With a 7-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers today the Pittsburgh Pirates have pushed their season to the brink. The team currently sits two games back in the wild card standings and appears to be headed the wrong direction. Certainly things are not looking good for the Pirates. However this is not the time to turn on them, call this season a collapse, lose all hope or even tout about how you saw this coming. Now is the time to get behind this team with your full weight. It looks clear right now that the Cardinals are the better baseball team and yes they should beat the Pirates this upcoming series but that doesn’t mean they will. If a new 162 game season were to start today there it is highly doubtful the Pirates could be better than the Cardinals over that span. However that isn’t want we are asking for here. All the Pirates need to be is better than the Cardinals for the remainder of this season a mere 35 games. That is possible. September baseball with expanded rosters can cause all sorts of crazy results if the Pirates can manage to keep this thing close until then all bets are off. How you keep this race close is by winning 2 of the next 3 against the Cardinals. It is a tall task yes but it is one that is certainly doable.
Over the course of the next three days it isn’t really all that dramatic to say that the Pirates season is on the line, that it is do or die, now or never. The Pirates must come out strong, McDonald and Burnett have to pitch like they are the Pirates horses and Rodriguez has to do what he was brought here to do. The offense needs to find itself and begin getting better production and the bullpen needs to stabilize. All of these things are possible and since we are only talking about a 3 game set right now it is impossible to predict if it will happen. Somebody needs to step up and put this team on his back and make these next three days successful. The fate of meaningful September baseball is riding on it.
Having this type of series this late in the baseball season is both nerve-racking and exhilarating. Enjoy it Pirate fans, for the younger generation this is the biggest series you will be able to recall and for the older generation it should bring back some fond (and admittedly not so fond) memories. These next three days are the reason you should be a fan of this club. Win or lose this Cardinal series is sure to be memorable to us all. It might become the final nail in the Pirates coffin or the spark that enables to compete deep into September and maybe even sneak into the playoffs. Either way now is not the time to criticize this team, now is the time to enjoy this team and yes if necessary go down with it. For this is the type of baseball that hasn’t be seen in these parts for 15 years. If our past should teach us anything it is that we need to embrace moments, games and series like this one because you never know when the next one might happen. So in closure say it with me Pirate Nation: LET’S GO BUCS!