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Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

On location: Pirates 3, Phillies 2

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (45-41) vs. Philadelphia Phillies (37-49)

Time: 4:05 p.m.

Site: PNC Park

TV, Radio: Root Sports, KDKA-FM (93.7)

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page and our Bucco Blog. Rob Biertempfel and Travis Sawchik are on the scene for the Trib.

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.


  1. Lad 9 says:

    Perfect day for a ballgame. Let’s go Bucs!

    David Buchanan (R)

    1. Ben Revere (L) CF
    2. Jimmy Rollins (S) SS
    3. Chase Utley (L) 2B
    4. Ryan Howard (L) 1B
    5. Marlon Byrd (R) RF
    6. Cody Asche (L) 3B
    7. Domonic Brown (L) LF
    8. Cameron Rupp (R) C
    9. David Buchanan (R) P

    Edinson Volquez (R)

    1. Gregory Polanco (L) RF
    2. Starling Marte (R) LF
    3. Andrew McCutchen (R) CF
    4. Ike Davis (L) 1B
    5. Josh Harrison (R) 2B
    6. Pedro Alvarez (L) 3B
    7. Jordy Mercer (R) SS
    8. Chris Stewart (R) C
    9. Edinson Volquez (R) P

    Gametime Forecast: 78°F • Clear • 0% PoP

  2. bpn8pitt says:

    The Phillies need to blow it up. Like yesterday. Young and bad is one thing. Old and bad is quite another.

  3. Bizrow says:

    +++++++, thanks as always, Lad ;-)

  4. The Angels made a trade, also, to bolster their bullpen. Guess they might not be satisfied with the Grilled Cheese acquisition.

  5. Bizrow says:

    Has there been any update on Cole?

  6. Not on Twitter from 24/7, Sawchk or DK.

  7. Grilli hasn’t pitched that poorly with the Angels. Good for him. He had that one glaring loss, but 2 holds since then.

    07/03 vs HOU W 5-2 1.0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 4 15 — H(2) 0.00
    07/01 @ CHW W 7-5 1.0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 3 12 — H(1) 0.00
    06/29 @ KC L 4-5 0.1 1 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 4 9 L(0-1) — 0.00
    06/28 @ KC W 6-2 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 3 12 — — 0.00
    Previously with PIT, Acquired by LAA

    Only 2 hits all week and had a K in each game he pitched

  8. Bizrow says:

    Well one good thing about the Cubs trade is those guys went to the AL

  9. 21sthebest says:

    Velocity seems a little better. Maybe the 8th inning is a better place for him.

  10. Lad 9 says:

    Cubs building quite a stash of middle infielders: Castro, Baez, Alcantara, and now Russell. My guess is that they flip Castro to, say, the Tigers for a younger pitcher like Smily or Robbie Ray. Not sure the Tigers would do that with Iglesias coming back next year, but they in turn could flip Castro in the offseason for a good return I would think. And let the trade season begin!

  11. Maz in Iowa says:

    Castro would make a pretty good 3B.Good power/arm

  12. Thundercrack says:

    Yes he has. And I think most of the Angels’ bullpen was a mess and in need of an upgrade.

  13. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Castro could probably have been had a year ago for Cumpton – or maybe Matt Hague and a couple of perogies. But he is back on track for a 3+ WAR season and has a very club favorable contract through 2020. He is making $5M this year – with a projected value of over $15M…

    Very nice team surplus value that will keep him in Chicago for a while – he could of course implode like he did last year.

    Theo will be moving some pieces around – but Castro is not likely to be one of them.

    The key for the Cubs in this deal is going to be if they can bring back Hammel in the off season – he says he likes Chicago and pitching for the Cubs.

  14. Thundercrack says:

    I heard someone suggest moving Castro to LF

  15. Thundercrack says:

    I know the Cubs need starting pitching, but I think the key to that deal for the Cubs was all the prospects they got back from the A’s…..not the hope that one of the pitchers re-signs with them again in the offseason. I don’t think you go into a trade like that thinking that way.

  16. Thundercrack says:

    Does Fieri have options left? Can he be sent down to the minors?

