The Pittsburgh Pirates have been introducing their lineup with a late-night television flair. A video intro that’s in the style of Saturday Night Live and Late Night With David Letterman has been playing before games at PNC Park
Todd Frazier, the Cincinnati Reds rookie third baseman, was credited with saving a man’s life Tuesday afternoon.Frazier performed the Heimlich maneuver on the man, who was choking on a piece of steak at a restaurant in downtown Pittsburgh. Frazier and Reds outfielder Ryan Ludwick were eating lunch before Cincinnati’s game against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
“I was talking to (Ludwick) and I see it out of the corner of my eye,” Frazier told reporters, including MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon. “I said, ‘I think that dude is choking over there.’ … There were two women side by side trying to give him the Heimlich. (Ludwick) said to get over there because I was the closest one. So I went over there and was yelling at them to get out of the way. They did, and I gave two pumps and it came out.”
Frazier said he learned the Heimlich in high school.
“It was pretty surreal. I have never done that before,” he told reporters.
The man, who did not give his name, thanked Frazier several times and paid for the players’ lunch, Frazier told reporters.
Frazier doubled, tripled, drove in two runs and scored a run in the Reds’ 8-1 victory Tuesday night at PNC Park.
The opening day game at Dodger Stadium got under way Tuesday amid a heavy police presence, one year after a San Francisco Giants fan was beaten into a coma in the parking lot. Undercover officers wearing Pittsburgh Pirates jerseys in the stadium joined uniformed officers patrolling on bikes, horses and in squad cars.
Officers wearing rival team jerseys will be at every game this season, Sgt. Mitzi Fierro said.
“If somebody is going to harass a fan from an opposing team, it increases the possibility of them coming in contact with a police officer,” she said. “It kind of requires people to be on their best behavior.”
Last year’s opening was marred by an attack at the end of the game on Giants fan Bryan Stow. He was wearing a San Francisco jersey when he was punched in the head, kicked and slammed to the ground in the parking lot. Stow, a paramedic from Santa Cruz, suffered severe brain damage and continues to undergo rehabilitation.
He still needs someone to dress him and help him to and from his wheelchair, according to a posting early last month on a family blog.
Two men have pleaded not guilty to charges of mayhem, assault and battery.
Being back in the National League for the first time since 2005, Pittsburgh Pirates new pitcher A.J. Burnett had to get his groove back holding a bat unfortunately the 35-year-old starting pitcher will require surgery and may be out 4-8 weeks after taking a foul ball to his face.
Tony La Russa might not have managed his final game in a St.Louis Cardinals cap after all. If commissioner Bud Selg has his way, La Russa would manage the National League in the 2012 All-Star Game in Kansas City.
“I’d like to see him do that,” Selig told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We’ve got to see what happens. Tony La Russa is one of the great managers in baseball history, Certainly he’s one of the legendary managers in this generation. There’s no argument about it,” Selig said.
La Russa wouldn’t be the first manager to return to manage an All-Star Game after being replaced by his own team. Danny Murtaugh did it in 1972 after leading the Pittsburgh Pirates to the World Series. But that was before the game “meant something” more than pride.
MLB has no clear rules dictating a replacement for an All-Star Game manager who has left or been removed from his job.
Cincinnati Reds rookie catcher Devin Mesoraco was angered at his parents over a batch of 700 or so red T-shirts designed by his parents and made in his honor. Mesoraco was upset when he learned, via Facebook, that his mom and dad had created this plan to honor him that contained his nickname, “Mez,” and an image of him throwing on the front. His name and uniform number are on the back.
“I didn’t even tell Devin, and somebody put it on Facebook,” his mother, Laura, told the Punxsatawney Spirit newspaper. “I got a text from him at one o’clock in the morning that said, ‘No T-shirts!,’ but I told him some friends approached us and wanted shirts to wear to support him, so Doug (Devin’s dad) and I sort of took it on so we could get the design we liked.”
Friends and family wore the shirts at PNC Park in Pittsburgh to play the Pirates over the weekend. The 23-yaer-old Mesoraco was born in DuBois about 100 miles from Pittsburgh. Mesoraco finally relented when his parents agreed to donate the proceeds to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, a charity Mesoraco supports.
Major League Baseball, which banned illegal performance-enhancing drugs and amphetamines, now has several teams restricting the use of energy drinks. Teams are discouraging the use of Red Bull and other energy drinks, with most banning it in the minor leagues.
