Big Lead Sports Bar


2010: The Year in Pittsburgh Sports

With 2010 winding down and my urge to create an archive of it in high gear, I combined both into this post,  a blow-by-blow account of the past 12 months in Pittsburgh sports. It's way too long, and there's a lot of stuff I felt was worth mentioning that probably wasn't, but brevity has never been one of my strong suits. It took me hours upon hours to compose, so I hope it serves some purpose, if nothing else than to bring back a lot of great (and some not-so-great) memories from the year that was.


Ben Roethlisberger put up $17,000 in airfare, hotels and other transportation costs to send the Thomas Jefferson Youth Football League's Little Jaguars to the Big Dog Bowl, a championship tournament in Los Angeles organized by Snoop Dogg.

Pitt upset #5 Syracuse, 82-72, at the Carrier Dome, getting 24 points from Ashton Gibbs.

The Steelers wrapped up the 2010 campaign with a 30-24 win against Miami behind 3 TD passes from Big Ben.

ST coach Bob Ligashesky was relieved of his duties by the Steelers, as was O-line coach Larry Zierlein.

The 5-12-3 Robert Morris hockey team swept #1 Miami (OH) two times in the course of one weekend.

The Pirates signed 38-year-old P Brendan Donnelly to a one-year deal, and also picked up P DJ Carrasco, P Octavio Dotel, and OF Ryan Church.

Randy Fitchner was named as the Steelers' new QB coach, replacing Ken Anderson. They also hired Al Everest as the new special teams coach and Sean Kugler for the O-line.

New York Islanders defenseman Andy Sutton sat two games and forfeited more than $31K in salary for a hit on Pascal Dupuis.

Bobby Bragan, manager of the Pirates in 1956-57, passed away in Fort Worth, Texas, at the age of 92.

Matt Cooke scored on a power-play goal with 1:47 left in the third period to lead the Penguins past the Flyers, 2-1, in front of a national NBC audience.

The Bill Mazeroski statue was announced, to be unveiled later in 2010.

Former Pitt Panther and Steeler Jerry Olsavsky returned to the Steelers as a defensive assistant coach

Talk of Mario Lemieux buying the Pirates burned up the internet

Total attendance for PirateFest was 15,398, up 271 from last year, with a 1,200-person boost over last year's final day. 

57-year-old Wayne Persang, formerly of Pittsburgh, rolled a perfect 300 game while bowling in a league at Countryside Lanes in Clearwater, Florida on January 11. On January 13th at Highland Lakes Golf Course in Palm Harbor, Persang aced the fifth hole

The Penguins overcame a 46-save performance from Jimmy Howard and outlasted the Detroit Red Wings by a 2-1 count in OT in front of a national NBC audience.

Three Steelers were named to the NFL's Team of the Decade 


Paul Zeise and Bob Pompeani officially lost it with bloggers

DL Aaron Donald, QB Anthony Gonzalez, WR Kevin Weatherspoon, DL T.J. Clemmings, and prep school athlete Todd Thomas were among the 24 LOIs received by the Pitt Panthers.

The basketball Backyard Brawl in Morgantown was ugly for Pitt on the court and ugly for WVU in the stands, resulting in Bob Huggins grabbing the mic to scold his own crowd.

"Bullet" Bill Dudley, a former Steeler and 1966 inductee into the Hall of Fame, passed away after a short illness at the age of 88 in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Pitt beat WVU 98-95 in the Brawl TRIPLE OT.

93.7 The Fan made its debut on the FM dial, with an opening lineup featuring Paul Alexander, Jim Colony, Jon Burton, Ron Cook, Vinnie Richichi, John Seibel, Joe Starkey, Gregg Giannotti, Andrew Fillipponi, and Chris Mueller.

Former Pirate Jim Bibby passed away at age 65.

Mayor Steelerstahl lost it with the media over whispers that he was at Mardi Gras, coming on the heels of his being snowed in at Seven Springs during the first Pittsburgh Snowpocalypse two weekends before.

Pitt's Elijah Fields posted some crazy pictures on his Twitter account 

Pitt beat #3 Villanova, 70-65, before more than 13,000 at the Pete and a CBS national audience.

A signed pair of Joe Paterno's glasses sold for $9,000 in an online auction.

Frank Coonelly managed to complicate a bad situation with his "dynasty" comments.

Casey Hampton reached a three-year deal to stay a Pittsburgh Steeler.

Mixed feelings swept Pittsburgh as Sidney Crosby broke America's hearts in the Olympic Gold Medal Game.

