The Game: 2013 NL Wild Card Game: Pirates vs. Reds

Where were you when Johnny Cueto dropped the ball?  Where were you when that fan almost blew it for us?

This game, more than any Pirate game I can remember, reaffirmed my faith and gave me a reassurance that I had done the correct thing by sticking with the team throughout their 20 year losing streak.   I remember watching the game at Spencer’s in Park Slope because I had no television or way to watch it at the time.  I walked down there and started at the bar on 5th that serves cheap drinks.  I watched the pregame there.  I was so nervous.  I felt like I was going ot have a heart attack.  The stress that I had felt during Penguins and Steelers playoff runs was nothing compared to this.  I knew I was about to watch history.  It was the realization of a day I had hoped for well over a decade. I always wanted to watch the Pirates in the playoffs as an adult.  Now I could.  So, here we go: The Game.

Steelers vs. Browns — 1993 Week 8

I spotted this classic game on YouTube and fave it a watch today.  It’s one of those ones that i actually remember.  I remember sitting in my parents living room, it was right around Halloween.  it was the best time to live in Pittsburgh.  The foliage was afire and leaves had fallen to the ground.  The better days of autumn had passed and it was football weather.

This game has it all.  It is a perfect example of the 90’s Steelers- Browns rivalry,  It has Barry Foster.  A full on Vinny Testaverde and Bernie Kosar quarterback controversy playing out in real time.  It has the dog pound.  It has Neil O’Donnell throwing to Dwight Stone.  Most of all it has Eric Metcalf going nuts and showing his true Eric Metcalfness.  Two punt returns for touchdowns and unlimited moves.  Enioy!

You Know What I Heard

You know what I heard…  by Joey Brunowizcki

Joey Brunowizcki ~ Bellvue's third fattest Joey

Joey Brunowizcki ~ Bellvue’s third fattest Joey

You know what I heard????

I heard that Tim Tebow’s gonna retire and then become like the Senator of Florida and then like Vice President,  and then President you know because of the illuminati, and than one day Jesus is gonna come down and say “let Tim Tebow be the quarterback of any team he pleases for as long as he pleases, pleases says Jesus” and than he’s gonna go back to heaven I guess.

I don’t know I just heard it in line to buy my numbers down at Gino’s, that little place on the corner of aaaaa….. it used to be called main street but now its like….. Martin Clinton X Way or something liberal and you know it’s where that car blew up from the dog farts, you know combustication of various combustables, simultaneously carbonating in harmony, they had that spaghetti dinner and Lenny Warsack’s daughter sang that song about the mouse that touched Michael Jackson and made him weird. Anyway that team ain’t gonna go to the playoffs until Tim Tebow dies because he ain’t no good at quarterback.

NCAA Basketball 2004-2005: Pitt Panthers vs. WVU Mountaineers

Big ups to YouTube user WVUgames, who made this video possible for all of us.  I give him respect as an internet person, all though I would have to suspect that he is a WVU fan, so I kind of don’t like him at all.

From the AP:

Kevin Pittsnogle is so unaccustomed to starting that he had to temporarily leave West Virginia’s game early on against Pittsburgh (No. 15 ESPN/USA Today; No. 16 AP) to catch his breath.

When he returned, he gave Pitt lots of problems.

Pittsnogle scored eight of his career-high 27 points in overtime to lead West Virginia to an 83-78 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday night. The 6-foot-11 Pittsnogle, starting for just the second time this season, was averaging 8 points a game. He got the start because center D’or Fischer did not play due to illness.

“When I got my second wind pretty fast, I was ready to go,” said Pittsnogle, whose previous high was 26 points in 2003. “My performance wasn’t enough to write me in the history book, but beating Pitt makes it a lot better.”

West Virginia (13-7, 3-6 Big East) broke a five-game losing streak to their rival 70 miles to the north.

Pittsnogle converted a three-point play and a 3-pointer a minute apart to give the Mountaineers their biggest lead, 73-66, with 2:08 left in overtime.

“Pittsnogle is a hard matchup for us and when he’s shooting the ball from [outside], it becomes very difficult to guard for our bigger guys,” said Pitt coach Jamie Dixon. “Sometimes guys step up in the absence of other guys, and that’s exactly what he did.”