  17. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Food for thought…

    OPS last 28 Days…

    1. Cutch-1.085
    2. Marte-0.836
    3. Martin-0.831
    4. Polanco-0.812
    5. Alvarez-0.748
    6. Mercer-0.741
    7. Davis-0.727
    8. Harrison-0.699
    9. Walker-0.545
    10. Sanchez-0.483

  18. Bizrow says:

    Per MLBTradeRumors, he is out of options

  19. Thundercrack says:

    Thanks Biz

  20. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Well my thinking was/is that to pry away maximum value the Cubs needed to find a trading partner that needed not just one – but two quality arms. But that creates the problem of leaving you with two – not one holes in your rotation.

    The fact that Hammel seems willing to at least consider resigning makes it easier to do the deal – no guarantee of course that he will resign – but it reduces the risk a little.

    The As were in a unique situation – they now have a very nice four man rotation for the playoffs – assuming nobody gets hurt between now and then…

    They have two very good starters who are going to be back next year – Parker and one other whose name escapes me – so they just need Hammel as a one year rental.

    So we agree that the prospect bounty was the key – my only point is that it would have been hard to get that return from the Bucs or Cards or Angels – who are looking to add just one arm.

  21. Maz in Iowa says:

    I also read that Kris Bryant might be moved to RF as well.Which might be a precursor to moving Castrol to 3B and promoting Baez.I live in the “mudwest” and have way too many Cub loving friends and I get stuck watching way too many Cub games(plus the Iowa Cubs AAA team is in Des Moines).

  22. Maz in Iowa says:

    Plus Mercer has the 2nd most RBI in the last 4-5 weeks along with a .300+ BA

  23. Maz in Iowa says:

    Mercer has played 3B in the minors as well

  24. The Gunner says:


    I am concerned about Cole. What’s the latest with the Pedro – Hurdle rift? And what about the absurd rumor about AJ returning to the Bucs?

    I am on vacation in Hilton Head so I am not getting many Bucco updates.

  25. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Couple of interesting reads over on ESPN – insider required – sorry
    In case you are bored waiting for the first pitch…

    NL Central Trade deadline – Dave Schoenfeld – not one of my faves – but not a bad assessment

    Great Buster O piece on the decline of O…

    I understand there is also a NYT article on the same topic as Buster’s – but I am over my article limit for the month – already ;-)

  26. Bizrow says:

    Haven’t heard anything on Pedro, but PRNW is out today, so it might just be getting JHay at bats.

    No word that I know of on Cole

  27. The Gunner says:

    Thanks Biz – let’s hope they sweep Philthadelphia & the Brewers keep losing!

  28. bradthedad says:

    Fieri and Pimental out of options. Tough spot to find innings for them to work things out.

  29. LonelyLibertarian says:

    One possible side effect of the Cubs trade is that it could put the heat on the Cards. A package for Price and Zobrist that sent Wong and Tavares to Tampa – along with a young arm or two might get it done. It would shore up 2nd for them and give them a #1a arm for the next two years that probably fits into their budget – but not the Bucs or Brewers budgets.

    I thought Price would have moved by now – but the trade would seem to help the Rays get a bit more value.

  30. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Hurdle seemed to be saying after the game that Stolmy was a bit surprised at being thrown into the game – Cole seemed to be cruising – chalked it up as a learning experience. Young guy – lots to learn – he will be better prepared the next time.

  31. I don’t want to see Price in our division unless he’s in a Pirate uniform and 21 would have to be fitted for his first.

  32. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    With the addition of pitchers Jeff Samardjida and Jason Hammel, the Oakland A’s have now infiltrated the middle of the pack on the MLB team salary chart.
    This is where I (and many others) hope the Pirates can land in the near future.

    Whether Oakland keeps themselves there next year remains to be seen.
    But one thing is clear….Billy Beane knows a payroll in the bottom feeder five is not going to cut it if you want to win a World Series.
    Perhaps he’s tired of seeing the movie play out the same way in October.

  33. bradthedad says:

    My bad. Pulled Stolmy’s game logs and they aren’t as bad as I thought.

  34. Thundercrack says:

    Someone tell Stewart to keep his eyes open

  35. JohninOshkosh says:

    Outstanding trade for the Athletics. Once again, overjoyed I did not become a Cub fan like my Dad. Years before they will be any good, if ever.

    I remember telling TC during the winter that I thought the A’s would finish 15 games worse this season than last.


  36. theplanisworking says:

    Very much agreed, Daquido.

