U mad, bro? Readers torn on Clint Hurdle, bash Antonio Brown, Penguins defense | TribLIVE.com
Breakfast With Benz

U mad, bro? Readers torn on Clint Hurdle, bash Antonio Brown, Penguins defense

Tim Benz
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Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle talks with Melky Cabrera in the dugout before a game against the Chicago Cubs Thursday, July 4, 2019, at PNC Park.

In “U mad, bro?” this week, some fans attack Clint Hurdle. Others defend him. Antonio Brown is a target. So is Pirates management. And the Penguins defense doesn’t get away unscathed.


Nick is fed up with the Pirates.

The Bucs will not be contenders until ownership agrees that a couple of stud pitchers are needed… and the likes of Moran and Frazier are replaced. They don’t have a catcher and in two years, Josh Bell will be playing elsewhere.

The Yanks, Dodgers and such teams, will compete every year and the fans can realistically imagine a World Series being played in their hometown. The Pirates hope that they can get in a wild card game every decade.

Nick, you are hoping for a wild card again next decade?

Wow. What a cockeyed optimist.


Mark is mad at Clint Hurdle for failing to remove Kyle Crick on Sunday afternoon in St. Louis.

Remember? He hit two batters to load the bases, allowed a run, and then yielded this grand slam?

All that after yapping at Hurdle to stay in the dugout and then failing to get out of the jam?

Yeah. That was bad.

“I’m typing this quietly in an effort not to wake Hurdle. Now, not only is he weak-minded, but he’s gutless. Starts out of the dugout and is motioned away by a pitcher.

Talk about a manager that’s lost the team, and thereby, his ability to do his job.”

I hated that, too, Mark. Crick is 3-7 with an ERA of 4.64. He shouldn’t be telling anyone to do anything.

As soon as he barked back at Hurdle you knew something bad was going to happen.

Maybe not that bad. But bad.


Meanwhile, Jim emailed me to defend Clint Hurdle after I wrote that the Pirates should fire him and Neal Huntington.

Clint Hurdle has a roster with very few players who could even sit on the bench in the Bronx or LA.

Hurdle and his staff have, time and again, been forced to rely on players who are not major league ready or discards from other clubs.

You should have placed the blame squarely on owner Nutting and his complicit general manager, Neal Huntington.

Any casual fan recognizes most of the Pirates’ transactions during the past two years have been designed to shed salary.

Player after player leaves the Bucs and management fails to re-invest with any salary savings. You can’t make chicken salad with chicken****.

Today’s article calling for the firing of Clint Hurdle was a cheap shot. Not even Jim Leyland, Sparky Anderson or Joe Torre could coax a winning season out of this AAA squad. Spend Nutting, Win Nutting!

Cheap shot?

Jim, the only thing cheap about the Pirates is the payroll.

As you pointed out.

I get your opinion on Hurdle. He can’t manage a 75-win team into a 90-win club.

But you have to explain to me why an 82-win team in 2018 looks like a 100-loss club in 2019.

Especially with how they’ve done it. They can’t catch pop-ups. Balls go through their legs. They’ve allowed about three or four Little League homers this year. The baserunning is an abomination.

The mental gaffes are repeated. The fundamentals are flawed. And Hurdle’s bullpen management is bad at best.

Hurdle isn’t the reason this franchise is rudderless. However, he is a reason this ship is sailing headlong into an iceberg instead of listlessly floating off into next season.


On Wednesday, I posted a column asking whether the Penguins or Steelers had a better shot at winning their league’s championship this year.

Clearly, Mike doesn’t have a very positive outlook on the Penguins.

Mike means Jack Johnson and Erik Gudbranson.

He also means that he thinks they both stink.

Mike may not be far off. But maybe Mike should remember how Chris Boswell kicks or how the Steelers defense protects leads in the fourth quarter before he runs to the bank on the football team.


Here’s a tweet about Antonio Brown’s saga out in Oakland from @pghfan999.

You know what could prevent his head from exploding?

A new helmet.

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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