Pirates 2010 Caravan Another Homerun


The Pirates Caravan Kickoff was last evening at Seven Springs Mountain Resort.   We came off the slopes to find 250 people lined up at the Convention Hall doors.  At 4pm!  The Pirates faithful wouldn’t let a wet, dreary day spoil their fun.

And the Pirates did their part to ensure the crowd didn’t leave empty handed.   Pirates were available for autographs and also worked the numerous carnival style games throughout the evening.  Psst…Heh Pirates owner Bob Nutting.  You will need a bigger ballroom next year.

The Pirates absolutely ripped up the Convention Hall last night.  It was phenomenal.  Sure, the lines were excrutiating long for those interested in getting multiple pictures or cases of baseballs signed.  But the players were more than accomodating and accessible throughout the night.

Along with all of the Pirates brass.

Highlights included:

Garrett Jones glows when he speaks about playing 1B.  Bottom line. 

Rocco:  Gun to your head RF or 1B?

Garrett Jones:  First base

lots of mumbling…”I enjoy playing both spots.  First base though… shorstop makes play on backhand you gotta pick it for him.”  Garrett Jones [glowing]

Bob Nutting stood in the center of the room.  Alone.  He was not insulated by anyone.  He spoke for hours to anyone who was willing to talk.  (We had an interesting conversation.)

Charlie Morton singing Happy Birthday with Rocco DeMaro.

Manager John Russell reflecting on his day as a major league pitcher.   He had a 0.00 ERA

JR spoke about how much Andrew McCutchen worked this offseason on his throwing.  “Accuracy will make up for arm strength.”

Frank Coonley on Roccos’ show-revenue sharing dollars: …MLB has a process that I used to be a part of, clubs file a report…. how they use their revenue producing proceeds. We have always been very transparent.   Very detailed. Cause…I am an ex-lawyer…. In the draft, we spent more more than any other club over the past two years in signing bonuses. Adding instructors in the minor league system. Investment in scouts.  Our investment in strength and conditioning coaches at every level in the minors which most clubs don’t have.  We have never received word back from the Commissioners office.”

McCutchen extension? 
“….We haven’t approached Andrew on a long term extension.”  Frank Coonley

Pedros’ offseason work at API?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  “…Pedro has dedicated himself.  He has bought into it.”  Frank Coonley (in terms of Pedros’ work ethic at API)

For the complete first and second hour from the Caravan Kickoff, click on the Rocco Extra Innings link on the left.  I’m sure I butchered some of that.

Steve Blass and Greg Brown were the hosts for Pirates Trivia and Let’s Make a Deal.  Forbes Field opened in what year?  Yeh, I made my best guess, but missed it by a few years.  (I picked C). It cost us the trivia contest title. Perfection was hard to beat.  The tiebreaker was what was Harvey Haddix’ ERA in the Series.  Great question.  By the way, Haddix was 2-0 in the series.