The First Place Pittsburgh Pirates

It’s after the All Star Game and the Pirates are in first place… tied with St. Louis yet with fewer losses.

They are contenders. If the playoffs started today, they’d be in a one game playoff with St. Louis. Actually with the Reds come from behind win and Jeff Karstens shutout of Houston, the National League Central has become wonderfully bunched together. 4 teams are within 3 games of first place.

But this is the latest the Pirates have had even a share of first since July 17, 1997. But even that deserves a little asterisk next to it. They were in first place because the 1997 NL Central was so lousy. They had a .500 record in mid July 1997 and still were tied for the top spot.

So this is the best Pirates team since 1992…
First step is first. Change the culture and have a winning season.
If they go 34-37 the rest of the way, they’ll finish above .500.

But for right now, take a gander Pirates fans.
It’s late in the season… It’s 57% over.

And here’s what the standings look like.
Savor it.

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Brandon Phillips! The Reds and Cardinals rivalry is awesome!

Walk off homer for Brandon Phillips!
Pujols homers off of Chapman!
I’m telling you, Reds-Cardinals could be Red Sox-Yankees for the next decade!
Please take note, Baseball!
Tonight’s game in Cincinnati should be the talk of baseball tonight.

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Hey Roger… Settle

If Roger Clemens gets another trial, and I am using my intense and knowledgeable legal mind to say that he will, it will be in the fall.

You know, when the pennant races are going on and leading up to the playoffs.

Won’t that make Bud Selig happy?

Now usually I am in favor of anything that angers Bud Selig (I’m not Bud’s biggest fan.)

But I for one don’t want to see this trial.
What is to gain by it?
Did Clemens lie?
Of course he did. Everyone on the planet Earth knows it.
Is it bad to lie to Congress? Sure, but they lie enough to US in return.
Does Congress have bigger fish to fry?
Sure. I’d like to see them talk to people who helped bankrupt the country, destroy the housing market and allow fecal matter to be served in fast food.
And I don’t care how much you hate Clemens (I’m actually not a Clemens hater… I grew up a huge Clemens fan.) Do you REALLY want to see him in jail?
Is that the latest chapter you want written in baseball? Clemens in an orange jump suit?
Clemens’ punishment is going to be banishment from the Hall of Fame. He’s not getting in. I’d vote for him, but I’m a big softy. They’ll be enough writers who will take him to the woodshed.
The Steroid Era is almost over. The remaining big juicers in the league are winding down (even A-Rod is breaking down now.) A new era and new stars are emerging.
You can end all of this Roger.
You got lucky. The prosecution was dumber than Grady Little and let you walk.
And the judge reminded everyone that jail time was on the line.
Take your good luck and strike a deal.
A plea bargain and all this will go away.
No trial.
No dragging ugliness into the court.
No public discussions of shooting lord knows what into your Hall of Fame ass.
We all know you are a tough competitor. But show some dignity.
End this.
Bonds’ trial ended and that will fade into oblivion.
Strike a deal.
Nobody wants this. And guess what? If you strike a deal now, it will go a long way to your rehabilitation.
If Pete Rose came clean in 1989, he’d be in the Hall of Fame right now. The whole gambling thing would be an embarrassing footnote to a great career.
Instead he dragged it out and made it worse by confessing only after he turned it into a pay day.
Settle now and maybe in 5, 6 or 7 years it will blow over.
People will realize you were a great player before you mysteriously ballooned up while hanging out with steroid distributors and Jose Canseco. People won’t mind as much that Andy Pettitte and Chuck Knoblauch confirmed Brian McNamee’s version of the story.
Settle now and by 2020 you will be a Hall of Famer. Sure you will dangle in the voting for a few years. Ask your old teammate Jim Rice how that felt. I bet he forgot, do you know why? BECAUSE HE’S IN THE HALL OF FAME!!!! He’s an immortal. He’s a Greek God now.
Settle… do the right thing for baseball and eventually your legacy.
Settle because this will only end badly if you don’t.

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