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Category: Pittsburgh Pirates

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Will mindbending proposed changes to MLB’s playoffs change the game?

Major League Baseball may restructure its playoffs to add teams and primetime drama. The changes would pit purists against progressivesThe NBA is toying with an in-season tournament, while the NFL devises deals with its players to add a 17th regular-se…

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Pirates’ All-Star closer Felipe Vázquez arrested for solicitation of a child

Two-time All-Star closer arrested on Tuesday in PittsburghVázquez, 28, could face more charges after search of devicesFelipe Vázquez, the Pittsburgh Pirates’ two-time All-Star closer, has been arrested and charged with one count of computer pornography…

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Yasiel Puig is ejected and traded in same inning as Reds and Pirates brawl

Outfielder involved in fight as NL Central rivals clash againNews of trade to Indians emerges just as fight takes placeCall it Pirates v Reds, round two and a fitting farewell for Yasiel Puig. Jarred Hughes hit Starling Marte with his first pitch in th…

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Yasiel Puig puts batting coach in headlock during Pirates-Reds mass brawl

Four players ejected after confrontation in PittsburghFight sparked after Chris Archer throws behind Derek DietrichCincinnati’s Derek Dietrich admired a home run off Chris Archer in the second inning, and two innings later the Pittsburgh Pirates starte…

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Pittsburgh Penguins win Stanley Cup again after late Game 6 goals

  • Penguins win second championship in two years after 2-0 victory
  • Pittsburgh take series 4-2 for first back-to-back titles in salary-cap era

Sidney Crosby is bringing the Stanley Cup back home to Pittsburgh for a second consecutive year.

Patric Hornqvist scored with 1:35 left and Matt Murray made 27 saves for his second straight shutout as the Penguins became the NHL’s first team in nearly two decades to repeat as champions following a 2-0 win over the Nashville Predators in Game 6 on Sunday night.

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte given 80-game ban for failing drug test

  • Pittsburgh star tests positive for nandrolone and is banned until mid-July
  • Marte: ‘I ask for forgiveness for disrespecting so many people’

Pittsburgh Pirates’ all-star outfielder Starling Marte has been suspended for 80 games by Major League Baseball after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.

The league said Tuesday that Marte tested positive for the steroid nandrolone. He will be eligible to return in mid-July.

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Baseball in 2016: from Cubs win! to Scully’s sayonara, 10 memorable moments

Another year of baseball is gone, goodbye: David Lengel takes a look back at the best, worst and most controversial moments of the 2016 season

It was Game 7 of the World Series, and baseball history was busy pulling the Chicago Cubs back into a boiling cauldron of curses. Rajai Davis’ eighth inning, game-tying home run off the Cubs’ Aroldis Chapman had turned Cleveland’s Progressive Field into a mosh pit, with slightly fewer title-starved Indians fans ripping off their shirts in frenetic celebrations.

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Major League Baseball overcome by emotion during its final week

MLB experienced both celebratory and tragic goodbyes this week with the retirement of legendary broadcaster Vin Scully and the death of pitcher José Fernández. Plus, a review of Major League Baseball’s have nots

On Friday night in Los Angeles, I sat next to my father inside Dodger Stadium. My dad, Mike Lengel, is a 75-year-old lifelong fan of the Dodgers, who grew up in New York city watching Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Duke Snider and the team of his childhood play in Brooklyn. But until Friday, he had never been been to LA or visited Dodger Stadium, where the team landed after leaving in 1957.

Related: José Fernández: a smiling star whose death leaves baseball bereft

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Major League Baseball overcome by emotion during its final week

MLB experienced both celebratory and tragic goodbyes this week with the retirement of legendary broadcaster Vin Scully and the death of pitcher José Fernández. Plus, a review of Major League Baseball’s have nots

On Friday night in Los Angeles, I sat next to my father inside Dodger Stadium. My dad, Mike Lengel, is a 75-year-old lifelong fan of the Dodgers, who grew up in New York city watching Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Duke Snider and the team of his childhood play in Brooklyn. But until Friday, he had never been been to LA or visited Dodger Stadium, where the team landed after leaving in 1957.

