Monday, August 31, 2009

Lightning Does Strike Twice

The Bucs lost both games of their day/night doubleheader against the Reds today, the first game was a 4-3 loss and game two was a 6-3 loss. The Bucs lost the first on a walk off wild pitch and the second they jus got flat beat.

In game one the Pirates got a good effort out of Daniel McCutchen but could not scratch together enough hits to give him his first major league win in his major league debut. McCutchen went six innings and giving up only three earned runs and striking out five. Joel Hanrahan pitched two really good innings striking out four. He has really been pitching well and he showed why he is in the game in important spots.

With two outs and a runner on third Jesse Chavez threw a wild pitch to plate Darnell McDonald and the Pirates loss. The Pirates 1-6 hitters went a combined 0-24 with six strikeouts and four walks (two by Lastings Milledge).

McCutchen averaged about 91 on his fastball and go it up around 93. I feel once he gets some innings and gets to learning how to pitch he can be an affective pitcher and possibly pick up some more velocity. We will have to track him throughout the rest of the season, but it could be worse.

Game two was not much to be talked about as the Pirates fell behind early and could not recover. Paul Maholm spotted the Reds a three spot in the first inning and that was pretty much all they needed to set the table on a day that the Pirates offense just wasn't there.

The Pirates managed eight hits, but no Pirate had more than one hit in the loss. Delwyn Young did not have a hit for the third straigh game and only has two hits in his last five games and has seen his average drop to .288. Hopefully he can snap out of this funk because he was playing pretty well.

Andrew McCutchen went deep again for the Pirates with his 11th home run and I feel he is making a really strong run for N.L. ROY. Really nice season. In 77 games this season he is supporting a .852 OPS and has 11 home runs and 44 RBI all hitting from the leadoff position. Very impressive.

Not too much else to say. Lets try to get them tomorrow.

Go Bucs.

Double the pleasure Double the fun

The Bucs take to the field for the good ole fashion day/night doubleheader today. Danny McCutchen will go in game one in his first Bucco start. Should be interesting. Let's take two. For your viewing pleasure, the most beautiful park in the world.

Looking Back at the Bucco Trades

Beautiful post over at Buccofans.com about how the Pirates trades have worked out so far. Very good article.

Here is the link

Here is an excerpt from it. The best part in my opinion:

"First of all, I can't really see how anyone could be upset over the Pirates blowing up this team. This is a team that went 67-95 last year. That's following three more years with 67-68 wins per season (well, there was only one season with 68 wins). At the time of the Nate McLouth trade, the Pirates were 24-28, in fifth place in their division, and six games out of first.Now let's think about that for a second.

A certain group of Pittsburgh fans will say "we were only four games below .500". That's fine if .500 is the goal. Luckily, it isn't. The goal is, and should be, the playoffs.For some reason, probably due to the losing streak, Pirates fans are willing to settle for a mediocre goal. Imagine if the Steelers came out next week and said their goal going in to the 2009 season was an 9-7 record. Imagine if the Penguins said they were shooting for a 42-40 record (well, that may be good enough to be one of the 27 teams to make the playoffs in the NHL). You'd be upset, and rightfully so,
because those teams would be saying they're satisfied with a goal that likely
leaves them outside of the playoff scene. So why is .500 the goal for the
Pirates?"



Great perspective on the situation. Great read.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

House of Horrors

What is it about going to Milwaukee that had the Pirates number? The Bucs have been to Milwaukee and haven't won there in 21 tries including today's 4-1 defeat. Ross Ohlendorf went five innings and gave up all four runs. Ohlendorf ran into one bad inning, the fifth inning. Ohlendorf gave up a single, double, and then intentially walked Frank Catalanotto to pitch to pitcher Jeff Suppan. Ohlendorf then promptly walked Suppan and then gave up a two out double to Craig Counsell for the three run inning that was eventually the losing one.

The Pirates were able to outhit the Brewers 9-5 but the one bad inning really did the Pirates in. When you are as bad as the Pirates are in Milwaukee then you can't have innings like that, nor can you leave the bases loaded twice in the first four innings like the Pirates did either. This is not a team that is going to hit double after double but you gotta knock in a few runs when you have the chance.

A couple bright spots in the game today, however. Garrett Jones went deep for his 16th home run of the season while Lastings Milledge contintues to rake as he went 3-for-4. Milledge's average is now up to .276 while he is hitting almost .300 while he has been with the Pirates. As you might know I am high on Milledge and I feel he can really help the team in the future if he can stay away from making any more rap video's.

Some other great news today as the Pirates optioned Brian Bixler down to AAA Indy right after the game. I hope he never comes back up. Last night he took the field and struck out three times and commited an error. Bixler has struck out 23 times in his 33 at bats this season while being up with the Pirates. Awful. How is he still in the system. The midblowing thing about all of this was that this was Bixler's quote after the game last night from the PG:


"No, I don't think they have (the good playing Bixler in AAA)," he said in
a hushed tone afterward. "But I've said this before: I feel like I'm a major
league player, like I belong with the Pirates. I just hope that, when I get my
opportunities, I can put it all together and help this team win."



Really Brian? You think you will get more opportunities? I wouldn't give you another one if we had no more shortstops in the system. If you think you are getting another shot with me in charge then you are wrong. He has to be gone. He is terrible. I can go up and K 66% of the time. You feel like a major league player? What gives you that idea? Decent AAA numbers does not make you a major league player. Please.

Daniel McCutchen also made the choice to leave Team USA and will rejoin the Pirates and make his first start for the big league team on Wednesday. This will be our first look at a kid that looks to be playing pretty well in the minors this year (24 Starts, 13-6, 3.47 ERA, 142.2 IP, 145 H, 63 R, 55 ER, 10 HR, 29 BB, 110 SO, 3 HBP, 5 WP, 1.220 WHIP, 9.1 H/9, 1.8 BB/9, 6.9 SO/9, 3.79 SO/BB) and see what he can do with the big club. I am excited to see how he pitches.

Go Bucs

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Steelers: Dominating, Bill: 0

What a game. What an absolute dominating game in pretty much all aspects as the Steelers beat the Bills tonight by the score of x-x. The first team offense was able to move the football (despite the penalties) as they pretty much had the ball for the entire game, and the defense was just absolute cash money all night as the Bills did not get 100 total yards until more than halfway through the fourth quarter. The first team defense made the first team Bills offense look like a JV team and they pretty much had their way all night.

James Farior had a pick six tonight that was just a terrible read by Bills starter Trent Edwards. I actually thought that Farrior was the intended receiver on that play. But the first team defense really gave the Bills nothing to work with all night.

Special teams was just outright dirty tonight. Stef Logan will make this team. He did another amazing job of returning kicks tonight and getting the job done by getting positive yardage when he returned kicks and also did a great job of making fair catches when he needed to. Not taking huge risks to hurt his team, when he had the chance to make a big return then he did that. What a great job. Danny S was cash again tonight. Averaged about 45 a kick and went 49 on one of them. Joe Burnett also made his bid to keep on the team when he blocked a field goal to preserve the shut out. With a little over two minutes to play in the game Burnett was being blocked on the outside and just dove and used his free hand to block a kick. That is the kind of stuff that keeps you on the team.

