Wednesday, August 3, 2011


The Pirates have a 5 game losing streak entering today, having been swept by the Philadelphia Phillie's Ace pitching staff and being unable to match the offense of the Chicago Cubs.  Pittsburgh's pitching staff as a whole has struggled lately, but the offense continues to be inconsistent much like it has been all season.  If the Pirates hope to make it to the playoffs, the offense is going to have to start to produce like they are capable of.
The key bats in the Pirates lineup are going to be Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, and Pedro Alvarez.  It's still to early to count on Derrek Lee and/or Ryan Ludwick to produce, but if Cutch can produce like he did since entering the league in the summer of 2009 and Walker continues to drive in clutch runs like he has all season I think the Pirates have a legitimate shot at making the playoffs.  The real key though is Pedro Alvarez producing down the stretch like he did last year.  During August and September last year "El Toro" was an absolute beast at the plate winning a player of the week and rookie of the month awards.

One team that didn't have to worry about offense was the 1979 World Series Champions Pittsburgh Pirates.  I wasn't even born when the Battling Bucs won their last World Series Championship, but I have seen the DVD collection and that was a fun team to watch.  Pops Stargell at the age of 39 was still crushing the ball as he hit .281/.352/.552 and had an OPS of .904 with 32 HR.  Dave Parker (28) batted .310, hit 25 HR, and swiped 20 bags.  The real success came from the unsung hero of that team Bill Madlock (also 28 years old) who hit 7 HR, stole 21 bases, drove in 44 runs, while posting a slash line of .328/.390/.469 in only 85 games.  Prior to Bill being traded from the San Fransisco Giants, the Pirates were just a few games over .500, but by season's end finished 34 games over and won the NL East division. 

This 2003 Topps Tribute World Series Edition commemorates the '79 Bucs 3 offensive stars: Willie Stargell, Dave Parker, and Bill Madlock.  The card is beautifully designed by having the game used relics cut into the shape of the Pirates logo.  This card contains bat pieces of Stargell and Madlock and a yellow jersey swatch from Parker.  I absolutely love this card and am glad to add it to my collection.

I would like to conclude by calculating a saber metric rarely used (FSC)
Pops + The Cobra +Mad Dog = FRICKING SWEET CARD!!!!


  1. I have to admit, you are right. That is one Sweet Frickin Card with those three guys. Welcome to the addictive blog world!!

  2. Nice card BTW. Don't feel too bad about your team getting swept by the Phillies...they've had the Braves number the last few years. My Braves almost got swept by the frickin' Nationals. All good teams have a slide here and there...let's just hope our teams get stronger down the stretch.

    I'm officially a follower now! I'll set aside any cards of the players you collect going forward.

  3. Thanks for following guys. Save those Bucs for me.