Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Welcome to the Pittsburgh Pirates Wake-Up Call, a daily feature here at RumBunter.com. Every morning at 9 AM, one of us will give you our random thoughts on the goings-on around the Pirates’ organization, and we’ll throw out a few links to some good Pirates-related items your way from around the web as well.
The Dark Knight Strikes (Out) Again
Last night A.J. Burnett had potentially the final start of his fantastic career and he was very, very good. He went 6.2 innings, allowed three runs on five hits and struck out nine. Unfortunately the Pirates’ offense was completely stifled as the Reds won 3-1. Even though the night didn’t ago according to plan, Burnett got an amazing send off from the crowd as he exited the game. He was wildly cheered and did a curtain call to a loud roar from the 30,000+ in attendance.
The Pirates’ offense couldn’t match Burnett as they really came up short against vulnerable Reds’ starting pitcher Brandon Finnegan. The Pirates never looked all that comfortable against his cut fastball and it moved all over the zone, which lead to Finnegan going six innings, allowing one run on three hits and striking out six. It was really hard watching the Pirates consistently fail against a pitcher that has struggled in his brief time in the Big Leagues this season, but unfortunately that’s baseball. Things like this happen over the course of 162 games, as frustrating as that can be.
Speaking of game 162, we go into the last game of the regular season with home field in the Wildcard game still up for grabs. It’s fairly simple for the Pirates, win the game and the game is at PNC Park on Wednesday, lose and the Cubs win and the team is traveling to Wrigley Field. It’s going to be a terrifying Sunday afternoon at PNC Park and I wouldn’t have it any other way. In 2015, the NL Central has been one of the best divisions in Major League history, so it’s only appropriate that it all comes down to game 162 for home field in a one game playoff. It’s going to be scary and tense, which is what October baseball is all about, even when October is still the regular season.
I also want all of you to remember to enjoy the ride and don’t dwell on the negative. The Pirates are a great team regardless of what happens today or what happens on Wednesday. I feel like way too many Pirates’ fans are dwelling on what the Pirates aren’t instead of focusing on what the Pirates are and that is a tremendous baseball team and one of the baseball regular season teams in franchise history. I know we all wanted the NL Central title and that unfortunately didn’t happen, but it took the Cardinals winning 100 games to finally clinch the division and that almost never happens. So instead of being super negative and thinking the Pirates are a bad team somehow pretending to be a good one, lets just accept the fact the 2015 Pirates are a very good team regardless of what happens in the playoffs. I know that is a novelty idea to many of the more negative fans, but they don’t call me annoyingly positive for nothing.
Around the Web
Bill Shaikin of the LA Times says the amazing play of the Cubs and Pirates is an historical blip and not an outrage.