Sid's Olympic heroics were even worthy of an SI cover:


The Pens picked up Alexei Ponikarovsky from Toronto in exchange for Luca Caputi and Martin Skoula. Pittsburgh also dealt for Calgary's Jordan Leopold.

With Pitt trailing by one and 3.5 seconds left in the game against Providence, Ashton Gibbs hit a three-pointer at the buzzer, giving the Panthers the 73-71 win and locking up a double-bye in the Big East tournament to boot

Ben Roethlisberger was accused of sexual assault in Milledgeville, Georgia. Hands down the biggest Pittsburgh sports story of 2010.

Matt Cooke delivered his famous knockout to Boston's Marc Savard.

Antwaan Randle-El left the Washington Redskins to re-join the Steelers in free agency.

Ryan Clark shocked the football world and re-signed with the Steelers.

WPXI's Rick Earle creeped everyone out when he dropped in on Ben Roethlisberger's Georgia neighborhood.

Dallas Green hit two free throws with seven seconds left to give Robert Morris a 52-50 win over Quinnpiac in the NEC Championship, sending the Colonials to the NCAA Tournament.

She's Out of My League, the movie shot in Pittsburgh starring Jay Baruchel and Alice Eve, opened in theaters. It would finish with a worldwide gross of $48 million on a $20 million budget.

Former Pirate OF Brian Giles retired, finishing with a .291 career average, 287 home runs and 1,078 RBI in 1,847 games.

John Steigerwald ripped Ben Roethlisberger on his new website, Just Watch the Game.

Pitt lost to Notre Dame, 50-45, in the Big East Tournament at MSG.

I took on a role with 93.7 The Fan, writing weekly articles and appearing on-air at various times and on various programs throughout their lineup.

Larry Foote signed a three-year, $9.3 million deal to return to the Steelers after a year in Detroit exile.

Mike Tomlin checked out Tim Tebow at Florida's pro day 

The Pens fell to 0-6 against the New Jersey Devils on the season with a depressing 5-2 loss on the road.

Ben Roethlisberger got the South Park treatment.

Robert Morris took Villanova to OT in the NCAA Tournament, eventually falling 73-70 in a game with very controversial officiating.

Xavier knocked Pitt out of the NCAA Tournament by a final of 71-68.

'Mad Mike' Jones, a 2001 X Games gold medalist from Export, was held at a detention center on allegations he attacked a repairman and a police officer at Miami International Airport.

Santonio Holmes was accused of attacking a woman with a glass and slicing her face open at Rain Nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

John Russell announced his bright idea to bat the pitcher eighth

Dave Wannstedt and Kris Letang both got contract extensions. At least it worked out for one of them.

Santonio Holmes was on quite the Twitter roll


Steeler Super Bowl XL hero Willie Parker joined the Washington Redskins.

The Pirates opened the 2010 regular season with an 11-5 win over the LA Dodgers in front of 39,000+ at PNC Park.

Pittsburgh's Marc Bulger was released after a long stint with the St. Louis Rams.

Former Penguin Dan Quinn became a caddy for pro golf star Ernie Els

The Pens dropped to 0-4 on the season against the Washington Capitals with a 6-3 loss.

Former Pitt head coach Walt Harris took an offensive coordinator job at Cal U.

The last regular-season game at Mellon Arena was pretty awesome.

I had the chance to take a tour of the yet-to-be-completed Consol Energy Center, and put together a photo essay of the day.

Pitt basketball assistant coach Tom Herrion was hired as the new head man at Marshall.

The Pens ended the regular season with a 6-5 overtime win at the New York Islanders on a late goal by Jordan Leopold.

Santonio Holmes was traded to the Jets for a fifth-round pick.

Big Ben spoke. His hair spoke even more.

Big Ben Beef Jerky officially bit the dust.

The Pens opened the Stanley Cup playoffs with a 5-4 loss to Ottawa at the Igloo.

Brewers 20, Pirates 0: The worst loss in Pirate history.

Maurkice Pouncey of Florida was the Steelers' first-round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft.

The Senators beat the Penguins Triple OT.

Jason Worilds of Virginia Tech was the Steelers' second-round pick in the NFL Draft.

Emmanuel Sanders, who had 98 receptions for 1,339 yards and seven touchdowns in 2009 at SMU, was the Steelers' third-round pick in the NFL Draft.