The offense was pretty good in their own respect. Ben was very good tonight. He fumbled an exchange but other than that he did a good job for the Steelers. He went 15 of 19 for 168 yards and no INT's. Hines Ward was just as good as Ben was. Hines is just as tough of a WR as you come across in the NFL. Five receptions for 74 yards. He is solid and I love that he is on our team and is not on any other team. Sweed played pretty well, made some nice catches and I think he will lock up the third WR spot. Wallace did not show too much today and McDonald is going to be a third down receiver and a possession type of guy so I really see Sweed as the number three.

Rashard Mendenhall was very hot and cold tonight. He ripped off a few good runs through some very nice holes the lines made, but he still looked very tentative when he ran. It just looks like he is more concerned with getting hit than actually preparing for a hit and then delivering one. he needs to get his pads low and run a few people over. I know he is not a short yardage back (although most people might think he is) but he just seems very shy when he gets to the line. Hopefully this will pass and he can be a force with the Steelers.

The Bills ended the game with only eight first downs and 135 total yards. The Steelers held the ball for over 40 minutes of time. This is the type of game that shows me they are ready for the regular season and they are ready to defend their title. Lets get it on.

Here We Go

Preseason Game 3 - Buffalo Bills

Today is a pretty important, if not the most important, preseason game of the season when the Pittsburgh Steelers meet the Buffalo Bills at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, PA.

Big Ben is expected to come back and play a little bit today. We should see the first team offense and defense go probably about a half and this should give us a good look at extended play on both sides of the football. That being said, I think the Steelers should only play Ben around three series, or two depending on the amount of plays. We know what Ben can do and we know what he brings to the table. He is a winner. He has a bad ankle, and although he says he is ready to go, we do not need to see him for a half. All is does is win Super Bowls and you can't win Super Bowls if you are on the shelf for half of the season.

This means that Charlie Batch will probably get some extended time and with DD hurt and out for the preseason that will give Mike Reilly a lot of snaps that usually would be left for Dixon. This will be a great chance for Mike to get some reps, not to make this Steelers team, but to get some looks out there for other teams that he might be able to hook on with.

A big match-up to watch is once again going to be the same two things I have been talking about this whole preseason. Those are the battles for the number three WR position and Lawrence Timmons. Timmons is being talked about as being a huge talent that is ready to come through for the Steelers and their long term plans, but we need to see something from him. He is missing assignments, missing tackles and just not looking good. Maybe he needs to settle into the starting position but lets get it together. A good game by him would make me feel a lot better about him, and our linebacker situation.

The WR battle is going to be a key position too. Once again nobody has really made a clean showing for the number three spot and to be honest these players are looking to just make the 53 man roster and not just battling for the number three spot. Having Ben in the line-up today will help all the receivers in seeing where they stack up with one of the best QB's in the game today.

Really excited for the game today.

Here We Go!

Best. Movie. Ever.

The boys over at The Pensblog found this gem. Coming soon near you...


Friday, August 28, 2009

Bucs Win

Like I talked about in the pregame this has been a really good series. Good pitching. Clutch hitting. Just good baseball. Did not matter that this was a matchup of one of the worst against one of the the best, it was great baseball.

The Bucs took two out of three from teh defending World Series Champions by the score of 3-2. Garrett Jones went deep with a two run shot in the bottom of the eighth with two outs for the winning score. Hell even Matt Capps pitched a perfect ninth for his 24th save of the season.

Andrew McCutchen went deep again for the Bucs as he is really putting up some good numbers and I really think he has a good shot at ROY. He is fourth or better in nearly every single offensive category amoung rookies and his slugging percent is reaching .500 which is pretty remarkable for a leadoff hitter.

How good does it feel to have such a young, promising player like McCutchen playing and producing now. Just think if Tabata and Alverez can produce like this when they come out. Think about putting them in the lineup with McCutchen. We will win more games.

You might say "How can you be so excited and happy about a team that is mostly 20 games under .500? Because I see and understand the future and I am stoked to see what happens. I haven't felt like this about the Pirates in a long time.

FYI: Alverez went deep twice tonight. Woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

Go Bucs.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Pirates/Phils

So far a pretty good series for the Pirates when you sit back and look at it. Playing the defending World Series Champs we have two come from behind efforts and won one of two via the walk off variety. After a pretty terrible top of the 9th on Tuesday they come back and tie it up/take the lead against Brad Lidge. Ross the Boss pitched very well in the loss and deserved the win, but got the ND.

The next night (last night) there was a beautiful pitched game by Paul Maholm against one of the leagues best in Cole Hammels. Hammels and Maholm went toe to toe with the only blip being Maholm's first inning mistake that Chase Utley went deep for a 1-0 Phils lead. That lasted until Brandon Moss pinch hit and took a Ryan Madson pitch to right field and a tie ball game. The bullpen then did its usual thing and blew the lead and Ryan Howard ended the game with a three run BOMB in the 10th.

One thing that has been very good is the performance of Brandon Moss. Moss hasn't been able to hit major league pitching at all (.171 in August going into the series). Now it is a wide notion that it is much harder to pinch hit rather than get regular at bats and get into a groove. But Moss stepped up both nights. In the win he knocked in the game tying run on a single off of Lidge and then last night he went deep to tie it in the 9th. He lost his starting spot, he gets two pinch hits, got two (huge) hits and a two (huge) RBI. Nice to see he can stay in the game and still produce.

Another thing must be said good series so far and it would be great to take two outta three. The Pirates have worked hard, showed they are not going to just roll over because they are the defending champs and because they should lose. Makes me glad to be a Pirate fan and makes me proud. These guys know they are playing for their job and that makes a world of difference. You can tell they want to stick in the league. They also are playing hard to thank the Pirates. Guys like Ohlendorf, Karstens, Moss, Milledge, they all have had chances and failed. The Pirates have the faith and the players owe it for giving them this next chance.

Here is the line-up tonight for our Bucs from DK over at the PG.

Pirates' lineup:

  1. McCutchen, CF
  2. Young, 2B
  3. Jones, RF
  4. LaRoche, 3B
  5. Doumit, C
  6. Milledge, LF
  7. Pearce, 1B
  8. Cruz, SS
  9. Morton, P
So lets beat Philly. They suck. At everything.

Go Bucs

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Can't Always Get Lucky

Bottom of the 9th, down 1-0, one out. Brandon Moss pinch hits and takes a Ryan Madson 1-1 pitch out of the ball park and a tie ball game. Who then comes up two batters later but Andrew McCutchen. Could he do it again? How awesome would it be if...strikeout.

Well it could have been a real sweet story but Cole Hammels made sure there were no fireworks at PNC Park today. Hammels is pretty good. Now I know I am not telling you something you don't already know but he was just straight dealin. He went eight innings, striking out seven. No runs given up.

Not to be outdone Paul Maholm pitched another wonderful game for the Pirates. He went seven innings, striking out four and only giving up a Chase Utley home run in the first inning. The Pirates pen did a nice job too. Let me rephrase that, Jesse Chavez and Joel Hanrahan did anoher nice job. Those two have been off the hook recently and JR can pretty much put them in whereever to get the job done which is what he did in a one run game. The problem? Both were used when the 10th came around. Steven Jackson came on, walked Jimmy Rollins, gave up a few hits and left the game to Phil Dumatrait who gave up a three run bomb to Ryan Howard. Ballgame.

It would have been a really nice win for the Pirates to get on back to back games, but the cards just didn't fall right. One thing is true about these new look Bucs is that they will not quit and although they are not the most talented they will put it all out on the line. You have to respect that.

