Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wednesday Wallace's

You didn't really think I was going to go with Steelers rookie wideout and sensational talent Mike Wallace, did you? You should know by now. Jeff Wallace pitched parts of three seasons for the Bucs from the years of 1997-2000. He was acquired from the Royals in the Jeff King/Jay Bell deal, and looked fairly promising during the 1999 season, throwing 39 innings of 3.69 ERA ball. He was striking out more than a batter an inning, but unfortunately, he was also walking almost a batter an inning. These are the type of red flags that should have made his 2000 season not all that surprising. Wallace's ERA in '00 ballooned to 7.07 as he continued to walk batters at an amazing rate, while also letting up too many home runs to be a successful major league pitcher. Wallace was let go after the season and then pitched for the Devil Rays and Red Sox before retiring due to arm troubles. He is currently scaring teenagers into being good pitchers.

He was definitely part of the problem (pitching staff) for that '00 team, which would be the last Bucs' team to play at Three Rivers Stadium. That was a damn good offense featuring John Vander Wal, Brian Giles, Wil Cordero, and Jason Kendall. Unfortunately, that year's pitching staff was made up of Kris Benson and a bunch of schmucks (which included future WS hero Bronson Arroyo and Cy Young winner Jason Schmidt). That was probably a pretty terrible defense as well (Giles was in center field), and we all know what happens when you put a bad pitching staff with a bad defense; that team let up an amazing 888 runs, the worst in franchise history since 1930 (and 4th worst overall). Good times.

Pens play the Islanders tonight at the Igloo (7:30/FSNP). That is, if anybody shows up. As the PPG has dubbed it, "Stormageddon II" hit last night and has made means of transportation even worse than before. But the show must go on. The Islanders just broke a long losing streak, but I would never underestimate this team. It's not gonna be easy, but the Pens should win this one to put them back on track after a pretty rough weekend.

Good news for the Steelers in 2010, they were so terrible at third downs this past season, that they should regress to the mean, and be much better next year. At least that's what we're all hoping for.

If you missed my two posts comparing the talent on the '08 Pirates roster as compared to the roster one can imagine for the '10 edition, then obviously, you're not following the blog. Here's a look at the lineups, and the pitching staffs. Conveniently, Charlie at BucsDugout has a post on just how truly bad the minor league system was when Huntington took over in '08. All in all, just a much better organization as a whole in 2010 than it was in 2008. Unfortunately, Bob Smizik does not have the ability to edit in his own comments onto my post.

Pat at WHYGAVS has a good look at who should win the fifth rotation spot between Kevin Hart and Daniel McCutchen. The conclusion is spot on, Hart doesn't throw enough strikes, while McCutchen lets up too many bombs. Since McCutchen showed improvement with his struggle this past season in AAA, he's probably the better bet. Either way, one of those guys has to be better than Jeff Karstens in '09, or that cluster'f in '08.

BUCCOFans now has a player tracker for 2010 draft hopeful Bryce Harper. The site will be tracking other potential guys the Bucs may grab with the #2 overall pick in June's draft; Christian Colon, Anthony Ranaudo, and Drew Pomeranz. Their seasons have not started yet, but when they do, BUCCOFans will be keeping track of their progress.

More later...

This is pretty cool, the Champions League Final will be shown on FOX in the United States. This means it should be in HD as well. The game was moved to a Saturday just so people around the world would not have to skip work to watch it (or watch it streaming in their cubicles); May 22nd, 2:30 EST. I'm gonna have to say more people across the world will watch this than they did for the game this past Sunday.

This is pretty spot on.

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