On Day 3 of the NFL Draft, the Steelers grabbed Antonio Brown, Chris Scott, Crezdon Butler, Doug Worthington, Jonathan Dwyer, Stevenson Sylvester, Thaddeus Gibson, and traded for Bryant McFadden.

Pirate starting pitcher Chris Jakubauskas was hit in the head by a Lance Berkman line drive in the bottom of the first inning of a 5-2 loss to Houston.

A Pascal Dupuis OT goal advanced the Pens past the Ottawa Senators in the playoffs.

Former Steeler QB Mike Tomczak was arrested in connection with a domestic dispute, but the charges were later dropped.

Brewers 17, Pirates 3.

Former Steeler Alan Faneca signed with the Pittsburgh-West Arizona Cardinals.

Ben Roethlisberger was mentioned in an Eminem song.


Coach Mike Rice left Robert Morris to take the helm at Rutgers

Penn State was ranked 14 and Pitt 16 in SI's Top 25 football poll.

Ben Roethlisberger covered Sports Illustrated, but it was one he'd rather forget.

The Montreal Canadiens knocked the Penguins out of the playoffs and closed Mellon Arena in disappointing fashion.

The Duquesne Dukes played their last home baseball game ever, an 8-3 loss to Temple.

A Penguin-bashing story was removed from the Nutting-owned website.

Ryan Doumit hit a two-out, 10th-inning home run off of Takashi Saito, giving the Pirates a 3-2 win over the Atlanta Braves at PNC Park.

The 2011 Winter Classic-to-Pittsburgh announcement was made official.


“Dana Eveland is a 26-year-old left-hander who has shown the ability to be an effective major-league starting pitcher. He has an interesting four-pitch mix, and we feel this acquisition is a potential upgrade for our current rotation with the upside of years of control and improved production.” -- Neil Huntington

The Sporting News called Dion Lewis "The Game's Most Complete Runner".

P Jameson Taillon of The Woodlands, TX, was drafted second overall by the Pirates.

Stephen Strasburg made his MLB debut, shutting down the Pirates in Washington.

DVDs were made public from the Ben Roethlisberger case.

Brad Lincoln made his MLB debut in a 7-5 loss to the Washington Nationals.

The NY Times iPhone app somehow mixed up Ben Roethlisberger with noted lady murderer Joran Van Der Sloot.

Former Penguin assistant Mike Yeo took a job as head coach of the Houston Aeros AHL team.

In Pedro Alvarez's first game at PNC Park, the Pirates had six errors and five hits in a 5-2 loss to the Chicago White Sox, the team's 10th loss in a row.

John Russell and Neil Huntington get contract extensions...months earlier, it was revealed.

The Pirates' PR nightmare continued with the firing of an outspoken pierogi.

The Penguins signed Matt Cooke to a new three-year deal.

Paul Maholm pitched so bad in a 13-3 loss to Texas that he apologized on Twitter.

After "his legs just went to Jell-O," the Pirates rid themselves of Dana Eveland.

Mondesi's House turned four years old.

Beau Bennett became the newest member of the Pittsburgh Penguins when he was chosen with their first-round draft pick.

OT Willie Colon tore his Achilles and went on IR, costing him the 2010 season.

A celebrity dove hunt experience with Bubby Brister and Bill Romanowski went up for bid, and someone plunked down $2500 for the opportunity.


D Sergei Gonchar signed with Ottawa, and the Pens filled that void with free agent Zbynek Michalek.

D Paul Martin then signed with the Penguins for five years, $25 million.

The Amazing Kreskin offered to pull the Pirates out of their funk, for an undisclosed fee.

Former Penguin Mark Eaton joined the New York Islanders.
Evan Meek was named as the Pirates' representative for the 2010 All-Star Game.

Chad Ochocinco famously compared the Steelers to girls.

Mike Tomlin scored a three-year extension through 2014.

Ben Roethlisberger was named in a public urination complaint.

It was announced that the Frozen Four is coming to Pittsburgh's Consol Energy Center in April, 2013.

Aleksey Lukashevich became the latest international experiment undertaken by the Pittsburgh Pirates, as he is the first-ever  player from Belarus to sign a Major-League contract.

Darnell Stapleton, a starting lineman for the Steelers in Super Bowl 43, signed with the UFL's Florida Tuskers.

Pitt D-lineman Jabaal Sheard threw a guy through a glass door window on the South Side.

The University of Florida and the NCAA investigated a possible rules violation involving Maurkice Pouncey.

The Mario Lemieux statue talk started to pick up steam.

Andrew Stockey's slip of the tongue landed the WTAE newsman on Jay Leno.

