Pirates Opening Day.

April 8, 2011 Leave a comment

Not much to talk about game wise it was pretty crappy, but there was a fan on the field first time I’ve ever seen that live. Well here you go some pictures and videos I got from the game

Frank Coonlley on 105.9 the X

My Seats, Man I Love PNC

Pre Game from the Rotunda

Alvarez At Bat

Good ol' GFJ in Right

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Who Does Pittsburgh Hate the Most?

March 24, 2011 5 comments

This is something I’ve always wanted to find out and discuss. What Pittsburgh Rival is the most hated? Each team in Pittsburgh has its own rivals, but which rival draws the most hatred out of Pittsburghers? That is what I’ll examine here I am going to pick the biggest rival for each team in the Burgh, and determine which one should be considered the Most Hated Team in Pittsburgh.

Steelers

I Think this was the easiest one for me to pick. Although you can say the Steelers have many rivals the Browns, Bengals, Patriots, my pick is the Baltimore Ravens. I think this rivalry initially stemmed from the Ravens actually being the Browns. Yes back at the beginning of the Ravens they were just the Browns transplanted to another city, and that gave Pittsburgh a reason to dislike them. Then it turned out they were actually pretty good. Through the first four years there wasn’t much competition as the Steelers Went 6-2. In 2000 however the Ravens won the Superbowl only adding fuel to the rivalry. I think this rivalry has really shot off since Ben Roethlisberger has been here. Not only because Ben is 9-2 against the Ravens in his career including playoffs, but also because we’ve won two Superbowls & beat them twice in the playoffs. Plus all the HUGE hits, Smack talk, and Dirtiness in the games fuels it even more.

All Time Record- Steelers up 22-12 (playoffs included)

Pirates

This one was little harder for me to pick seeing as the Pirates have been perennial losers for 19 years and haven’t been on anyones radar as a rival.  I mean obviously I think that there is a natural rivalry between you and anyone in your division. What teams does that leave us with Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers, and St. Louis Cardinals. I suppose you could put the Mets or Phillies here too, but I think those were more relevant when they played them more often. Anyways my choice is the Brewers. I feel as though that this is probably how the Browns feel about the Steelers, not a huge competition they pretty much beat us every time and that’s why we hate them.  Look at just last season and you can see some of the reasons of course there is the 20-0 loss the worst loss in franchise history. Then of course the 22 game losing streak at Miller Park that was finally broken last year.

2010 Record- Brewers 13-5

Penguins

This one was also a little harder for me to figure out but it is because I’m not a huge hockey follower, but I do know a lot of people who are huge hockey fans so I figured I’d ask them. Like I’ve stated before there is a natural rivalry with any team in your division, and for the Pens these teams are The Philadelphia Flyers, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, and New York Rangers. It’s obvious out of those that the biggest rivalry is the Flyers. With the Pens though there are also some other teams who are rivals that aren’t in the division a huge one being The Washington Capitals, but also you could put the Ottawa Senators here too. My choice came down to the Caps and Flyers and my final choice is the Flyers. When these two teams get together there is pure hatred. Plus since both Teams are excellent right now it’s like the Ravens & Steelers rivalry it could go either way at any time. In their two most recent playoff  meetings the Pens have beat the Flyers, which is huge in a rivalry.

All Time Record- Flyers Up 136- 80- 30 Playoff Series Flyers up 3-2

Pitt Football/Basketball

Lets just take a look at the Teams in the Big East in Football you have CincinnatiConnecticutLouisvilleRutgersSouth FloridaSyracuseWest Virginia. I don’t think there is any real competition here as to who I’m gonna choose here obviously it is the WVU Mountaineers. This is probably one of the biggest college football rivalries.  The Backyard Brawl has so much history behind it and each year it’s a great game.