    I am not saying the Pirates should have traded for Samardidja, but wasn’t that the type of trade that the Pirates are supposed to do? I mean, I keep hearing repeatedly that the Bucs have the top rated farm system, and some of those prospects can be traded for major-league ready players?

    Also, Oakland is a smaller market than Pittsburgh, and their revenues were smaller also. Yet here we have Billy Beane making a major trade. Think Neal Huntington will ever make this type of trade? NO.

    One more thing ………. the Pirates no longer have the top farm system in baseball. I just read ESPN that the Cubs do. They have 6 of the top 75 position prospects. Would be nice if the Pirates could someday ever complete a trade such as this one, or something similar.

  37. Thundercrack says:

    21 has options left

  38. Thundercrack says:

    Oakland is considered to be in same market as San Francisco. It is not smaller than Pittsburgh.

  39. KING says:

    Bold strike by the A’s…Acquiring Samardjzia & Hammel. They will win West but lose to Tigers in the playoffs. I think Verlander,Porcello,Scherzer,Sanchez best rotation in the game.

    Like Pirates to win 7-4. HR Polanco HR Pedro…3 hits J-Hay. Should climb into 2nd place by the end of July.

    I Read Marte was clocked at 100 mph on the Gun throwing the ball back into infield while in minors. Do you think Pirates have best OF in Majors? KING

  40. Thundercrack says:

    I won’t hold it against you Oshie. I forgot that prediction. :-)

  41. :D

    The option to pitch as a 50-year old. Hoyt Wilhelm again. 21 better have a knuckle ball in his repertoire.

  42. KING says:

    2 run blast by Cutch HR 13 (116 in Career) RBI 52,53. Bucs up 2-0. U Bucs fans think Cutch can repeat as MVP in 2014? KING

  43. Thundercrack says:

    I don’t begrudge the Pirates for no longer having the top rates farm system.

    They promoted their #1 prospect (Polanco) and another highly rated system added 3 top prospects.

  44. LonelyLibertarian says:

    Not sure why u would say the Cubs are years away…

    The have an ace to Replace JS – Arieta has been Kershaw like…

    Hammel will probably return on a multi-year deal – Oakland only needs him for this year

    Wood is a serviceable 3/4

    Rizzo and Castro are both locked in for a long time with very affordable extensions – and are solid – and 24…

    The Farm system will start adding pieces next year and by 2016 the Cubs should have the offensive pieces in place…

    Yes they will need to add arms – and that won’t be cheap – but they have flex due to the Castro and Rizzo deals.

    Being a Cub fan this year is not a good thing – next year maybe – but 2016 could be fun for both Buc and Cubs fans.

  45. Jim S. says:

    Old, bad and with a stupid GM is no way to go through life.

  46. Jim S. says:

    On the game today, they just reported he has a little soreness but is fine otherwise.

  47. Jim S. says:

    Castro always had way more value than that. He’s still very young.

  48. bpn8pitt says:

    One thing I have enjoyed the last month or so, has been the Bucs ability to jump on teams early. Makes everything better.

  49. twentytwo22 says:

    Ed, take 3 strikes.

  50. Florida Steeler says:

    The Pirates have to do something regarding the first base situation. They are getting little or nothing out of Ike and Gaby. And, realizing,there may be no options out there; I would give Pedro a shot at first, Harrison to third and leave Pedro play.

  51. twentytwo22 says:

    Ed did better than Polanco and Marte.

  52. Jim S. says:

    He’s having the best offensive year of anyone I can think of in the NL right now.

  53. bpn8pitt says:

    Tulo, Jim.

  54. Jim S. says:

    Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija are both having good years. But, they are both sub-.500 career pitchers. Samardzija has a career 3.97 ERA and 1.33 WHIP. He hasn’t exactly been elite, but he does have a great arm. Hammel has a career 4.62 ERA and 1.40 WHIP. He has been a #5 starter, nothing more. The Cubs got a ton in return for them IMO.

    The equivalent of what the Cubs got was something like a healthy James Taillon and Austin Meadows. These are the types of deals we want the Pirates to make?

  55. Jim S. says:

    Oh, and they also got a starting pitcher along the lines of Cumpton. I hope it works out for Billy Beane because he have up a lot.

