Hitting the stretch, Rod and I

Ever get the feeling you’re stuck in a “Twilight Zone” episode? So help me Rod Serling, I’ve had that sensation for nearly two years now, since returning to Pittsburgh to cover the Pirates for MLB.com.

Flashback: As a kid rooting for the Bucs, I would often base my faith in divine powers on getting answers to prayers such as, “If there’s a God, please let Virdon hit one out here.” Bear in mind, just the messed up ramblings of a very juvenile mind. Did it work? Well, I still consider myself pretty devout. Anyway, I got the impression the Pirates couldn’t win if I wasn’t looking over them.

Again, the perceptions of a juvenile mind. Except, stuff like that tends to stick with you, and starts messing with your adult mind (this is where the Twilight Zone comes in).

Like everyone else, reporters get occasional time off. Unlike most people, ours isn’t a Monday-to-Friday world, so the off days come in chunks of series.

In my two years of covering the Bucs, I’ve seen them go 123-91. When I have not been on the scene, they have gone 26-39.

I got into the irrational dichotomy last season, the Pirates’ 20th straight with a losing record. Not as far as I was concerned: I saw a 65-61 club (which made them 14-22 without my presence).

So it became somewhat of a running gag.

But it isn’t funny any more. The numbers this season are 12-17 … and 58-30.

The only four series I’ve missed the last six weeks are the only ones they have lost. Two sweeps since the first week of the season — in Atlanta in June and this past weekend in Colorado. Yep, wasn’t at either one.

I’m on my way to St. Louis. Don’t plan on missing any more games. Ridiculous? Call the loony bin? Felony supersition? 

All of the above. But Rod and I are going all the way on this one.


heavens to mergatroid tom, for the love of baseball gahds, please stick with them. tell buhie kuhn you need the work, to pay for a sick childs condition, all of our sanity!

I really need you to be there for the games then! go Bucs!!!!!

Clint should bench Marte, until the swelling of his head goes down, and get rid of Gaby Sanchez. He can’t hit, can’t catch, can’t throw. GO BUCS!!!

“You’ve just crossed over…into the Twilight Zone!”

I tend to be superstitious, even though I think it’s silly. If you can take the crazy approach that the results of the games don’t have to do with your presence then you can look on the bright side. You’ve been able to see the Pirates be successful and your time off happened to coincide with some Bucs struggles. They will struggle time to time and if I was covering them, I’d prefer that to be when I wasn’t there. So maybe the Pirates are unlucky when you aren’t there OR maybe you have been blessed to be there when the Pirates have succeeded and not when they have failed.

A very sensible way of looking at it. Thank you.

When R U or someone else going to point out to Mr. Hurdle that Mr. Pedro Alvarez has much better power #’s and batting avg. hitting 5th and or 6th then he has hitting 4th where his Average and Power #’s are horable this yr. and career wise, as of the other day when I checked his career batting avg. was a measly .166 go to espn.com and check the splits yourself if you don’t believe me. THANK YOU

Believe me, they’re aware of all that — but there’s such a conviction that their lineup would max out if he gets the hang of cleanup that they’re willing to wait.

That is STUPID have you looked at how much different the #’s are this is ridiculous put the platoon of Jones and G. Sanchez back in the 4 spot there #’s are way better then Pedro’s and another thing they should get Right-handed bat who hits left-handed pitching and sit Pedro against lefties he’s a career .209 hitter with 12 hr’s 59 rbi’s with 166 strikeouts in 386 ab’s!!!!!

1st off Pedro is never going to learn to bat in the 4 spot of the lineup as long as he has a crack in his behind and a hole in his butt!!!! 2nd when is everyone going to stop praising a pitcher who has lost 7 of his last 9 starts and realize this guy cannot live off his fastball I don’t care if he throws it 200 miles a hr. because it has no movement what so ever its straight as a rrow?????

Pirates are 5-0 when I have seen them in person (& I live in Oregon! It has been so much fun!) and 0-4 when I have watched their games on TV. No more WGN or any other station for me!!! (For the playoffs? Not sure. What do you suggest?)

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