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I lived through Sid Bream and The Slide. I not only watched the game from start to finish, I had World Series tickets in my hand when THAT happened. Yes, the last two games have been disappointing. But comparatively speaking, last night was a very bad paper cut compared to the utter agony that was Game Seven.
The Pirates aren't going to lose their best players to free agency this off-season.This isn't the culmination of 3 years of chronic underachieving. If anything, they overachieved. And the future is bright. Yesterday was disappointing, no doubt, but I see it as the beginning of the story, not the end.
2 months ago on NLDS Game 5: Cardinals 6 Pirates 1 (and so much more)
I kind of hope they use Cole similar to how the Rays used Price back during his rookie season (as your go-to reliever in key relief situations). I have no idea if Cole is calibrated to that sort of usage but it would give a much-needed boost to the bullpen. As I look at things, I assume the Pirates go with a 3 man rotation at least in the LDS with AJ & Chuck on Thurs/Fri and then bringing back Liriano on Sunday so unless Cole pulls a Bob Walk (92 NLCS Reference for you old timers!) at some point, they gotta get him some work in somewhere.
2 months, 1 week ago on Wild card game roster updates
While certainly not ideal, not sure I agree about the idea of a Wild Card game in Cincy being "terrifying." Not to be a negative nelly but if they play in Cincy, then the Pirates finished 3rd. If you finish third, I'd consider them lucky to even be getting a playoff game. Not replacing the Jolly Roger with a Vogelsong (reference for us WHYGAVS old timers!) by a long shot but I'm happy the Pirates are back. Everything else is gravy.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Game 159: Cubs 4 Pirates 2
It's nights like this that I flashback to October 1992 and for a second - a very very brief split second - wonder why I ever wanted to go through this again. Another loss like this and I'm starting a blog titled, "Where Have You Gone, Dave Littlefield?"
2 months, 3 weeks ago on (Hopefully not) the last home series
And it also seems right the guy who made the final putout was the Pittsburgh Kid...wearing Andy Van Slyke's old number.
3 months ago on Game 143: Pirates 1 Rangers 0
I actually liked Presley, too. I would've preferred he be the lefty
in the platoon with Tabata in RF rather than Travis Snider, who is
absolutely useless. That said, I'm good with this trade because I don't
see Presley as anything that's irreplaceable. Polanco will be here
sometime next season and in the meantime the Bucs can sign somebody over
the winter and I wouldn't even give up on Tabata, who I still think has
the most upside of the "fourth OFers" if he could only stay motivated
3 months, 1 week ago on Pirates acquire Justin Morneau from Twins in exchange for Alex Presley
@wkkortas I don't consider Herrera a top tier prospect. When I made that comment, I was more referring to the yinzers calling into talk radio demanding we swap Taillon or Polanco for Alex Rios. I have no problem trading middling prospects for help in a pennant race.
Of course, I reserve the right to Monday morning quarterback this trade if the PTBNL turns out to be someone I like (or Herrera becomes the next Robbie Cano).
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Pirates trade for Marlon Byrd and John Buck
@mwr505 @wkkortas It's Neal Huntington's version of the rope-a-dope. He's been so slow to address the team's obvious need for a bat that I'm sure the Reds figured he was content to stand pat for the rest of the season rather than part with any of his precious prospects. Clearly the Reds don't have a GM as deviously clever as we have here in the 'Burgh!
I was really hoping Wandy would come back because both Locke and Cole seem to be at the end of their ropes. With a visit to Dr. Andrews (the four worst words in baseball) looming, it looks like he's done for the year. Cumpton had that great spot start against the Cards and Gomez has pitched well all year but I'm not sure I feel comfortable throwing either one into the rotation on a regular basis.
I know Huntington seems loathe to pull the trigger on a trade but I'd feel a lot better if he looked into the Angels about Jason Vargas or even, *shudder*, Houston about Eric Bedard. At this point, I trust either of them to give us 7-8 mediocre starts more than I trust Locke.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Game 127: Pirates 10 Giants 5
Clutch hits by Pedro and Cutch, an unexpected homer by Tabata, a solid bounce back by Cole after terrible fourth inning, Garret Jones Crazy Hot Wife revealing he loves junk food, and some douchebag dropping his Primanti sandwich all over the warning track... This game had something for everybody!