Related: José Fernández: a smiling star whose death leaves baseball bereft

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Why the New York Yankees can’t lose even when they try to

The Yankees raised the white flag, brought in the kids and still kept the buzz around the ballpark. Plus, what the Cubs and Donald Trump have in common

A-Rod who? The omnipresent slugger’s nickname, so long on the tip of our tongues, seemed long gone by the time two ballyhooed Yankees prospects bounced into the Bronx on Saturday. And so what was supposed to be a weekend awash with nostalgia – Alex Rodriguez’ departure, the honoring of the 1996 World Series champion Yanks and a Monument Park plaque for Mariano Rivera, became much more about tomorrow than yesterday.

The Yankees, for all their winning (some 27 World Series titles), have suffered in the past. Their most famous collapse came in 1965, when an empire that brought 10 titles, 15 pennants in 18 seasons, Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford, Yogi Berra and a host of Yankee elites, crumbled to the core.

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Why Major League Baseball must crush the St Louis Cardinals for their sins

A Cardinals employee was sent to prison following a conviction for hacking the Houston Astros’ database: now his employers must pay

Last June, devout St Louis Cardinals fan Nicole Vartanian was digesting stunning charges: that a member of the team’s own front office had hacked the Houston Astros.

“An allegation of this magnitude is a punch to the gut,” said Vartanian at the time. “Right now Cardinal nation woke up with a collective pit in our stomach. We’re hoping it’s a mild bout of nausea that will be resolved quickly, but there’s also the long-term ramifications: giving those who roundly derided Cardinal fans a new punchline that doesn’t go away.”

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Cleveland’s hangover cure? An Indians World Series title

Clevelanders waited long enough for a post-playoffs party: if the Tribe keep on winning, the festivities could stretch deep into October. Plus A-Rod’s wisdom and baseball in Vegas

Nearly a million Clevelanders crammed into downtown on Wednesday, celebrating something the they knew very little about: a title. It was an unrecognizable scene inside a city well-studied in sporting pain, where a drive here, a seeing-eye single there and “The Shot” once added up to 147 seasons passed without a championship.

Now the Cavaliers, their city, their fans are finally winners, and judging by the enthusiasm of the folks soaking up the Forest City sun, more regular opportunities to express championship exhilaration would be welcome.

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From ‘God’ to gotcha: the long decline of Major League Baseball umpires

As the roles of men in blue are whittled away, should umpiring eventually fade to black? Plus, let’s put two pitchers in the Home Run Derby, the Rays are trying to break more molds, the Cubs get new suits and more

Noah Syndergaard was stunned. So was the partisan New York Mets crowd, many of which had barely settled in from the journey to Flushing, Queens. “Thor” had been tossed by young umpire Adam Hamari, an out into the home third inning, for throwing behind Chase Utley. A purpose pitch no doubt, as New York sought to send some semblance of a message to their current Dodgers and previous Phillies torturer. Worthy of ejection? Surely not. Hamari made a snap decision, a wrong one, misusing the power of the umpire while doing what every official in sports strives not to do: become the story. With the main attraction out, the crowd booed, broadcasters pondered and the Mets, without their ace, never had a chance, losing on 9-1 on a late-May holiday evening.

The opposite occurred in the second inning of the Tuesday night match-up between Kansas City and Baltimore. Yordano Ventura threw way inside to Baltimore’s Manny Machado, who took exception to the location and delivered a cold stare and a few choice words for the hurler. There was no warning from home plate umpire Manny Gonzalez. In his next at-bat, the volatile Ventura, who does have a reputation for throwing at players, drilled the O’s third baseman with a 99mph fastball, leading to a bench-clearing brawl. Gonzalez’ failure to read the game and take action in the second inning led to a later incident that caused a major brawl and potential injuries.

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Will the Chicago Cubs wreck their franchise and win the World Series?

The Cubs are inching closer to the impossible, but do they really want to win it all for the first time since 1908? We preview the second half of the MLB season

Congratulations – you’ve survived two nights without any Major League Baseball activity whatsoever. I know, it wasn’t easy, because there’s only so much Real Housewives that one person can take. Never mind. Tonight, Friday, we’re back on the saddle, getting set for what should be a compelling second half baseball, with most of the league still in contention for playoff spot. Having said all that, I know you have some questions, so let’s try and answer a few of them.

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Pittsburgh Pirates are World Series contenders and it’s unacceptable

The Pirates could have settled for being a midmarket team content not to lose but instead they had to raise their fans’ hopes

Well, now you’ve done it, Pirates. You’ve ruined everything.

