Saturday, April 14, 2007

Do the Pirates make you a better beer drinker?

. . . no game tonight. So this is all we got . . .

Bucdaddy raised a good question in the comments the other day. Does being a fan of the Pirates make you a better beer drinker?

At first, it may be hard to see how the two hobbies might be related. On second thought, I see some clear connections. So I can imagine more than one approach to this deep and thorny question.

Tony Armas vs. Barry Zito tonight. I will ponder the question as I head to the beer store to stock up.

Big Poison's number retired

Dejan Kovacevic reports. Of course I agree with the decision to retire no. 11.

All hail no. 11!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Off day

The Pirates fell from first. The NL Central remains knotted up. The big event this weekend looks to be the Cardinals-Brewers series. Hopefully they can wear out each other's bullpens before the Pirates visit both these teams next week.

Spike had an idea. For your off-day satisfaction, consider burning sage around the computer, the radio, and the television.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Game 9: Cardinals at Pirates

Wainwright vs. Maholm, underway. Eldred starting at 1B.

4-4, first place

Here are the standings.

If someone had told me that the Pirates would finish the first eight games with a 4-4 record, I would say, "That is not bad." It is not good, either. It is mediocre.

The fact that they remain in first place with a 4-4 record suggests the great opportunity that mediocre teams might have in this division.

Not everything is going right so far this year, but not everything is going wrong. A little winning would go a long way right now.

This is a much different and a much better situation than the 0-6 start of last season. Now if the back end of our rotation can pitch as well as the converted relievers of St. Louis, perhaps the Pirates can win a few and put the early pain of this home-opening series behind them.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Game 8: Cardinals at Pirates

Minor-league middle-relief journeyman vs. Beer-guzzling Tom Gorzelanny. Game on pretty soon.

Good morning

It is not too early to look at the standings.

It is much too early to worry about Adam LaRoche. He will be fine. He's not 39 years old with a recent history that predicts decline.

The same can be said for Ronny Paulino.

My once a year post on baseball

Levitt and Dubner hint at some forthcoming protection studies.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Opening Day: Cardinals at Pirates

This is a day game. It will be cold. Braden Looper will start for the Cardinals, Ian Snell will start for the Pirates.

It's never too early to look at the standings.

If you must be at work, put the game on the radio. Or stream it from MLB.com--if their lousy servers can make room for you.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Game 6: Pirates at Reds

The Jeff Conine Experience continues with Zach Duke and Eric Milton at 1:15.

Freddy activated, Doumit sent down

Paul Meyer on the return of Sanchez: the demoted Doumit will catch every day for Indy. Meanwhile, Don Kelly enjoys a major league roster spot. I'm guessing that demoting Doumit over Kelly is more about trying to get regular ABs for Doumit than affirming Don Kelly's irreplaceable value from the bench.

Yankees hire robots

Robert Dvorchak for the P-G, on 21st century baseball technology:

A computer like IBM's Deep Blue can be programmed to beat a grand master in chess. But no computer can throw a called strike by Jason Bay, can it?

Actually, there is a device called the ProBatter PX2 pitching simulator. Using patented technology, the machine projects a DVD-quality image of a real pitcher onto an 8x10-foot screen, either throwing from a windup or from the stretch. At the moment of release, an actual ball is fired through a small hole in the screen simulating fastballs, sliders, sinkers, cutters, curves and change-ups. The top speed is 100 mph.

The Yankees have purchased the system for their big league and minor league clubs.

Prediction: in twenty years, a retired Tracy will blissfully clown around with his Jose Hernandez and Mike Edwards simulators.