Go Bucs

What A Picture

What a picture of the walk off last night. Great job by the PG






Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Capps Can't Blow This One

First off, woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

Second off, we need to do something with Matt Capps

Third off, wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

The Bucs walked it off at PNC Park tonight when Andrew McCutchen went yard with Brandon Moss on second base to right center field after just a wild game. As you know I can't watch the games up here in Alaska, but I just saw the replay of the game and if you thought the Pirates were going to win this game then you were crazy.

The game started with a 1-0 lead on the first pitch of the ballgame when Jim Rollins went deep on the first pitch of the game. If you think that is kinda crazy then you will love the next sentence. Rollins went deep on the first pitch of his next at bat too. Holy cow, you don't see that too often.

The Pirates took the lead on a Steve Pearce home run which also scored Ryan Doumit (who homered earlier in the game). Then things got interesting. Matt Capps comes in, gives up a double, double, triple to blow the save and give the Phillies the lead. Andrew McCutchen misread the triple (and really should have had it) and the Phillies led by one.

The Pirates took Brad Lidge and his 7+ ERA and went to work. Luis Cruz singles then moves up on a wild pitch. Then somethign happens which I didn't want to see. Brian Bixler in the baseball game. He should not be in the game anytime the game is within 10 runs. Well Bixler, moves to third on a Brandon Moss single, then Jayson Werth bobbles the ball in right, Bixler is held at third then takes off on the bobble and just barely beats the throw home to tie the game. I don't know if that was bad baserunning or a coaching misake, but it looked really ugly the way that play went down.

Then Andrew McCutchen comes up, and actually says "What misplay in centerfield" (seriously, I think he said that) and walks it off to right centerfield and throws his fist up as he goes around the bases. Gotta love walk off homeruns.

Go Bucs.

Leadership, and No Richards?

The Battlin' Bucs will be taking on the defending World Series Champs tonight at PNC Park. Ross Ohlendorf will be going for the Pirates, and to many people's surprise the Dorfer has been pitching really well for the Pirates this season. He has a team high 11 wins and only a 4.15 ERA and is second on the team, behind Zach Duke, with 15 quality starts. Solid numbers in only 24 starts. Over his last 10 starts he is 5-2 with three no-decisions and has seven quality starts in those last ten games. Lookin really good for the Dorfer recently. Gives some hope for him to be here in the future and looks like a solid three or four guy in the rotation if we can every get a shut down guy like the Giants have (they actually have two, hey SF can we have one please?).

Ronny Cedeno will be back in the Pirates lineup after missing a few games with a fracture in his finger. Thank God Blixer will not be in the lineup. Hell, if Bixler is going to play I can go out there and strike out.

The Pirates will be sending a good bit of players to the Arizona Fall League.

Sid is the top Canadian at the Olympic camp so far says the NHL. How does Mike Richards not get this, his leadership dominates everyone's.

That's it for now. Probably be back after the game.

Go Bucs.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Whole Lotta Nothin'

No Pirates game today so there is not a whole ton of stuff going on that I am hearing so we will kinda just go with a links day again like we did on the last Pirates day off (which seems like it was just yesterday.

Well it was brought up by The Confluence that Sid was centering a line with Jarome Iginla and Rick Nash. That line is going to be sick nasty if they get to play with each other at the Olympics. Just think, Iginla brings the grit, Nash brings the speed and touch and Sid is just the man. How do you stop that line? Can you imagine if somehow Marty Biron was playing net for the other team? You might as well just get a shooter tutor.

Looks like Denis Dixon is going to miss the rest of the preseason and some of the regular season with a dislocated shoulder.

Looks like Stef Logan is a big hit with the Steelers

The Steelers are pretty lucky to have Charlie

The Pirates are not planning on calling up a ton of players

Great finds by the Blog 'N Gold at the PG:

Mike Tomlin interview

The Steelers Good, Bad and Ugly so far.

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand Snoop is coming to town. Wooooooooooooooooooooo

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Streak Snapped

The Bucs fell in their third, and final, game of the series against the Reds 4-1. Kevin Hart took the loss for the Pirates as he only went five innings, yielding three runs in defeat. Hart threw 99 pitches in the five innings and really never got into the game.

The Pirates struggled again to gather hits as they only had five, two off the bat of Delwyn Young who raised his season average up to .312. Brian Bixler got the start for the Pirates, as that is probably the sole reason for their loss, and here is a shocker, he struck out twice. Why is he still on the team? I mean if you read my post on what team I would throw in a one game playoff for the number one pick Bixler would be my starting shortstop. Don't even get my started.

Young continues to be a nice surprise for the Pirates. He has almost 250 at bats and has a very nice batting average. Over the last ten games Young only has been hitless in two of those games and three multi hit games in that span.

All in all the Pirates won their second straight series in a row against division opponents and now will take the day off on Monday before travel to defending World Series champions Philadelphia Phillies and then traveling to Milwaukee and Cincinnati over the next few home stands.

Lets Go Bucs.

Washington - 17, Steelers - 14



Finally got to watch the Steeler game a little bit just right now and there were a few things that I caught from the game that you can actually take something out of. Now, the Steelers lost the game 17-14 but that really does not mean anything.

The first thing that I noticed in the first three minutes of the game was that I am so glad I don’t have to listen to Joe Theisman for the entire season. He was awful last night. I remember when the Skins ran their fake punt, Theisman stated that it was a good call at a crucial time of the game. Crucial time of the game? Are you serious Joe? It was 30 seconds into the first quarter? Get a clue. Also he tried to say that these teams prep for each other and have game plans. No way. If Dick LeBeau wanted to have a game plan the Skins would not have had it that easy on offense and there would have been some more character in the Steelers offense. I know that.

The first team defense I thought did a pretty nice job last night. The Skins tried to go deep twice and Troy made a nice play on the first offensive play of the game and Ike Taylor had nice coverage one on one a few series later. Lawrence Timmons got a few pressures, although no sacks, but I didn’t see anything that was glaring bad like I did against Carolina. He was a little late jumping a coverage in the second quarter but he still was right there on it so it could have been worse. The Steelers also stuffed the Skins on a goal to go series which was nice, Keyaron Fox made a play on third down which was very nice to see.

The offense was not good at all. The line was having problems all night and Charlie Batch was hurried, hit and being forced to move out of the pocket most of the time he was in the game. The Steelers were able to convert on a goal to go series when Willie Parker scored on a toss play to the right on a second and goal play so that is somewhat reassuring. Charlie Batch looked ok as he came back for his extended play but overall I was not impressed with the offense as a whole. Granted, last year they were in the mid 20’s in every category AND it is the preseason so who knows. I would like to see more. Maybe it was a little bit that Ben wasn’t in there, but who knows.

Rashard Mendenhall looked better last night. He played after Fast Willie Parker and although he might not have played against the top defense he was finding creases and hitting them a little bit more last night. Mendenhall collected 26 yards on five carries so it was much better statistically then his first preseason game against the Cardinals.

None of the receivers made much of a presence in the game as there were not too many completions to go around. All the QB’s combined only went to complete 15 passes and those were to 11 different receivers. Shaun McDonald had three catches but that was only for 13 yards. Mike Wallace made two catches for 23 yards and probably looked the best out of him, Sweed and McDonald. I think Mike Wallace has a decent chance, as of now, to make the team.