Not so long ago, your fans were completely happy with a simple .500 season. After a American professional sports record 20 consecutive losing seasons from 1993 through 2012 – with epic collapses ending the 2011 and 2012 campaigns – simply breaking through with a winning record in 2013 was reason for celebration. The wildcard victory and spot in the divisional round that came with it were icing on the quite palatable cake of mathematical non-failure. Another wildcard spot last year, which lasted a few innings before being mowed down by Madison Bumgarner and the Giants, was more of the same: evidence that the demons of the ‘90s and ‘00s were exorcised and that the Pittsburgh Pirates Baseball Club had achieved semi-relevance. Huzzah!

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New York Mets fans win the World Series … of bad grammar

As if losing seven of their previous eight games wasn’t enough, Mets fans now find themselves in the basement of MLG – that’s Major League Grammar

It’s another day, and another kick in the teeth for fans of the New York Mets.

After riding high in April, the Mets have been shot down in May and June while their morose lineup continues to drag the team into an offensive abyss. Their injury-depleted roster, one loaded with rookies, has scored just 11 runs in their previous eight games, sending their fans to the talk radio airwaves in a panic, demanding that something, anything, be done by their general manager Sandy Alderson, in order to save a season that once looked incredibly promising after a blistering 14-4 start.

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How the Marlins became baseball’s most compelling sideshow

Jeffrey Loria has rocked the boat again, this time by appointing a man who hasn’t skippered a game since high school as their new field manager

The baseball season just got a whole lot more interesting, and for that we can thank the Miami Marlins. This generous gift means fans will be glued to Marlins games for the rest of the season, watching what happens when their former general manager and new manager, Dan Jennings, who never played the game on any level, and hasn’t filled out a lineup card since his players were squeezing zits in high school, takes over a dugout filled with burly multi-millionaires.

It is an eye-popping move, the kind of shenanigans we thought we’d never see again in baseball if only because of the way the game is run today: tight, buttoned up, with lots of data fueled decision making. Is it a promotion? Is it a demotion? I have no idea, but one thing that is for sure is that their firing of Mike Redmond and hiring of Jennings is a throwback to a more colorful time in the game.

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NL Central season preview: all the ways the Cubs will mess up

The St Louis Cardinals are one of baseball’s smuggest teams – but they have reason to be, and should win the division again

With the regular season looming and teams about to head north, it’s time to take a look at five questions that will define the storylines for the National League Central in 2015.

Related: AL Central season preview: the White Sox are due a resurgence

Playoff predictions: AL Orioles, Indians, Mariners; DET, NYY. NL Nationals, Pirates, Dodgers; Cardinals, Marlins. PIT to win WS over SEA.

We hope Andrew McCutchen’s strength wasn’t in his hair… —-> http://t.co/OkMdDCObfT (via http://t.co/Aqy0o8BLIj) pic.twitter.com/F86nBOE4iz

Related: NL West season preview: why the San Francisco Giants won’t repeat

Related: AL West season preview: Rangers set for Texas-sized suffering

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The Miami Marlins are baseball’s most compelling sideshow

Jeffrey Loria has rocked the boat again, this time by appointing a man who hasn’t skippered a game since high school as their new field manager

The baseball season just got a whole lot more interesting, and for that we can thank the Miami Marlins. This generous gift means fans will be glued to Marlins games for the rest of the season, watching what happens when their former general manager and new manager, Dan Jennings, who never played the game on any level, and hasn’t filled out a lineup card since his players were squeezing zits in high school, takes over a dugout filled with burly multi-millionaires.

It is an eye-popping move, the kind of shenanigans we thought we’d never see again in baseball if only because of the way the game is run today: tight, buttoned up, with lots of data fueled decision making. Is it a promotion? Is it a demotion? I have no idea, but one thing that is for sure is that their firing of Mike Redmond and hiring of Jennings is a throwback to a more colorful time in the game.

Continue reading…

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Pittsburgh Pirates: picture of militant in team’s hat ‘absolutely sickening’

The Pittsburgh Pirates released a strongly worded statement distancing themselves from the Islamic State after a photo surfaced of Mohammed Emwazi – the knife-wielding militant known as ‘Jihadi John’ – wearing a cap with the team’s insignia.

Sky News published a photo on Friday of Emwazi obtained from University of Westminster student records in which the 26-year-old is wearing a Pirates hat.

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