We at RSBS often lament the chronic disgrace that the Pittsburgh Pirates organization has become. The home of players like Roberto Clemente not only continues to lose at an unfathomable rate, they also show no signs of turning it around anytime in the near future. Throw in the fact that they have basically resorted to reality TV contests to drum up interest and you almost feel embarrassed for them, mainly because they obviously don’t have the good sense to feel embarrassed for themselves.
What the Pirates need is a mentor, someone who can show them how to get back to their swashbuckling ways. Pirates used to strike fear in the hearts of sailors and the National League. That can happen again.
If I can be so bold as to make a suggestion: the Pirates need lessons from real pirates. And I’m not talking the Johnny Depp, cavorting around in makeup kind of buccaneer. I’m talking the armed to the teeth while hijacking a supertanker kind of pirate.
As luck would have it, The Atlantic recently provided a blueprint for what has made the Somali pirates successful and there are definitely some lessons the NL Pirates can take to heart. For instance, how about this truth-berry? “You don’t want your pirates running off with the loot! Be sure to
incentivize your workforce and set compensation levels fairly.” If history is any guide (Jason Bay, Nate McLouth, Aramis Ramirez), this might be a good place to start.
Or how about this? “Each pirate should bring his own firearm in exchange for a class A share
of the profits.” More firearms means more firepower. Which also means that bringing guys like Rinku and Dinesh on board probably isn’t going to cut it.
If all else fails the Pirates possess one final option, an option that frankly I’m a little surprised they haven’t already exercised. Why not do like their namesakes and just hijack the Yankees or Phillies, then hold them for ransom? “Sure, we’ll let you go. As soon as you give us Cliff Lee.” It’s something to think about and certainly couldn’t do them any worse than what they’ve done to themselves the past 17 years.