.com/sports/red_sox_mlb/boston_red_sox/2013/10/david_ortiz_slam_keys_dramatic_red_sox_comeback

    14 Detroit Free Press

    Jeff Seidel: Why in the world did Tigers pitch to Ortiz?

    http://www.freep.com/article/20131014/COL38/310140024/detroit-tigers-boston-red-sox-game-2-american-league-championship-series-fenway-park

    15 Cincinnati Enquirer

    All quiet on the Reds manager front

    http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20131012/SPT04/310120072/All-quiet-on-the-Reds-manager-front

    16 PBC Site

    Rojas, Andrade smooth path for Bucs’ Hispanic players

    http://pittsburgh.pirates.mlb.com/news/article/pit/coaches-euclides-rojas-heberto-andrade-smooth-path-for-pirates-hispanic-players?ymd=20131013&content_id=62905224&vkey=news_pit

    17 St Louis Post Dispatch

    Bernie: Last October keeps Cards centered

    http://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/bernie-miklasz/bernie-last-october-keeps-cards-centered/article_c7668ac8-8fb8-52f1-996c-b457cc6b676e.html

    18 LA Times

    Down 0-2 in NLCS, Dodgers place their fate in Hyun-Jin Ryu’s hands

    http://www.latimes.com/sports/baseball/mlb/dodgers/la-sp-1014-dodgers-cardinals-20131014,0,7305345.story#axzz2hgx1V1iz

    SPORTS WEBSITES

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    The Week In Quotes

    http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=22036

    20 Fangraphs

    A Resurgence of Young Postseason Starters

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/a-resurgence-of-young-postseason-starters/

  6. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Winners and Losers from Steelers 19-6 win over the New York Jets in Week 6

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/10/13/4834564/steelers-jets-report-card-evaluation-final-score-nfl-week-6

    Steelers vs. Jets final score: Plays get made in Steelers’ 19-6 win over Jets

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/10/13/4834666/steelers-jets-week-6-final-score-highlights-game-summary

    22 Steelers Gab

    Two Turnovers, Three Sacks Lead Steelers To 19-6 Win Over Jets

    http://www.steelersgab.com/2013/10/13/two-turnovers-three-sacks-lead-steelers-to-19-6-win-over-jets/

    Soccer(football)

    23 US Soccer

    Several Changes Made to U.S. MNT Roster for Final FIFA World Cup Qualifier Against Panama

    http://www.ussoccer.com/news/mens-national-team/2013/10/several-changes-made-to-us-mnt-roster-for-qualifier-against-panama.aspx

    24 World Soccer Daily

    10 stories you need to read, 11th October, 2013

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/247/world-soccer-daily-the-stories-you-need-to-read-11th-october-2013

    Face to face: Franck Ribery

    http://www.worldsoccer.com/features/face-to-face-franck-ribery

    PENGUIN BLOGS and NHL Links

    25 Pensburgh

    Crosby, Niskanen power Pens to 5-4 win in Tampa

    http://www.pensburgh.com/2013/10/13/4833658/crosby-niskanen-power-pens-to-5-4-win-in-tampa

  7. Jandy says:

    “Clark needs to zip it. ”

    Indeed. And if he doesn’t, duct tape works wonders.

  8. Naje says:

    Clark and the defense were not giving the ball away like free breakfast’s at Denny’s. Apparently the qb got the message and did his job.

  9. Naje says:

    Wonder if the almighty Leyland “hurdled” himself and his team last night…. apparently, even the most incredibly terrific, fantastic, best-in-class coaches make major boneheaded mistakes, too.

  10. Jandy says:

    Yes, Ben was making “boneheaded” plays the first four games, and losing the ball. Doesn’t change the fact that Clark needs to STFU.

  11. Drew71 says:

    Do I sense bitterness?

    I think they’re both very good managers. The difference, at least for this season, is that Hurdle will win – and earn – manager of the year and Leyland, though very good and a past winner, will not.

    Of course it is also fair to point out that Leyland’s team is still playing.

  12. theplanisworking says:

    Wow!

    Trashing a manager that has been to the playoffs 10 times in 22 years, winning 1 WS title, and appearing in 2 other WS.

    Wow.

    Happy Columbus Day, everybody!!!!

  13. Jandy says:

    Happy fackin Monday to you, too Night Janitor :)

    Some people are having a rough Monday I guess…

  14. Jandy says:

    sense? SENSE?

    it reeks lol

  15. Naje says:

    Just as you trashed a manager nearly every day that won 94 games in the regular season and three more playoff games. With about half the talent that Leyland has at his disposal.

    But I see, only fair to trash a manager when you see fit and when it fits your narrative.

  16. Thundercrack says:

    Saturday night’s AL Championship Game:
    10 hits
    1 Run
    3:56 was the time of the game.

    I can’t believe last night’s game was about a half hour shorter.
    Almost makes me think that any game the Red Sox are in should have a clock.

    Game 2 of the Dodgers vs Cardinals was also a 1-0 game. It only took 2:40 to play.

  17. theplanisworking says:

    As if we needed further proof who hijacked the blog Friday………….

    a man in a Green Lantern shirt was seen scurrying away from Trib HQ, then DK offers a mushy apology for the site crashing, then he is in New York for the Steeler win (proving miracles do exist) , now a week long vacation. Hmmmmmm.

    Enjoy your vacation, DK, and dont take down any more websites. ;) :)

  18. theplanisworking says:

    I gave credit where credit was due, and criticized where appropriate also.
    Just because I didnt fawn all over him, you are mad.

    Nice try.

  19. Naje says:

    I asked Ben Roethlisberger what’s the mindset now, given the still-huge 1-4 hole: “The mindset is, ‘Congratulations, good job, but we’ve got a lot of work to do.”

    Would have been nice to see a great deal of that work getting done in August and September. Hope the team showers off those two months thoroughly and keeps moving in a positive direction.

  20. Naje says:

    No, you don’t and you didn’t. You were a consistent basher of Hurdle all year, oftentimes over the top and unreasonable. And if anyone criticized you, they were labeled as too big a Hurdle fan.

    Nice try. Thanks!