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That time the Pirates made no sense

It started when I noticed that Sean Rodriguez was playing in right field and Corey Hart was playing first.  It continued when they allowed Gerrit Cole to pinch bunt in the 5th only to have him fake bunt/take a swing for a second strike and then bunt again to strike out.  Putting in Radhames Liz, sticking with Mark Melancon in a tight spot all though he has been a disaster all season.  It took many, many horrible decisions for the Pirates to lose 9-8 in the first game of the Russell-Bryant era.

The Pirates, well, that was shit.  It’s a long season.  It will work itself out.   They are simply trying to get too cute.  However tonight’s heartbreaker only shined a brighter light on some of the flaws in the Pirates roster that have popped up early this season:  most notably the bullpen and their defense.

All though the Pirates faults were many, tonight was really about something else.  The Cubs are very, very good and they will be for a long, long time.  Addison Russell wasn’t Barry Larkin, but he looked like a solid big league player and not everyone gets off to the start the Kris Bryant does.  Kris Bryant is the real story.

bryant

The ball comes off Kris Bryant’s bat in a way I have never really seen.  As a child I remember seeing highlights of Bo Jackson hitting and thinking no one hits like that.  Honestly, I probably never saw anyone hit like that until Kris Bryant.  He is amazing.  It’s honestly on the borderline of unbelievable.  The ball jumps off his bat and he can control where it goes.  Along with his piercing blue Hitler eyes I have to imagine the next decade will be his.  He’s not Mike Trout.  He’s not Cutch.  He’s something completely different.  We will compare future players to Bryant and I am pleased that I got to see his debut.

As for the Pirates, it’s a long season.  It’s going to be a good one.  Minor tweaks.  Small changes.  Less nonsense decisions.  That is all it will take.

The Top 5 Things I Noticed From the Pirates Season Opener

The Pirates opened their season in Cincinnati today with a 5-2 loss, allowing 3 runs to be scored in the 8th after having the game tied 2-2.  Tony Watson picks up the loss after a poor inning of relief after taking the mound for Francisco Liriano who lasted 7 innings and had 7 strikeouts.  Andrew McCutchen led the Pirates with 2 hits and 2 rbi’s which came on an 8th inning home run off of Reds reliever Kevin Gregg.  Aroldis Chapman was dominant in relief. The Pirates will resume the series on Wednesday with Gerrit Cole taking the mound.

 

The game was solid enough and the Pirates didn’t look outmatched, but there were a few things i noticed that give me pause.  There were also a few things I noticed that calmed a few of my preseason fears.  Put them together and what do you have?

 

The top 5 things I noticed from the season opener.

 

Jordy Mercer has the body language of a man who is going to lose his job in the next month or so —

I’m not claiming to have studied with Dr. Bill Simmons, but you can just see it in Mercer and it was the most noticeable item ofjordy the day for me.  Mercer looks as if he knows his time is up as the starter given Kang’s spring and he is overwhelmed by what it would take to hold Kang off.  I started noticing it when he almost got taken out by Starling Marte in the rain towards the beginning of the game.  He looked like he had no clue what was going on and more than that he didn’t recover.  He didn’t crack a joke, he didn’t yell, there was little communication.  He just looked at everyone as if he was an outsider looking in.

 

Mercer is a solid player and I hope he has a great season, but I feel as if he is a starter or bust kind of player.  As in if he gets the reps and at bats he could be a solid major league starting shortstop, but give some of those at bats to Kang and I don’t think Mercer becomes an elite bench player.  I think he becomes another teams shortstop.

 

Andrew Lambo earned my respect with his pinch hit at bat —

 

I’ll be honest.  I am biased.  It hurts me to watch Andrew Lambo.  He has AAAA player written all over him and I was slightly confused as to why the Pirates chose to break camp with him.  However in his pinch hit at bat he took Kevin Gregg for a ride and got him to throw double digit pitches.  He kept finding a way to get the foul tip and the one he got a hold of was only a little bit foul.  Sure, in the end, he was out.  Without his at bat though I find it unlikely Cutch gets his homer.  Gregg had shown all his cards in the first at bat.  Andrew Lambo will never be a starter for the Pirates, but if he can repeat tonight’s performance on a regular basis he will have a spot on the roster for the rest of the season.

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