  56. KING says:

    Agree Jim. Cubs really got the steal in the end. Hammel enjoys pitching in Chicago & can return as free agent after the season. I really like Shark…He has dominated Pirates both as a reliever & a starter. A’s have to win a World Series in 2014 or 2015 or they will end up holding an empty paper bag. KING

  57. Florida Steeler says:

    mmm–maybe. I lived out there and the natives would not agree with you. Because they are in the same geographical areas , does not mean there are not there vast differences between the East Bay area and suburbs than San Francisco and its suburbs. Economically, there are tremendous differences and the same for government support for the teams. The A’s have been begging for years to get support for a new stadium and get out of that dump–the Oakland Coliseum to no avail. San Francisco City and burbs jumped on new stadiums for the Giants and 49ers.
    Trust me, not a great number of people from San Francisco travel across the bridge to support the A’s.

  58. Jim S. says:

    Ok. Anyone not playing in the equivalent of an American Legion field. Just kidding.

    Tulo is great, and having a great year. But, you have to account for his field. Cutch would out up monstrous numbers there as well.

  59. Jim S. says:

    With you on that, bpn. There was a point in the year where they had scored the least amount of 1st inning runs in MLB. They are rling now.

  60. 21sthebest says:

    “21 has options left”

    Well I did hit 72 at the Science Center about 10 years ago.

  61. Jim S. says:

    I don’t blame Oakland for going for it. But, they gave up a lot.

  62. Arriba Wilver says:

    I was surprised where Tulo’s numbers were in looking at the All Star ballot. I even voted for him once.

  63. bpn8pitt says:

    4 errors at SS is impressive anywhere.

  64. Thundercrack says:

    True FS

    But in terms of population (potential ticket buyers ), TV watchers, and radio listeners … Oakland is still larger

  65. Jim S. says:

    I’ll start with a disclaimer. I love Gregory Polanco, and think he’ll be a star. The sky’s the limit.

    But, he has things to work on. He is not handling pitches on the outside corner well, IMO. He is doing a lot of slapping at those pitches and hitting pop flies that won’t continue to fall in.

    Overall, I see a lot of soft contact from him so far. He has beaten out several infield grounders, and he has dropped in a lot of flairs. But, only 5 extra base hits so far.

    He’s 22, and there will still be some rough patches. I love his plate discipline, but a slump sometime soon would not surprise me until he starts doing a better job with the stuff low and away.

  66. bpn8pitt says:


    Rudy Owens and Robbie Grossman.

  67. Jim S. says:

    Well, I said offensively.

  68. bpn8pitt says:

    Holiday played there too, Jim. Still can rake.

  69. Jim S. says:

    I do think they will have the best OF in MLB by next year, King.

  70. Thundercrack says:

    With all that we heard about him I expected to see Polanco beat out a ton of infield hits. Haven’t seen it yet.

  71. Thundercrack says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw Stolemy again today

  72. Maz in Iowa says:

    A lotta knuckle curves

  73. Jim S. says:

    I didn’t love either of those guys (Grossman, Owens) and neither of them was anywhere near the level of prospect of Taillon, Cole, Marte, Cutch, Meadows, Bell, McGuire, Glasnow, Cole. I’m perfectly fine with giving up middling prospects. But, if I give up 2 really highly rated ones, I want a lot more than a #5 starter and 1.5 years of a guy with a great arm who is finally putting it together.

  74. bpn8pitt says:

    Pedro, Marte, Kingham


    Price, Zobrist, Boxberger

  75. Arriba Wilver says:

    That surprises me, Jim. I haven’t seen him a lot since he cooled off, but I thought he was one of our better guys with those outside pitches. Better than Pedro and Marte anyway. But, like I say, I could easily be wrong. I remember Jason Bay had a bit of trouble with those, too, and he was a pretty good player when he was with us.

  76. Jim S. says:

    I think he had 3 quick ones in the first week, TC. But, maybe only about 1 since then?

  77. Arriba Wilver says:

    Tulo’s a player. Out of the same draft as Cutch and Braun, I believe.

  78. Jim S. says:

    It’s just my impression from the last week or so, AW. I could be off on my take about the outside corner stuff.

    But, I would be surprised if the data showed he is making a lot of hard contact. He does have the 3 bombs. But, only 2 other XBH.

    I think it’s all just part of a young guy finding his way. Maybe it wasn’t so dumb to get him more at bats in AAA, as they did. He’s gone through a lot of levels in a few short years.