  21. theplanisworking says:

    Hi Jandy.
    Hope you and hubby recovered by now.

    We got our Christmas miracle yesterday in New York.
    DK is gonna be at the game Tuesday…….. I am afraid the arena will go dark. ;)

  22. Naje says:

    No one’s having a rough Monday, J… had to deal all season with unreasonable criticisms on a near daily basis. Leyland got burned last night. He’d have been trashed all over this blog if this was a Bucs team. Just pointing out that even those managers we believe to be the best around, make mistakes… sometimes, a lot of mistakes.

  23. Jandy says:

    Hubby is sore, but he’ll make it. He’s a stubborn guy :)

    It’s high time the Steelers won a game.

    As for Dejan, he’s not working so we MIGHT be spared ;)

  24. theplanisworking says:

    I dont know what your agenda is this morning, but the last month of the season, I gave much credit to 3 maligned people…….. Huntington, Hurdle, and Alvarez.

    I did question why Hurdle wasnt allowed to be criticized for making mistakes, because there WAS a faction of the blog thaf didnt allow it.

    But thats ok, we all saw in your original post here the hate you have for Leyland.

    As for you saying I never gave Hurdle credit, you are outright lying. So please stop, and have a great day!

  25. Thundercrack says:

    We are not allowed to criticize Hurdle.
    And apparently we’re not allowed to criticize Leyland.
    Ha!

    I like Leyland a lot. And he is the perfect manager for a team with a lot of talented veterans.

  26. Jandy says:

    Yes, Naje, they may be in the spotlight, but they’re still human.

    Gotta give credit, tho, the man (Leyland) has had a good career.

    Are you a big Leyland fan, Naje? I like the guy, always have.

  27. theplanisworking says:

    hey, Thunder, you always argue with me and my viewpoints………. question for you:

    who was the person who stated that anyone questioning Hurdle’s managing of the team didnt have credibility? You remember that quote? I remember your answer to that quote. You think you could help Naje remember who said that quote??

  28. That would be refreshing.

  29. I thought Benoit threw that granny gopher ball to Big Papi, not Leyland. Guess I flipped over to House Hunters at the wrong time.

  30. Jandy says:

    Revvie!!!!!
    Maybe we need to get AJ to have a “talk” with him ;)

  31. Jandy says:

    ZING!!!!!!!!!!

  32. 21sthebest says:

    I thought John Farrell made a bigger mistake than Leyland.

  33. theplanisworking says:

    Lord no. ;)

  34. theplanisworking says:

    Good Morning, sir.
    Hope thr rolling hills of Kentucky are well this morning.

  35. Couldn’t hurt, J-Girl.

    Seems there has been 1 or 2 Steelers the last couple or so years that don’t know when to stow it.

    Tomlin needs to unleash duct tape on some of them, like you already said.

  36. 21sthebest says:

    The criticism I heard of Leyland is that he didn’t use Phil Coke against Ortiz. But Coke’s splits against lefty’s aren’t very good so that non move didn’t bother me.

  37. Drew71 says:

    Naje,

    I don’t think that trashing one manager justifies trashing another. Especially when, in my opinion, neither is deserved.

    You know what, doesn’t matter if deserved. Taking a position on Leyland as what appears to be revenge-trashing for Hurdle strikes me as across a line.

    And no. I am NOT attempting to limit debate. Just tone and revenge-anything.

    Wanna make the argument that Leyland is overrated, based on facts and content? Or about Hurdle? Or the opposite arguments? Go for it.

    But the qualities of one manager, or the lack thereof, have nothing to do with another.

  38. theplanisworking says:

    If I ever make it back to Florida someday, I will buy you many beers. Nice post.

  39. Drew71 says:

    When Zane Smith pitched a one or two run game, it usually took less than two hours. Which was cool. And one of the reason that a guy with ok stuff was often over-his-head effective.

  40. Drew71 says:

    Careful. I drink VERY expensive beers.

  41. Jandy says:

    You remembered the “L”, good job Planster :)

  42. Jandy says:

    Hey 21! How did the marathon go?

  43. Jandy says:

    Count me in! I want some good brew ;)

  44. Jandy says:

    OOps, sorry, seems you DON’T like Leyland. My mistake.

  45. Jim S. says:

    I believe the Dodgers have a big-time beef with the way they lost on Friday night. Didn’t appear that Molina actually tagged the runner on Beltran’s throw.

    But, your point was that St. Louis has had great pitching and I can’t disagree a bit, Tom. Maybe the Pirates hitters were not so bad, after all.

    Also, Detroit could be up 2-0 now with a competent bullpen. I have not been able to figure out how they spared no expense in building that team, but could not put together a decent bullpen.

    Finally, Prince Fielder should have to change his last name. He is a disaster at 1b. He should have easily kept the throw in front of him on the first batter of the 9th last night, rather than allowing it to skip out of play and allow the runner to advance. Then, he dropped a pop up near the railing without almost no interference from the fans. If he makes those 2 plays, the Red Sox are batting with a man on 1st and 1 out. The single through the drawn in infield looked like a DP ball if the SS was back in his normal position.

  46. Dom says:

    If Todd Haley gets fired, who will the Steeler look to replace him? It was rumored that Kirby Wilson was to be the successor before he was badly injured in a fire but since he’s back on the job, would he be the favorite for the OC position?

  47. Jim S. says:

    True, Naje. But, part of the defense’s job is takeaways, and zero through 4 games is not doing your job. He also dropped a simple pick late in the game yesterday that was right in his hands, and he tripped over his own feet after making his interception. I like Clark. I just wish he would worry about himself and his current job rather than his next job while he’s still being paid by the Steelers.

  48. hockeymonster says:

    Somebody tell Bortuzzo to lay off the caffeine…he was all over the place and way out of control against florida. He should read scuderi’s quote about head manning the puck and playing simple. Wasn’t surprised to see pens get engellend in against tampa. They were probably looking for a time to play him anyway but bortuzzo jumping up into the play and lugging the puck into traffic too much made it easier to sit him. One time I saw him join the rush so out of control he stole a pass not intended for him and led to a turnover.

