Pirates' Pitchers Struggle For Consistency
When it comes to pitching, making predictions isn't easy. Followers
of the hometown Pittsburgh Pirates are no doubt keenly aware of
that by now.
Prior to the 2003 season, the general
consensus was that the Pirates would have a formidable bullpen.
After all, Mike Williams had registered a club-record 46 saves the
year before, and set-up men Scott Sauerbeck and Brian Boehringer
also had outstanding seasons. The trio combined to fashion an excellent
2.92 ERA in 2002. More of the same was expected.
But 2003 turned out to be a disaster
for the three relievers . . . more.....
Ward And Burress Have Limited Choices
Say what you want about Plaxico Burress.
Call him unprofessional for skipping
each of the Steelers' 19 spring practice sessions.
Call him overrated after he followed
two 1,000-yard seasons with a series of poor games and dropped passes
last season that doomed the Steelers and quarterback Tommy Maddox
as much as any part of the team . . . more.....
Up Close With Tony Kornheiser
Tony Kornheiser, columnist for the Washington Post, is also the
co-host of ESPN's popular "Pardon the Interruption" (PTI) show,
which he hosts with his Washington Post colleague, Michael Wilbon.
A native of Long Island, N.Y., Kornheiser left the New York Times
to join the Post in 1979. His radio show aired on ESPN Radio from
January 1998 until this past spring. PSR editor Tony DeFazio spoke
with Kornheiser recently . . . more.....
Time Well Spent
everywhere in the sports world. Whether it's fans, media coverage
or salaries, things are on the move.
Some things, however, remain the same,
like the chance baseball offers fans, even in Pittsburgh, to see
the game's great players. That's the case even if the Pirates find
themselves out of contention before the Fourth of July (something
else that doesn't seem to change).
Why fans go to games is not much different
now than it's ever been . . . more.....
Classic comes to Pittsburgh July 29-31, 2005. Fish fans are expected
to start claiming prime riverbank spots from which to watch any
I'm not sure which is the bigger lie:
That this Super Bowl of fishing will bring $25-30 million into Pittsburgh's
economy, or that it's safe to eat anything caught out of the toxic
Manhattan clam chowder that poses as water in our city's rivers.
Imagine, fat rednecks wearing hats adorned
with hooks . . . more.....
Pittsburgh Lands A Lunker
Merriam-Webster's: lun-ker-something large of its kind; used esp.
of a game fish.
Money to be raised for Pittsburgh to
host the Bassmaster Classic fishing tournament next year? $2 million.
Money expected to be pumped into the
economy that week? $34 million.
Impression that viewers get when they
see our rivers and city on national TV? Priceless . . .
Despite Frustrations, Fans Keep Coming
Baseball legend Yogi Berra, a New York Yankees' Hall of Famer, is
perhaps best known in Pittsburgh for turning his back toward Forbes
Field's home plate and watching Bill Mazeroski's home run win the
1960 World Series for the Pirates.
It appears, though, that even with attendance
for professional sporting events in Pittsburgh on the decline (with
the exception of the Steelers), few fans are ready to turn their
backs on their teams. Fans of the Pirates and Penguins have been
beaten up by high ticket prices . . . more.....
Fan Cost Index
of the Fan Cost Index? It's published annually by the Team Marketing
Report and purports to enlighten the public as to what it would
cost a family of four to attend various sporting events. The Pirates
have taken a lot of deserved flak in recent years, but PSR is taking
to court as defense counsel on this issue. The Fan Cost Index total
for a family of four to attend a 2004 game at PNC Park is $143.31.
We don't think so . . . more.....
Super-Fans Accepted as Part of the Show
son, no. Remember what Dad told you. You use the body paint for
your body. Not for your hair. After all, you are going to be wearing
that big black and gold wig, remember?"
Yes, similar precious father-son bonding
conversations like this one take place all over Pittsburgh and other
NFL cities every Sunday morning. And the hysteria for that certain
segment of the sports population known as the "super fans" isn't
relegated to the NFL.
You ever been to Cameron Indoor Stadium?
. . . more.....
No Cheering In The Press Box
Sometimes, I'm not sure if I'm a breath mint, or a candy mint. Sometimes,
I have trouble deciding whether I should taste great or be less
filling. All the time, I'm convinced that the reader/viewer/listener
doesn't understand exactly what it is I'm trying to do, and/or what
I should be doing.
There's a misconception on the part of
the sporting public as to exactly what role a sports journalist
should fill. And given that the roles are multi-faceted and often
overlap, perhaps that's what leads to at least some of the confusion.
Recent criticism by callers and . . .
PSR: On The Clock: David Stern
David Stern has been the commissioner of the National Basketball
Association since February 1984. He joined the NBA in 1978 as general
counsel and became the league's executive vice president in 1980.
Born in Chelsea, New York in 1942, Stern's career began in his family's
New York delicatessen, Stern's Deli. He credits working behind the
counter with providing him the kind of work ethic necessary to head
the multimillion-dollar empire that the NBA has become under his
guidance (the league's revenue has increased five-fold since he
took the reigns in 1984). In Stern's two decades as commish, the
NBA has opened . . . more.....
in the Baby Penguins' recent march to the Calder Cup Finals was
the holistic view of Pittsburgh's first five seasons as owner and
operator of its own American Hockey League franchise.
The Wilkes Barre/Scranton Penguins have
established themselves as a popular brand in the northeastern corner
of the state while playing in a beautiful new building. They have
also deposited the development of players squarely in Pittsburgh's
control . . . more.....