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Saturday, December 20, 2014

Pirates Encourage Boycott of Local Bar Offering Discount Following Losses

The Pirates haven’t had a winning season since 1992, giving the fans of Pittsburgh very little to pass the time between the Penguins and Steelers. We keep hoping that they’ll rebuild with good draft picks like Andrew McCutchen, but that appears to be unrealistic. Instead they’ve settled for being the laughingstock of baseball that’s perennially putting up fire sale signs in June. Given their apparent acceptance of losing, it’s odd to see members of their front office get so ticked off by negativity in the community.

WTAE in Pittsburgh via Ben Maller reports that two Pirates front office members called for a ban of Stroll Inn, a bar that offers a nickel off pitchers following Pirates losses. I don’t know how heavy of drinkers they are in Pittsburgh, but last I checked a nickel can’t even buy you a stick of gum, so this seems to be much more about the humor than the discount. Unsurprisingly, the same group that fired one of its pierogi racers for expressing negativity, is displeased with the bar.

A Pirates official emailed the bar to complain about the promotion, feeling it was a slight against the team. “An occasional joke and jab is expected here and there, but to create business by ripping on the home team is ridiculous and in my opinion distasteful,” account exec Angela Criscella wrote. She urged bar patrons to “take your business away from the Stroll Inn and to other local restaurants instead.”

The bar owner tried to explain to Criscella that the promotion was a consolation prize for fans rather than a rip on the team. I disagree. Knocking off just a nickel is not helping anyone financially; it’s just a way to generate some publicity with a funny line at the Pirates’ expense. Has the team earned the jokes with their poor play over the years? Absolutely. But as I said when they fired the pierogi, how else are you supposed to reverse nearly 20 years of losing without changing the culture and mentality of everyone around the organization? Once again, I side with the Pirates rather than the bar making the lame excuse.

Photo Credit: WTAE



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