LaMarr Woodley said his treatment by the team has been "jacked up".

Kaye Cowher passed away at 54 due to skin cancer.

DeJuan Blair...rapping.

Penguin PA announcer John Barbero passed away after a lengthy illness at 65.

Jack Tatum, one of the key players involved in The Immaculate Reception, passed away at 61.

Mondesi's House got a makeover.

Greg Romeus and Dion Lewis went to Bristol, CT, to appear on ESPN in advance of the 2010 season.

Mario Lemieux and Sidney Crosby became the first people to hit the Consol Energy Center ice.

The Steelers signed OT Flozell "The Hotel" Adams to replace injured Willie Colon.

Neal Huntington pulled the trigger on a five-player deal with Arizona, dealing P D.J. Carrasco, OF Ryan Church, and IF Bobby Crosby for C Chris Snyder and minor-league SS Pedro Ciriaco.


Jeff Reed accused the Steelers of lying to him in the matter of his contract.

Chan Ho Park joined the Pirates to little fanfare.

Pitt and Penn State were ranked back-to-back in the first coaches poll of the season.

93.7 The Fan moved Gregg Giannotti to their Morning Show alongside Jim Colony and Paul Alexander.

Super Bowl XL referee Bill Leavy re-opened the can of worms that was the officiating in that game.

Ed Rendell wiped out at the opening ceremonies of the Consol Energy Center

On the same Saturday night, Dick LeBeau, Russ Grimm, and Rickey Jackson got inducted into the Hall of Fame, the Pirates won 8-7 on a walkoff home run, and the Bucs fired pitching coach Joe Kerrigan and bench coach Gary Varsho after the game.

The two greatest Pedro Alvarez clips in internet history were featured.

Longtime Pirate GM Joe L. Brown passed away at 91.

The Pirates signed both Jameson Taillon and Stetson Allie to big-money contracts.

Hines Ward said Dennis Dixon was the new Kordell Stewart. The internet was left to wonder whether or not that was a good thing.

Paul McCartney had the honors of opening the Consol Energy Center

The Pirates gave $2.6 million to 16-year-old Mexican pitcher Luis Heredia.

The Pittsburgh Power revealed their ownership details, logo, and website.

Bottom of the fourth inning. Your team is down 7-2. Two outs. Runners at second and third. And who does John Russell send to the plate? Reliever Sean Gallagher.

Deadspin opened up the Pirates' books for the general public's review.

Malcolm Gilbert, the 16th-ranked center in the recruiting Class of 2011, committed to the Pitt Panthers.

Pens President David Morehouse was booed at a meeting concerning the future of Mellon Arena.

Dan Rooney was kicked out of the press box at Giants Stadium during a Steeler preseason game there.

Troy Polamalu's hair was insured for $1 million, no doubt connected to his role as spokesperson for Head and Shoulders shampoo.

The Pirates were walloped by the Cubs 14-2, and the game featured a home run from Chicago pitcher Carlos Zambrano.


Pitt's Nike Pro Combat uniforms for the Backyard Brawl were revealed to the public.

Pitt was sloppy yet still had a shot to win in an opening-game defeat at Utah

The Penguins signed Mr. Hilary Duff, Mike Comrie.

Former Steelers Kraig Urbik, Stefan Logan, and Patrick Bailey landed with new teams.

Sidney Crosby took batting practice with the Pirates and opened some eyes after going deep.

Ray Graham and Tino Sunseri led Pitt in a 38-16 win against New Hampshire, their first W of the 2010 season.

Terry Bradshaw said on Fox that he would've gotten rid of Ben Roethlisberger if he owned the Steelers.

The Steelers opened the 2010 regular season with a 15-9 OT win against the Atlanta Falcons at Heinz Field.

"Hey, I play for Pitt football. Please, don't arrest me."

The Pirates released their 2011 schedule, including games against the Boston Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles, and Detroit Tigers.

Chris Siegfried was named as the first coach in Pittsburgh Power history.

Hines Ward was named by President Obama to the President's Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

The Steelers beat Tennessee, 19-11, and James Harrison bodyslammed Vince Young to the tune of a $5,000 fine.

The Pens' first preseason game at the Consol Energy Center was a 5-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings.

The HBO 24/7 reality series following the Pens and Capitals was formally announced.

Pitt was blown out at home in a disappointing 31-3 loss to the Miami Hurricanes.

Rashard Mendenhall ran for 143 yards in a 38-13 Steeler win at Tampa Bay.

