Big Lead Sports Bar

6/11/2007

Pirates Hatred Reaches Possible All-Time High

The last few days have been the perfect storm of Pirate disgust. The draft, followed by the three-day embarrassment that was the Yankee series, has morale among Pirate fans at an all-time low. As I opened my inbox tonight, I counted 51 emails that came in since I last checked, and most of them were Pirate-related. Subject lines such as "Ugh", "The Pirates Blow and I May Never Care" and "Weekly Thoughts: Pirates Suck Edition" pretty much sum everything up.
What was in these emails was a mixed bag of all things angst. I got vomit-inducing Pirate links, such as this analysis of ninth-round pick Anthony Watson:
Left-hander Anthony Watson (ninth round), a junior at the University of Nebraska, signed. Watson had reconstructive shoulder surgery two years ago, and this year he was slightly overweight and showed a drop in his fastball velocity.
I received emails touting new Pirate-mocking blogs (Be Like Tike), people protesting the June 30th game, and more in-person Yankee series recaps (if you haven't read all of ours yet, you really should...I added more of them). And I received Pirate hate mail in Sam's Club bulk quantities. I'll address some in an upcoming mailbag, but here are some interesting ones to hold you until then...
Dan from THE Ohio State University:
I've seen Jim Tracy mention "know-how" a lot when referring to Masumi Kuwata. Just check out this tidbit from one of Dejan's "Pirates Notebook" articles, which followed Kuwata's debut against the Yankees.
"He did fine," manager Jim Tracy said of Kuwata. "We saw strikes. We saw know-how. And the guy who homered off him can do it anywhere."
While Tracy also mentions Kuwata as a strike-thrower, it really bothers me that the best thing he can come up with for Kuwata is that he has a lot of "know-how". Doesn't kind of remind you of the movie Rookie of the Year when Gary Busey goes out to consult with the 100 mph fastball throwing kid, telling him to rely on his "have-to".
Brad from WVU:
Can someone organize a "We Can Officially Stop Paying Attention to the Pirates since Training Camp and College Football Are Near" party somewhere in Latrobe on the eve of rookies reporting to St. Vincent?
1. I'm from Latrobe and it would be the greatest thing to happen in town party-wise in quite awhile (that says all you need to know about Latrobe) and
2. This Pirates team makes me want to drink Everclear (not even legally sold in West Virginia anymore) straight until I go blind or my esophagus corrodes. It would be less frustrating if they had absolutely no talent and lost 105 games and they actually played hard and with something of a brain. It is considerably more insulting to their rapidly alienated fan base for them to put a team out there that will almost certainly lose 95 despite the fact that, on paper and well managed, has enough ballplayers that they could break the elusive 81 win plateau, which is about what it takes to challenge in their JV division. I think one can definitively say the Pirates are now officially the third banana in this city.
David M:
Hey Mondesi, if you're still trying to get that pathetic taste of the Pirates series in New York from this weekend out of your mouth, I've found the Steelers Super Bowl XL DVD to be very therapeutic. I've probably watched it about 14 times by now, but there's just something about watching linebackers go wild, Joey Porter taunt Bungals fans, Vanderjagt miss wide right, and The Bus holding up the Lombardi Trophy that never gets old.
OK, so the Pirates stink and we're all writing them off. So what do we do with ourselves until the upcoming NFL campaign?
I nominate more coverage of Washington Wild Things TV broadcasts on FSN Pittsburgh. The Wild Things play about five minutes away from my house, and since I've never been to a game in person, I thought I'd catch a few innings tonight in between Bo and Luke Duke meeting Cale Yarborough on Monday night's Dukes of Hazzard rerun.

Stan Savran was broadcasting, and he was doing a great job, especially considering the assignment. But the highlight for me was his booth partner for the evening...my newest Pittsburgh media favorite, the always-entertaining former Pirate, Chris Peters.

Tonight, the Wild Things were taking on the Florence Freedom. No, they're not named after Florence the maid on The Jeffersons. We're talking Florence, Kentucky. And they had the Things on the ropes.

It's the top of the 9th, Freedom up by three. A Florence runner attempts a stolen base and the throw from Washington's catcher nails the Washington pitcher en route to second base. In all the years I've played and watched baseball, I've never seen a pitcher hit by his catcher's throw on an attempted steal. Not even in a Pirate game, mind you. But the inning moves on...

The next pitch, to a right-handed batter, was so far outside that it would have been behind a left-handed batter. I don't have the word-for-word transcript, but Chris Peters definitely used the word "eraticness" to describe the pitcher. After his multiple-"ain't" performance on the Pirate postgame show this weekend, plus the fact that he now makes up words (I confirmed it...erraticness is not a word), I think we may have a real discovery here in Mr. Peters.
To top that, Florence added a fourth run, to which Peters said something along the lines of, "falling behind by three runs is tough enough, but four is really difficult."
Classic analysis.
By the way, the Wild Things ended up winning, 8-7, on a two-out, game-winner by the one and only Robbie Knapp. Unfortunately, I missed it. This was the episode where they painted three cars to look like the General Lee, and I had to see how it ended. Cale made it to the Illinois 500 (which they all pronounced "Illinoise" the entire episode), and Boss Hogg's zany scheme was foiled yet again. And guess what? I got more enjoyment out of my Wild Things/Dukes evening than any Pirate game has given me in a long time.
What other non-Pirate activities are on my agenda? Well, on Monday, a casino opened virtually in my backyard. 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week. That sounds a lot better to me than the 26-37 Pirates against the 23-40 Rangers on a warm Tuesday night in June.

3 comments:

TheStarterWife said...

Why not kill two birds with one stone?

There is a Wildcats home game on the 30th, so why don't all the Pirate fans go hold their protest there?

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

Actually, in the spirit of all the reports from the game this weekend, I guess I could share a couple thoughts on the Pirates v. Yankees PRESEASON game at the Yankees "Legend's Field" in Tampa.

-It was actually really cold and rainy that day. The Pirates were winning like 3-1, and after the 5th inning most of the Yankee fans left. The majority of the Bucco faithfull in attendance stayed oddly enough.

- Like an idiot, I had on gym shorts and a T-shirt and was really wet and cold.

- Like a bigger idiot, I stayed until the end of the game.

- Like the biggest idiot of all, I'm complaining about how cold it was in Florida to people who probably live somewhere in the northeast and were REALLY freezing their asses off on that early-March day. But you gotta believe me, it was cold.

- After the majority of the Yankee fans left, there was a group of people wearing Pirate and Steeler gear in my section chanting "Who's house?? OUR HOUSE!!"

- The Yankees scored a few runs in the 8th to come back and win. Despite the fact that everyone on either team that was going to be on either team come April was already somewhere warm, the Yankee fans in attendance went absolutely crazy.

- The Pirates couldn't even give me the small amount of satisfaction of beating the Yankees in effing PRESEASON!!!

Brady said...

Help - I need help. I live 30 minutes south of Cleveland, but I still can't help being a Pirates fan. I dont' WANT to be a Pirates fan - they've done nothing in recent memory to make me like them. Yet every night I'm checking the scores for the Pirates - what is wrong with me? How can I give up and move on? Is there a support group or something?