The Arizona Diamondbacks and Houston Astros have stopped providing energy drinks in their clubhouse on the big league level and the Milwaukee Brewers have removed them throughout their minor league system. All clubs are citing harmful effects but can’t ban the beverages because they are not prohibited in the collective bargaining agreement.
“We take the same education approach with the energy drinks that we take with supplements,” said Ross Atkins, vice president/player development of the Cleveland Indians. “We ask why a player is using it, is there something else natural he could to improve his energy levels?”
The Astros began taking precautions in 2009 when reliever Wesley Wright was taken to a hospital and treated for dehydration. He said he drank several cans of Red Bull and soft drinks before pitching that afternoon.
“We’ve had a couple of issues regarding dehydration,” Astros General Manager Ed Wade said, “and our people think they can be traced to misuse, overuse of energy drinks. It just seemed that we shouldn’t be creating an environment where we’re almost facilitating the effects of dehydration.”
This of course has caused several players to speak out.
Pittsburgh Pirates All-Star closer Joel Hanrahan, who typically consumes two Red Bull drinks a day, said: “I don’t see why it should be banned. You’ve got to go out there 162 games. You’re playing 21 games in a row, and switching time zones, and you want to be mentally and physically ready. If fans can sit in the stands and drink it, why can’t we drink it during games? We’re human, too.”
“It’s asinine,” Diamondbacks closer J.J. Putz said. “What are they going to ban next, coffee? Soft drinks? It’s so bizarre.”
Sluggers Ted Williams, Larry Doby, Willie Stargell and Joe DiMaggio will be honored as part of a set featuring baseball players the U.S. Postal Service announced. The U.S. Postal Service is releasing a series of “Major League Baseball All Stars” commemorative forever stamps that are to go on sale in July 2012.
Williams is the last baseball player to hit .400 for the season and owned a .344 average over his 19-year career for the Boston Red Sox. Stargell won a pair of World Series titles with the Pittsburgh Pirates and was voted to the All-Star game seven times as well as winning 1979 National League and World Series MVP awards.
DiMaggio is best known for his 56-game hit streak, but he helped the New York Yankees to nine World Series titles, earning three AL MVP awards along the way. Doby was the second black player to play in the majors and the first to play in the American League and appeared in seven All-Star games as well as helping the 1948 Cleveland Indians capture their last World Series title.
On Saturday Milwaukee Brewers manager Ron Roenicke signaled to pitcher Zack Greinke to pick up a bat and step in for pinch hitting duties against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Greinke, not scheduled to appear until Wednesday, stepped in the batters box wearing a special jersey the Brewers had planned on wearing on Sunday to honor the city’s German heritage. Greinke provided a sneak peek with “Bierbrauer” across the front of his jersey when he hit for Milwaukee starter Marco Estrada in the fifth innings. He was able to move Jonathan Lucroy to second with a sacrifice.
After 19 innings and almost 7 hours in the Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves game last night, home plate umpire Jerry Meals missed an obvious out just a few feet in front of him. Braves Julio Lugo scored from third base on a contested play at the plate, giving the Braves a 4-3 win in 19 innings over the Pirates shortly after 1:50 EST. Lugo took on Scott Proctor’s grounder to Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez, whose throw to catcher Michael McKenry easily beat Lugo to the plate. Lugo tried to avoid the tag and replays indicated McKenry made the tag, but home plate umpire Meals called Lugo safe.
“I saw the tag, but he looked like he oléd him and I called him safe for that,” Meals said. “I looked at the replays and it appeared he might have got him on the shin area. I’m guessing he might have got him, but when I was out there when it happened I didn’t see a tag.”
The game was the longest in Turner Field history and matched the longest in the major leagues this season. At 6 hours, 39 minutes, it was the longest by time for both teams.The Pirates previous longest game was 6:12 against the San Diego Padres on August 25, 1979. The Braves previous longest game by time was 6:10 against the New York Mets on July 4, 1985, at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium.
Canadian little Tommy showed up to last nights Pittsburgh Pirates-Toronto Blue Jays game dressed as a mini me version of his baseball hero Jose Bautista. little Tommy went all out in his imitation of Bautista with batting gloves, shades and a drawn on beard, making dad and the MLB home run leader proud.
Two Bautista’s are indeed better than one.
Pittsburgh Pirates closer Joel Hanrahan is having a solid year, having saved 20 games in 20 opportunities and is carrying a 1.31 ERA. The success on the diamond has risen his confidence so much that he tweeted him getting a pedicure with his wife. The toes on the left, he said, are colored purple for prostate cancer and pink for breast cancer and on the toes on the right represent the Pirates.
