Monday, August 21, 2006

The Last Action Hero

Well it's about that time of year kiddies, the time where there aren't more than 2 or 3 reasons to watch the Buccos. They lose almost every day and there is no way they will make the post season. So here are my final few reasons to watch the Bucs.

1. Can Snell win 15 games? He needs 4 more wins and can do it if he pitches the way he has been pitching. He has about 6 or 7 starts left so it is within his reach.

2. Will Freddy Sanchez win the batting title? He is hitting .352 and has a 16 point lead over his next challenger, Miguel Cabrera. The other question at hand is will he collect 200 hits? He has 153 in 120 games with 38 games remaining in the season. He will need 47 hits, and I think he will do both.

Its nice to see Freddy atop the leader board, where he has been pretty much the whole season. People in Pittsburgh are checking the papers daily to see if Freddy grabbed a few hits and strengthened his lead. It is very nice to see a Bucco chasing the batting title for the first time since 1983. GO BUCS!

Monday, August 14, 2006

The Art of Pitching Inside

Yesterday afternoon's game got me to thinking about pitching inside and hitting batters. After Jose Bautista was hit leading off the 7th and 8th innings both benches were warned. There were a total of 3 HBPs yesterday by Cardinals pitchers. The Pirates pitchers hit none. It made me think about the rule changes about pitching inside and I have come to the conclusion that it is total bullshit. One of the most important things a pitcher can do is throw inside and control the outside corner of the plate. Pitchers have been backing hitters off the plate for years and until the rule changes it was one of the only advantages pitchers had left. Lowering the mound, in the AL the DH, small ballparks, and countless other aspects of the present day game have all been roadblocks in the way to success for today's major league pitchers. Almost all rule changes in the past 40 years have been to make the game easier for hitters.

I am of the opinion that if today's dominant pitchers had pitched 30-40 years ago they would have been nearly unhittable. If they had had the advantages that Bob Gibson, Sandy Koufax, Juan Marichal, etc. had they would have been just as unhittable. Thats just my humble opinion.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Double Take

Terribly sorry for the 8 of you that check this website on a frequent enough basis to relize that I haven't posted much. Nothing really that interesting has been happening lately (at least nothing interesting enough for me to write about). Anyway something caught my eye last night when I was in Vesuvio on the South Side getting some pizza. I was waiting for my slices to heat in the oven so I picked up the PM (free) edition of the Trib (I hate the Trib and their right wing garbage) and on the front it states something to the extent of Dan Rooney will not ask for a motorcycle clause in Ben's next conract. this initially shocked me, I mean why wouldn't he? I was a bit buzzed, so baturally I dwelled on this for a while. I read the stroy once I got back to my friends apartment and it actaully all made sense. The quote from Mr. Rooney was, "I think everyone learned a valuable lesson from what happened." I couldn't agree more, but I'm sure Ben agrees much more infadically than I do.

If you asked me 2 days ago if I wanted to bet if the Steelers were going to put a motorcycle clause in his contract my only question would've been, "how much you got?" I mean Mr. Rooney is a crusty old man, not exactly a young hip guy. I wouldn've expected him to protect his invest ment at all costs. However, then I started to think about the extent the Steelers aren't just a football team, they are more of a family, the Corleone family actually.

If you start to think about it Dan Rooney chairman of the team is Vito Corleone. He's getting older, starting to get a bit behind the times but hey he's still got it. He's still got all the power that comes with being one of the greatest owners of this generation and already being in the Football Hall of Fame.

I could say Art Rooney II would be Sonny since he is the heir apparent but I want to go in a more creative route. Sonny is Cowher, hot temper, could boil over at any second, stay out of his way when he's angry. Not only this but he is destined for a fall, falling in line with the speculation that Cowher is gone after this year... everyone loves Sonny but they know that he wouldn't last forever.

Michael Corleone is Ken Whisenhunt the heir apparent once Sonny is out of the picture (at least let's hope so, for those of who who think this should be Grimm's job slide him in). He's quite and reserved right now when he doesn't have much power, but expect changes once he does become godfather...

Fredo... I'm looking at the list of member of the Steelers' front office / coaching staff and no one is popping out at me, but only one person comes to mind, Tom Donhoe. He jumped ship for more money and power in Buffalo, which turned out to be a huge mistake. He ended up getting wacked by the Bills this January. He now sleeps with the fishes...

Tom Hagan, the lawyer who acts as advisor to Michael much of the time is Kevin Colbert. Often waiting in the wings, not taking too much attention for himself, is the exact role Colbert takes with this team. He does a lot of work no one ever hears about.

You can plug players into the soldier positions from the movie and there you go. Our very own Steelers' Corleone family.