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Sports Illustrated Writer: contract the Pirates!

Apr 30, 2010, 5:45 PM EDT

Paul Daugherty, usually of the Cincinnati Enquirer, but writing here for Sports Illustrated, saw just about all he needed to see from the Pirates last week:

In the seven days between April 20 and 26, the Pirates were outscored
72-12. Not by the Yankees, or even the Jets, but by the Brewers and the
Houston Astros. This isn’t Major League Baseball in any way, except

Break up the Pirates.

No, really.
Dismantle them player by player. Melt them down. Paperweights and
doorstops for everyone.

Daugherty bases his argument on more than just the shellacking at the hands of the Brewers and Astros, of course. The 17 years of futility enter into it, as well as charges that the Pirates don’t spend their revenue sharing money to actually make the team better.

Which doesn’t exactly square with the union’s position, which I wrote about last week.  The union believes that the Pirates are not, like the Marlins, squandering money to make the team better or otherwise acting poorly as an organization. Sure, that’s just one group’s opinion of the matter, but doesn’t it follow that the first ones to scream if the Pirates were mismanaging the store would be the union?

And as for those 17 years, the vast majority of them occurred under different ownership and different management.  It’s cold comfort to Pirates fans who can’t necessarily be expected to care what regime is presiding over the bad on-the-field product, but Daugherty knows that different people are in charge now, and unless he’s in radical disagreement with most people who know a little bit about the subject, he has to acknowledge that things are better now than they were just a few short years ago.

I know it’s bleak in Pittsburgh, but it’s not hopeless, and this brand of overreaction doesn’t seem to reflect what’s really going on in the organization.

  1. SouthofHeaven - Apr 30, 2010 at 6:18 PM

    The Pirates are like The Indians in Major League. They’re so overmatched, but you just can’t help sort of rooting for them. I get a big grin whenever I hear that some other team screwed up & they squeaked out a win.

  2. Oscar D - Apr 30, 2010 at 7:04 PM

    Maybe Paul forgets but right before their meltdown last week the Pirates swept the Reds.
    Go Buccos!

  3. Gomez - Apr 30, 2010 at 7:43 PM

    Let he who is without sin…Cincinnati hasn’t made the playoffs in 15 years themselves.

  4. Old Gator - May 1, 2010 at 12:10 AM

    The mere idea that the ownership of a major league baseball team would even think of just pocketing their luxury tax money without investing it in their team seems so far fetched to me that I won’t even seriously consider it. If that sort of thing were going on here in Macondo, hardly anyone would go to Feesh games.

  5. DSFC - May 1, 2010 at 1:48 AM

    Remember ten years ago or so when it was the Twins everyone wanted to contract? Yeah, about that….
    The Pirates have been a very poorly run team for a very long time, but there’s nothing set in stone about that. In another ten years, the Pirates could be contenders and the talk is about contracting someone else.

  6. Moses Green - May 1, 2010 at 5:51 AM

    you have about a 5 hour downtime on comments now…overnight? Talk about devotion to duty. Morels and hamsteak … mmmmm

  7. Steve B. - May 1, 2010 at 11:14 AM

    MLB should not be contracted under any circumstances. There are more baseball players available from more places than there have ever been, which would suggest that expansion would be smarter than contraction at the moment.
    I’m not saying either of those is the optimal immediate solution, but contraction is a dumb idea that would hurt players and fans alike.

  8. funi - May 1, 2010 at 11:17 AM

    Why don’t he write, Contract the Bengals! Thye never won anything! Where were the Reds anygood anyhow? 74-76 and in 1990! I think this “writer” knows the Pirates will eb very good shortly with Alverez coming up and the Reds have no hope at all for the next decade plus!

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