On a bad note, Dennis Dixon left the game in the fourth quarter after suffering a shoulder injury. Coach Mike Tomlin said that it was a AC Joint which if it is true could be an injury that could take a week or months. Dixon looked ok. Made a few nice throws to Wallace and Sweed and also made a very nice run late in the second quarter for 17 yards. It will be nice to continue to see how that injury progresses because I like Dixon and think he can help this team, if not this year then defiantly next year.

The specialties were the best part of the Steelers game last night. Punt coverage was very good last night as Danny S. gave about 48 yards a punt and the coverage team only gave up about six yards so it was very good showing by that. In the same respect I think Stefan Logan made the team last night with his returns. He averaged 12 yards a punt return which is a lot better than what they were able to do last years. He also averaged 40 yards per kick return. 40 yards. That is incredible. If you told Big Ben that he was going to start the drive on the 35 or 40 yard line every time he will tell you that we are going to score some points. Logan is on the team, not doubt about it. You gotta be happy about the special teams from the Steelers.

The officials were not very good last nigh at all either. A lot of flags and some shoddy calls on both sides. Not just bad calls and bad no calls for the Steelers but I think the Skins got hosed too. Hopefully the officiating can be better than this for the regular season.

Overall a so-so game with a lot of penalties on Pittsburgh, 10 in the first half, and some sloppy play on offense. This is only the second preseason game so you can reserve some criticism but hopefully we can see something else next game.

Here We Go.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

HOLY BUCCOS!

Wow, just wow…I had to work pretty much all day today and now I am headed for an event I have to go to, but I looked at the Pirates gamecast and I am just awe struck. Everybody in the lineup got a hit today, Jones drivin in runs, Milledge continues to hit, Ryan Doumit decides that he is gonna join the party and go deep today with three RBI. Where was all of this when the Pirates were losing 12 of 13?

In case you don't believe me check out the box score.

Cutch got a hit and was walked twice, Delwyn Young continues to put the ball in play and is hitting .309, Milledge is around .242 (which is up from around .210 where he was before the home stand), and hell even Brian Bixler got in the game. Now, if anyone knows me they know I hate Bixler. He is terrible and I do not want him on the team, but he even got on base today (via a walk). Holy shit.

Zach Duke went seven strong innings only giving up two earned runs on eight hits and lowers his ERA to 3.38. Duke is having one hell of a season and if it were not for the Pirates just going to bed on most days he has pitched I really believe he could be among the tops in the bigs in wins. He just gets the job done. Nothing overpowering, nothing too foolish, just throwing strikes and getting outs. That is what it is all about.

Five in a row and soon we are going to be moving up the charts in the standings in the NL Central. Now I know we have the side bar that shows the Pirates and how far away they are from the worst team in the league, but this home stand really just blew that out of the waters. Would I like to get a shot at Bryce Harper? Hell yea! Would I like to see the Pirates win more instead of getting Harper at this point? Yea. I am not gonna sit here and lie and say I want the Pirates to lose. As much as I think Harper could be a great addition, I want the Pirates to win. I hate to lose. Keep it up Bucs

Go Bucs.

Preseason Game 2 - Washington Redskins

The Steelers embark on their second preseason game of the season when they travel to Washington D.C. for a date with the Washington Redskins. This should be a game where the starters see around a quarter and we see some more of the reservers and what they can do and try to convince the coaches why they should be on the team.


Remember last time the Steelers went to D.C.? In case you forgot here is the link to the appropriate game recap and this blog post about why Washington's "home field" was a non factor for them. That was basically like it always gets in D.C. for sports that go on. You know when the Verizon Center is overflowing with Penguin fans. That is what it was like at FedEx Field.

Should Big Ben play? No. Will he play? Probably not. After getting hurt in practice there is no reason for Ben to play. He will be ready for the regular season. If he has to miss a preseason game I am ok with that as long as he is ready for the regular season when the games count. I would also like to see Dennis Dixon get a few more snaps and see how he progressed from the last preseason game. If he is going to be in the system for the future then I want to see how he performs as much as possible this preseason, and I think the coaching staff has the same idea.

Also I would like to keep an eye on Lawrence Timmons today and see how he bounces back from a pretty poor first showing in preseason game number one against the Arizona Cardinals. Timmons looked a step slow and just didn't seem to be in position to make plays in his first start. Time will tell this preseason, but I would like to see a little bit of something.

The WR should look to have a very competitive day again today. Between Sweed, McDonald, Wallace and Baker they are fighting for maybe three spots with the ultimate prize being the third WR spot on the team behind Santonio Holmes and Hines Ward. This game will not determine that but Sweed, McDonald and Wallace had nice games against the Cardinals and look have the inside tracks on the three spots. Right now it looks as if Sweed will get that number three spot and Wallace could possibly see some kick returning duties for the team. This battle will defiantly be interesting to watch and will probably go down to the last preseason game to see some separation.

As if this really needs to be said but the O-line really needs to step up and show me more than they did. Them along with Timmons did not play particularly well against Arizona, but then again it is only the first preseason game. Hopefully the line can get this stuff together for the regular season and cut down the number of times that Ben is going to get hit/sacked.

I would put my money on LaMarr Woodley getting a sack today. Even if he only plays one series, he will get one. He is becoming a stud on the outside and between him and James Harrison I really do not know how some teams are going to stop both of them in the same game. They make QB's lives miserable for the four hours or so a game goes on. I am sure many game plans will be made this season just to stop both of them. They will probably not work, hell if they even slow one of them down it will be a win for that offense.

I will not be able to watch the game live tonight, but I will be following Twitter on my phone so there will probably not be a post game write up until Sunday night or possibly even Monday afternoon so I apologize for that in advance.

Here We Go!


Friday, August 21, 2009

Mad Capper, Bucs Win!

Well the Pirates got their fourth win in a row tonight as they just defeated the Reds 5-3. Charlie Morton got the win and Matt Capps with another good performance for the save. Hopefully Capps can finish up his season well.

Garrett Jones smashed a home run and Lastings Milledge went deep again for the Pirates and also had two hits to raise his average to .234. The Pirates only managed five hits on the day. With the way the Pirates hit the ball (poorly) anytime you can get a win with only five hits you will take it.

Got to get back to work so this is a short one.

Go Bucs.

Linkage

Slow day. No Pirates. Steelers in camp and don't play til Saturday. Pens aren't doin to much except talkin about winnin championships with the Steelers. So today we are gonna give you some links. Here goes nothing.

Pat over at WHYGAVS also thinks that its a little slow by this post.

Pirates/Cubs "rainout" is scheduled for September 30.

Maholm=Tough

Solid post by "Mc" Effect about Lanny Frattare.

Raise the Jolly Roger gives us a nice post on his thoughts on the draft class of 2009 for the Bucs.

North Side Notch went to the Indy game the other night before Louisville and got some great video. Also got Tabata's home run on tape. Solid job.

Ben hurt his ankle in practice today. Seriously what happens if Ben misses time. Is Dixon ready? Can Charlie give us more than just one game? Should we be looking elsewhere? I hope we don't have to find out.

Mike Tomlin is one sly dog.

If you are a ghostbusters fan you are in luck.