    Stay in your lane Bortuzzo. Don’t mess up your good start with sloppy decisions trying to get on the score sheet.

  49. Looking at the replay, which is all I had yesterday,
    it seemed to me that ball was an over-throw into double coverage.

    Any one of us here on the blog could probably have made that pick and probably should have.

    Correct me if I’m wrong.

  50. Jim S. says:

    I actually heard a guy on MLB Radio this morning call to complain that Leyland did not walk Ortiz to force in the run and make it 5-2, then pitch to Napoli. Talk about hindsight and 20/20. Sheesh!

  51. 21sthebest says:

    Thanks for asking Jandy. It was actually October 6. Went pretty well. Got pretty hot!

  52. Jim S. says:

    Yeah, 26.2. How did it go?

  53. Jandy says:

    it was 80+ degrees here that weekend, so yeah it was like a hot summer day for that one.
    Hope there weren’t too many casualties.

  54. Thundercrack says:

    No plan. I don’t know what you are talking about

    But I do know who keeps saying these types of things.

    “because there WAS a faction of the blog thaf didnt allow it.”

    Nobody controls what can and can’t be discussed on the blog. Well, only one guy can do that

  55. theplanisworking says:

    I know you drink expensive beers. Doesnt matter………. I will save the $$$ from me not drinking beers……. Jandy, you too.

    ;)

  56. Jim S. says:

    Gotta say, I thought plan gave credit to Hurdle and even Huntington quite a bit down the stretch.

  57. theplanisworking says:

    Yay me?

  58. Jim S. says:

    Can I get in on the free beers?

  59. Jandy says:

    Plan always calls them as he sees them. He may bet upset with a coach for something, but a few days later give the same coach credit for a job well done.
    Unlike some on here, who pick a player or coach and hound them to he!! and back, and never give credit, even when it’s warranted.

    :D

  60. Jandy says:

    it’s a PPAAAARRRTTTAYYY!!!!

  61. Jim S. says:

    The Red Sox and Yankees are the cause of these long playoff games. Started about 10 years ago. Every batter grinds through every at bat. As a consequence, the pitchers take longer and longer between pitches. The Pirates and Cards buzzed through a few of their games, old school-like.

    It can probably originally be traced to the Moneyball A’s. Just speculation on my part, but it seems that’s what started it all. I don’t mind a guy working an at bat. In fact, I like it out of my players. But, not a whole lineup of that.

  62. Jim S. says:

    I would prefer someone from a different organization and a whole new mindset. I realize Haley came from a different organization, but next time I would prefer someone successful from a different organization.

  63. theplanisworking says:

    Jim, Jandy, your checks are in the snail mail. ;)

  64. Jandy says:

    Good thing the gov’t shut down didn’t affect the postal service ;)

  65. theplanisworking says:

    Sure Jim, BEERS FOR EVERYONE!!! ;)

    (Except for those who dont drink, or oppose beers).

    This ad paid for by the candidate………

  66. Jandy says:

    Have anyone in mind, Jim? Not a pick, just wondering.

  67. 21sthebest says:

    Good, thanks! Actually I had a better run yesterday around the lake in North Park! There’s was an all female race going in the opposite direction!

  68. theplanisworking says:

    Bruce Arians. ;)

  69. Thundercrack says:

    MLB needs to enforce the rule of how long a pitcher has to deliver the next pitch

    And they should limit the number of times a catcher can visit the mound. It has gotten out of hand.

  70. Eric Bowser says:

    What a day to celebrate…. we’re celebrating a man who failed in his objective (sail to Japan), wasn’t even the first to discover the Americas, and was a brutal man. Hey, other than that… what a guy.

    Speaking of… Ryan Clark…. what a guy.

    Since Pirates season is over, I’ve been trying to think… hmm, what will be Nutting’s mandate for this offseason and how will Huntington go about making it work. Liriano, Cole, Morton, and Locke would seem to be a good start for the rotation with Cumpton as depth and Taillon ready by June. If Wandy Rodriguez elects to go with his option, it would put him into the rotation. That leaves the big question on whether the team can re-sign A.J. Burnett… if he signs, that would seem to put Locke out of the rotation and who would possibly be taken out of the rotation, if Taillon earns his way in June? I don’t think A.J. will be back.

    Catching should be fine with Russell Martin and Tony Sanchez. I have to think Michael McKenry gets a minor league deal.

    First base… hmm, yeah… ah… could team go after Cuban Jose Abreu? He’s 27 and I think has a swing like Andres Galarraga. PNC Park is so hard on right-handed pull hitting power bats that I wonder if that’s going to be a big reason for team to not go crazy in their pursuit for him. If not him, then who? Garrett Jones will be looking to get paid & play, not real crazy about Justin Morneau, and Gaby Sanchez is ok bench player. Other free agent options are not that exicting with Seattle’s Kendrys Morales, who is more of a DH, Tampa’s James Loney and Milwaukee’s Corey Hart coming off a knee injury. Doubt many teams are looking to deal a 1B, can Pirates find their Chris Davis? If Rays re-sign Loney, maybe they’ll look to deal Ben Zobrist ($7 million option, $2.5 million buyout). Or shock the world by signing Robinson Cano and move him to 1B…… LOL

    Second base is Neil Walker’s until they have better options coming up, which I don’t know if Alen Hanson will be that guy or not.

    Shortstop… time for Jordy Mercer to get the full-time gig. If they want to retain Clint Barmes at a salary much lower than his $5 million, I’m fine with that as I doubt the team will find a better defensive option as a backup.

    Third base… Pedro Alvarez.

    Left field and Center field will be Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen.

    Right field should be a 1 year stop gap, not sure Marlon Byrd would take 1 year deal knowing he could lose job by June if Gregory Polanco makes his way to majors. Not interested in Travis Snider or Jose Tabata getting full-time gig but how many outfielders that are good will take 1-year deal knowing his time could be short. I have a bad feeling how this is going to turn out. Team wants to compete but also doesn’t want to spend money on a position that has a future star coming up.

    Not even going to try to think about the bullpen… I’m quite happy with Grilli, Melancon, Watson, and Wilson as 4 of the 7 spots. They’ll figure something out with the other 3 spots.

