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Monday, July 2, 2007

Breaking News: The Pittsburgh Pirates are a bad team

I couldn't figure out which irritated me the most: Pittsburgh Pirates fans staging a 3rd inning walk out protest during Saturday's game to show the owners that fans are tired of another losing season and then not walking out---OR---going to the game with a Braves jersey on and yelling Francisco Cabrera and Sid Bream and very few people recognizing what it was I was talking about.

First off, rarely will I steer away from concentrating on the NFL and the Dallas Cowboys, but this is too good to ignore. For background, check this out.

If that was a protest, then I will make the bold statement that Pirate fans deserve to lose. Or at least be bad for awhile. That was pathetic. What was more pathetic were the fans who wore the trademark GREEN shirts for the protest and never left the stadium. It was a joke.

But what concerned me even more was the sheer lack of knowledge about their team, from the old timers to the Pirate-shirt wearing wannabes.

Very few, if any fans, knew who Sid Bream was and the significance behind Sid Bream and Francisco Cabrera in 1992 NLCS, Game 7, Atlanta v Pirates.

Here is what happened:

The Pirates carried a 2-0 lead into the bottom of the 9th inning under the pitching of their ace, Doug Drabek, needing just three outs to make the World Series. Drabek gave up a leadoff double to Terry Pendleton. David Justice reached base on an infield error by second baseman Jose Lind. After Drabek walked Bream to load the bases, Pirates manager Jim Leyland pulled him out of the game. Reliever Stan Belinda replaced him on the mound, and managed to get two outs, despite giving up a run on a sacrifice fly by Ron Gant. Then, Braves third-string catcher Francisco Cabrera belted a single to left field, and Justice scored easily to tie the game. Pirates left fielder Barry Bonds fielded the ball as the snail-slow Bream plodded around the bases toward home plate. Bonds' throw arrived first, but it was slightly offline towards the first-base line. Bream was safe, with what is now known as "The Slide."
I guess all Pirates fans didn't need to know this piece of information to be a real fan of the sport, but a good number should have been able to have had a friendly conversation about that game and series. But I couldn't find one person. Instead, a found a hot-headed Italian who didn't know whom I was talking about, but preferred to fight me.

The bottom line is, the Pirates fan have a great stadium. And the team has stunk since 1992. They have some of the lowest-priced tickets for any stadium (you can grab a seat at this place for $15 and $26 for a very good seat). I don't think there is a whole lot to complain about, especially if you don't know your team's history. But the fact that you staged a walk out, wore the green shirts, and didn't walk out of the stadium maybe explains why the Pirates owner is sitting in his office, cigar in hand, laughing at you all.

It sure is funny.

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