  79. Maz in Iowa says:

    Mercer closing in on .250.Nice to see Jordy Joe doing well the last several weeks

  80. bpn8pitt says:

    Well, Jim might not have been high on them, but at one time the Pirates were.

    Not every prospect pans out. Considering how thin the free agent market is, trades are the only way to add to your team.

  81. Patrick(ri) says:

    Yadiar just dropped a perfect throw at the plate & Marlins tie it (McGeehee hit)

  82. Maz in Iowa says:

    Better add Bell or Taillon

  83. Arriba Wilver says:


  84. scapper says:

    Exactly, Lucky. Maybe he’s a jerk, maybe not, but either way, he was a major part of one of the most exciting Pirate seasons ever, so I wish him well. Glad he’s gone, haha, but here’s to him regaining whatever he had that made him so successful last season.

  85. bpn8pitt says:

    Remember a few years ago when the Rangers had “untouchables” like Olt and Profar? Things change Jim.

  86. Arriba Wilver says:

    Is Edinson limping after that play at first?

  87. Patrick(ri) says:

    McGeehee scores on a hit — bottom of 9 th, 5-4 Marlins.

  88. Thundercrack says:


  89. Thundercrack says:

    Sandberg just learned the lesson: never listen to Rollins

  90. bpn8pitt says:

    Really? The years of control edge in this trade scenario clearly favors the Rays.

    I wasn’t high on Taillon before TJ to be honest.

  91. Flbucco says:

    I just went and looked and today is Polanco’s 24 game – 23 rd start.

    I would take a deep breath and give the young man another month or two before worrying about the things you mention…

    One reason I had hoped he would have been called up earlier is I heard a lot of “experts” suggesting he would need a month or two to acclimate.

    Had he been called up in mid to late April he would be in his 60 the game or so…

    Let’s sit back and watch him learn and grow – if he is still making the same mistakes late August I will be worrying with you.

  92. Barb says:

    Marlins have won. Yes!

  93. Arriba Wilver says:

    Home plate ump stinks.

  94. Patrick(ri) says:

    Don’t often see Molina blow a game!

  95. 21sthebest says:

    And I haven’t seen Mercer try to hit the opposite way in weeks.

  96. 21sthebest says:

    90’s Braves strike zone.

  97. Flbucco says:

    I just went and looked and today is Polanco’s 24 game – 23 rd start.

    I would take a deep breath and give the young man another month or two before worrying about the things you mention…

    One reason I had hoped he would have been called up earlier is I heard a lot of “experts” suggesting he would need a month or two to acclimate.

    Had he been called up in mid to late April he would be in his 60 the game or so…

    Let’s sit back and watch him learn and grow – if he is still making the same mistakes late August I will be worrying with you.

  98. Maz in Iowa says:

    Mercer 6 errors

  99. Arriba Wilver says:

    I wish they would have shown the box on that last “strike” to Marte. Looked inside.

  100. twentytwo22 says:

    Let’s get some insurance runs.

  101. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    There’s always an excuse….ALWAYS.

  102. Flbucco says:

    Technically Oakland is an entirely different TV market – and most people who life in the SF side of the bridge would never be caught dead watching an A’s game let alone buy a ticket…

    And the same is true in the other direction

    Oakland is ranked 29th
    pirates 22nd
    Giants 14th

  103. Thundercrack says:

    OK, all this Josh Harrison is now totally off the rails.

    Asking Blass if he played with or against a comparable player. Blass hasn’t played in 40 years …who cares

  104. KING says:

    I guess it’s possible Pirates could end up with Price. Like a good detective, you eliminate the suspects. See who’s left.

    Dont think Rays would trade in the AL East. Those teams are out. Losing teams like SD,AZ,Colorado,Houston,Texas,etc out of the Price sweepstakes. I guess Cubs could parlay some of their prospects for Price but seems unlikely. The Tigers have a strong rotation. A’s made their acquisitions. Probably going to stand pat.
    Detective King sees 8 potential places for Price. 1.Brewers 2.STL 3.Cincy 4. Pirates 5.Dodgers 6.Braves 7.Royals 8.Mariners.
    Price to one of the NL Central teams makes most sense. He can be the reason a team wins division. Dodgers have plenty of $ & players to give Rays.
    The Braves could be the best fit. They have lost a few starters to injury likely to be out rest of season. Atlanta always has a good farm system.
    The Royals also are stocked with prospects & are desperate to finally make the playoffs.