    Lineup….
    1. Tabata, RF
    2. Walker, 2B
    3. McCutchen, CF
    4. Alvarez, 3B
    5. Marte, LF
    6. Morneau, 1B
    7. Martin, C
    8. Mercer, SS

    Rotation
    Liriano – Cole – Rodriguez – Morton – Locke

    —————

  71. There are a large number of HS coaches around the country and especially in PA and Ohio with more imagination than him.

    Many more in college, also.

  72. Eric Bowser says:

    If they fire Haley, have to assume Wilson gets the job.

  73. Good column, Eric, but you better leave out Morneau. He doesn’t even get mentioned in some folks long-term projections.

  74. Eric Bowser says:

    The whole team was that way against Florida. It wasn’t a good road trip for defense.

    I thought there was too many frantic plays with the puck again by their defensemen that lead to bad clearing attempts along the boards. What I saw in those two games against the Panthers and Lightning were the same problems the team has had for the last few years under Bylsma.

    Lack of composure.

  75. 21sthebest says:

    The Quick Chick 10K!

  76. Jandy says:

    OK gotta get some work done.

    maybe catch up with Yinz in a bit :)

  77. Arriba Wilver says:

    +1

  78. 21sthebest says:

    I really don’t mind long games except when Tim McCarver is talking.

  79. Eric Bowser says:

    Thanks Lucky. I figure they’ll be unable or maybe unwilling to go big money for Abreu and the other free agents don’t really present that great of an option over Morneau. Gotta hope Alex Dickerson can hit the ball this winter and be ready to push for that job by September, which won’t do much for this season.

  80. Thundercrack says:

    Watching the recap highlights of last night’s game.

    Prince Fielder used to be a decent fielding first baseman

  81. Arriba Wilver says:

    Getting older with that bulk might be catching up with him.

  82. Jim S. says:

    A couple of weekend observations:

    Missed the Friday night Pens game at Florida. Was at our local HS cross-town rivalry game. Glad I missed it.

    Caught Saturday’s game as part of the NHL Pkg free start of the season. I won’t get into a whole bunch of analysis, except to say I think Crosby is “all the way back” from both the concussion and the jaw. No sooner had Errey mentioned that he had only scored 1 PP goal in 18 games than he ripped 2 home. I think he may win the NHL scoring race by 20 points this year.

    Awful late game penalty on the Pens allowed Tampa to tie it. That was such a homer call. And, what’s with the ref helping Stamkos off the ice? That looked like a park district 10 year old game move by the ref. I’m surprised he didn’t bring him some orange wedges on the bench. It was uncomfortable just watching it. And, then it led to a Tampa goal! Oh well, the Pens overcame, which is what good teams do. Geno still needs to get it going.

    I want for all the world to say the Steelers are cured now and make a playoff run. I agonize over their losses. I am definitely glad they finally won. But, a couple of key facts from that game:

    1) Geno Smith is a rookie, and he can’t read a defense to save his life.
    2) The Jets played last Monday, and had a short work week.
    3) The Steelers were simultaneously coming off a bye week. That is a double-advantage that the NFL should not allow with scheduling. I would have been livid if the Steelers were put in that position by the league.
    4) The Jets are coached by Rex Ryan and Marty Morninghweg. Mensa is currently not recruiting either of them.
    5) The Jets secondary is banged up. Cromartie must have committed 5 penalties that were caught on the replays before the refs finally flagged him.
    6) The Steelers committed numerous offensive holdings and could not open holes for the running game, nor could they contain the Jets blitz pressure consistently.

    I’m not saying there weren’t bright spots. I think Bell looks very good. If the OLine could actually open a decent hole, he could have had a big game. Jarvis Jones shows flashes and should be an impact player by next year. Heath is still Heath, which is a huge addition to the passing and running games. Timmons was everywhere. Gay looked good, but see #1, above. If we have to rely on him vs. a decent passing QB we are in big trouble.

    Levi Brown, we hardly knew you. Can we have that draft pick back?

    Prove it again this week vs. a mediocre Baltimore team and I will start getting excited. Yesterday was a start in the right direction.

  83. I’ll hope with ‘ya.

  84. Jim S. says:

    He was an absolute disaster in the 9th inning. Cost them a base on the 3b error, and should have had the popup.

  85. Jim S. says:

    True.

  86. Jim S. says:

    Let’s not forget a possible Lambo/Sanchez tandem at 1b. I could see Lambo taking over the hybrid 1b/RF role of GI Jones.

  87. I could, too, Jim, but there are many Lambo detractors around since he didn’t hit .750 at his initial call-up.

  88. 21sthebest says:

    +1. I cannot believe he didn’t at least stop that throw from Iglesias.

  89. Jim S. says:

    Knowing, of course, that Polanco should take over by July.

    My point is, Lambo does have big-time power. Does that translate into doing it at the MLB level? That remains to be seen. But, I thought he was starting to hit the ball better late in the season, given the few opportunities. I would like to see them find an established 1b, but I think Lambo could do ok vs. RHP.

  90. Arriba Wilver says:

    I’m not a detractor, but I’m not ready to rely on him as a solution.

  91. Jim S. says:

    Arriba may be correct. He did not really try to get his body in front of it. Maybe his lack of mobility is a bigger issue now that he is approaching 30.

    Although on that one it looked like he just didn’t want to get in front of it. On my son’s 11 year old team, I had a standing rule that any infielder who took a low throw in the leg, chest or stomach would get a Blizzard after the game. We just wanted them to get in the habit of saving extra bases by knocking down bad throws and keeping them in front of them. I didn’t payoff for about a month or more. Then, I had to pay off about 5x in the last couple of weeks, mostly on low throws from the catcher on SB attemps. It’s a mindset.

  92. theplanisworking says:

    Lane Kiffin is available……….

  93. Kevin says:

    I agree.. too many odd man breaks and poor puck control.

  94. 21sthebest says:

    I agree and I would also sign Byrd to a 1 year deal, 2 if that’s what it takes to get him. I don’t see the point of rushing Polanco and that’s what it would be to me. I see more benefit to a full season’s worth of Triple A at bats rather than getting him here in June.

