The Pittsburgh Pirates are subdued this week on the field and on social media – perhaps they could all use a nice pep talk from mom!

You know that old saying, “A face only a mother could love?” Well, with their losing streak at the moment, the Pirates are closing in on “A team only a mother could love” territory (at least until they go on a winning streak and all of the fair weather folks come flooding back). At any rate, it’s a good thing Mother’s Day is just around the corner, so the guys can show their appreciation for the women in their lives.

Johnny Barbato got things started, although his mom doesn’t look nearly old enough to have a kid in the MLB!

My rock! Wouldn't be here without her!! Love you mom!

A post shared by Johnny Barbato (@johnny_barbato) on

#SOS Venezuela

Baseball has a way of distracting us from everything. We get so caught up with wins and losses and who’s on the DL and who is in a slump that we fail to realize that there are other things going on – real things, difficult things, life and death things. Pirates fans have had a few doses of that reality lately – with Jameson Taillon’s suspected testicular cancer diagnosis and with the ongoing political situation in Venezuela. The Pirates have several players and coaches from the country and while previously they kept their concerns confined to their social media feeds – they’ve recently begun speaking out on the field, too.

Translation: We are still united in out fight for our Venezuela…far away but not absent, we’re with you! Seven stars cause that Bolivar was the freedman to Venezuela the others were clinging to power, trampling on the memory of Bolivar.

ESPN’s Marly Rivera spoke with catcher Francisco Cervelli about the troubles in his homeland a few weeks back. Her story, and this one by USA Today’s For the Win from just two days ago, highlight the escalating crisis and concerns Venezuelan players in MLB have about their native country.

Welcome Home

When they weren’t busy kicking the ever-loving snot out of the Pittsburgh Pirates on the field, the Diamondbacks took a few moments to welcome back Daniel Hudson to Chase Field with a scoreboard montage and the like. Hudson spent six seasons with the team.

Hudson, who was emotional about his return to Arizona, was touched by the thought.

Drink for Charity

If you like baseball and wine (and really, who doesn’t?) be sure to get tickets for Gerrit Cole’s Uncork for a Cause charity dinner June 11.

A Meal on JHay

Josh Harrison wants to help buy you dinner, Pittsburgh! UberEats, which basically delivers meals from certain participating restos right to your home, just started service in the Burgh and Harrison is pretty stoked apparently. Just don’t expect JHay to be doing the delivering, K?

Baseball Camp with Cutch

Andrew McCutchen always dedicates himself to helping kids. Whether its fulfilling a wish for the Make a Wish Foundation or throwing some dedicated Pirates fans his batting gloves, he’s certainly trying to give back. This summer, he’s hosting a one day baseball camp for kids of all skill levels in Pittsburgh. According to the site, the camp includes “tips and hands-on instruction, including lectures, fundamental baseball skills stations, contests, and games in a high-energy, fun, and positive environment.” Sounds like a good time!

Strike Out Poverty with El Coffee

We told you a few months back about Gregory Polanco’s work with Food for the Hungry’s Striking Out Poverty campaign. Now, you can get a KPoverty shirt, like the one he wore in the photo below. The purchase of a shirt helps provide food and clean water to the most needy communities in the Dominican Republic. Get yours at Athletes Brand today!

A Final Thought

This week it comes from Josh Lindblom, who joined the Bucs bullpen when Trevor Williams was placed into the rotation to take Jameson Taillon’s spot while he recovers from surgery. Simple, and to the point:

That’s all this week for the Pittsburgh Pirates Social Media Round-up. The Pirates take on the Diamondbacks tonight at 8:10 p.m. at Chase Field. Have a great weekend, Happy Mother’s Day and #LetsGoBucs


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Joy Frank-Collins

Joy Frank-Collins is a Communications professional who got her start writing as a journalist at a daily newspaper in southeastern Ohio. She was born in Reds country, but "found" baseball watching the 1986 Mets win the World Series. She lives in Marietta, Ohio, with her family, who all share her passion for Pirates baseball. She loves the suicide squeeze, a crisp 6-4-3 double play and catchers (especially Russell Martin). When not obsessing over baseball, Joy likes to work out, travel and drink wine. Check her out on Instagram @JoyFC