    Mariners have been aggressive in the last year signing Cano. Pairing King Felix with Price would be a nightmare for AL teams.

    6 innings in the books. Pirates 3 Phillies 1 & J-Hay hustled another hit. KING

  105. Maz in Iowa says:

    I remember Doumit doing it constantly.Totally infuriating me!

  106. 21sthebest says:

    “Harrison is everywhere!”

  107. bpn8pitt says:

    Yeah, im glad Harrison is playing well, but in all fairness, all you can say now is that he had a nice first half. Plain and simple.

  108. 21sthebest says:

    And again.

  109. Arriba Wilver says:

    Did Josh just do the Jordy Whirly?

  110. I only hit 62 on the machine at the Louisville Slugger Museum and that was 2 or 3 years ago. You probably throw as hard as Josh Fogg.

  111. Arriba Wilver says:

    I think I know the title of tomorrow’s Morning Java (if they win). ;-)

  112. Maz in Iowa says:

    Mercer 360?Isn’t that an ice skating move? :)

  113. Patrick(ri) says:

    From “nice: pleasing, agreeable, delightful.” If i am limited by these terms, I vote for “delightful.” Astonishingly so.

  114. twentytwo22 says:

    7 IP, 1 R from Volquez. Good defense behind him.

  115. Thundercrack says:


  116. Dejan Kovacevic says:

    Easy to enjoy watching a guy like Edinson Volquez do well. Been just tremendous to be around, going way back to Bradenton.

  117. 21sthebest says:

    I do not understand what is and what is not an error anymore.

  118. Arriba Wilver says:

    Bad News Phils.

  119. Flbucco says:

    You have to throw away his years as a reliever – he had a pretty good year in relief in 2011 and followed with 2.5 years as a pretty solid starter. Since the start of 2012 Price has been worth 12.1 WAR JS 7.9

    Hammel is having a good year and all Oakland needs from him is about 15 regular season starts and hopefully another 7 or 8 in the post season.

  120. Arriba Wilver says:


  121. Patrick(ri) says:

    Personally, I would prefer to see Watson on a beach somewhere. Resting.

  122. Maz in Iowa says:

    WOW Joey Votto is like ………Ike Davis lite!

  123. theplanisworking says:

    Oakland is always near the bottom of revenues and ticket sales and payroll. Pesky facts, I understand. Thank You for bringing these numbers to the table.

    Three areas that “fans” of the Pirates always point to as why Pirate payroll cannot increase, and these types of trades cannot occur.

  124. Flbucco says:

    When I am wrong I am wrong…
    – I thought signing EV was a mistake
    – I thought bringing him north was a mistake
    – if I had the chance I would have wagered a ton on him winning less than 5 in the full year…

    Would love a column – or a blog post DK on the “fun factor” he seems to bring – it looks like from the snippets we get to se that he is genuinely liked and tries to keep everybody loose – or am I reading too much into it.

  125. KING says:

    Tony Watson deserves All Star selection. 5-0 record .91 ERA. Has been excellent all year. Pirates are methodically beating these sub 500 teams.

    Phillies-Pirates changing of the guard. One franchise on the way down…Pirates on the way up. Always respected Howard,Rollins Utley. Great players. Pirates 3-1. 8th inning. KING

  126. dennis g. says:


  127. 21sthebest says:

    If it were up to me, no more than 2 relievers on an all star team and they’d have to be closers.

  128. Maz in Iowa says:

    Hey DK,any word on Cole?

  129. Patrick(ri) says:

    Last year 2 of our pitchers went. I am superstitious enough to be happy if none go this year!

  130. bpn8pitt says:

    Melancon never, ever seems to have a clean inning.

  131. Florida Steeler says:

    Would someone ask Clint why Watson is not the closer?? The guy is so damn stubborn.

  132. Maz in Iowa says:

    One 9th inning meltdown…..coming up!!

  133. Patrick(ri) says:

    I thought Dominic Brown looked really good early this season. Not so much, now.

  134. bpn8pitt says:

    If it were up to me, id take middle relievers like Watson. That 6th, 7th 8th inning is something they are used to….Remember the game counts, as stupid as it sounds.