  95. theplanisworking says:

    It hurt his Daddy…….

  96. 21sthebest says:

    I thought he could have come off the bag and caught the ball on a fly altogether. But Prince hardly needs a Blizzard.

  97. theplanisworking says:

    Wandy will definitely exercise his option, but he is injured, so I dont know what we can count on from him. He still might be a candidate for surgery. Hope not.

    1B — dont know what to make of this. Gabby will be there, I dont think I would bring back Morneau. Maybe a trade?

    SS — if Barmes comes back for a million or 2, fine. He is good defensively.

  98. Drew71 says:

    Here’s my thing about Lambo…or Polanco or ANY young guy.

    Good organizations make these guys FORCE their way into the lineup. Two columns ago, Dejan used the phrase: make him blow the hinges off the door, or something like that.

    What I do NOT like is the sentiment: “let’s see what he can do.”

    Forget THAT. ESPECIALLY for a playoff team. (Boy was it fun to write THAT.) Let’s see him MAKE us play him.

    Spring Training. Lambo will get his ABs. Probably plenty.

    Lambo has an advantage over Polanco. Lambo is no longer that young, elite guy who they’ll keep down until June to protect a year. If he plays well, he plays.

  99. theplanisworking says:

    I think a nigger question than his power, would be….. can he field the position? Does he have the footwork required?

    1B is really the biggest ?? this offseason…….

  100. Jim S. says:

    He is a vegetarian, though, from what I read awhile back.

  101. Arriba Wilver says:

    Agree. That sentiment is a leftover from 20 years of, well . . . You know.

  102. theplanisworking says:

    I said Saturday night that all 4 major sports leagues have a huge reffing/umping problem, and they just dont seem to care, in my eyes.

    But why fix it if the leagues are making $$$$ ?

  103. Drew71 says:

    You remember when Levi Brown came out as a very coveted 1st Rd pick?

    Sadly for him, his career has turned into:
    “Didn’t you use to be Levi Brown?”

  104. Drew71 says:

    So lotsa chocolate cake. No eggs.

  105. theplanisworking says:

    HOLY COW !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    That should be Bigger, not the other word.

    YIKES!
    And apologies to any offended by that mistake!

  106. Jim S. says:

    If I’m Byrd, I’m probably thinking 2 years from some team. He is nearing the end of the string, and probably wants to make as much money as he can at this point. But, there might be other guys to grab for 1 year. We are now a more attractive landing spot for a veteran than in the past.

    I don’t want to see Polanco rushed, either. I think they will monitor that closely. Tabata and a veteran (or Lambo) would most likely benefit if Polanco needs more than 3 months in Indy this year.

  107. I’d sign Byrd, too, if he would stay. His presence would be a big plus even if Polanco is up by July.

    Not disregarding his best year was 2013.

  108. Arriba Wilver says:

    Could still have a Blizzard, unless he’s a Vegan.

    ;-)

  109. Thundercrack says:

    I would feel much better about Lambo if he went to winter ball and played first base.

  110. Jim S. says:

    Good question, Jandy. I guess we’d have to check in the off-season. I’m no offensive expert, but would like an up and coming young mind from a bunch of different organizations that seem to be more modern, for lack of a better term – SF, Seattle, New England, Green Bay. I say let’s see what shakes out after the seaon. Todd Haley is not cutting it IMO. Maybe Kirby would be better.

  111. theplanisworking says:

    :D

    I need your forgiveness and prayers for a typo I did down below.

    Never in a million years would I evr make that mistake, but two letters are next to each other on a keyboard…………

    :(

  112. Jim S. says:

    I believe this is the last roundup for old Timmy. Don’t worry, though, they’ll find another ex-Cardinals player somewhere to replace him and team with Cardinals announcer, Joe Buck. Maybe Tommy Herr can take up announcing.

  113. Jim S. says:

    Anybody remember the crafty lefty from the San Diego Padres, Randy Jones?

  114. Arriba Wilver says:

    Sure. He was one of the best pitchers in the league for a couple of years, maybe more.

  115. Jim S. says:

    Yep. Right smack in his hands. I guess he gets a “pass defensed” for that? Those turn into TDs for the Bears almost every week.

  116. Jim S. says:

    Even Mizzou looks great now. That conference is scary.

  117. Jim S. says:

    The Cardinals have to be snickering about that trade – although they don’t have a lot else to snicker about these days.

  118. Jim S. says:

    Vegetarian pizza – lots of it!

  119. Jim S. says:

    Harmless mistake. I’m sure no one gave it a second thought.

  120. Jim S. says:

    His games used to go 1:40 when he had it going.

  121. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks, Jim, but I gave a second thought.
    I am mortified by it…………..

    but thanks for the shoutout.

  122. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks, Jim, but I gave a second thought.
    I am mortified by it…………..

    but thanks for the shoutout.

  123. Arriba Wilver says:

    Bob Gibson was the fastest worker I ever saw.

  124. You can tell you live in a northern state, Plan.

    If you did that Jandy-typo error here, nobody, except us northerners would notice it. Sad, to say the least. We were raised differently.

    And we aren’t even that far south here.

    I echo Jim. Errors happen.

  125. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks Rev. You are 100% correct in your observations.

  126. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks Rev. You are 100% correct in your observations.

  127. Jim S. says:

    I didn’t catch much of Gibby. I remember him from the bronchial asthma commercials though.

    I also faintly recall him no hitting the Bucs by something like 11-0.

    He was an amazing WS pitcher, right?

  128. hockeymonster says:

    Florida game to me was irrelevant. Zatkoff really didn’t make the saves you need and led to the team opening up to try to score and compensate. Just thought bortuzzo was forcing in an attempt to get on the scoresheet and was pointing out why he was benched for tampa game.

    Tampa game was an example I thought of our offense pressuring an inferior defense which led to a few mistakes but in the regular season we can get away with that. Playoffs not so much.

  129. Milo Hamilton says:

    Thank goodness for guys like Bob Costas. Otherwise, I wouldn’t know what to think.

