Big Lead Sports Bar

8/31/2010

The Pirate Limbo: How Low Can They Go?


The Pittsburgh Pirates continued to push the limits of how much bad baseball one city can tolerate with a 14-2 loss last night in Chicago, highlighted by a home run from Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano.


It's been weeks like this when I wonder why people are Pirate fans at all anymore. The players certainly don't look like they care, the manager clearly doesn't look like he cares, the front office isn't doing anything to stop the bleeding...as a fan, why get worked up?

Last night was the latest embarrassment to the city, a 12-run defeat started by Paul Maholm with the exact same pitching line put up by Charlie Morton's Great Stuff the day before: eight runs, nine hits, a walk and a hit batsman over 3 1/3 inning. The batting was bad (six hits), the fielding was awful, the baserunning was lackluster and the manager sat in a daze on the bench at the end of the game. It was all the usual components of a 2010 Pirates game rolled into one.

There are calls to can Russell, and while it's certainly not all his fault, he's done absolutely zero to make this team any better. Their play is not acceptable and their body language and effort indicate that they've mailed it in. That's not the proper atmosphere in which to raise a stable of your best prospects, and someone should take the fall. It's not going to be Neal Huntington, so the next on the firing block would be Russell, breaking up "the best management team in baseball" in the process. I guess the start of the dynasty will have to wait a while, but that's a price the Pirates should be willing to pay.

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8 comments:

The Mad Bubbler said...

"The Pittsburgh Pirates continued to push the limits of how much bad baseball one city can tolerate"


If people haven't quit supporting this team (and by team I mainly mean ownership) by now, they never will. The Succos could go 0-162 for the next 40 years and some morons would still watch and go to their games, and discuss the team like they were a legitimate franchise.


Here's to losing 100 games, and another 18 losing seasons! Cheers!

okel dokel said...

Fire John Russell....please!

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

Bubbler is right, this team could go 0-162 and there would still be people talking about how they are going in the right direction and the plan is in place.

To those who were just born 2 or 3 years ago, we have seen/heard of these plans before. THEY HAVEN'T WORKED YET. So I am not going to apologize for being skeptical or accept that I am indeed the crazy one.

A loose definition of insanity if repeating the same actions over and over while expecting different results.......... Who is the crazy one now?

HomeRunFromBehindTheMeatballs said...

Hey, don't be so hard on this team... No other professional team has won their 14th road game of the season this month either! ...It ain't easy.

If this team is going to continue with it's current 'effort' level. They might as well just stay home and forfeit the rest of the way. But then, how would Zambelli's know when to start Skyblastin'??

Steve said...

The problem with being the worst pro sports franchise in history is that the worse they get, the easier it is to get fans excited about winning again. Firing the manager won't really solve anything but people looking for the silver lining will use it to support their beliefs that things will be different soon.

I honestly feel bad for those too young to know what it's like to see their team win a World Series or at least know the team has a very good chance to win the division any given year. Instead, fans today are simply praying and hoping their team can somehow, some way, not have another losing season and end an embarrassment that's become historical and no longer even laughable, just sad. Should the Pirates hire Sally Struthers to manage the team and build even more empathy? Will there be a parade bigger than any ever in the city if the Pirates can someday simply win more than they lose?

It will take a few more quality high draft picks (that means years folks) and some key FA signings before this team is ready to compete and I am confident this ownership can't afford it. Spending the money on draft signings is one thing and only part of the answer. Signing the FA's needed to fill the holes the draft doesn't and having deep enough pockets to keep the talent on the field once it matures and comes together as a team is something I will bet my house on they'll never be able to do.

I would love for Nutting to man up and give a time table as to how long he’s willing to drag the Pirates, the fans and the city through the mud before he admits he’s in the wrong business and puts the team up for sale. 5 more years would be ideal and 10 years would even be respectable. Just back out and give someone else a shot, no matter if the team is as bad as it is now, or is flirting with finally turning the corner. That would be the noble thing to do but the reality is, I think he’s willing to lose for another 20-30 years, if not until he dies, whichever comes first.

okel dokel said...

Firing the manager will stop the "downward" spiral of the alleged "core." I would like if they fire Huntington as well.

Perhaps someday Nutting will be gone.

I would like to see them do the following;

1. Spend some money to bring in some veteran leadership. The "core" needs some guidance through the marathon baseball season.

2. Actually keep said veterans through the trade deadline and beyond.

3. The Farm system is nicely stocked so trading should be on a need basis only (hold on I have to stop laughing). We will be getting the top draft next year and should still be getting a decent draft for another year so the farm system should continue to evolve. We do not need to stock pile anything.

4. Hire a manager with a set of balls and surround him with veteran coaches and some past managers. This staff has to develop the "core" so if we go with an up and coming manager with fire at least give him some veteran support. This is what the Phillies did with Charlie Manuel.

I am not sure any middle tier veteran free agents are going to come to this mess, but an effort needs to be made. I liked the Snyder pickup, even though he has sucked at the plate, because he can manage a pitching staff (when we have one.)

Cue Chip to tell me how much of a fool I am.

Dallas Mike said...

Steve,

Thank you for providing some perspective on this issue. Well said.

Dee said...

There will always be a "lower" in the future of the Pirates, till Bob Nutting and bunch are eradicated from the offices of PNC Park.
He has to go....Now.