As a 21-year-old Pittsburgher, my earliest memories of being a Pittsburgh baseball fan was watching Jeff King, Jay Bell and Al Martin at Three Rivers Stadium.
Those were times when the team still competed and fans had passion for the game. It’s sad to say, though, that I have no recollection of the Pirates playing in the playoffs.
Yes, I’ve seen the FSN Spotlight on the Jim Leyland-led Buccos. And I know about the rivalry against the Atlanta Braves. I’ve seen the slide at home, and I understand how good those teams were.
Nevertheless, I was too young to know what was happening.
I hear my father talk about the Pirates in the 1970’s, and how the city was completely wrapped up in the playoffs every October.
Now he vehemently argues that the franchise shouldn’t even be called the Pirates any more. He says, “The players had pride. The ownership had morals. These guys don’t deserve to wear the jerseys that Mazeroski, Clemente and Stargell once wore.”
I have to agree.
This franchise is going to set a record for consecutive losing seasons. It has turned off an entire generation to Pirates baseball.
I’m sick to death of watching the team give up five runs in the first inning, and once they record the third out…the fans clap!?
And the fact that those who wore green shirts last year got booed as they walked out of the game is a testament to how stupid we as Pirates fans are.
I’m now hearing fans say we would be crazy to not trade Jason Bay and Xavier Nady at the trade deadline. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!?
They say we need to build around our new prospects and draft picks.
Not long ago, I believe the idea was to build around Jason Bay when we traded Brian Giles.
Weren’t we planning on building our pitching staff around Zach Duke?
Ten years ago, weren’t we supposed to build around Jose Guillen?
It is pointless to list the players that the Pirates once had that went on to different teams and performed well. The point is, the ownership doesn’t get it done.
I think it is important to keep the outfield in tact. The Pirates have the most productive outfield in Major League Baseball. That is something to build around.
We also have a rather solid shortstop/second base duo. So why not keep the lineup that is scoring a ton of runs and focus on the real issue: pitching.
The Pirates are a smaller market team, but they have more money than they are spending. Honestly, the Nuttings are genius’s because they have an amazing ballpark, and stupidly fans flock to the gates without realizing they are contributing to the problem.
Regardless, Nady and Bay will likely be moved and we will all go back to square one. The rebuilding process will continue over and over again. The reason teams like Florida and Arizona have been successful is because they rebuild the right way.
The Pirates don’t know how to do this. And once Alvarez (the Pirates #1 pick in this year’s draft) makes it in the league, he will become too expensive and get traded away just as Aramis Ramirez was.
Almost all Pittsburghers have only one favorite football team, the Steelers, and one favorite hockey team, the Penguins. Isn’t it interesting most baseball fans in this town have a second team for baseball? Isn’t it interesting to see so many Cubs and Cardinals fans at PNC Park?
You don’t have to look far to understand why. Look to the front office.