  130. Arriba Wilver says:

    JAL either loves Three Dog Night . . . Or just hates ME. ;-)

  131. Jandy says:

    Thanks Jim, and good observations.

  132. Jandy says:

    Don’t sweat it, Hipposter, we know you didn’t mean anything buy it…relax :)

  133. Kevin says:

    All in all, a pretty exciting weekend for PA sports I care about.

    - Penn State upsetting Michigan in 4 OTs— excessively dramatic fashion, I kept changing the channel (to the penguins) thinking they just lost the game only to turn back 5 minutes later to see that they were still playing.

    - Pittsburgh penguins similarly dramatic win over the TB Lightning… the back-n-forth nature of that hockey game and the ultimate goal with 18 secs left by Niskie on a beautiful pass by Geno.

    - Last (and least), the Steelers win over the Jets. Finally seeming to put together some kind of offense AND defense. Well, the defense was always there but not the takeaways. Definitely good seeing those. Also, good to see the return of the running game in the 2nd half.

  134. Jandy says:

    Bribery will get you everywhere with kids :)

  135. Kevin says:

    by the way, I don’t usually care about Penn State… but my sister went to the game with her friend from Pittsburgh who’s brother plays for Penn State on the o-line. So… I had more interest than usual that kept me flipping back between commercials of the penguin game.

  136. Jim S. says:

    Curt Schilling and his wife had an estate sale this weekend at the home they are attempting to sell for $3 million. They bought the 8,000 sq. ft. house from Drew Bledsoe for $4.5 million.

    It was described as basically a large garage sale, with people wandering through their house and buying just about everything. Schilling auctioned off his famous bloody sock recently to pay off debts associated with the video game company he owned that went bankrupt. It is estimated that he lost $50 million in the video game venture.

    He and his wife claim this estate sale is not being done because they need the money, but it sure looks that way. They say they are just selling items they no longer need now that their kids have outgrown them and they are “downsizing.” Some guy said he bought a bathroom scale for $8, hoping Schilling may have stood on it with his famous bloody sock.

    I’m not taking any pleasure in whatever financial woes Schilling might have. But, when are athletes going to learn to hold onto their money? $50 million is enough money to live extravagantly off interest ($2 million per year at 4% return) and not even touch the principle. If you have no expertise in video game companies, why risk a fortune?

  137. Tom P. says:

    As they say, good pitching beats good hitting. And I agree that the runner did not appear to be tagged at the plate, at least in slow motion. I haven’t followed the series close enough to know whether the Dodgers have objected to the call.

    Regarding players names, the Steelers had a tight end named Dwight Stone. After he dropped a pass in the endzone, the color commentator observed that, “He is living up to his name, and I’m not talking about Dwight.”

  138. Jim S. says:

    Well, if you are going to weigh in, NBC is the right place to work.

  139. Eric Bowser says:

    He got some bad advice and his ego took over.

  140. tpbco says:

    Not many were beating on Geno Smith, Rex Ryan or Morningware after drubbing the Falcons at home, in a must win game. Although I tend to agree with you on the scheduling comment, it was also fairly obvious that teams coming off the bye week also start of rusty. Which the Steelers did and the Jets did not take advantage of that, either.

    The Jets D was #2 against the run in the AFC and totally throttled “Matty Ice” whom many would suggests has a lot more O talent around him than BBR.

    Not enough credit (if any) to our O Coordinator, who screened the Jets out of their 46 D, which then gave BBR more time to throw and created some cracks for the running game in the second half.

    All William Gay has done so far this season is play as well or better than anyone else on the D. Will it continue, dunno, but anyone complaining about his play to this point either isn’t seeing the game or has an agenda against him for past indiscretions.

  141. tpbco says:

    Ya, and watching the end of the game against SF, the LT they did have in got his a$$ handed to him and knocked Palmer’s on the ground. Don’t think Carson Palmer will be buying his dinner this week.

    He who laughs last….

  142. tpbco says:

    Sorry, if Pedro can’t raise his batting average to .260 – .270, he cannot move up in the order.

    So the Pirates must find a #$ and #5 hitter, whether it’s to resign Morneau and Byrd or another FA.

    If they try to give it to some one who has not earned it (Lambo or whoever), and they fail, then this management team will lose at some of the good will it earned this year.

  143. Jim S. says:

    I think you’re right, Eric. They all think they can cross over and be rap stars or business moguls. It takes brilliant, highly educated, highly motivated people who are not athletes, actors or musicians a lifetime of hard work to accumulate $50 million – if they do everything right. Athletes are so naive.

  144. tpbco says:

    Wow, typing synapsis disconnectus.

    *find #4 or #5 hitter*

    *this management team will lose at least some of the good will*

  145. Dom says:

    Isn’t investing in a company a very poor investment one can make.

    You hear that athletes finance a friend’s restaurant or invest in a new product but what they should be doing is going to a financial advisor and he’ll open an IRA or 401K.

    I’ll also never understand why he would invest $50 million in one company. If you have $50 million to burn, why are you interested in obtaining more money?

  146. Jim S. says:

    I hear you that they need to get it right, tpb. But, you have to get a chance before you can earn it. Polanco will definitely get chances – maybe as soon as late June or July. I would think Lambo will as well. A veteran like Byrd would be a nice insurance policy this year in RF.

    I really don’t think Morneau is the answer. His power #’s (and all other #’s) have been falling for years. There is no way Huntington brings him back after the showing he had with the Bucs. I would definitely put Lambo in there before him. At least, Lambo has potential. Morneau no longer does, IMO. If we are not ready to turn over so many at bats to Lambo, then we need to find a better lefty bat than Morneau instead.

  147. Milo Hamilton says:

    :)

  148. Jim S. says:

    Well, I think people with $50 million try to obtain more money all the time, Dom. The world needs that because they employ a lot of people and create new products and innovations when they start new ventures. But, they should be well trained to take on that risk before they do it. And, they should not risk every penny they have to do it.

    If your point is that if your only area of expertise is “baseball pitcher” it is very risky to suddenly sink your fortune into a video game company, I can’t disagree.