Former Raiders QB George Blanda of Youngwood passed away at age 83.

The Pittsburgh Power signed their first player, former Marshall QB Bernard Morris.

Khem Birch, the #1 PF in the Class of 2012, committed to becoming a Pitt Panther for coach Jamie Dixon.


The Steelers ended their four-game stretch sans Big Ben with a 17-14 loss to Baltimore at Heinz Field.

John Russell was fired as manager of the Pirates, leaving with a final record of 186-299, with three last place finishes.

The Pens christened the Consol Energy Center with an opener against the Philadelphia Flyers, and I was on hand with a live blog of the happenings

After two losses, the Pens got their first victory of the '10-'11 season with a 3-1 win at New Jersey on October 11 with Brent Johnson between the pipes.

Deryk Engelland electrified the CEC crowd when he threw down with heavyweight Colton Orr in an early-season matchup with Toronto.

DeJuan Blair came back to Pittsburgh as a member of the San Antonio Spurs in an exhibition game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at The Pete. 

Ben Roethlisberger's suspension ended as he led the Steelers to a 28-10 victory over the Browns at Heinz Field.

James Harrison held his breath and threatened retirement but eventually backed off and returned to work.

The Steelers eeked out a one-point win in Miami on a highly controversial call.

Melted Mellon Arena ice went on sale for the low, low price of $40 a bottle.

The Penguins got an unusual endorsement from the undead on an episode of the Travel Channel's Ghost Adventures.

A Pittsburgh fan made a faux movie trailer for beloved icon "Cotton Candy Man".

James Harrison landed on the cover of Sports Illustrated as the poster boy for big hits.

The Steelers ended the month losing 20-10 to the Saints in New Orleans on Sunday Night Football, featuring a memorable encounter between Troy Polamalu and Julius Jones.


Sidney Crosby dropped the gloves in a rare fight with Dallas' Matt Niskanen, dropping the Pens to 6-6-1 during their early-season struggles.

Locker stalls belonging to Mario Lemieux and Sidney Crosby from Mellon Arena went up for auction, resulting in a final sale price of nearly $37,000.

The Cleveland Show's Halloween episode featured lead character Cleveland Brown dressing up as Willie Stargell.

OT Max Starks (neck) became the latest Steeler to be lost for the season.

Pitt lost in incredibly disappointing fashion at UConn, costing them a Big East Championship and eventually costing Dave Wannstedt his job. 

Jeff Reed wore a shirt that read "Haters Hate" and called out Steeler fans and media following a lopsided loss to New England at Heinz Field.

DE Greg Romeus of the Pitt Panthers tore his ACL, ending his college career.

K Jeff Reed, struggling mightily at the time, was finally shown the door by the Steelers.

The Steelers knocked off the Raiders at Heinz Field, but the game was marred by 21 penalties, including 14 on the Steelers for a franchise-record 163 yards. Tony Corrente was the official overseeing the debacle, which included Richard Seymour slapping Ben Roethlisberger after a Steeler TD.

The Steelers narrowly beat the Bills in Buffalo, and James Harrison was fined $25K for a hit on Ryan Fitzpatrick


Former PG sports editor Bruce Keidan passed away at 67 due to complications caused by diabetes.

Free agent K Jeff Reed joined the San Francisco 49ers after being replaced in Pittsburgh by Shaun Suisham.

OF Matt Diaz joined the Pittsburgh Pirates via free agency, reportedly in a platoon role in 2011. The Bucs also signed P Kevin Correia and P Scott Olsen, who has quite a colorful past.

Jon Baldwin had some harsh words for the Pitt Panthers on his way out the door to the NFL, then awkwardly backed off his comments.

Dana Holgorsen, reportedly a top candidate for the Pitt job, instead got hired by Oliver Luck and West Virginia in a bizarre arrangement where he'll serve as Bill Stewart's offensive coordinator for a year before taking over in 2012.

Former Miami (OH) coach Michael Haywood was named as the successor to the "resigning" Dave Wannstedt, and this video of Haywood giving a speech to his former team made the internet rounds.

The Penguins won their 12th in a row, beating the Buffalo Sabres 5-2 behind 34 saves from MAF.

A Winter Classic Alumni game was announced featuring Mario Lemieux and a host of other retired NHL stars

Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby appeared in a massively overhyped segment on The Price is Right

Penn State football coach Joe Paterno turned 84 years old

The Pittsburgh Steelers showed off their singing chops with eight minutes of Christmas carols 

The Pens took down the Capitals in a shootout, while the Steelers stayed home to thump the Carolina Panthers on Thursday Night Football. I commemorated the occasion by combining both wins into one recap.

