In honor of being named #34 on the Latest Leaders list, why not pay tribute to the Buccos own 34, John Grabow.
John has been one of teh longest tenured current Pirates. Which is saying alot considering how fast the organization is known for shipping out their talent. At 30 years old he has been on the major league roster for the past 7 years. Over thos years he has posted winning records in 4 of them.
So far this season Grabow has been an asset out of the bullpen, just has he has throughout his career. He is number one on the depth chart and the go-to guy in tight relief situations. In the 2009 campaign he has a 3-0 record. He has had his share of miscues including giving up a hit in every inning of his 38 innings of work. His era could be better, as it is pretty much average at a mark of 3.49.
Although he has been in the organization since 1997, Grabow is as reserved as they come. He is looked to as a leader in clubhouse, even though he is relatively overlooked when it comes to being a fan favorite. He rarely speaks to the media and is not in the game long enough for the fans to get a grasp of what he is really doing. I guess that is the case with most relievers. Its hard to appreciate the work they really put in. They are only in the game for 1 maybe 2 innings, sometimes only 1 maybe 2 batters. Plus relievers are only noticed when they give up a big hit or home run. It may not be fair, but its the truth. TPeople in the stands expect the reliever to come in get a hold and set up the game for a win. They think its that simple. When the unepected comes the reliever is booed mercily. Its a hrad job and somebody has to do it. Grabow just happens to do it pretty well.
He has done it so well that he is almost always being corted by other teams. Grabow is always brought up in trade talks even though the Pirates may not have him on the block. This season more serious talks are being brought up. So far the Yankees and Twins have expressed interest in the Buc’s go to guy. All bets are on that the trigger will be pulled and Grabow will be gone by the July 31st trade deadline. He will probably be shipped in a package deal along with another Pirate player, probably a current starter. Wherever Grabow lands up whether it be the Big Apple, Land of 10,000 Lakes or even here in the Steel City he will keep his rugged, always prepared approach.
Last night Grabow was a big part in the Pirates 6-3 win over the Astros. He came in for one inning of work and did not let up a run. Things got pretty shaky as he let up 3 hits and a walk. His 20 pitch inning was good enough to set the Pirates up for victory thanks to big games from Jack Wilson, Andrew McCutchen and Garret Jones.
Grabow’s grit and hard work have landed him many accolades throughout his time in the league. The veteran left hander was on the World Baseball Classic team this past spring. He came out of the pen for USA and did a solid job. Just recently the Pirates put up one of his WBC jerseys up for auction.
Along with many other cool memorobilla pieces Grabow was front and center on PNC Park’s main concourse. The auction was held to benefit Pirates charities. As I stood there drooling over these wonderful pieces my jaw dropped as well when I looked at the prices each was going for. Grabow’s jersey had reached $800,far more than that Andy LaRoche jersey seen to the far left. It goes to show that Grabow is respected for what he has done on his time with the Pirates. I wish him the best wherever his career takes him.
5…5 WINS…5 WINS IN A ROW!
It was a pitcher’s duel throughout the course of nine innings but the Bucs pull off another win, 2-1 over the Nats.
The Bucs played small ball to move rnners over with Delwyn Young, Freddy Sanchez and Nate McClouth all collected singles in the last frame. The offense was not there for the Pirates or the Nationals all game. Pittsburgh left 13 men on base, 9 times out of ten you lose a game when you leave that many on base. Thank goodness for John Russel’s crew, they were playing Washington.
The Nats are losing by the pound these days. Alot of the blame needs to be placed on their atrocouis bullpen. The Nats pen is 1-15 when givin the opportunity to win a game. John Hanarahan picked up the L for the Nats yesterday. An era of 6.97 and an 0-2 record just won’t cut it if you’re trying to win ballgames.
The losing tendency is wearing off an outfielder Adam Dunn. The offseason acquisition must really be rethinking signing with the club.
“I’m tired of talking about losses, period,” he said.
“You can only say the same thing over and over and over before you get fed up with it, and that’s kind of what’s going on right now.”
The opposite feeling is abounding over at the Pirates camp.
“It’s unbelievable. You can just feel the electricity in the clubhouse,” John Grabow said after he picked up his second win of the season to remain undefeated. “It’s so awesome knowing that when you win, how much it changes the mood. Everybody’s a lot more confident. When you come to the field and you’re expecting a win, it makes all the difference.”
With the Buc’s on a brink of a 4-game sweep. Fans are ready but quite hesitant to jump on the bandwagon. The brroms will surely be out in the capital tonight. From watching the series on FSN Pittsburgh there seems to be a large contingency of “Burghers cheering on the Bucs at National’s Park. The drive to D.C. is not very far and fans must be taking advantage of the short trip to take in a game as well as a history lesson about America.
Posters on the Pirates message board on piratec.com claim that a large population from the Steel City migrated to the east for work in the latter part of teh ’70s. After being in Baltimore myself last year for an Orioles-Pirates game I can definately agree. There were many many Buccos fans joining me to cheer on the Pirates. It’s laways nice seein us Pittsburgh fans invading another teams stdium. We surely get enough of them at PNC Park in the summer when Cardinals, Cubs and Philies fans invade the Park.
OH and by the way…
RAISE THE JOLLY ROGER…19-21
QUOTE CREDIT: espn.com/AP report
Last night’s loss was tough to swallow. It was a comeback wasted after Milwaukee destroyed the Buc’s bullpen torching the staff for 5 runs. Jeff Karstens began the game and lobbed 3 homerun balls to Ryan Braun, Rickie Weeks and Mike Cameron respectively. Jesse Chavez first relieved Karstens in the 6th and did a quality job. Chavez looked demanding and controlling getting batts to pop up. At the beginning of the year I questioned the move to make him a go-to-guy out of the pen, but he has since proved me wrong. Tyler Yates on the other hand has proved me right. I’ve never been a fan of the guy and he has given me no real reason to support him.
Yates has a record of 0- on the young season, the loss coming in last night’s game, and a dismal era of 9.95. In only 6.1 innings pitched he has walked 4 batters, given up 7 earned runs and has successfully made me cringe and sweat upon his appearances on the mound.
John Grabow was a surprise failure in yesterday’s game. Grabow was able to just retire one batter as he was just all over the place walking 2 batters and earning two runs.
The only key reliever was Evan Meek, throwing a full inning Meek struck out two batters. Meek deserves more of a tip of the cap from our organization. After beginning the year in Indy Meek has stepped in and done an unfathomable good job. Not allowing a run in two appearances and giving me confidence whenever he steps on the mound. It would pay great dividends to keep him up here, even when Craig Hansen returns from the DL. Yates should be the one sent down.
The bullpen of the Nationals has also been abysmal. Thats right it’s time for another installment of WELL’S WATCH.
It was a tight game between the Nats and Philies last night, a 13-11 slugfest that was ultimately won by the Phils. With the score close and the Nats within striking distance Kipper was called on to keep Philly in check. Which he did masterfully. Wells went one strong inning and struck out two batters.
So far on the year Kip has appeared in four games and has only suffered one earned run. Three strikeouts in only 4 innings pitched, two hits in only four innings pitched and no homeruns in only 4 innings pitched. Hey in my book, thats solid. He’s been solid without a doubt and looks like he’s really coming around. The bullpen is definately the spot for him. Looks like we should have utilized him out of the pen, instead of throwing him in the starting role like a chicken with his head cut off.