Pittsburgh police say a man attacked the wife of Pirates catcher Chris Snyder in a traffic dispute while Snyder sat in the car, unable to get out because he’d had back surgery. Investigators say Carla Snyder and the scooter-riding man, Subhash Arjanbhi Modhwadia, nearly collided Wednesday. The 44-year-old Modhwadia followed her to a gas station, kicked the vehicle and swung at Carla while her two children sat in the car as well. Authorities say he ripped a mirror off the car.
A passer-by and an off-duty police officer subdued him. Police say Modhwadia bit the bystander and threw punches with keys between his fingers. Modhwadia is being held on $25,000 bail.
A frustrated New York Mets manager Terry Collins laid into his team Wednesday after a loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. He vowed to make changes while pointing out the team’s inability to make plays.
“I’m running out of ideas here,” Collins told reporters in his postgame news conference. “Do we play hard? Absolutely. That’s not the issue. The issue is not effort. That’s not it. It’s about execution.”
Collins spoke with the media after chewing out players in the clubhouse.
“He got his point across,” Mets left fielder Jason Bay said. “He was fed up with the way we were playing.”
New York allowed five runs in the seventh inning and four more in the eighth as the Pirates won, 9-3. The seventh-inning meltdown included a failed double play attempt and two lapses by third baseman Willie Harris.
“He wasn’t very happy, he wasn’t very happy at all,” Harris told reporters. “And he had no reason to be.”
Said Collins: “That seventh and eighth inning are my players that I put out there. I truly believe in them. Therefore maybe I’ve got to make some adjustments. And, by god, they’ll be made. I don’t know if it comes with finding different players. But they’ll be made. Something is going to be changing.”
The Mets fell to 25-30 with the loss, their second in three games to the Pirates. They’re fourth in the National League East, 8 1/2 games behind the first-place Philadelphia Phillies. On top of all that, they became the fifth team in major league history to lose five consecutive home games after leading in the seventh inning or later.
“I sit up every night trying to figure out what can we do to get us over the top. Should we hit-and-run more? Well, who do you have up there? You have guys up there you shouldn’t hit-and-run with. Should we bunt more? Well, if we don’t get bunts down, you’re putting them in situations to fail. Guys are pitching good. We get in situations where we’ve got to make a pitch, we don’t make a pitch. I don’t have the answers. I’m searching. I’m wringing the rag dry of coming in here and having to look at [the media], and having you look at me like I’m a stinking fool. And I told these guys: ‘We’re good enough. We’ve got to go play the game right.’ We just can’t continue to make foolish mistakes….“They’re big league players. They should be able to do it.”
Today at Wrigley Field the band More Than Me was in the booth to sing the time honored tradition of Take Me Out To The Ball Game during the seventh inning stretch of the Chicago Cubs versus Pittsburgh Pirates game. Apparently the concept of how to wear a jersey correctly still hasn’t circulated of Buffalo, the city they call home. Nor have the correct lyrics as they happened mangled those as well by signing “Buy me some penis and Crackerjack …” “And it’s one, two, three balls you’re out”
See for yourself HERE
PNC Park and Pittsburgh Pirates usher Michael Schacht, 58, tragically passed away after pulling off the road while suffering a heart attack after driving home from an extra inning game on April 8th. Schacht was left to die in the street after a teenage suspect approached the vehicle, dragged him out of his car, robbed and carjacked him and left him in the street for dead.
Police did make an arrest of a seventeen year old male because the suspect inadvertently left behind an iPod at the scene of the crime. The teenager approached the car and found Schacht “in distress and slumped over the console,” then removed him from the car leaving him on the ground as he went through his pocket and stealing his wallet, the teen drove off in his 2002 silver Hyundai Sonata.
A passer-by found Schacht unresponsive and bleeding from a head injury and was taken to Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh where he was pronounced dead later.
Back on April 11, we posted the video of the Pittsburgh police beating and tasering a Pirates fan at PNC Park while mocking a woman in the background that could be heard over and over “stop that!” Turns out the woman, Amanda Harle, is a producer at Pittsburgh’s CBS affiliate KDKA and was said to have threatened the arresting officers while even taking a kick at them.
She was in court where a judge dismissed her aggravated assault, misdemeanor disorderly conduct and resisting arrest charges against but found her guilty of summary defiant trespassing, harassment and disorderly conduct.
The police that worked at a recent Pirates game at PNC Park where not about to let this Kurt Angle USA jacket wearing fan turn their home stadium into a scene similar to the one out in Los Angeles and hit him with the teazer. Someone should have put a muzzle over the lady screaming “stop that.”
