Andrew McCutchen connects

Leading off and playing center field for the National League …

Andrew McCutchen’s history with the Pittsburgh Pirates coincides nearly perfectly with the genesis of this blog. I started writing in April of 2005, and McCutchen was drafted two months later in June. Actually, I was not terrible impressed with the Pirates’ selection: [McCutchen] put up some amazing numbers in his senior year of high school, […]


Game 95: Reds 6 Pirates 3

Of course, everything that I wrote in my pre-game post about this past week not being so bad and the Pirates being in decent shape going into the All-Star Break all presupposed a situation in which the Pirates won this afternoon. Instead, Francisco Liriano lost his control after the first inning, served up a home […]

Pasadena Architectural Salvage

Salvage operation

After Friday night’s Tony Watson meltdown and last night’s Charlie Morton implosion, it felt like the Pirates were on a train ride directly into All-Star Break Hell after an awful week against two division opponents. Then, Andrew McCutchen put on his cape, bailed the team out, and now the Bucs are one win away from […]


Game 94: Pirates 6 Reds 5

I tried to stay away. Really, I did. There was just one hitch to my plan: I didn’t actually have anything else to do tonight, so my plan to avoid the Pirates was to hole up in my apartment and watch TV on my iPad. My iPad that flashes a notification whenever runs are scored […]


I think I’m sitting this one out

I have had too much late inning Pirate shenanigans for one week, I think. Charlie Morton pitches for the Pirates against Mike Leake. It’s hard to say any of these game are “must win” because the Pirates have lost pretty much every single game you could put that label on this year and will still […]


Game 93: Reds 6 Pirates 5

I have a few thoughts: Yup, I think it’s time to have “that” conversation with Pedro Alvarez. I wonder if the Mets will trade Blake Taylor back for Ike Davis? I really don’t think it’s ideal to look at a pitcher who’s given up four hits in a row and already blown a two-run lead […]


Locke and Latos

To put it simply, now would be a very good time for the Pirates to start playing better against their NL Central rivals. I wrote about the eight-teams-for-five-spots race in the National League this afternoon, but it wasn’t really all that long ago that the Marlins and and Rockies were in the thick of things, […]

neck and neck

The National League is an eight-team race

Towards the end of last summer, whenever I’d watch Pirate games with my non-Pirate fan friends here in North Carolina, they would make fun of me. “Why are you so nervous?” they’d ask. “Aren’t the Pirates going to make the playoffs pretty much no matter what at this point?” I was particularly neurotic in the […]

Game 92: Pirates 9 Cardinals 1

Well, that was cathartic. After losing two coin-flip games to open the series, then getting outplayed pretty clearly last night, the Pirates managed to salvage something from this trip to St. Louis tonight by beating up on Shelby Miller and the Cardinals’ bullpen, while getting a complete game from Edinson Volquez. Given that the Reds […]


Start with one

I would start this post by asking if you remembered this 5-4 Pirate win over the Cardinals from the 31st of last July, but I suspect that I don’t need to. The Pirates fell behind 4-2 early against Adam Wainwright, but fought their way back to 5-4 on an eighth inning Russell Martin single. The […]


Game 91: Cardinals 5 Pirates 2

This game was long and terrible and I don’t want to spend much more time thinking about it, so let’s do bullet points: At one point in I think the third inning, the ESPN announcers mentioned that the Cardinals had fouled something like 17 of Brandon Cumpton’s 60 pitches off. On most nights, that would […]

Get up

Tonight’s goal: do better

Look, I can’t spend much more time talking about the bullpen or the Pirates’ record against the non-Cubs teams in the NL Central. The bullpen needs to pitch better in close games that they don’t have a lead in, and the Pirates need to win games against the Cardinals, Cubs, and Reds. That’s it. Starling […]


The trouble with the bullpen

If you want to look at the first two games of this Pirates/Cardinals series with absolutely zero emotion and only with cold logic, the conclusion that you would probably draw is this: the Pirates have continued to play well this week, but a combination of bad luck and a thin bullpen has cost them two […]


Game 90: Cardinals 5 Pirates 4

The Cardinals have two walkoff home runs off of Justin Wilson and Ernesto Frieri in a series where Mark Melancon has thrown zero pitches. We sure have evolved an efficient model of bullpen usage here in the era of statistics and sabermetrics. Image credit: CPG Grey, Flickr

Super Balls


Four times this year, the Pirates have won the first game of a series against a division foe, only to drop the remaining two or three games remaining in the series. Since most of those series happened when the Pirates were struggling, the first win was encouraging and the subsequent losses were deflating.  The Pirates […]