It’s Not Hard, But Never Forget Who Is Ultimately In Charge of the Pittsburgh Pirates
By Tom Smith
Bob Nutting has some big decisions to make regarding the Pittsburgh Pirates
“One thing we’ll never do, that I’ll never allow, is giving up our best young players for a short-term gain or a rental. We’d be crazy to do that.”
“Well, there also are trades where you can get years of control with a player, so I’d say Neal has some very interesting decisions to make. But Marte, Cole, Taillon, Heredia, they’re what gets us over the top.”
Bob Nutting called this season “so fun, so gratifying, the way our team has played, the enthusiasm,” and added, “I’m just glad we had the conviction to roll through those first couple months.”
Right. Nutting was involved there, too, and didn’t mind being the bad guy: Back in May, he summoned Huntington and Clint Hurdle to address the then-miserable offense and had to be talked out of pushing for immediate change.
“I really do believe in structure and wanted to hear what they had to say. We had a discussion, and those guys turned out to be absolutely right.”
So did the guy who let them be absolutely right.
That was the feel good piece by Dejan giving Pittsburgh Pirates owner Bob Nutting some credit for the successes the Pirates had made to that point back in July.
We heard that in that sit down meeting, Nutting asked when Pedro Alvarez was going to be sent to Triple-A. And if we heard it, surely you know Alvarez has already heard that statement.
We bet it does wonder for the Nutting-Pedro relationship.
The trouble was, an article like that is a beacon for assholes like me right now. So, when the Pittsburgh Pirates take the field today, Bob Nutting will be watching. He doesn’t have a choice.
We do have a choice, and we will be watching too.
[Pitcure break: God, this Reds sweep against the Reds sucked].
Sep 12, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Reds fans hold up brooms for the Reds three game sweep over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Great American Ball Park. The Reds defeated the Pirates 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE
If the Pittsburgh Pirates grab a couple wins in Chicago, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania becomes a two-sport town for the first time in twenty years.
Talk radio on Monday will be abuzz with Yinzers claiming they saw it coming, they dreamt about it, Clint Hurdle should be Mayor. Y’know what I’m saying, it’s been that way on and off all season.
93.7 has ridden the Bucs success to record advertisement sales, or maybe it just seems that way since there are so. damn. many. ads running on the station right now. Good for them. It’s just a damn shame the station demotes the professional baseball franchise to Triple-A KDKA AM when the Pitt Panthers play football games.
If the Pittsburgh Pirates lose today, or even worse tomorrow, what would have been a huge series when Milwaukee comes to town Tuesday, becomes a stage for everything that has went wrong the past twenty years.
Today Bob Nutting appeared out of the darkness. What was once a storybook Pirates season has morphed into a bad Hollywood slasher flick, leaving a number of Bucs fans to ponder not if, but when the blonde chick gets mauled.
If only Nutting’s comments were as decisive as the masked murderer in the movie. Nutting failed to sound decisive, even today, about what he is going to do.
“I don’t think it’s ever fair to speculate on people’s jobs,” he said. “My approach has always been to fully support the team we have in place, and when it’s time to make a change, we make a change.”
It’s far from a sparkling endorsement, but not exactly a call to immediate action. To steal Nuttings phrase….’When it’s time?’ Uhhh, how about changing something right now Bob.
[Picture Break: Swept by L.A. back in April, ughh….]
April 12, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers left fielder Tony Gwynn (10), center fielder Matt Kemp (27) and right fielder Andre Ethier (16) after the series sweep against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Dodger Stadium. Dodgers won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE
Something isn’t right. Bob Nutting is the man in charge. Sure, the minority owners have a say in the matter, but not as much as Bob Nutting. So the pronoun WE that he used when he said, WE make a change, is wrong. There won’t be a WE, it’s you Bob Nutting.
A lot is on the line today. Let’s trust Nutting pays attention. There is still time for him to make a decision on what needs fixed, because it’s more than obvious that something isn’t quite right.
The Pirates aren’t a team blessed with a wealth of talent, but in a season when simply being average in the second half of the year, would have been enough, what the hell happened?
When the roster wasn’t upgraded with better talent that existed within the system someone needs to be accountable. When the organization makes decisions that don’t have the welfare of a team in a pennant race in mind, something is wrong. When something like the Pirates Fan Advisor happens, something isn’t quite right. When a manager makes poor decisions and doesn’t immediately take accountability, something needs done. When players disappear for games on end, something….anyyyyything needs dialed in a bit better.
The lineup received its strength from basically four players. Rod Barajas consistently received more playing time than he should have received. The corner outfielders were horrendous. The replacements for those players were injured in Snider’s case its interesting to ponder if it could have been prevented. So when the stretch run came, everyone was looking around for talent that simply didn’t exist. So where should we place the blame for that?
We think it all comes down to talent. The team didn’t have it when they needed it, but who shoulders that blame? Nutting might have to look in the mirror.
But it doesn’t have to be an in-season firing, just shake some shit up. Try and make a spark to close out this season.
And it doesn’t all fall on one person specifically which is the challenge for Nutting. When you’re this bad, there’s plenty of blame to go around. Maybe it’s a few people who need to step up and loudly accept responsibility?
It would certainly help.
But in the end, it’s up to Bob Nutting to decide who is at fault, or if he thinks he can accept the path the team is on.
But if Nutting believed the Pirates were on the right track, why wouldn’t he just set that record straight? Maybe he comes out and says, there are specific things that I will address immediately. I have confidence in our leaders. I have their back. I’m confident we will get this fixed, we have reviewed the inefficiencies and an immediate action plan is in place to resolve our shortcomings.
Freaking humor us for God’s sake.
The fact that he didn’t say anyting remotely close to what denotes confidence in the organization, tells me Nutting isn’t confident either.
The guy is smart. The guy is successful.
Let’s trust Nutting changes something before it’s too late. There isn’t a switch to be turned off and on, but maybe the wiring can be juggled a bit? Because, the thought of a two-sports town for a few more weeks is downright thrilling.
Here are the links to the stories we discussed above…