Let’s get this out of the way quickly. The Pirates jumped out to an early 2-0 start. Then they remembered they were the Pirates and went 1-3 over the next 4 games. But, look on the bright side. They’re 3-3 right now. That’s .500! If we can just keep this up for the next…..oh…..few months or so…..aw, forget it. Stat of the day for the Pirates: the Pirates are 2-0 with 7.5 runs per game when Garrett Jones hits a home run and 1-3 with 3.75 runs per game when he doesn’t. Anyone else want to provide a spark? Anyone? Well, on the bright side, maybe Garrett will break Barry Bonds’ home run record so we have a shot at .500 (and hopefully does it without any ‘help’ if you know what I mean).
Well, they made it a race with the Devils down the stretch, but after choking against Atlanta, come up short for the Atlantic Division crown and 2nd seed. I can’t say they honestly deserve it after going winless against Washington and New Jersey during the regular season. I’m not sure about this year. The Pens are really struggling against quality opponents (especially against teams that play the trap), but they have some guys that can absolutely take over a game so you can never count them out. I honestly have no idea how they’re going to do. I wouldn’t be shocked if they win the cup, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see them loose to Ottawa. I’m going to be really interested to see how they respond to the playoff atmosphere, and after the first couple of games will have a much firmer grasp of the expectations for them. Is anyone else with me on that?
Oh, the Steelers. Drama drama everywhere, and not a moral in sight. My goodness. Anyway, the big news all occurred this morning. If you haven’t heard yet, the Steelers traded Santonio Holmes to the Jets for a 5th round pick (and possibly a song to be named later), and Ben Roethlisberger will not have charges filed against him in Georgia (though a civil case is still possible). Well, as for Ben, there’s no choice but to wait and see. Suspensions, court dates, and the like are all probably coming down the pike, but he’s got way too many more years/monies owed on his contract to do anything to him. That’s unfortunate. Santonio, on the other hand, was not so lucky. He’s the sacrificial lamb in this because he’s convenient. He screwed up a lot, he was replaceable, and he was a free agent next year. That’s why he was let go. But I’m still glad the Steelers traded him. I, as well as most fans, cheer for my teams because they bring positive attention to my city/university when they win. The Steelers in particular are so revered in Pittsburgh because they bring some positive connotations about the city to people who haven’t been here since the steel mills were replaced by hospitals and universities. They are unfortunately also capable of bringing shame both on and off the field. The Rooneys have been very good about giving Pittsburgh the benefit of both worlds: winning while not compromising on character. However, if a decision must be made, I’d much rather be embarrassed on the field than off. That’s why it’s good riddance to Holmes, and if Big Ben and even Jeff Reed (both have made multiple mistakes in the past) go with him, I’ll take the hit in the win/loss column.
Tomorrow will be an extra special post: I’ve been working hard to find out if/why the Big East underperformes so much in March.