First Call: Pirates manager rumblings; Discipline coming for Dolphins starter | TribLIVE.com
Breakfast With Benz

First Call: Pirates manager rumblings; Discipline coming for Dolphins starter

Tim Benz
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AP
This file photo from July 21, 2015, shows San Diego Padres hitting coach Mark Kotsay prior to a baseball game against the San Francisco Giants in San Diego.

In Tuesday’s “First Call,” some Pirates managerial talk. The Steelers have an off-field issue with the Anthony Chickillo situation. Meanwhile, the Dolphins have a problem, too. Also, Sam Darnold’s Monday Night Football disaster impacts Le’ Veon Bell.


Mutual interest

One name floated as a potential candidate for the Pittsburgh Pirates managerial position is Mark Kotsay.

Kotsay is a former Major Leaguer with 1,914 games of experience spread out over seven teams. He was a top-10 draft choice by the Florida Marlins coming out of Cal State-Fullerton, where he won the Golden Spikes Award.

If that tweet from Jon Heyman is correct, interest in Kotsay may not be limited to the Pirates.

MLB.com is reporting that the Giants may like Kotsay as a candidate for their open position as well.

However, the organization did just interview Cubs first base coach Will Venable for the job according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

So Kotsay may be down the list.


Buffalo blowup

The Miami Dolphins are thin at safety already.

Heck, they are thin everywhere.

But at safety, that’s a particular problem. Minkah Fitzpatrick was traded to the Steelers. Reshad Jones missed the Bills game with a chest injury. And now they may suspend Bobby McCain.

According to the Buffalo News, he got into an exchange with a 13-year-old fan in Buffalo.

“We’re going to discipline Bobby for that,” said head coach Brian Flores. “We’ll handle that discipline internally. Situations like this, we’ve got to handle those situations. Before I say that, we take those very seriously. There’s a standard that we’re trying to set here of professionalism, of the way we go about things, and we need to live up to that standard, and we’re going to. I talked to Bobby, and again, I heard his side of the story, but we need to handle the situation better.”

Flores wouldn’t explicitly say if McCain would be suspended.

Via ESPN.com, “The fan, 28-year-old Dylan Wentland, told The Associated Press he was standing at the ledge overlooking the tunnel when McCain ran up and spit in his face following the game. Wentland said he and McCain exchanged words before the game when McCain twice threatened to spit at a teen, once before pregame warm-ups and a second time while heading out to the field before kickoff.”

Wentland told the Buffalo News that McCain’s threat to spit on the teen came after the boy shouted to the safety that he was ‘irrelevant.’”

McCain addressed the incident on Monday.

We will wait to see if he dresses Monday night at Heinz Field.


Darned Darnold

Sam Darnold was atrocious on “Monday Night Football.”

The Jets quarterback threw four interceptions en route to a 33-0 loss at home against the New England Patriots.

One player who is suffering in the receiving department is Le’ Veon Bell. He has just two catches for nine yards the last two weeks. In the three games Bell played while Darnold was out sick before that, he had 21 catches.

At least Bell got a little more action on the ground Monday night. He had 15 carries for a season-high 70 yards.

But those numbers certainly aren’t matching the levels of production the Jets were aiming for when they signed Bell to a $52.5 million contract.


Panther power

The Pitt women’s volleyball team is getting ready for an important test against Notre Dame Friday.

That’s a key matchup in the ACC. The Panthers — ranked third nationally behind Baylor and Stanford — lead the conference at 8-0. They are 19-1 overall.

Notre Dame is 7-1 in the ACC and tied for second with Louisville.

The Panthers then face the Cardinals on the road Sunday.

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Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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