Never count this Pittsburgh Pirates team out. For the second time in a week they were down heading into the eighth inning and again they got some timely hitting, tied the game and won in extra innings.
It's a feeling Pirates fans are not used to. The idea that this team is never really out of a game. When this team got down in the past, especially late in the game, there was little hope in a comeback. At least I never had any hope of a comeback. Maybe that speaks more about me as a fan, but I doubt I was alone with my line of thinking.
Sunday's 2-1, 14-inning, win against the Milwaukee Brewers perfectly illustrated how this team has played all year and is the reason the Pirates will break the losing-season streak (That's right, I said will). Their pitching was great. They didn't give up an earned run in 14 innings of play. After a lengthy delay, unlikely bullpen stud Vin Mazzaro pitched five perfect innings and five other relievers combined to pitch seven more shut out innings. The effort was topped off by Tony Watson pitching a perfect three innings to get the win.
Combine that with just enough offense to get by, including Andrew McCutchen's two-out RBI single in the bottom of the eighth inning to tie the game. We won't linger of Brandon Inge striking out with the bases loaded in the ninth. We're just staying positive here.
It's times like these I'm saddened that I'm living in Philadelphia and can't be at PNC Park to experience this team first-hand. Oh well. This run is still enjoyable, and it will only get better as the team gets closer to meaningful September baseball.
Some other quick thoughts swirling in my head:
- I'm a huge Pascal Dupuis fan, but even I am a little concerned if the Pittsburgh Penguins give him a 4-year deal. He's 34 and a big part of his game relies on speed. What happens if he loses a step after a few years? The man works his ass off, and others have defied age in the past, but I still worry.
- Things just keep getting worse for Aaron Hernandez. If he goes to trial for three counts of murder, does this become the biggest off the field sports story since O.J.? Or is it already?
- How many of you back in August thought that the Pittsburgh Steelers would have had a .500 season and the Pirates would have the best record in baseball? The answer is none.
- With no Letang trade, and therefore no early picks for the Pens, the NHL draft was pretty boring for Pens fans. I know nothing about any of the players drafted. While they addressed an organizational need with goalie Tristan Jarry in the second round, Jarry won't be in the NHL for years and is in no way a threat or message to Marc-Andre Fleury.
- I was shocked the Vancouver Canucks moved Cory Schneider to the New Jersey Devils for only a first-round pick (No. 9 overall). Reports out there had Edmonton offering the No. 7 pick, a second-round pick and Devan Dubnyk for Schneider, but the Canucks didn't want to trade within their division. While the Devils still won't have any offense this year, they probably just solidified their goaltending for the next decade, which is bad news for the Pens.
- "This is the End" was a pretty hilarious. I probably would have enjoyed it more if the theater I saw it in didn't have a burned out bulb. I seriously couldn't see the right side of the screen if it was a dark scene. And there were a lot of dark scenes. The movie also dragged on a bit. They could have cut out 15-20 minutes and it would have been a better movie.
- Bob McKenzie is tweeting that Cam Neely would like to reprise his roll as Seabass for the "Dumb and Dumber" sequel. I didn't even know that was Cam Neely. He didn't seem to limp in the movie.
- If you hate the New York Yankees and Alex Rodriguez, you have to be loving the bickering going back forth between the two sides. I get that the Yankees still owe A-Rod around $100 million, but considering how drastically his production is falling and how injury prone he has become, they should rid themselves of this headache.
- The eighth season of "Dexter" kicked off last night and continued the downward spiral the show started in Season Five. It's just one episode, but nothing in it got me excited for the rest of the season.