Big Lead Sports Bar



So much for the 162-0 season. The Pirates came crashing back to Earth on Thursday (and so did their attendance) with a 10-2 blowout at the hands of the LA Dodgers, whiffing on an opportunity to start the season 3-0.

After more than 70,000 fans crammed their way into PNC Park for the first two games, only 9,352 were in the house for a Thursday afternoon matinee featuring Paul Maholm and Chad Billingsley on the hill.

Even worse, the Dodgers gave a day off to regulars Manny Ramirez, Andre Ethier, Casey Blake, and Russell Martin, and still torched Pirate pitching for 16 hits and 10 runs on the afternoon. 2B Ronnie Belliard did the most damage, with a double, triple, home run, and four RBI, but he certainly had plenty of help from the James Loneys and Matt Kemps of the world.
The Pirates got six innings out of starter Paul Maholm, who allowed four earned runs, but things really headed south when newly-acquired Hayden Penn stepped in and was hammered for six hits and four runs in one inning of work.

The Bucs showed some plate discipline with five walks, but the offense was otherwise meek. Delwyn Young doubled twice, and there wasn't much to speak of beyond that.

Tomorrow night, Charlie Morton tries to get the Pirates back on the winning side at Arizona against Rodrigo Lopez. Gametime is slated for 9:40 p.m. at Chase Field. The D-Backs opened 2010 by taking two of three from San Diego, getting four homers in their Wednesday night win over the Padres.

Loneliness, Thy Name Is Pirates Fandom [Deadspin]

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Badstreet said...

Let's not go slashing our wrists just yet. Attendance was down because it was a rainy thursday afternoon game. As for the performance, you had to figure the Dodgers were going to get their crap together at some point.

Frankly, I'm more interested in this team right now than I have been in at least the past five years.

MJ said...

After watching Andy LaRoche during this series, I can't wait for the Pedro Alvarez clock to start ticking. And it'd be nice if Bobby Crosby never set foot on the PNC Park infield again after his abysmal showing today.

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

Rain was also in the forecast today.

But that didn't stop Deadspin from making fun of us, and failing to mention the huge crowd on hand the night before.

Of course, we got made fun of for that game during the G20 when it was apparently really hard to get into downtown and like 1,000 people showed up. If the Yankees had a low attendance number for a similar reason, the media would be rushing to give the public the real reason why.

But not the Pirates. We're just a sad sack that gets piled onto.

Nate said...

MJ: I feel like Andy LaRoche had a good series. He reached base in every game and walked 3 times in the second one. He's been working the count, making pitchers work out there, looking patient and playing good defense, save for his error in the opener. The only failures that come to mind are the times he came up with the bases loaded and struck out. Twice. That's big, but I'm not ready to crucify him just yet. This time last year, he had yet to even reach base.

As for Crosby, I don't think we'll see many games like today. He has a reputation as a defensive wizard, and he's never had a high-error season before. I'd say we're more likely to see better defensive games from him and worse offensive ones - he's not exactly what one would call a good hitter.

Kyle Chrise said...

bejeezus, every story on this game across the web seems to think this game proves we're gonna have 100 loses this season. You had to predict a crash y'day: barely less than 12 hours between games for this young team is gonna have an affect on them. And, even though the Dodgers sat 5 starters, their replacements that day had more mlb experience than most of our entire team combined. Let's have a little more April optimism. There's nothing wrong with being excited about the bucs until the NFL draft comes around. Then we can talk football until the Stanley Cup playoffs are over.
Battlin' Bucs Play Hardball!

HomeRunFromBehindTheMeatballs said...

Everyone is mentioning that we lost game 3 to the Dodger's 'B' team, but no one mentions that the priates also sat 3 starters. I'll be happy with 2 out of 3 against LAD anytime!

Most impressive player of the first series: Akinora "Full Count" Iwamura (nickname credit to "bucco fans"). Might not have had any hits, but every single at bat was quality and he drew a bunch of walks. Balls in play will start to drop and his OBP may be even better! This guy looks like an awesome pickup (at least through the first 1.9% of the season anyway)

Dallas Mike said...


17 straight seaons of losing qualifies as a "sad sack" in most peoples minds, and the Pirates deserve to be the punchline of all jokes. The reason you don't hear about the Yankees attendance problems, is because they don't have any. The Pirates were 28th in attendance in 2009; only beating out Florida and Oakland. The numbers speak for themselves. People in New York actually go to the park to watch baseball, while the ownership in Pittsburgh has cultivated masses of fireworks enthusiasts. Don't blame the media for the Pirates problems. When the shoe is on the other foot, most Pittsburgh fans are the first to lampoon the Bengals and Browns for their ineptitude. When it is the Pirates that are the butt of jokes, some people get offended? The Pirates earned it.

I can't understand why Pirates fans get defensive about the criticism. Anger and outrage from media, fans, and sponsors might have sent a message to ownership a long time ago. You are only enabling the problem when you buy in. The management sells the fans on hope every season and each year the loyalists rationalize how "this year is going to be different". I have heard it every year since 1998 and it is becoming comical. Don't you think it is ironic that the Pirates have the lowest payroll in MLB at a period in time in which the newspaper and resort businesses are hemorrhaging money? It is not a coincidence, yet many continue to believe the spin about bolstering minor league operations. I hope I am wrong and the Pirates have a great season. I would love to eat my words on this one. Unfortunately, I am a realist. The Pirates used to be my favorite team as a kid, but now I barely follow baseball. Optimism is fine if the proper ownership was in place. However the actions of this ownership group are nothing more than Lucy asking Charlie Brown to come kick the football one more time. I won't be the one falling on my a$$ to watch losing season #18.