Mondesi's House: The Director's Cut (more links, commentary, etc):


Unknown said...

hmmm...what did you leave out? great article!

SantoGold said...

That's about as thorough as you can get. Terrific summary.

AJ said...

I'm just upset that Ronnie Florian had a low key year.

Unknown said...

Despite the current Steelers, Pens, and Pitt hoops seasons, I'd argue it was a pretty down year in the Pittsburgh sports pantheon.

BURGH08 said...

Great review!

pens fan in philly said...

and the most successful sports team in the Pittsburgh area this year was.... the Big East Champion, Final Four West Virginia Mens Basketball team.... Im sure thats mentioned somewhere and I just missed it

JW said...

Right, and you can include the Ohio State Buckeyes Rose Bowl win too. Oh and also the Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup because that's only a few hours ride on I-80. And Philly's pickup of Cliff Lee was a huge moment in Pittsburgh sports too.

HomeRunFromBehindTheMeatballs said...

Robert Morris hockey sweeping Miami (OH) was a great great weekend for local hockey for sure!

Wow, what a big year for Wayne Persang! A 300 game & an ace on the golf course?!? This guy sounds like the Kim Jong-Il of out of shape sports.

Sorry, mondesi, but "BOO" for the Fan! Vinnie and Cook is the worst abomination in the history of radio!

Under-the-radar story - the resigning of ryan clark! How much worse would that secondary be without him? I don't wanna think about it. Though, Mundy has been OK in limited time this season.

Geez, i guess i'm a fan of Robert Morris? That would have been super awesome if they could've pulled off the first EVER #15 over #2 upset in the big dance!!! And it was soooo close!

I think the steelers should take a WR in the 3rd round every year! They've obviously got it down pat lately.

For all the pirate bashing, who can argue against the Chris Snyder trade? To get a starter anywhere around the diamond for Bobby Crosby, Ryan Church, and D.J. Carrasco (a.k.a. one good year amongst them ever, and zero since 2004. Note: in this setting a 'good' year includes a .239 batting avg!) is a UUUUGGE WIN!

When was Chan Ho "having the diarrhea"? haha

DrPsychodelic said...

you left out rocco demaro's firing from extra innings in december...all us baseball stat geeks lose the best on air sports figure in pittsburgh.

JW said...

Do you think "New Pitt Coach Arrested on Domestic Violence Charges" will make the 2010 list, or lead off the 2011 recap?

Daquido_Bazzini said...

Big Bob Nutting was traveling east on the PA Turnpike in this recently acquired 2002 Ford Expedition XLT, enroute to his (as he likes to call it) "other big baby".....The ski resort of 7-Springs.
He usually listens to the country stations along the way, but today he figured he would take a few minutes to listen to Pittsburgh sports station The Fan.
Why not catch up on the latest in Pirate news?!.....As it would save him a call to GM Neal Huntington or faraway President Zelionople Coonelly (who last was heard from in the Greek isles....Eating olives and resting comfortably).
After taking a long sip of ginger bread latte.....Nutting went to put his Pirate cup full of "the bean" back in the dashboard beverage holder.
That is when he heard the news from the radio......"The Fan reports that the Pirates have traded RHP Joe Martinez for future considerations. The Pirates had picked up Martinez from the SF Giants in the latter part
of this past summer."
Nutting let out a country howl and grinned wider than a cheshire cat...."That's my boy Neal!", he proclaimed loudly....."Always lookin' to save moolah!"
He decided to call and congratulate his favorite GM:
Huntington: Huntington here!
Nutting: Neal....Nutting here! Just heard the news that you cut bait with one of those World Series Giant pitchers from our roster.....Martinez was the name.....Damn good move Neal. We don't need any
World Series types on our accounting sheet.
Huntington: Oh....ummmm.....Yes boss.....Thank you.....You're exactly right.
Nutting: Was that the guy with the black beard?
Huntington: No....No boss.
Nutting: Well....Anyway.....Good job! We don't want any of our fans getting any crazy ideas. You know....Just "pretend" like we're putting that kinda team together. That's why I approved that Hurdle guy as manager.
Huntington: In other words boss....Business as usual?
Nutting: Tis the off-season......Business as usual!.....I'm out!....*click*.....

....And with that.....Nutting exited the PA Turnpike.
Why pay extra when you know the back roads?