All Time Record- Pitt Up 61-39-3

Now Lets take a look at Pitt basketball, the Big East has a few more teams that play basketball but I think the biggest rivalries are WVU, U Conn, Notre Dame, and Georgetown. Out of these The one I think that is the biggest is Pitt Vs. U Conn Huskies. I think it could go either way here, but in my eyes some of these games have been pretty awesome and intense. This rivalry really sprung from the Big East Championships they played the Panthers in the Big East Tournament championship game in 20022003, and 2004.

Power

Seeing as the Pittsburgh Power have only played two games, they don’t really have a rival yet. However there’s the divisional rival thing, which consists of the Cleveland GladiatorsMilwaukee Mustangs, and Philadelphia Soul. I would call the Philadelphia Soul the biggest rival of the Power, Since I hate all things Philadelphia.

All Time Record- Soul up 1-0

Hines Ward Shines on Dancing With The Stars.

March 22, 2011 Leave a comment

I must admit I don’t know much about ballroom dancing, but I have watched Dancing With the Stars before & Hines looked a lot better than some people I’ve seen on there. I really feel like he has a chance to win this because not only is he a guy that if he tries hard enough can get what he wants, but also because like he said coming off the loss of the Superbowl he wants to take home the Mirror Ball Trophy. Not to mention I really like his partner Kym Johnson I think she’ll be able to whip him into a dancing star.

The judges seemed to really like him too, Carrie Ann Inaba said “You are just exuberant and your smile lights up the whole stage.” Len Goodman also said “It was clean, it was crisp, you were confident.” I mean Obviously he wasn’t perfect yet and has to make improvements as the judges told him. He did score the third highest at 21 and I can see him only improving as the show goes on.

Why I Want to See Pouncey in a Steelers Jersey.

This is the third installment of  Why I Want to See _____ in a Steelers Jersey. You can read the last article about Brandon Harris here.

You might be thinking out loud, in your head, or to a buddy, “Hey, two Pouncey’s? That’d be great!” My thoughts exactly, but would having two Pouncey’s actually benefit the Steelers?  Yeah, I think it would. Maurkice or Mark, as I call him a really good center, and Mike, a really swell guard, that would overall benefit the Steelers O-Line.

The first reason is that the Steelers need some BIG help in the Offensive Line department. Do

If you want to see what Mike looks like in a Steeler Jersey, just look at a picture of Maurkice

you know how many sacks they have given up on Ben Roethlisberger? 274. Compared to a team like the New England Patriots who only gave up 187 sacks since ’04. If you ask me, or anybody else for that matter, that’s a whale of a difference. I believe that Mike Pouncey can sway that number in the right direction. Although the O-Line has seemed to improve slightly, Mike Pouncey could be an immediate upgrade to the guards, which consist of Chris KemoeatuTrai Essex, and Ramon Foster. Plus he is a very versatile lineman so he can help out at any position, if needed.

 

Another reason is that Mike and Mark are identical twins. That, I believe, means they have the same exact genes and therefore would equally be as good at football as the other. Unless of course one of them trains and works harder than the other. This could be a totally unfounded statement, but I think its true. Also we already know how he would look Black and Gold.

Quick Look at Mike Pouncey

Height- 6’5″

Weight- 303 lbs

40 YD Dash- 5.2

Bench Reps- 24 at 225 lbs

Why I Want to See Harris in a Steelers Jersey.

March 20, 2011 1 comment

This is the second installment of  Why I Want to See _____ in a Steelers Jersey. You can read the last article about Jonathan Baldwin here. This time I decided to pick a guy on the other side of the ball, and a guy who fits the team needs . Brandon Harris is the man I want to see in a Steelers jersey.  Now I must say I don’t feel like I know as much about Harris as I’d like, but I’ve read up on him & I’m starting to like what I see.