VS. really got some sweet games for the Penguins this upcoming season.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Boots Come in Pairs, Wins Come in Three


One is a win, two is consecutive, three is a streak. A streak is what the Pirates now have after a convincing 3-1 win today in front of over 12,000+ at PNC Park. Paul Maholm was steller going 7.2 innings only giving up the one earned run while throwing 110 pitches. Maholm also was hit by two batted balls today. Once in the shoulder and once in the calf. Both times Maholm continued to pitch after being hit which is good for the Pirates.

Here is your recap from today's game and here is your box score.

Despite the solid game the Pirates only managed five hits the entire game, two off the bat of Delwyn Young who raised his average to .312. I guess Prince might know who he is now after he is hitting around .500 against the Brewers this year. Prince, on the other hand, ended up going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts. Nice game Prince. The Brewers are now basically out of the playoff picture for good being four games under .500.

Solid series for the Pirates as they finally show life. They looked as dead as you could before the series started but they should feel pretty good after bringing out the broom for the win.
Let the good times roll...
Go Bucs

The Future Pirate MVP

When thinking of the Pirates future in major league baseball you think of names like Tabata, Alderson, Alverez, Sanchez and McCutchen. How do you rank the future of the Pirates though? Surfin through Twitter I came across the blog “Mc” Effect.

Solid read about the MVP’s of the Pirates future and the blog goes on to break down the top ten in that category. Here is the link for the post.

Interesting they put Delwyn Young and Andy LaRoche in there. Valid points though. Young has played very well for the Pirates since he has been getting more and more playing time since the trade of Freddy Sanchez. He is hitting well over .300 and although I am not getting to see the Pirates play I have not read too much about him being terrible in the field. I would love to see Young be a huge success because of how hard the Pirates have tried to get him over the past few season. The Pirates really covet him as a player and he is showing up which is a good sign for the direction of the team.

Andy LaRoche needs to show me a little bit more. I felt good about him being in the system when we got him and I gave him a pass because of not being in the system a long time (much like what I am doing with Lastings Milledge) but I guess he has not been that terrible this year. Sure I would like to see a little better than a .265 average and sure he is not a prototypical third base power, but I guess we will see how he rounds out.

What a great picture of Lastings Milledge though. I really hope he rounds out and becomes a good six or seven hitter on the Pirate team of the future.

What really has me worried is that the Pirates have nothing in terms of the shortstop position. I really think this is the spot that the Pirates need to focus on in the draft (Harper) or go out and sign a young free agent (Sano) or just go get someone. After Jack left there is nothing there. Cedeno is not an option for the future and lord help us if Bixler is here any long. Actually, I just got word that Bixler has struck out five times since midnight, shocker.

Overall, an interesting list that hopefully will round out. Only time will tell, but it is fun to talk about and discuss now.

Although I want the Pirates to get the #1 pick, I hope they beat the shit out of the Brewers today.

Go Bucs.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Delwyn Who?

Remember when Prince Fielder said he didn't know who Delwyn Young was? Well I bet Prince knows who he is now after he is pretty much beating the Brewers by himself. I even heard rumours that Delwyn introduced himself after his first inning home run.

Here is the box score and here is the recap.

Ross the boss was deal today in keeping up with his solid home starts. As I talked about in the pre game post Ross was 7-2 at PNC Park before today's game and he continued his home success today. Ohlendorf went seven strong yielding one run and scattering five hits. Just a solid all around performance where Ross threw 17 of his 26 first pitches for strikes and threw 67 of his 103 pitches for strikes. That is Ohlendorf's 11th win of the season.

Andy LaRoche got the start in the four hole today and did a pretty nice job if I do say so. He went 2-for-2 with two walks and an RBI. Delwyn Young and Lastings Milledge each went deep for the Pirates as they each had a hit and he also drove in two runs.

Much has been made about the struggles at the plate. Milledge is only hitting .227 since being called up to the Bucco's. I just feel that we need to give Milledge a little more time. In my opinion this year is going to be a wash. Lets see how he goes through a whole off season and how he prepares himself for next season. He is only 25 and he has a ton of upside and I would love to see him break of of this slump and help the team out. If he can pull out I can see him hitting behind Cutch. Outside of his awful outfield skills I am still quietly optimistic.

All in all, I hate the Brewers and am glad they are not winning. They really think that major league baseball owes them something and they need to come to the reality that they are out of it already. I do realize that the Pirates are going to set the record for losing seasons but there are a few things I am glad for. 1) I am not from West Virginia, 2) I am not from Ohio and 3) I am not a Brewers fan.

Go Bucs...

Just Another Day

Just another day for the Pittsburgh Pirates. You know, coming off a win, batting Adam LaRoche in the clean-up spot. Just another normal day in the office. You might wonder "why the hell are they batting LaRoche in the four spot?" Great question, but who else are you really going to put there? Not a whole lot of power outside of Pedro Alverez. Too bad Pedro is only in Altoona and will not be moving up to the big team this year.

The Dorfer is goin today for your Bucco's and I am looking forward to a fairly decent performance from him. Ross has only given up three or more earned runs in one of his last nine starts and has went at least six innings in six of those nine appearances. Ross is also 7-2 at PNC Park this season so all the things are lining up for the Pirates to have a terrible loss and give up 15 runs. Nothing ever goes as planned. Not too bad for Ross though. Pretty steady, which is what the Pirates need. Not really what they need to get the number one pick, but I hate the Brewers. Also on that note I do want the Pirates to win every single game from here out. I mean we are on a good start from yesterday right?

I will not discuss the big news today. What a drama queen.

Also today is Roberto Clemente's birthday. He would have been 75. You are missed.

Go Bucs.


Monday, August 17, 2009

The Blind Squirrel Finds a Nut

By blind squirrel I mean the Pittsburgh Pirates and by "finds a nut" means...well you get where I am going with this.

In the previous four games the Pirates pounded out 19 hits, today they accounted for 16. 16 hits. What happened today? Outside of Ryan Doumitt (0-for-5) everyone was a part of the hit parade today, even pitcher Kevin Hart. Hart not only went six innings yielding four earned runs but he also went 2-for-2 with an RBI in the winning cause. Matt Capps even earned a scoreless inning. MATT CAPPS!

What I am feeling the problem is going to be with this game is that the Pirates just used up all their hits in one game.

What I was really surprised about was that Delwyn Young is hitting .309. I didn't really see that coming. Who cares. Big win for the Pirates. I hate Milwaukee.

Dave Chappelle Move.

What would happen if you were a new player in your profession. You were really good in school and got a 4.0 and went on to graduate school to fine tune your craft and you continued to learn in the classroom and from other people at the university while working an internship for little money.

What if you then graduated from graduate school with a 4.0 and you could go to any company and be compensated very handsomely. You find that dream job in your profession and the company says “I want to make you our highest paid employee ever. You are only going to be in the first year with the company but we think so highly of you that they are gonna show you the money.”

What do you do? If you don’t understand where I am going with this then you must not follow spots and you must have stumbled upon this blog and thought I was going to talk about how dirty the Allegheny River was or something like that.

Steven Strasburg has been offered a major contract by the Washington Nationals and he apparently has turned it down for even more money. He is probably right though, I would much rather play independent ball and not make any money rather than pitch in the majors next year and make that cash money.

Today is a big day for the top three picks as none of them has signed with their respective teams. The highest pick to sign is the Pirates Tony Sanchez and he has been just dealin in his first crack at the minor leagues.