  149. Milo Hamilton says:

    Reports out of New York have the Rangers placing goalie Marty Biron on waivers. He makes $1.3 million. If I am correct, Vokoun’s $2 million will come off the cap after the 10th game.

    Right now, Biron makes $800,000 more than Zatkoff. Bennett makes $900,000 & doesn’t have to clear waivers. Can we do without Bennett for a week or so until the Vokoun savings kicks in ? Or make another move somewhere else ? Help capologists.

    I think they really need to investigate this.

  150. Milo Hamilton says:

    Now I see that Bennett is hurt & did not practice today. Complicates things. In Botterill I trust.

  151. Jandy says:

    yeah I was wondering what happened to him. he played very little against the Lightning.

  152. Jim S. says:

    I have not seen every game, tpb. So, maybe I am off base on my Wm. Gay comments. I did acknowledge that he played well yesterday, but I have my doubts based on his history. I think it is a bit of a stretch to say he has played as well or better than anyone on the defense.

    I did not see what Cowher and Simms seem to see in Geno Smith. I watched him throw into multiple coverage pretty often, and both of those guys would follow up by saying how bright his future is. I know he has played some good games, but let’s see where he shakes out at the end of the season. Teams tend to figure out young QBs during the season just as young QBs get better at their jobs.

    I am not a fan of our O Coordinator. I think his record with the Steelers stands for itself since he was hired. I guess the performance of the OLine is not all his doing, but things do not appear to be better with the offense since he showed up. I’m going by results.

  153. CWalton_67 says:

    Every now and then, I feel compelled to remind my friends to be thankful for the young men and women who make this place and these conversations possible:

    http://guardianofvalor.com/salute-seen-around-world-wounded-ranger-salutes-commander-despite-injuries/

    I am very proud to have worn the same uniform as young men like this one. Take a moment from your day and offer a prayer or positive thought for his recovery.

    Rangers Lead The Way.

  154. Jandy says:

    Dear Lord, CWalton, you’ve made me cry. What a special human Josh is.
    God bless our service men and women.\

    Let’s hope more of the media pass this picture on and on, as is fitting.

  155. Milo Hamilton says:

    Bennett is day to day – lower body.

  156. Jim S. says:

    Thanks for sharing CW. Well said.

  157. Patrick(RI) says:

    Just checking in to see if there was talk of Grilli’s speech at the Pearl Jam concert? This guy is unique! He did the Martin chest thump with the lead singer. Can’t wait for next spring.

  158. buggee says:

    enjoy your time off DK! you’ve earned it by far. just tireless, ceaseless timely reporting without sacrificing the quality of your craft. Well done sir.

    in some circles that kind of work could be described as “Jandylicious”!

    Hasta la bye-bye (that’s Spanish for “c-ya)

    Oh, and while you’re off DK, do me a favor and…

    RAISE IT!

  159. Jandy says:

    I missed that, Patrick. got a link?

  160. Patrick(RI) says:

    Bleacher Report has film.

  161. Jandy says:

    buggeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!

    haha, Dejan will prolly lose his lunch at that Jandylicous reference ;)

    be good, my friend. Or be bad and have fun!

  162. Jandy says:

    thanks!

  163. buggee says:

    since the Buccos are out of it… blah. Bring on the Boys of Winter

  164. CWalton_67 says:

    Jandy,
    the best thing is that there are many men and women like this one. They wear berets in maroon and tan, they step into absolute darkness from perfectly functioning aircraft while wearing more than 100 pounds of equipment for the sole purpose of being surrounded by our nations enemies, and every single one is a volunteer. Every American will wake up and enjoy freedom today. One percent will wake up and defend it.

    Hope all will forgive my non- sports post, don’t mean to hijack the blog, but I thought this story should be shared with this group.

    Chris

  165. buggee says:

    betcher enjoying yourself after that big ole Stiller win, eh Jandy?

  166. Jandy says:

    Chris, no need for apologies, this is a fitting post on any blog.

    I can’t imagine the inner fortitude of these men and women, and you as well.

    I the rest of us can do is humbly say “thank you!”

  167. Jandy says:

    No, no, buggee, we had one resident who got very, very angry when someone didn’t type the capital L in front of Lord.

  168. Kevin says:

    fleeces and shuffleboard? I do not get that reference…

  169. Jandy says:

    Kevin, I’m not a big Penn State fan either, but I’m happy to see this team do well. After everything that’s happened, it’s nice to see them succeed.

  170. Jandy says:

    Well, buggee, me fine friend, I was enjoying myself even more after the Penguins win on Saturday night :)

  171. Jandy says:

    They’re a lotta fun to watch, buggee, don’t sound so depressed about it…sheesh…Letang isn’t even playing yet, so your lil wifelet can’t be droolin over him….right???

  172. Jandy says:

    Anything you say, your Honor…
    but Revvie, I wasn’t referring to you, silly :P

  173. hockeymonster says:

    I think vokoun is already off the cap with maatta and kobasew eating up about 1.4M. If vokoun does come back we’ll need to make significant moves.

  174. tpbco says:

    It seems that a lot of people are not fans of our OC. However based on the comments that some make (not alluding to any one specifically), I am not sure why they are so negative against him other than that it’s a “herd mentality” , a lack of profootball knowledge (other than being a fan – and that’s ok) or just general disagreement with his O philosophy. I certainly can accept the latter, but not without explanation. I, for one, did not have issues with Arian’s playcallling -based on HIS system. I did disagree with his philososphy and can point to specifics.

    This OC, last year, prior to BBR’s shoulder injury, was running one of the best O’s in football. Since then it has not worked as well, largely as a result of non controllables. Like losing your all pro C on the 8th play of the first series of the first game, struggles with rookies and young players at new positions, starting the season w/o your probowl TE, losing your #1 receiver to FA and more. The talent and personnel decisions are not made by him, other than possible some input.

    I would really like someone to specifically state what their problem with the OC is…after all he he has a history of both developing a running game AND a passing game and there is no doubt he was a major contributor yesterday.

