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Welcome to Bucs Dugout

Hello, everyone. My name is Charlie, and if you're a serious Pirates dork you may remember me as the author of Value Over Replacement Blog.

If you're not a serious Pirates fan - well, what brings you here? A bit of schadenfreude, perhaps?

If you happen to be unfamiliar with what I do, it may surprise you to learn that I don't actually like the Pirates very much. No, let me rephrase - I don't like the people who currently constitute the Pirates very much. I love the city; I love the baseball tradition in Pittsburgh; I love PNC Park; and I love the fans in Pittsburgh. The problem is that the current ownership of the Pirates does not seem to love those things the way I do.

I watch the games whenever possible, and I still am intrigued when the Pirates perform well. If I believe in a player, I'll root for him. But it is simply not possible for me to get too excited about a team that is not built to win. I'm in my mid-twenties now, and the Pirates haven't had a winning season since I was in middle school. This blog is a coping mechanism for me; this is where I sit and wait for something - anything - exciting to happen for more than a week or two at a time.

If you're new to my writing, here's why you should continue reading: I promise that I will never, ever apologize for or mince words about the Pirates' mediocrity. The more ridiculous the front office's decisions are, the more entertaining this blog is going to be.

At the same time, I will not mock the Pirates' decisions just because I can. When the Pirates make what I think is a good move, I'll say so. It's just that, given the last decade or so, there's little reason to expect the Bucs' front office to commit to building a winner anytime soon. There's also no reason to expect that they'll know how to do that even if they have the desire to.

One interesting feature of this new site is that you, the reader, will be able to post diaries that will be displayed in the sidebar. Feel free to take advantage of that feature as a way to start any Pirates-related thread you wish, but please keep it intelligent and clean. Not that you wouldn't.

Finally, a few words about the name. Over at VORB, I promised that the person who came up with the next name of my blog would get a shout-out in the first post under the new name, and a free dinner next time they were in San Diego. A number of my readers submitted very fine names. I submitted about a dozen to my new bosses, and all were rejected, either because they referred to a player by name or used the words "Pirates" or "PNC," or the domain names were taken, or they weren't "generically marketable" enough. In the end, I went with a variation on the name my bosses originally provided for me. So, I suppose that if Blez from Athletics Nation wants to take me up on it, I owe him dinner next time he's in San Diego.

Welcome, everyone. I look forward to interacting with all of you.