Saturday, April 15, 2006

Game 13: Cubs at Pirates

Jerome Williams leads the 6-3 Chicago team against Zach Duke and the 3-9 Pirates.

Piper down

Get well, Sean. Good thing we've still got Craig Wilson.

Update (5:20 PM): Casey out for up to two months with two fractures in his "left lower back". Ouch.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Game 12: Cubs at Pirates

The Cubs start a nine-game road trip tonight, and they've arranged their rotation so they burn none of their top starters on the Pirates. They'll be saved for Los Angeles and St. Louis, their next two destinations. Tonight we get Sean Marshall.

The Pirates, desperate for a win, respond with the current ace of the staff, our stopper, Victor Santos.

Game on at seven eastern. I'll be expecting Aramis Ramirez to misplay a few grounders and hit a few homers. What are you expecting?

Wiggy update

From the comments in the previous thread. If you don't read the comments to this blog, you should. These things are fun, and fun is good. First, skeptic tank:

I am outraged that the Pirates let go and received nothing for a guy who is absolutely on fire for another team so far this year. He's batting .300 with an OPS of 1.116. He has four homers. And he has a fu-manchu and would look really good bowling over opposing team's catchers. I think he goes by the name of Wiggy. Remember him?


It looks like they're using Bones' Wiggy-centric playbook for him, too.


Wow. Great picture, Soup. That's what I was talking about. If we still had Wiggy we could have had Gerut take some reps at catcher in practice (with Wiggy running the bases of course). You know, since Gerut's gonna have surgery anyway.

My apologies to those who had to read that exchange twice, but the comments do not go out on the feed, and haloscan does not archive our comments, and some things are too good not to share and preserve.

All hail Wiggy. Best of luck to him in Tampa Bay. He sucked for us, yeah, and he'll probably suck for them, but here's hoping.

More than once I've wished for the "Wiggy hook" this season. In fact, it may be all I think about as I watch our starters failing to get the ball across the plate. Man, I wish they could throw strikes.

Bones note: I miss Wiggy. Didn't think I'd ever say that. But all the learned helplessness is effectively combatted by the primal joy derived from watching one of our guys clean somebody's clock every now and then.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Operation Shutdown

Jody Gerut checks out. File this one under Mysteries. Anyone care to figure out who is in the right, who is in the wrong, or what the team should learn from it? I'm not going to worry my beautiful 8-loss-scarred mind about it.


It's only a flesh wound.

Game 11: Dodgers at Pirates

Looking for win number 4. Derek Lowe and Oliver Perez at noon-thirty eastern. Beautiful, beautiful day too.

Bench depth bumbaye

DK reports Casey is out from that collision with Cota going for the pop-up. Who was pitching at the time? I vaguely remember some talk about him being responsible for air traffic control in such situations.

Casey is someone you want to keep healthy. You could say that about everybody, sure, but his career suggests he's too happy to play maimed. He won't take himself out, and you might not notice he's injured until he's played a month with 600 OPS hitting.

It's good to have a bench comprised of players who are about as good as the starters. The Pirates may always lack the $17M starters, but they can make some of that disadvantage up with superior bench players who start often. With Casey and Randa out, the Pirates suffer little drop-off by starting Wilson and Sanchez. They are only down pinch-hitters for the moment.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Game 9: Dodgers at Pirates

Seo and Snell at seven eastern.


Michael Keaton (aka Batman, Beetlejuice), on Bucs' ownership:

"I fear they will take advantage of the good will of the people who continue to show up ... For my money, that's disrespectful ... at some point, you've got to win. I think fans have been gracious. And maybe not vocal enough. Maybe not vociferous enough with their displeasure."
All hail Keaton! I wholeheartedly support anyone who publicly criticizes the heartless evil losing empire of Mr. McNutting. Honest fans have been getting duped out of their money, and it's just not right. Anyway, my favorite Michael Keaton character is roach-breeding, tenant-from-hell Carter Hayes, in Pacific Heights.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Pirates win!

One foot out of the grave.

... so here's the story of the use of Gonzo in the eighth and Hernandez in the ninth. On the Gonzo announcement, the Reds pinch-hit Freel for Tony Womack. Greg Brown and Bob Walk were under the impression that Tracy was calling on Gonzo for a two-inning save. With a 5-2 lead, Gonzo walked the first batter he faced. Lopez, a switch-hitter, looked weak from that side of the plate and struck out. Gonzalez was throwing about 94. Griffey, a lefty, had a good at-bat ending in a run-scoring double. Gonzo fell behind Dunn, and Jim Colborn went to the mound for a visit. Matt Capps got up in the pen. Gonzo missed, up and in, on a fastball. Dunn took called strikes on 3-0 and 3-1, then whiffed on a breaking ball. Gonzo fell behind 3-0 on Encarnacion, who took a high strike, looking all the way. The crowd booed; Gonzo may have got a call. Encarnacion takes the next pitch, which is a strike. Next he swings and misses and strikes out.

Hernandez got up during the bottom of the eighth with Hatteberg, a lefty, due to bat first.

I'm not sure what Tracy said after the game, but Gonzo did not look sharp. And I wouldn't have wanted him coming back for the ninth to save our first win of the season.

I'd like to see him pitch more often on this coming homestand. He looked rusty tonight. Tracy more or less promised to make an elite closer out of Gonzo when he took the job, so I've no doubt he'll get all the chances sooner or later. Until he's sharp and throwing strikes, if I'm the manager, I wouldn't use him in tie or close games if I had a steadier option.

Game 7: Pirates at Reds

Victor Santos and Dave Williams at 1:15 eastern.

... any roster move predictions to make? I'd bet if they demote someone to add a pitcher, say Brandon Duckworth, it would be Chris Duffy.