The respective teams have until midnight tonight to sign as many of their draft picks as they can/want to. The Pirates have signed like their first 12 I believe and have spent in upwards of around $8.5 million this year. They have inked some guys that nobody thought they would and I feel they have done a nice job on taking chances with guys who were thought to have been shoe-ins for college and made them major league players.

We will see how this goes.

Pirates/Brewers at 7.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Updates/Changes

You might not care about certain things that go on this blog. If anyone actually reads this blog I have added some things onto the site that you might wonder about.

On the side bar I have added an updated standing on what it is going to take to get the number one draft pick in next years draft. Now someone might be asking themselves this: "Boy Cory why the hell would we care. Anyone in the top five is going to get a great player to build towards the future." Wrong. The worst team in the league this year gets Bryce Harper. That same person, or someone else, might say "Ah he can't be that good, we can get someone else just as good if we are the third or even fourth worst team in the leauge." Even more wrong. He has been tabbed the savior. Real deal. I want him on the Pirates. They call him baseball's LeBron. I want him now. Oh yea, by the way, he is only 16.

Other than that I have been updating the Pittsburgh blog sidebar thing I have. Check out those blogs. They are legit and really, really good.

Also get on Twitter if you are not and follow me, and the other Pittsburgh blogs. Good reads and good information.

Playoff Roster

Well when I woke up this morning and saw that they Pirates were playing on TV in Alaska for the first time since I moved up here two weeks ago I got really excited. I next then got on twitter and read an article that was posted on there by Tony over at the Confluence by Joe Starkey at the Trib. You can find that article here.

Sitting there and reading that kinda got me excited. As we started out today it is a three way race between us, the Nationals and the Royals were for the #1 spot in next year's draft. Now mind you this could all change with what happens with Strasburg but for now we are going to focus on getting the first pick and 16 y/o stud Bryce Harper.

This post is going to take a look at who the Pirates should run out if there was a one game "playoff" for the #1 pick in the draft. Here is a look at who I would throw out there. These players are going to be somewhat realistic, having played in the major leagues somewhere around the year 2000.

1. LF - Adam Hyzdu
Career .229 hitter who spent his first four years as a Pirate. Mud

2. 3B - Jose Hernandez
Spent two seasons with the Pirates in 2003 and 2006 and hit .240 for the Pirates and struck out 85 times in his 313 at bats with the Pirates. Perfect spot for him in the two hole.

3. CF - Chad Hermansen
Spent four years with the Pirates and in his time with the Bucs he hit below the Mendoza line which makes it a perfect spot for him to hit in this game. Not only was he terrible for the Pirates but he was terrible everywhere. He struck out 168 times in only 494 at bats in his career.

4. 1B - Brad Eldred
A disappointing player in the Pirates system. He was bad in his few stints in the big leagues. I originally had Kevin Young in this spot, but I forgot really how awful that Eldred really was in the bigs.

5. RF - Derek Bell
How could you have a Pirate team without "Operation Shutdown" on it. This guy needs to be on the roster and play right field. He batted .173 in his year for the Bucs and he will be perfect for quitting in the middle of the game and getting one of our bench guys in.

6. SS - Brian Bixler
Bixler is on the current Pirate roster and he is so awful that I am not sure wtf the Pirates are thinking by still having him in the system. Bixler has struck out 18 times in 24 at bats this season and has 54 punch outs in 133 career at bats. I mean if those were pitching stats he would be cash money, but they are hitting stats.

7. C - Humberto Cota
Thought about putting Ronny behind the plate, but with our luck he would do what he always does and f' it up and have a good game. Cota supports a .233 average in his seven seasons with the Pirates.

8. 2B - Matt Kata
.239 career hitter and hit like .250 in his season with the Pirates. Whatev

9. P - Jimmy Anderson
When I went to the Bucs game when he was on the team he pitched every single game that I went to. I was so pissed every time because I knew that outside of God himself coming to play for us that we were going to lose. Click the link if you want his stats. He pisses me off.

Bench/Pen:

C - Ronny Paulino
IF - Pat Mears (Hell we are still paying him)
OF - Emil Brown
2B - Bobby Hill
P - Matt Morris
P - Ryan Vogelsong
P - John Van Benschoten
P - Mike Fetters
P - Shane Youman

There is your roster for the Bucs. What do you think? Who did I miss? Let me know in the comments.

Go Bucs

Saturday, August 15, 2009

This Kid is a Bigger Joke Than the Bengals

This kid can't be serious.

PSAMP did a nice post about this kid (and I mean that literally). Please hit the link and go there and read it. Good stuff.

This is why the Bengals are a joke. People like this.

Who Won the Stanley Cup?

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooh that's right:

video

Just incase anyone forgot what happened in game seven of the Stanley Cup finals.

Forcast in the D: Cold

Suck it.

Only A Field Goal

Well the Bucs only gave up a FG today and not enough points to beat the Cleveland Browns. Actually on second thought the Bucs did give up enough to beat the Browns today. But nevertheless.

They lost for the 12th time in 13 games and another miserable performance. A bright spot for the Pirates today was he effort of Zach Duke. He went 7.1 and gave up the three runs, but the Pirates must find a way to score more than three runs when they get a solid pitching performance.

Tom Gorzelanny got the win for the Cubs going only five innings. Gorzo struck out eight Pirates in the process while the Pirates struck out 13 times as a group today managing only five hits. Oh wow.

DK over at he PG gives a great stat today following the game:

"Duke was charged with three runs and nine hits but fell to 9-11 despite a
3.42 ERA. In those 11 losses, the Pirates have scored a total of 14 runs."


14 runs of support in Duke's 11 losses. That is terrible.

I give mad props over to Pat at WHYGAVS. Unlike what I try to do here, and I stress try, I write about pretty much all the Pittsburgh sports not just the Pirates. Although I am a diehard Buccos fan I do go on and talk about the Steelers and Penguins a good bit. Pat normally does not and he does an amazing job over at his site. Kudos.

The bleeding has to stop soon. Right?

Friday, August 14, 2009

NHL 91, Game 6 SCF

WOW is all I have to say...

Via The Pensblog via someone else...

Click the link here.

Do it.

Cubs 1000, Pirates 2

What a God awful game. Giving up 10 in the second inning and Derek Lee having 7 RBI before the fourth inning (maybe the third, who cares).

The Pirates have lost the last three and 11 of the last 12.

What a dismal display today. Not much more to write. I don't know what to wait for anymore. Just disappointing.

It has to end soon right?

Bowie State, Steelers 20, Cardinals 10


Short post about the game today. I thought the Steelers were solid for most of the game. Nothing flashy, nothing that blew my mind, just a first preseason game. LaMarr Woodley recorded only one sack though, can't say I am not disappointed that he didn't get two. James Harrison is gonna be a straight freak this year. No doubt about it.

Ben looked ok, got away from a safety and got three yards out of a run. Charlie Batch played a little bit and made a nice throw to Limas Sweed who came back and won a jump ball. Sweed played pretty well making two grabs for 56 yards but he did drop a pass from DD on a third down play in the second half. Shaun McDonald also had a pretty nice second half where he caught six balls for 69 yards. Dallas Baker only made one catch and Mike Wallace showed some flashes and made two catches for 35 yards. Not bad.

Dixon played pretty well. He started off slow and played pretty well towards the end. I know its preseason and that he is playing against the third team Arizona defense, but he was making some stick throws and I look for him to develop into a capable NFL backup this year.

