During the 20 year losing streak, fans of the Pittsburgh Pirates were used to hearing the usual rhetoric from the front office and coaching staff year after year.
“We have a young ballclub that is finding its way.”
“We will field the best possible chance at competing within the structure of major league baseball.”
After the postseason runs of The New Streak, those phrases changed considerably, perhaps encapsulated by one single quote from the leader of the Pirates, Andrew McCutchen:
“There’s still more work to do,” Andrew McCutchen said.
For the Pittsburgh Pirates to fulfill national commentator predicitons, a few things will need to happen, which we will go over shortly. Perhaps no one knows the amount of work needed to achieve success than Clint Hurdle. The man who took the Colorado Rockies to a world series tells us the proper mindset his current team needs to have in order to make the same leap:
"“We need to understand how we made progress,” Hurdle said. “We incrementally got a little bit better every day as a group over the last four years. Our goal is to push it forward. You can’t rest. We’re not looking to maintain or sustain. We’re looking to get better.”"
Now that Clint has set the mindset, I’m going to tell you the three steps to the Pirates taking that next step this year. We’ll also hear from YOU, the readers, who came out in droves to participate in our free t-shirt giveaway in partnership with centerfieldsmoke.com.
First, let’s get the obvious out of the way
Next: Step One: Get off to a better start