Big Lead Sports Bar



Even the most pessimistic Pirate fan (which is pretty much all of them) would have to admit that last week was one of, if not the most, intriguing weeks of the 2009 season. And this weekend, the hits kept on coming. A briefing on where we stand heading into the week ahead:

--Adam "Loose Lips" LaRoche, suddenly the most quotable player in all of MLB, spouted off again to the press, this time about Mets OF Carlos Beltran telling the world how he was embarrassed to be swept by the Pirates. Said the Buck Commander:
"I think it shows zero class and zero professionalism," the Pirates' first baseman said yesterday at Minute Maid Park. "When somebody says that, they know what they're saying, and they know it's going to get out. He knows we're not going to be real happy about it. If you go and say that to your buddies, it's one thing. If you go to the media and make that public for us to hear? Yeah, that's no class."
--Even better, Beltran actually took the time out of his busy life to respond to LaRoche's comments:
"I don't care what he says. I say the way I feel. This is how I feel about the team that day. If he said that, I don't agree with him. I've got class. And I've got what he said that I don't have."
If only this were 1988 and the two teams were still in the NL East, I'd say we might actually have something resembling a budding rivalry. They'd be firing up the "Muck the Fets" t-shirts at the bootleg t-shirt factories on Monday morning for sale in the Strip District by sundown. But alas, the Buccos and Mets meet only once more in 2009 for a makeup game, and LaRoche might actually be traded for prospects by then. So just forget that idea.

--As far as the on-field product goes, the Pirates were busy dropping two of three to the Astros this weekend. That's Astros as in "the only team below the Pirates in the NL Central" Astros, in case you were wondering.
On Sunday, Ian Snell managed to allow a mere three runs in six innings, which, by his 2009 standards, is akin to throwing a perfect game. Of course, luck would have it that the bullpen would surrender three runs in two innings of work, which was just what Houston needed to topple Team Huntington. Astros 6, Pirates 4. But the good news, Andrew McCutchen had three more hits, and no one got unexpectedly traded after the game.

--Entering Monday, the standings look like this:
And if the Pirates still had Nate McLouth, they be at least 27-29.

--Speaking of the departed, guess who the Pirates are playing this week? That's right, Nate McLouth and the Atlanta Braves! A four-game set starts Monday night with Zach Duke (6-4, 2.62) against Kenshin Kawakami (3-6, 4.63). In the meantime, get used to seeing this:
--And again speaking of McLouth, there's been so much carrying on by players, fans, and media over the Pirates ditching a .251 hitter in favor of a pedigreed blue-chip prospect that the GM actually had to write a letter defending the trade. Which is probably necessary when the PG is printing inflammatory stuff like this under the op/ed header.

--Finally, Vince Pellegrini authored this absolutely sweet guide to the Pirates' upcoming draft for Not only does it tell you who they might draft, it also tells you who they could've drafted in past years (Matt Wieters!) as well as notable first-round choices, late-round steals, the All-Time Pirates draft team, and much more. We might as well end on a high note.

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Jeff_King_Fan said...

does anybody have any feedback from mcclouth on the trade? i'm hearing mostly from current pirate players/fans & the atlanta brass. i'm sure he's happy to be on a contender, but for whatever its worth, a lot of former pirate players say that they loved the clubhouse and friendships built there (bay, doug M., nady, etc.).

HotDog_Zanzabar said...

Unfotunately, good friendships couldn't get them to win