  175. Jim S. says:

    Seems like a big “if” to get him back, monster. What I read not long ago said this thing has scared the crap out of him, and he is strongly considering retirement. I guess it all depends on how the recovery goes. Hopefully, it goes very well.

  176. Milo Hamilton says:

    Thanks. I was hoping you were out there somewhere.

  177. hockeymonster says:

    Reporting for duty! :)

  178. Jim S. says:

    I can respect that position, tpb. I hope he does well. Let’s see how the rest of this season shakes out. I didn’t think he came to the Steelers with quite the stellar offensive resume of developing a running game and passing game as you stated. I thought the offense in KC was pretty bad. I know he was HC, but it was his philosophy, right? I honestly can’t remember everything from AZ, but I recall ups and downs there.

  179. theplanisworking says:

    What they all said ^^^^ !

    + many

  180. hockeymonster says:

    Ya was being optimistic. Don’t blame him for being cautious.

    But pens do have to figure something out. I didn’t see enough from zatkoff to make me think he’ll improve enough. Pens are up against it and don’t know if we can get another goalie for same cap hit as zatkoff. When D’agastini comes back do you send down Maatta or Bennett if team is healthy? I don’t want to trade Nisky either…now that we’re playing the trap more often like I’ve been pleading for Nisky looks like a keeper this year and even PM is making the veins in my neck explode a little less this year. But just a little.

  181. Patrick(ri) says:

    Sorry, Jandy, i forgot to warn you that Jason predicts lots of procreation next year in Pittsburgh.

  182. Wild Bill says:

    Hello All – now that the blog is working well again, it took me a half hour to read all your posts. Even when DK tries to hide, the blog lives on.

    Friday night was great at the new Pegula Center at PSU. A wonderful facility for college hockey, that a lot of minor league pro teams would be jealous of. And – hello Consol – the ice seemed pretty darn good for a first game in a new arena. The team was a little too amped up and took ten penalties, but won comfortably.

    I think a lot of our Pittsburgh area hockey kids are going to find Penn State hard to resist when the Lions come recruiting them.

    Other than the Pens on Friday night and Pitt’s struggles, a decent sports weekend. With no dog left in the baseball hunt, I really couldn’t care less who wins the Series – well, maybe with a slight pull for the much ridiculed Manager Leyland.

  183. tpb,

    I have nothing against TH as a person. I don’t care for his adaptability to certain situations, his predictibility (if that’s even a word), his red-zone play calling in every game and especially yesterday, and all I got was Game Trax, and I’m not all that thrilled with his credentials.

    I’m not one that pines away for Arians, either, but he did get the royal shaft from a first-class organization.

    Just MHO.

    I enjoy your posts.

  184. Jandy says:

    I was gonna comment to agree with this post, but your last 2 lines killed it….

  185. Jandy says:

    LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  186. Jandy says:

    Well, gang, gotta go see the dentist.

    Yeah.

    Catch yinz sooner or later.

    :)

  187. hockeymonster says:

    Hmmm…so I guess its 100% agreement or bust huh? Sounds like a reason to shutdown the govt. Boom…bazinga! :)

  188. Dom says:

    I have no problem with that you’re saying but it appears that he invested way too much than what he was able to.

    I did a search for his current net worth and although I cannot confirm that this figure is correct but it says that he is worth just $1 million.

    If he was worth about $50 million, why would he invest all of it? He could have invested $10 million, lost it all, and could still be living large.

  189. Jim S. says:

    Total agreement with you on Schilling, Dom. In fact, I was trying to say the same thing. Why would someone invest everything they have in a venture he apparently did not know much about? $50 million is so much money. That was just reckless and foolish.

    All I was saying about there being a lot of people who invest that much is that it is usually done by people who know what the heck they are doing – not so with Schilling.

  190. Kevin says:

    ah hah shuffleboard was one of the locker room games that Tomlin took away from the vets (4+ yr experienced). Still don’t get the fleeces though.

  191. Kevin says:

    Heard an actual real “yinz” today for the first time in.. oh.. years, atleast 5. I shoulda expected it I guess, it was gentleman calling from one of our jobs in Altoona, PA.

  192. tpbco says:

    I certainly agree that BA’s departure was out of character. The assumption I made was that they wanted him to leave but really didn’t want to fire him and things got out of sorts. At least that’s what I want to believe.

    As people and players change, so do the organizations. They can’t stay exactly the same forever and I think that some of the frustrations (especially this year) are in having to accept that when it comes to a team like the Steelers. I really try to look at these things objectively as possible, comes with “experience” I guess.

    Having lived in some other major sports cities, Denver and Houston, Pittsburgh sports fans really have had it good for a very long time….how about being a Texan fan right now….

    We need to remember that a little more.

  193. tpbco says:

    Haley was the OC when Arizona went to the SB, his passing attack with Warner and Fitz and Boldin damn near took it from us…without much help from their D.

    Then after Warner retired the running game with Jammal Charles led the league.

    No question there was some weirdness behind the scenes there, which led to his departure. But who do you believe? The truth is ALWAYS some where in the middle.

    All I am suggesting is that maybe he isn’t as bad as some of the efforts are to make him look bad and I don’t think there is enough data to make an informed decision on him yet – either way.

  194. JohninOshkosh says:

    So far in the NLCS, both teams have scored a combined 8 runs in 2 2/3 games.

  195. Other than the A.J. game, the Cards haven’t hit much at all in the post season. That and 3 runs off Melancon.

  196. Milo Hamilton says:

    Umpire Wally Bell has died of a heart attack. Only 48. He just worked the Pirates series.

  197. Big Dave says:

    1. Make the offer to A.J. – He enjoys and is valuable as the clubhouse leader.
    2. Watson HAS to be used more at the end of the game.
    3. Here’s my big one – Shin-Soo Choo in RF leading off.
    4. Marlon Byrd at1B batting 5th protecting Alvarez’s cleanup.
    5. Marte batting 2nd with Walker 6th. Walker is a better RBI guy down in the order.

  198. Jandy says:

    hey Kevin,
    What kinda job yinz have in Altoona?
    I am sure I say yinz several times a day, lol.
    I was raised on it ;)

  199. Jandy says:

    ZING!

 
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