The Spoilers – Bucs Take Series; GM Search Continues

Oh baby – what a game!

4-4 tie going into the bottom of the 8th and the Brewers decided to put Derrick Turnbow on the mound instead of their closer Francisco Cordero probably because Cordero has a 6.75 ERA in away games.

It would be a mistake Ned Yost would regret as the Cubs had lost their game against Houston.

Turnbow walked Jose Bautista and Steven Pearce and, Jim Tracy, deciding to show his resolve to play the spoiler, sent Cesear Izturis out to pinch run for Bautista. Ronny Paulino then ground a single back through the box and Bill Hall’s throw from center was late and off the mark allowing Izturis to score.

But the Bucs wanted more.

After Jack Wilson flied out, Josh Phelps came up with two outs and crushed a 2-0 Turnbow heater off the centerfield wall for a triple that Hall bobbled allowing both Pearce and Paulino to score on putting the Pirates up 7-4.

Matt Capps came out and needed just 12 pitches to record his first save since August 28th.

Fabulous stuff.

Both starters took the mound in this game with poor command but Tom Gorzelanny was able to battle through it when he needed to limiting the Brewers to six hits and two runs despite walking a batter an inning in the 2cd, 3rd, and 4th. He also hit a batter.

Brewers starter Dave Bush didn’t have as much luck. In the first he issued a one out walk to Nate McLouth, a two out walk to Adam LaRoche, Jose Bautista was hit by a pitch loading the bases, and then Steven Pearce hit a routine ground ball to J.J. Hardy who took his eye off the ball at the last second and the ball bounced off his glove allowing McLouth to score.

1-0 Pirates.

McLouth tripled leading off the third with a line drive shot into the 410 notch, Freddy Sanchez quickly lined a single into center to score McLouth, LaRoche crushed a shot past Prince Fielder that went into the corner for a double and Sanchez was held up at third.

Jose Bautista stroked a single into center scoring Sanchez, Pearce hit a routine double play to Hardy at short and the Brewers got the force at second but Weeks relay was weak and it bounced and the hustling Pearce beat it out allowing LaRoche to score.

4-0 Pirates after three.

The Brewers started to mount a come back in the fourth when Braun was given a free pass, Fielder ground one that went under Sanchez’s glove allowing Braun third, and Hart ground into a double play that Braun scored on.

4-1 Pirates.

Bill Miller got into the act hammering a Gorzelanny 3-2 pitch into the left field seats in the 5th making it 4-2. The Brewers tried to rally again in the seventh but stranded two runners when Franquelis Osoria got Weeks to strike out looking.

4-2 Pirates through 7.

In the 8th with Osoria still on the mound, Hardy ground a single just past Jack Wilson and Braun doubled into the right field corner which Weeks went to third on. Jim Tracy went to his pen calling on Damaso Marte to face Fielder who ground one to deep short that Wilson made a highlight reel play on to get Fielder, although Hardy scored.

Tracy went to his pen once again and brought out Shawn Chacon with Braun at third and dished up a Corey Hart deep fly ball to the center field wall that Morgan jumped for, had in his glove, but failed to squeeze, and Hart had a triple with Braun scoring which tied the game.

Tom Gorzelanny is now +25 innings over 2006 and is projected to make three more starts which could put him in the +43 range.

+25 is normally considered the start of a danger point with almost every organization in baseball as the "Year-After Effect" is well documented.

Tom Verducci started monitoring the effect back in 2002 and last year noted Duke and Maholm each had a significant rise in their ERA’s from 2005 to 2006 while coincidentally also having had significantly increased workloads year-to-year (Maholm +98 and Duke +44).

Now the year after the Year-After Effect we see Duke and Maholm are both out for the count.

Bucco Blog has recommended Tom Gorzelanny be shut down for over a month now and, after watching three of his last four outings, it’s become painfully obvious that it should happen now disregarding the team’s desire to see him win 15.

Phillies Assistant GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has been linked to the Pirates GM search in numerous publications but we have to believe that if Amaro was so hard up to even consider the Houston position working under Drayton McLane, he’s not the kind of guy we need in Pittsburgh anyway.

Speaking of not being wanted, Ivy League White Sox assistant general manager Rick Hahn said Wednesday that "I’ve removed my name from consideration." Whether Hahn was even a GM candidate is anyone’s guess, but his statement is a bit worrisome.

And continues to push Brewers scouting director Jack Zduriencik’s name as if he was all but hired. I’m not so sure for numerous reasons, the most obvious being many believe he is horribly overrated. Further, if he was the choice the Pirates would have already announced their CEO pick in Coonelly instead of waiting as long as they have.

Our bet is on LaCava – not just because we think he would be the best man for the job, but because most everyone else around the game does too.

While the Pirates are playing well there is an old saying in baseball that says don’t look at March and September stats with a meaningful eye. Keep that in mind this winter when we start hearing how well the Pirates mashed down the stretch.. without Bay, Nady, and  Duffy.





    Word just got out that Twins GM Terry Ryan is stepping down at the end of the season. Do you think he could be a possible candidate here and what do you think about him as a GM? Would he be a good fit here?


    With all do respect,Its amazing how some people can speak for most of the people in the game. And Oh yea about stats, yes they are just a piece of the puzzle not the answer to the puzzle.Your comparisons lack substance Why choose only 3 years and then proceed to compare oranges to apples, why not total years as Scouting Directors. Also, If you are going to compare Scouting Directors #’s, then limit it to Scouting Directors only, for they are the ones that see the players and make the decisions not Assistant GM’s. They are different tasks and titles.
    As for Overrated that is a very strong statement to say about someone that has helped turn one of the Worst teams in Baseball into one of the Best, by Drafting IMPACT players (Fielder, Braun, Hardy, Hart, Weeks, Gallardo, Gwynn etc…)To say the least Jack Zduriencik is not Overrated, but a very Viable and Qualified candidate to be the GM of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

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