Rashard Mendenhall played alright. Not great stats only getting 24 yards on nine carries but I am sure that will improve. The Steelers however did convert a third and one, thank God.

Bowie State grad Isaac Redman had two touchdown runs in the fourth quarter which might not help him make the team but it will get him another week on the team and a chance to showcase himself for another team or maybe even practice squad time for the Steelers.

Ziggy Hood looked good considering who he was playing against but hurried a throw that turned into a pick and the Steelers first touchdown and then he had a sack on former Steeler Brian St. Pierre. Nice first game. Really looking forward to seeing him develop.

What was really nice seeing last night was Danny S. back and punting for the Black and Gold. He got the biggest ovation from the fans and for good reasons. Six punts for 49.5 yards in punting. Two of those were inside the 20 and his long was only 53 yards so you really can see that it was not just one huge punt followed by a few duds. He was very consistent and looked good both in distance and in hang time. He WILL make a difference this year for the Steelers.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Preseason Game 1 - Arizona Cardinals

What should we expect from the preseason game against the Cardinals today? Not a whole lot. We should see the first team offense and defense for probably about a series or two. This will be a huge game for a lot of the draft picks and the players who are fighting for spots. LaMarr Woodley I am sure will play exactly one play and have two sacks. Woodly having two sacks in a game is about as certain as it gets. Here are a few players that you should watch during the game as they try and make the team.

Lawrence Timmons – This will be a nice gage of where he is as it pertains to being a starter. LT is in his first year as a starter and it will be interesting to watch him this pre-season as he evolves as an everyday player rather than being a spot player like he was last year.

Rashard Mendenhall – This will be huge for numerous reasons. One is that he did not play much last year after breaking his shoulder thanks in part to Ray Lewis. It will be interesting to see how he comes out today and runs since he hasn’t played in a year. This is also a contract year for Fast Willie and he might not be back next year. This might be Mendy’s team next year so he better show something.

Ryan Mundy – He is one smart dude. Been with the team for a year, although hurt, and he should know a good bit about the system. Ryan Clark is in a contract year and Tyrone Carter’s future is uncertain so it will be good to see where we stand with Mundy and if he can make the team and possibly play in the Dime defense a little this year if he dresses.

The WR core – This will be a battle all of training camp. The definite ins are Ward and Holmes. Sweed, Mike Wallace, Shaun McDonald and Dallas Baker are battling for the other spots. Sweed has been looking good in practice and McDonald is a seasoned vet that can return kicks so it is going to be very tight to make the team. Should be exciting.

Back-up QB – I have heard that Charlie has been playing really well during camp, and coupled with BA saying there would be no wild cat, would almost see to seal the deal on Dixon being the number three QB this year. I want to see how far Dixon has come in a year and Charlie is not that young so Dixon might be the future and I want to see what he has to offer. Plus if he is the backup we COULD run the wild cat and give the offense a new wrinkle.

Well there is a ton to look for and tonight starts the journey for a great season. There are 12 players on each side of the ball that have Western PA ties, and that does not include the coaching staff, so we are basically playing Pittsburgh West tonight. Lets show them this is Steelers football.

Here We Go.

Snoop Knows It

Snoop Doggy Dog was just on ESPN and the question was posed to the Dog himself if it was more possible for USC to win the BCS Championship or the Steelers to throw the repeat. Snoop went on to say that since the Lakes took the NBA title and the Dodgers will win the World Series and both USC and the Steelers will bring home championships. Snoop was in the Ravens training camp the other day, but he is Black and Gold at heart.

Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

BUCS WIN!

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

The Pirates broke an eight game losing steak and beat the Colorado Rockies tonight 7-3. Granted the Rockies pitches closely resembled my 10 year old little league team, but we will take them anyway we can get them. For your viewing pleasure here is the game recap and here is the box score.

Looking at the box score you know you are going to have a good night when the starting pitcher on the other side goes 2.2 innings giving up four earned runs on only one hit. I mean think about that. How hard is it to do that when someone does not even hit a home run? I mean walking six hitters in 2.2 innings does not do your team any help, but lets be serious here. Which reliever did we trade to the Rockies to start tonight's ballgame?

Our old buddy Josh Fogg came in to try and stop the bleeding. If you consider giving up five hits in your first inning of work stopping the bleeding then Mr. Fogg should be working in the ER (with our pen mind you).

The Dorfer earned the win going six strong and giving up three earned.

Cutch better hope he does not get caught by the police on the way back to the hotel because he is going to get five to ten for grand theft for the bags he was stealing tonight. He took three bags on the night, twice stealing third, as the Pirates stole five bags total and didn't get thrown out once. Is someone saying game plan? Solid work.

Cutch also scored three runs while walking three times as Jones, Doumitt, Young and Cedeno each had two hits tonight with Young driving in two runs.

Finally a win. Celebrate.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Beatin Up Cabbies Was Cool in the Fifth Grade

How stupid is Pat Kane? He and his cousin beat up a cab driver at 4 AM the other morning (sober I am sure since Kane is 20 years old) because they gave the cab driver $15 and the tab was $13.80. The cab drive was only able to give them $1.00 back and the Kane's chocked and punched the cab driver and Pat Kane asked "Do you know who I am?" Great job Pat you stupid idiot. Leave a tip you dbag.

James Mirtle brings us the actual police report from the incident.

Mirtle also brings us an article about how this might affect Kane's reputation.

What an idiot.

What a find by The Pensblog here. Solid vid.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Bucs Signin Picks

The Bucs dropped their eighth straight game as they fall to the Cardinals by the score of 7-3. If you care here is the game recap and here is the game box score.

I watched the GameCast on ESPN and when I turned it on in the sixth inning and it was 3-1 Pirates and weirdly enough the Pirates had eight his and every single position player had exactly one hit at that point. I wonder how often that actually happens. Probably not very often.

Zach Duke actually pitched a pretty nice game going 7.1 innings and only giving up three (two earned) and striking out two while lowering his ERA to around 3.20. But like we have seen before Matt Capps comes in, pitches to face two batter, not record any outs, give up two earned runs, blow a save and then get tossed for hitting Big Albert. I mean really? How bad can it possibly get for Capps this season? I mean his ERA is 5.96 on the season. This is very similar to how it was when Mike Williams was the Bucs closer a while ago. A couple good seasons then just completely blowing up. Go figure.

Milledge, Young and Vasquez all had two hits on the day as the Pirates collected 11 hits on the day. I guess you can look for positives. Duke’s performance was one and getting 11 hits is always a plus. That is about it. Very tough to watch even if I could only watch the GameCast.

In other Pirates related news the Pirates are about to come to terms with highly touted draft pick Zack Von Rosenberg. Here is an article by the PBC blog at the PG about the signing.

Good write up on the kid. A little bit from the article that caught my eye was that Baseball America actually had the kid as a first rounder but he fell in the draft because most teams felt he was going to honor his scholarship to LSU and play ball down there.

Maybe the best part of the whole article was when they talked about Von Rosenberg actually said he talked to other draft picks, pitchers Colton Cain and Zach Dodson, and said they want to be part of the rebuilding from the minor leagues up. This is very exciting if you are a Pirates fan as you have your draft picks talking about revamping the system. Very cool. These pitchers that the Pirates have signed are also being talked about as being in the systems top 10 prospect list. Good day even if the Bucs had a tough loss.