Brandon Harris Future Steeler... Maybe

It is clear why they should draft him, because CB is their weakest position in my eyes. I know some would say that the offensive line is the worst part of the team, but I think of the O-Line like I do a bullpen in baseball you can assemble one that isn’t great but will get you through the season. Plus think about this does another O-Lineman get them a win in the Super  Bowl, nope, but I think a better secondary does. Let’s take a look at what they have assuming they resign Ike Taylor he is clearly the top CB on the team, and in my eyes he is an elite cover man, he is getting older though plus there is no guarantee he comes back.  Next you have Bryant McFadden who sometimes looks like a legit #2 CB, but most of the time looks like well nothing. Then you’ve got William Gay who I don’t even want to speak about, and the younger guys Crezdon Butler and Keenan Lewis who could be serviceable players or could be nothing.  Drafting Harris would not immediately improve that, but he could probably be a nickel guy until he improved enough I do think he’d be the #1 CB with time though. Like I said in my last article they clearly won’t be able to get the top guys like Patrick Peterson, Prince Nakamura, or even Jimmy Smith unless they trade up. Another reason I like the idea of Brandon Harris in Steelers jersey is because of the great NFL players the University of Miami has already produced.  Just take a quick look at this list Frank Gore, Devin Hester, Ray Lewis, Brandon Meriweather, Ed Reed, Jonathan Vilma, Reggie Wayne. That is not even all the greats I could have mentioned, anyway what does this have to do with Harris well if this many great players came from Miami then doesn’t that make the chances of him being good. It also is always good to hear that a guy has good character or work ethic, that’s what I’m seeing about Harris while I have seen the exact opposite talk about Jimmy Smith. Finally wouldn’t he just look magnificent in Black and Gold?

From NFL.com

Harris is a true gamer that is at his best when the lights are on and he has the tools to become a starting cornerback at the next level. He excels in man coverage, as he is explosive with an elite closing burst and he has very fluid hips to maintain speed in transition. He also shows very good instincts when lined up one-on-one, but he seems confused at times in zone coverage and can get caught out of position. His press skills are still raw, but he is a strong kid with a tireless work ethic and he should be a mid-to-late first round pick.

Quick Look at Brandon Harris

Height- 5’10″

Weight- 191 lbs

40 YD Dash- 4.53

Vert Jump- 35.5″

College Career Stats: 129 Tackles, 2 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, 4 inteceptions

Why I Want to See Baldwin in a Steelers Jersey.

March 18, 2011 1 comment

Well it is once again time to speculate who will get drafted where and what team will take who. I know a lot of people make mock drafts, but I simply don’t patience or time. So I will simply do a series of why I want to see (Insert Steelers first pick worthy player) in a Steelers jersey. In the First installment here I want to talk about one of my favorite receivers ever Jonathan Baldwin.

First of all I think the main reason I want to see Baldwin in a Steelers jersey is just because I like him so much. I’ve followed this dude since he was in High School, and he was in probably my favorite football games of all time. This was a High school game but boy was I impressed, It ended being pretty much Terrelle Pryor Vs. Jon Baldwin. Then of course I’ve followed him in college, since he played for my favorite school. He didn’t disappoint me there either all be it he didn’t look as great as he could have, but I blame that on Pitt being unable to recruit a legit QB. However my strong obsession does not give the Steelers a legitimate reason to take Baldwin, but there are many other reasons why he would be a smart pick.

Lets get to the real reasons why I think he should be in a Steelers jersey. Well my first reason would that the Steelers need WR help. They may not need this a direly as OL or secondary help, but help at the WR position is needed. Lets take a look Hines Ward although once our #1 receiver has lost a step and is on the downside of his Career, next is Mike “THE FLASH” Wallace he is one of the top young guys at his position however he can’t do it alone he’ll need help (Baldwin), and the other two guys

Manny Sanders and Antonio Brown

Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown looked OK last year but just ok gets you a bunch of losses in the AFC Championship game. I think if they took Baldwin he would instantly be the 2nd or 3rd best WR on the team, and after a while he’d be their #1. Another strong reason why I want to see JB in a Steelers jersey is because I think he may be the best player available when they pick at 31. I think most want to see the Steelers pick an O Lineman or a Cornerback, but there may not be one available that is the worth taking in the first round. While on the other hand Baldwin is definitely worth a first round pick. Next I want to see him in a Steelers jersey because he is from Pittsburgh. Isn’t this a classic story that everyone loves to see, a hometown fella that becomes a superstar for his hometown team. Plus isn’t the NFL a business all about making money, I think it’s a good PR move. Finally wouldn’t he just look magnificent in Black and Gold?