  135. dennis g. says:

    If you are going to compare the size of the two markets, Oak/SFO and PIT don’t you have to at least make some adjustment in the numbers since there are two teams sharing it. I agree there is billions more in disposable income in OAK/SFO but how many fans are there?

  136. 21sthebest says:


  137. jay says:

    Totally agree…hate to hear fans putting guys down after they leave…true or not why should I care…last year was great and I will always remember he was an important player on that team…so thanks is plenty to say

  138. bpn8pitt says:

    I like to take 5 or 6 of the next 8 games.

  139. 21sthebest says:

    Well the 8th inning is important too!

  140. Maz in Iowa says:

    When describing the Pirates it is much nicer to hear …surging as opposed to ….woeful or hapless

  141. On the radio broadcast I thought I heard them say he is just sore. Whatever that means.

  142. Now, yet another try at a sweep.

  143. Thundercrack says:

    What rankings are you showing there Flbucco?

    I can’t speak to why people on one side of a bridge won’t cross it to see a game.

    But as far as how they rank TV and Radio markets the SF-Oakland is considered one market.

    And even if you take the population of Oakland and compare it to the population of Pittsburgh — Oakland may be more.

    I wasn’t saying anything about revenues, ticket sales or payroll. Just market size.
    Good for the A’s. Glad they helped their team.

  144. Thundercrack says:

    You may have just jinxed us Lucky.

    But then again the other night against the Diamondbacks my wife was complaining that not enough people brought brooms to the game. I blamed her for the loss.

  145. Daquido_Bazzini says:

    I’m enjoying the Pirate wins AND I’d still like a change of ownership.
    It can be done!

  146. Maz in Iowa says:

    And they say chivalry is dead. :)

  147. I’ll take the blame. Leave your dear wife out of it. Who pitches tomorrow? The Phils aren’t really hitting right now, so I believe we have a chance.

  148. Bizrow says:


  149. 21sthebest says:

    I know. I don’t care that it counts. I think starters are more deserving, then closers.

  150. 21sthebest says:

    If my mother-in-law was going, she would’ve ridden hers there.

  151. The Pirates won today and now, it’ll be Locke vs. AJ tomorrow. Manager Clint Hurdle says he likes where the Bucs are at right now and he certainly should.

  152. Volquez gave up only his first run in 16 innings when the Phils homered in the 6th and the Phils proved to be just as punchless when it counted as they were last night, and, hopefully, Locke will prove to be just as sharp tomorrow as Volquez was today.

  153. Well, at least he got his 15th save today against the punchless when it counted Phils, although he’ll definitely need to have clean innings in the future against other teams.

  154. Jim S. says:

    We keep missing out on the sweeps, but at least we keep getting chances.

  155. Jim S. says:

    Except that, in reality, he averages less than 1 base runner allowed per inning this year – no matter what it seems.

  156. Jim S. says:


    I don’t care that you don’t agree with me about prospects. But, please don’t attach things to me that I never said. And please don’t pass off Rudy Owens as ever being some sort of elite prospect. At his best, he would not crack the current top 20 Pirates prospects. And Grossman was liked by some, but no one ever thought he was elite, either. He’s an average OF with no power. I never complained about giving them up because they were B prospects at best. Giving them up is nothing like what the A’s just gave up.

    And, I realize even the most highly rated of prospects often fail. But, what you don’t seem to realize is they don’t all fail. The Pirates are a solid franchise now because they have developed prospects and stocked their team with them, not because they traded them away. Cutch, Alvarez, Cole, Marte, Walker are all players many fans would have been glad years ago if the team had traded them away because “not all prospects pan out.” We’d be in sad shape if those guys had been replaced with 1-2 yr rentals. The Pirates cannot possibly sustain any sort of success by trading a high % of their prospects. There will be times when trading away valued prospects makes sense, but not very often for small market teams.

  157. Jim S. says:


    So, now, since I said Colorado is a much easier park in which to hit than PNC that is the equivalent of saying Matt Holliday can’t hit? Seriously?

    It is a fact that a whole lot more runs are scored in Colorado by both the home and visiting team every year. That’s how I know it is an easier park in which to hit.

  158. Jim S. says:

    I’m not worrying. Only cautioning that he isn’t a finished product. Thought I bade they pretty clear. But, ok. I never know which of your alter egos to debate.

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