*Rumblings, Musings, Opinions*

1. BEN’S LIFESTYLE CHANGES – I wrote Friday that it is smart business for the Steelers to hold off on an extension and the positive talk from both sides right now is all good and such but anyone who doesn’t think these talks won’t get contentious next summer, just wait and see.

The Roethlisberger negotiations are not going to be some breeze of negotiations but here’s why the Steelers know they will eventually get Ben to resign on their terms; His lifestyle change of getting married and having two kids has locked Ben into wanting to retire here. They know it, everybody knows it. Ben wants to continue to raising his family in the Pittsburgh surrounding area and his agent constantly putting it in his head that the Steelers don’t respect him enough, isn’t going to matter at the end of the day. If Ben was still clubbing around, taking girls into bathrooms and such, living the wild life, and being the guy teammates hated, we might have a different story here.
Ben wants to be paid like one of the NFL’s top quarterbacks and he’s going to fight for it, but the odds are the Steelers eventually end up signing him on their terms.

2. JOHNNY MANZIEL – Maybe it’s just me but from an outside perspective, the Browns coaching staff sure comes off as hoping Johnny Manziel fails in training camp and they can teach him a lesson for his constant partying ways. News flash for Mike Pettine. There’s likely going to be no changing Johnny Manziel whether he flops or hits it big. It’s been so bizarre how the Browns constantly go out of their way to over-hype a journeyman quarterback in Brian Hoyer and don’t seem at all to be embracing Manziel who was drafted to be their franchise quarterback and instantly brought buzz to their organization. Yes, he goes out and acts like a drunken fool at nightclubs but so do a lot of other NFL players.

3. SOME WANT HARRISON TO FAIL – Josh Harrison’s emergence this season has been fascinating to watch on how it’s been perceived by the media and fan base. For a player who is so easy to root for, there seems to be a group of media, fans who are wishing Harrison fails. Anytime Harrison goes through a rough couple of games, these group of pundits, fans, are so quick to throw out stats on how he’s regressing and then when Harrison has an impact game like he did on Sunday, and he’s had quite a few this season, it’s written off like he’s a bum with people saying “he’s going to hit .250 next year”, blah, blah, blah. There is always this faction in baseball where they don’t want a Josh Harrison becoming an everyday player because these group of people don’t want to be proved wrong.

4. 23-25 ROSTER PLAYERS NOT GOOD ENOUGH – “We are not an organization that believes in the window or the cycle,” those were Neal Huntington’s words yesterday on his radio show which airs on 937 The Fan on Sunday’s. However, Pirate officials believe as early as 2016, 2017 this group could have a chance to be really special and there just doesn’t seem to be the appetite to mortgage the future significantly to impact this years roster.
In speaking to some team officials over the past couple weeks, I’ve fallen into the trap of buying into what they sell, that it’s all about the farm system. I just don’t see a move that’s out there worth giving up an elite prospect like Tyler Glasnow, Austin Meadows or Josh Bell to give this years team an extra boost to make the post-season.
However, Huntington has to at least upgrade the bench between now and July 31st and add a reliever. The 23, 24, 25 players on the roster are terrible. The likes of Brent Morel and Michael Martinez should never be stepping foot in a Major League park.
The talk of the Pirates not wanting Jose Tabata around because of a bad influence on Starling Marte, Gregory Polanco, continues to be the only thing that makes sense as to why he’s not up right now and was booted off the 40-man roster. This is a guy who hit .312 (49-157) in August/September down the stretch last season and was batting .289 this season and hitting .379 vs left handers.

5. BAD STRETCH OR CONCERN FOR WATSON? Tony Watson last 6.2 innings pitched: 12 Hits Allowed, 3 home runs allowed
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