Quick Look at Jon Baldwin

Height: 6-5

Weight: 225

40 YD Dash: 4.50

Vert Jump: 42.0

College Career Stats: 128 Rec, 2337 Yards, 16 TD

My 2011 Pirates Predictions.

March 16, 2011 Leave a comment

I Love the Pirates, I have no idea why as I have never seen a good Pirates team in my life. Could this be the year that changes? Who knows, I mean it probably won’t be but a boy can dream right. There are some things that I want to predict that I  most certainly believe will happen. So here its is Mine and Brando’s list of What will Happen  to the Pirates in 2011.

  1. The Pirates Will Not lose 100 games. It Simply won’t happen two years in a Row. As bad as they were last year you have to believe they improved enough to win 7- 10 more games and only lose in the 90 game range. I’m not saying they only win 63 games as I believe anything could happen with this young core, but I do know they won’t lose 100.

    It's a Major Award!

  2. Andrew McCutchen will Win a Major Award. Andrew McCutchen is a great player and despite playing for the Pirates, I believe that he will win a major award such as the Gold Glove award. We’ve seen it happen in the past and I don’t see any reason that the best outfielder the Pirates have had in years couldn’t pull it off. Could he even win the Batting Title or Possibly the MVP? We can only hope that he brings some watchable ball to PNC.
  3. The Best Pitcher will be… Rudy Owens. This may be the boldest of my predictions, but I really think it may be true.  Most are going to disagree with this and say it will be James McDonald. I do think that J-Mac will do pretty good this year, he did have some good stats in his time with the Pirates. He went 4-5 with a 3.52 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, and averaged 8.7 K’s/9 in 64 IP. As we know though Pirates Starters have had problems repeating success in the past. Plus this will be his first year where he’ll be expected to carry a major load in the majors. Why do I think Owens will do so good well I really like what I see in him I think he’ll do great in AAA, be up in the majors by mid-season, and really show he deserves it.
  4. The Pirates will hit more home runs this year then in the last five years. They were 6th worst in the league last year with only 126. Before that  they hit 125 in 09, 153 in 08, 148 in 07, and 141 in 06. Lets face it last year they had Jones as their scariest home run threat, This year looks a lot different. First off Pedro Alvarez will be the main power man in my eyes he has 40 Home Run potential, will he hit that many this year probably not but with 25-35 it sure will do. Next I look at the platoon of Jones/Diaz to be the second biggest source of power. Jones isn’t good against lefties but he does great against righties, and the exact opposite is true for Diaz . Jones had a .282/.359/.495 line against right-handers, and Diaz’s  career line against lefties is .335/.373/.533. I would expect around 20-30 from the Jones/Diaz platoon. Lyle Overbay will be a good addition to the long ball department. Although he is on the downside of his career I can see him doing alright for the Pirates being a lefty in PNC is always a plus. He should hit around 15-25. For my prediction to come true they’d have to hit at least 154, can it happen.
  5. A Pirate Pitcher will win the Cy Young. Ok so we all know this isn’t going to happen, but I figured I’d make one really crazy prediction to go with my other somewhat crazy predictions. I mean what are the actual chances that someone from the group of Maholm, Ohlendorf, McDonald, Correia, Morton can beat out some of the guys like Lincecum, Halladay, Lee. Well I think those chances are about 1 in a billion, but that’s big enough for me to make this prediction.
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