Pittsburgh Pirates series takeaways vs Cincinnati Reds

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Aug 2, 2015; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates relief pitcher Mark Melancon (35) throws against Cincinnati Reds in the ninth inning at Great American Ball Park. The Pirates won 3-0. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

I am sure some fans will be disappointed the Pittsburgh Pirates “only” split the four-game series with the Reds, but the Reds have played some good baseball since the All-Star Break and splitting a series on the road is always something you want at a minimum. Plus, with the split, the Pirates capped off a successful 4-2 road trip. This series against the Reds was a heated one as it usually is when these two teams play. The Reds may not be a very strong team this season, but you can throw the records out the window then these teams get together as you can almost guarantee someone is going to get hit by a pitch and the other team will retaliate soon after.

The Pirates will have to move from one division rival to another as they return home to play a three-game series against the young, upstart Chicago Cubs. The Pirates have been relatively up and down since the All Star Break, but they have been more up recently, winning four of their last six games on the road. The Pirates will have to survive without their spiritual leader A.J. Burnett for awhile as he is on the DL with an elbow injury. The Pirates can’t feel too down on themselves as Clint Hurdle preaches, next man up. The Pirates have to focus on their upcoming opponents, as they have a very difficult schedule ahead. Every team deals with injuries and while it’s easy to feel pessimistic, this Pirates club knows how to win and they’ve dealt with plenty of injuries each of the past two seasons. This team has the talent and now they have to prove that they have the depth to withstand an injury to a vital starting pitcher.

Series Result: Split 2-2

2015 win/loss record: 61-43

2015 series record: 17-12-4

Next: Will Jordy Mercer ever be the starting shortstop in Pittsburgh again?