USA! USA! USA!
The Altoona Curve a minor league affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirate unveiled for the start of the MiLB season these rally cap lining reversible hats. When the Railroad Red cap with the new Engineer head logo is turned inside out, a bright orange lining with large black eyes is displayed to simulate the look of popular Curve rally mascot Al Tuna.
Every Thursday Sports Grind Entertainment will present you with the Mama Margie’s Major Meltdown. The recipient of this honor goes to the Tampa Bay Rays who lead the American League last year with 96 wins and won the American League east Division but have yet to notch a win this season. The Rays have started the season 0-5 with all their games coming at home and where swept by the Baltimore Orioles, a team that won all of 66 games last season good enough for second worst in the American League.
In MLB history, which dates to 1869, 110 teams have started a season 0-5 however just two of those 110 went on to make the postseason, which is less than two percent. Those two teams were the 1974 Pittsburgh Pirates and 1995 Cincinnati Reds, both of whom actually started their seasons 0-6.
What’s lies ahead in the 2011 Major League Baseball season, well no one knows for sure but Opening Day is upon us and it’s time to roll out a few predictions. I can only hope to match last year when I picked the San Francisco Giants to win it all and then right before the World Series started calling it over in five games, which had a few local industry folk laughing at the gesture cause it was against their beloved Texas Rangers.
If you happened to listen to our live show a week ago then you already heard a few of these but a few have been added before today’s first pitch. So here I go (wish Calvin Casey and Rudy J would have participated).
Enjoy opening day, enjoy the season. I know I will.
American League East winner:
Boston Red Sox
American League Central winner:
Chicago White Sox
American League West winner:
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
American League Wild-Card winner:
New York Yankees
American League Pennant winner:
Boston Red Sox
National League East winner:
National League Central winner:
National League West winner:
San Francisco Giants
National League Wild-Card winner:
National League Pennant winner:
American League Surprise team:
American League Disappointing team:
Tampa Bay Rays
National League Surprise team:
National League Disappointing team:
St. Louis Cardinals
American League Rookie of the Year:
Kyle Drabek, Toronto Blue Jays
National League Rookie of the Year:
Aroldis Chapman, Cincinnati Reds
American League Manger of the Year:
John Farrell, Toronto Blue Jays
National League Manager of the Year:
Dusty Baker, Cincinnati Reds
American League MVP:
Carlos Quentin, Chicago White Sox*
National League MVP
Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers
American League Cy Young Award:
Dan Haren, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
National League Cy Young Award:
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
*indicates changed from on-air pick
Had no idea the Chicago Cubs needed New York Yankees Derek Jeter to help sell tickets but that appears to be the case with this billboard on display in Chicago. Yes the Yankees are coming to town June 17-19 for inter-league play but this type of advertising campaign is something you would see centered around the Florida Marlins or the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Back on October 29, 2009, we posted the story of the Pittsburgh Pirates signing two Indian players after they won that reality show. Well now there’s only one who can call himself a Pirate as Dinesh Patel has been released. Patel pitched sparingly in the Gulf Coast League over the past two summers. 13.2 innings of relief work in which he gave up nine runs on 19 hits while striking out 11 and walking three.
His reality show-winning partner, Rinku Singh, did a bit better. He actually got to pitch two whole innings in the New York-Penn League last year, and will presumably remain in the Pirates organization a bit longer.
San Francisco Giants shortstop Edgar Renteria nailed a 3 run home run off Texas Rangers pitcher Cliff Lee in the top of the seventh inning to put his name alongside baseball greats Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio and Yogi Berra as the only players with two World Series-winning hits.
Renteria aka Mr. World Series was named the World Series MVP after he batted .412 with two home runs in the series. Thirteen years after getting the hit that won the 1997 title for Florida Marlins he stunned the Rangers as his hit sailed over the outfield fence that propelled the Giants to a 3-1 victory all from the No. 8 spot in the batting order. In 1997, Renteria’s 11th-inning single up the middle off Cleveland Indians Charles Nagy won the title for the Marlins.
Renteria is also one of only two players to get a World Series-ending hit and hit into a World Series-ending out, according to STATS LLC. Back in 2004 Mr. World Series hit a comebacker to Boston Red Sox Keith Foulke who swept the St. Louis Cardinals. The other player to accomplish such a rare feat was Goose Goslin, who struck out for Washington against Pittsburgh Pirates in 1925, then singled for Detroit Tigers against the Chicago Cubs in 1935.
In his three World Series appearances, he has gone 21-63 for a .333 average with five doubles, two homers and 10 RBIs.