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Wednesday April 23 2014
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Columnist Joe Giardina

Moments after the Game 4 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals at PNC Park on Monday afternoon, the second-guessers flocked to the parking garages, the local bars and the radio waves.

Why were the Pirates so afraid of Carlos Beltran (as if his post-season numbers weren’t enough of a reason)?

10/08/2013 - 12:45
Joe Giardina
The selection process for election into the National Baseball Hall of Fame is simple: a player, five-years removed from last wearing a uniform, is elected once his name appears on at least 75 percent of the ballots turned in by the voting members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.

The player remains on the ballot for 15 years, assuming he never receives less than five percent of the votes in any given year, at which point he would be removed.

01/30/2013 - 10:17
Joe Giardina
Forgive us if we’ve been down this road before, even if, over the past two decades, it’s been the road less taken. Last year, riding a wave of excellent pitching, timely hitting and unlikely heroes, the Pirates jumped out to a 47-43 record, entering the All-Star break above .500 for the first time since 1992.

On July 19 they were 51-44 and in sole possession of first place in the N.L. Central – the latest in the season they had been atop the division since 1997.

07/12/2012 - 17:24
Joe Giardina
Ray Searage became the Pirates pitching coach late in the 2010 season, after the team let Joe Kerrigan go. PSR’s Joe Giardina talked with Searage during Spring Training about the Bucs’ pitching staff.

Searage was a relief pitcher for the New York Mets (1981), Milwaukee Brewers (1984–1986), Chicago White Sox (

04/15/2012 - 14:39
Joe Giardina
For the first four months of the 2011 season, the Pirates were relevant again. They entered the All-Star break above .500 for the first time since 1992. They had three All-Stars for the first time since 1990.

On July 18 they were in first place in the NL Central – the latest in the season they were atop the division since 1997. But the final two months weren’t as kind.  They lost 47 of the

04/02/2012 - 23:37
Joe Giardina
When Albert Pujols signed a 10-year, $254-million contract with the Angels in December, the baseball world was shocked, as no one envisioned him leaving St. Louis.

Six weeks later, after Prince Fielder inked a nine-year, $214-million contract with the Tigers, shock turned to disbelief, as the years and dollar amount were well above even the most optimistic pr

04/01/2012 - 17:38
Joe Giardina
PSR's Joe Giardina caught up with Buster Olney of ESPN to get his assessment of the Pirates, the National League Central, and why Pedro Alvarez is the most important player in a Pirates uniform.

Joe: Do you think the departure of Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder, as well as the Reds emptying their fa

03/04/2012 - 17:41
Joe Giardina
The Pirates starting rotation received a minor overhaul over the offseason, with the recent acquisition of veteran A.J. Burnett from the Yankees, and the earlier signing of lefty Erik Bedard. Gone are Ross Ohlendorf, who never lived up to his workhorse reputation, and Paul Maholm, who started more games than any lefty in the National League over the past five years.



Here’s a look at the rest of the staff, in no particular order…

A.J.

02/20/2012 - 15:02
Joe Giardina
With pitchers and catchers just a few short weeks away from reporting to Bradenton, the core of the Pirates 2012 roster is pretty much set. PSR's Joe Giardina takes a close look at how the team breaks down, position-by-position, for the upcoming season as well as the long-term.

Catcher
2012: Rod Barajas
After pa

02/02/2012 - 17:57
Joe Giardina
I remember when I was 12 years old, playing basketball in the 6th grade on the JV team. On one particular night, in a span of about three minutes, I shot three straight air balls in a loss.

After the game I overheard my coach talking to a parent: “Did you see Joe’s shooting today? Maybe tomorrow he’ll be able to hit rim.”

11/08/2011 - 16:28
Joe Giardina
It’s all starting to make sense. The Steelers have not made the playoffs the past two seasons. Those two years have seen the team part ways with players who were integral to a sustained run of success that resulted in a pair of Super Bowl championships.
Editor's DeskFeature OnePure Steel
The play of Penguins captain Sidney Crosby has a tremendous impact on every game the team plays. Whatever success the Penguins have in the Stanley Cup Playoffs will depend largely on the opposition’s ability to contain No. 87. But he is not doing it alone.
Blue LineFeature Two
A champion won't be crowned in the NHL for nearly two months, but the quest for hockey's holy grail begins now. Sixteen teams are lacing up their skates and preparing for the upcoming hunt for the Stanley Cup. Here are the four favorites.
Blue LineFeature Three
Donation was made possible through sale of the “Remembering Rocco” shirt and by the overwhelming generosity of the Pittsburgh community and beyond.
Feature FourPress RoomSports Bites
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The newest crop of rookies will enter the NFL on May 8, when the 2014 NFL Draft gets underway at Radio City Music Hall in New York. The Houston Texans own the first selection, and it's a South Carolina defensive end who sits atop PSR's board.
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The Steelers’ offseason additions and subtractions have given a peek into what may be going on in the team’s South Side War Room as the team prepares for one of the deepest drafts in years. Several players have emerged as potential targets for the Black and Gold in 2014.
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Several local players could be off the board before the second round is completed on May 9. Pitt's Aaron Donald is the top prospect, but Penn State has a pair of players who expect to hear their names called early as well.
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The 2014 NFL Draft is shaping up to be one of the deepest in recent memory. But even in the deepest of drafts, there are studs, duds, snubs and flubs. How is one to know if a draft pick is worth cheering for, or if he should be booed mercilessly?
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