The Pirates have also successfully signed all picks they took in rounds 1-10. Another solid draft yea for the Pirates. Hopefully they get better soon. Pittsburgh needs it.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Rod Woodson: HOF


As you might be watching Rod Woodson is getting inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame today. What a great honor for a great player. Although he played for the 49ers, Ravens and Raiders he will always be a Steeler. Woodson played a majority of his career as a Pittsburgh Steeler and he is one of the best to ever play the game. The stats speak for themselves when you look at what he has done through his career. Through his career Woodson had 71 INT and returned 12 of them for touchdowns. Woodson also recovered 23 fumbles and made 1050 tackles Woodson also took two punts and two kickoffs back for touchdowns. Woodson was an 11 time Pro Bowler and six time first team All-Pro. Let’s take a quick look at his team by team breakdown of regular season statistics:

Pittsburgh Steelers:
1987-1996 – 10 seasons

With the Steelers Woodson had 38 INT with five of those coming back to the house for touchdowns. Woodson also recovered 22 of his 23 fumbles with the Black and Gold and also made 644 tackles with Pittsburgh. Woodson also had 13.5 sacks with the Steelers and had a career high six in 1992. Woodson was a pro bowler seven times with the Steelers and went to the All-Pro game six straight years from 1989-1994 before getting injured in 1995 and returning to the All-Pro game back in 1996. Woodson was also a first team All-Pro selection five times with the Steelers.

San Francisco 49ers
1997 – 1 Season

Woodson only played one season with the niners recording three INT while making 43 tackles.

Baltimore Ravens
1998-2001 – 4 seasons

Woodson went to the hated Ravens after his year in San Fran but he was very successful with the Ravens. Woodson had 20 INT with the Ravens in his four years while returning five of them back for a touchdown. Woodson recorded 253 tackles with the Ravens and had six fumble recoveries.

Oakland Raiders
2002-2003 – 2 seasons

Woodson finally finished his career with the Raiders and owner Al Davis. Woodson had a career high eight INT in 2002 and finished with 10 in his time in Oakland. Woodson took two INT back for touchdowns and had 110 tackles.

I would like to congratulate Rod on the great accomplishment that everyone knew he was going to get. It is also good to note that Woodson made zero sacks with and of his other three teams. All of his sacks were with the Steelers. What a defense. Also congratulations to all the other inductees.
EDIT: Here is the link to his speech. If you did not get a chance to watch it you must watch the 30 min. speech. It is so worth it. If I can get a decent embedded link I will also post it here. Until then the link will have to do.

Boom Boom Pow and DQ

Bucs lost another one last night. What a tough stretch of games. Albert Pujols is a beast. Best in the game.

The Pensblog has an epic post today about their adventure to DQ and have some first hand pictures of an ordeal. Here is the link to the story. I was actually laughing out loud.

I have a few YouTube's that I have been meaning to put up but really have forgot/not had the time to put them up.

This YouTube is my favorite HNIC intro of the whole playoffs. Mostly because of how the crew blended the game clips with the song and the beat to the song is pretty sick, even if I am not a huge fan of the song itself.


This next clip is a very good tribute to the Pens playoff run throughout the playoffs


The last is a tribute from Stan Savran on the final SporsBeat episode. It is a crying shame that they took this show off the air. It will be missed. Love the show.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Well, At Least We Are Not From Cleveland

Well the Pirates dropped another game last night. This one was just as painful as the last one. Up three runs late in the game, and lose by giving up five in the 12th. Kevin Hart got the start last night and from all that I am reading (I can not watch the games anymore unless I buy the MLB package on my computer) was looking pretty good. Solid start from him, and that is good because now we do not have to see VV out on the bump anymore.

The Pirates had some players who played well, Cutch, Milledge, Young and Cedeno all had two hits each while the Bucs collected 11 hits. The bad part, they gave up 21 hits. 21 hits is the highest in the D-back history, which also happened once before. What is up with the pen. When the middle relief is good Capps blows it and when the middle relief is God awful Capps gives us hope by pitching really well.

So frustrating. Although the Bucs did sign their eighth rounder, Colton Cain. Good, we need to sign the guys from the draft that we want and that’s what we did. You wanna know how bad it was for the pen last night? Immediately after the game Steven Jackson (who was horrible last night) was optioned to AAA. I mean immediately. I am talking that I saw the game ended on GameCast and I refreshed Twitter and saw a tweet from the Bucs Insider that said he was demoted down. I mean before he was off the field he was already down. How bad does it have to get to do that?

Bring on the red birds. Lets Go Bucs.

My last post was post #66, he is cash money.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Almost No Hit, Then Blow Lead

Well the Pirates continue on their free fall down the N.L. standings as they took back to back losses last night and tonight to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Last night the Bucs did their damndist to get no hit by a pitcher that had about a 100 ERA and today give up three in the eighth to lose 4-3.

It is going to be a long rest of the season but I have a good feeling this team is going in the right direction. Hopefully his is only he start of some successful teams over the next handful of years.

Well I have not talked much about the Steelers lately. I am not going to be able to attend training camp because I am currently located in Fairbanks, Alaska for the next year and I have been a little out of touch from the scene. I am, however, able to listen to the afernoons on ESPN radio about training camp as well as reading the papers online.

I am stoked for Steelers season. They are going to be good, no doubt about it.

After signing Heath the Steelers basically said that they will not resign any other players this year because of cap concerns. That means that Ryan Clark, Big Snack, Jeff Reed, Fast Willie as well as many others will not be resigned and might be testing the free agent waters. Who is the most important? My cash is on Jeff Reed. Before you sit there and say that I am crazy (again) check out this write up by Ron Cook today about Reed. No question about it, Reed is cash money. I say Reed and Clark are the most important ones here. Ryan Clark is very underrated and really makes Troy so much better (if that is possible). Those two would be my priority and I would like to get them wrapped up. But whatever the Steelers do I will be ok with. I mean can you argue with their success?

Also RIP to those people affected by the fatal shooing at the LA Fitness Center back at home. You are in everyone prayers.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Maybe It Isn't So Laughable

Not a lot of posting going on from me now, I am in the process of starting a new job and it has been crazy busy for me since I have had to move from Pittsburgh.

Here is a great article from Jerry Crasnick about the Pirates and their moves. Just look at the list of players that the Bucs have got and traded away since 2008. Good read.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Oh Cutch

What a great day. Last night Andrew McCutchen was on acid. Really I mean the first home run might have been a little weak but number two and three were legit. Number two was just a line drive that got out in about 1.65 seconds and the third was a no doubter and everyone knew it. The best part of the home run was the Nationals pitcher (the name slips me) asked the umpire for a new ball before the ball was even over the fence. Cutch got a standing O, which he deserved. Give it up to the 27,000+ that were at PNC Park last night who gave him another standing O when he took the field for the top of the seventh inning. Really nice.

How gitty am I about the Pirates right now? Jose Tabata just got moved up to AAA, Pedro Alverez is now hitting over .300 and went 1 for 1 last night with a handfull of walks and a bomb and Lastings Milledge had two more RBI last night to go along with Cutch going 4 for 5 with six RBI. The future is coming along and I can't wait to see these guys when they come up. There is some potential there. Make no mistake about it, potential does not win games but that does not mean it is not excited to watch stuff like this as it unfolds.

I wonder how Burnett feels after making his quote. Have fun in Washington tool. Maybe you can go hang out with OV and Semin and talk about how none of your teams will win a championship.