3 months, 3 weeks ago on Game 121: Pirates 6 Diamondbacks 2
@nickjuneau24 Exactly my thoughts (except with less math). People always bring up Zane Smith being a "key" to the Pirates making the playoffs but to me that's a strawman. Alas MLBTradeRumors didn't exist back then so I have no idea who else was on the market but those 90s Pirates were so good, how could we know they wouldn't have accomplished the same amount with a different/cheaper deadline acquisition?
The lesson I think/hope Pirate fans would have learned from that fiasco is nothing is a sure thing. You're far better off planning for the long term than the short. Instead of going all in for one shot, it's better to maintain a strong farm and ensure you're competitive for as many years as possible because the odds of winning it all in one particular year just are never that great.
Or in simpler terms, the A's and Rays never trade away future All-Stars in the name of going "ALL IN." Neither should the Pirates.
4 months, 3 weeks ago on At the break
@wkkortas The trading of Moises Alou still haunts me to this day. Trading a potential solid every day player or two to help you "win now" is fine but trading a potential superstar/All-Star is the surest road to utter ruin.
See, Spring Training isn't a complete waste of time after all!
7 months, 3 weeks ago on Game 17: Pirates 3 Braves 1
The only positive about that quick half inning is it limited the amount of BS from NH we were subjected to. The Bucs should hire Ray Shero when this assclown is fired after the season.
8 months, 1 week ago on Here goes something
Guess the Bucs don't have a book on Rizzo yet. Yeesh.
The Bucs are like a bitchy ex-girlfriend. It's not enough that they break your heart, they gotta kick you in the balls on the way out the door.
1 year, 2 months ago on Game 155: Reds 1 Pirates 0
@wkkortas I just didn't feel like typing out a real long comment. Wandy and Gaby are token moves, those aren't "over the top" moves. Trading for CC Sabathia is an over the top move. Not saying this was the year to go all in but if it was, he didn't do what he needed to do in that regard.
As for organizational depth, they didn't have any starting pitching to take over when JMac turned into JSuck and Jeff Karstens got hurt. Locke and MacPherson are just Duke and Gorzo redux. When Kevin Correia is your best option, that's on the GM. They didn't have any effective relievers in AAA so when Lincoln was traded and the other guys (like Resop and Watson) began to falter, the bullpen fell apart. The failure of Tabata and Presley meant they had to trade perhaps their best bargaining chip (Lincoln) for a corner OF, who has contributed very little.
I could go on but I don't feel like rehashing this depressing season. You like NH, I get it. I think he's made a ton of mistakes. Way more than the Pirates could afford. I've mentioned many times that I follow the Rays since my folks live in Tampa. Andrew Friedman (Rays GM) has the same plan as NH and operates under the exact same constraints but he's implemented the plan about a billion times better than NH has. I think the problem with a lot of the pro-NH people are they confuse the fact he has a GREAT PLAN with implementing that great plan.
NH wins on the former but has failed pretty badly in the latter.
1 year, 2 months ago on Neal Huntington and his staff get a vote of confidence
@wkkortas Lack of organizational depth and failure to add pieces that would put a contender over the top fall directly on the GM.
@wkkortas You're picking and choosing the exceptions and trying to claim it's the rule. 99 times out of 100, the player goes for the money. Yes there are cases here and there where a guy takes less to play for a contender or whatever but they are few and far between.
Believe what you wish but if you think the Pirates finishing .500 means they'll suddenly start getting a higher class of free agent than the Kevin Corrieas or Erik Bedards then you're just setting yourself up for disappointment.
I'm not really much of a NH fan but (insanity of the past month and a half aside) I do like Hurdle and I guess you can't keep one without the other. So I can't really quibble with bringing him back for another year. I still think NH has no idea how to effectively shift from rebuilding mode to contender mode but I guess he deserves one more year to figure it out.
Although I'm not sure what we're going to learn next year. The pitching staff looks to be a mess heading into 2013 and if the offense drops off even a tick, I can see this team not even being in the hunt. In which case the rallying cry will be "Wait until Cole and Taillon are both here in 2014 & 2015. That's when the Pirates will finally be contenders!" And we'll be having this discussion all over again.
Wash, rinse, repeat. Waiting 'til next year for a year that never actually comes.