June 13th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

Pirates fail to reach .500 again

For all that has been made of the Pirates’ struggles in interleague play, such as the fact that they have the worst record in the entire major leagues over the history of the competition, they should be able to defeat the Baltimore Orioles, especially when the game means reaching the .500 plateau that means so much to Pirate fans everywhere. The disappointing part of the game, however, was not that the Pirates failed to reach .500, but that their best pitcher thus far let them down and that John Russell managed his team out of a win for the second day in a row en route to a 9-6 loss in a game which the Pirates led 6-1 at one point. Keep reading →

June 12th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

Ian Snell, Once and Future Ace

Ian Snell is back, but this is not the same angry Ian Snell that we all saw before.  No, this Ian Snell is some type of overly relaxed pitcher who cares about the team winning which should, of course, be the prime goal of any pitcher.  For Snell, though, it’s something of a shift in philosophy.  Before, even this season, it was always Snell in the individual matchups, with the most prominent being Snell vs. Albert Pujols.   Now, Snell seems to have shifted his focus to the team and their success, which comes when he pitches well, like he did Wednesday night in the Pirates’ 3-1 victory. Keep reading →

June 11th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

Capps, Maholm waste Doumit Day

The Pirates’ pitching was just bad enough to lose on Tuesday night at PNC Park, as the Pirates dropped a crucial 7-6 decision to the Washington Nationals.  Starter Paul Maholm gave up four runs in six and two-thirds innings, while closer Matt Capps lost the game on a two-run home run to Lastings Milledge, who promptly exploded in the Nationals dugout with the type of celebration that Redskins’ fans have been waiting to see out of Antwan Randle El. Keep reading →

June 10th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

So where’s Hines Ward?

The Pirates are taking a page from the Steelers’ playbook.  And no, I don’t mean that in the part where they are winning games.  The Pirates have become excellent at the Hines Ward self-motivation, take sleights at nothing in order to pump each other up enough to win thing.  Ian Snell was good at it last year, but this year it’s the whole entire team and that was most evident today and yesterday, when Jason Michaels’ refusal to accept a strike call and Doug Mientkiewicz’s refusal to take crap from one of the best pitchers in the history of the game resulted in Pittsburgh victories. Keep reading →

June 9th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

Dumatrait, offense come together to beat D’Backs

The Pirates responded to two consecutive losses to the Arizona Diamondbacks by beating the NL West’s first place team on Sunday, 6-4.  Phil Dumatrait was again solid for the Pirates, throwing five and two-thirds innings on a steamy day in Pittsburgh, surrendering two runs and striking out three opponents.  The Pirates were finally able to muster some offense against Arizona pitching, which had shut them down two days in a row, as they went for five runs in three and two-thirds innings against Diamondbacks’ pitcher Doug Davis. Keep reading →

June 8th, 2008 by Adam Wagner

Snell, Grabow drop games to D’Backs

The Pirates have not had luck at PNC Park over the last two nights, losing 3-1 to the Diamondbacks on Friday and then 4-3 on Saturday.  This series promised to be interesting, as Ian Snell and Tom Gorzelanny, who started on Friday and Saturday respectively, have been struggling as of late.  Both pitchers managed to have somewhat effective outings with some downsides to each start.  Unfortunately, neither one was able to beat their opposition, Arizona’s double ace combination of Brandon Webb and Dan Haren. Keep reading →