Big Lead Sports Bar


Pirates Home Opener: An In-Person Recap

While we were all working extremely hard on a Monday afternoon, 37,491 of our baseball-loving friends turned out at PNC Park for the pomp and pageantry that was the Pirates' 2008 Home Opener: Donnie Iris, Bill Mazeroski, Lou Piniella, Aramis Ramirez, a former Povertyneck Hillbilly, AND a flyover.
Luckily, I arranged in advance for a first-person report, and made sure my field correspondent put their photo-taking emphasis on the really interesting stuff: the action around the game. I'm sure you already know that the Pirates dug a 7-0 hole by the 3rd inning, I'm sure you know that they somehow botched a 9th-inning rally with a bizarre, two-on/one-out bunt, and I'm sure you know that ultimately, the Pirates would send their fans home disappointed with a 10-8 loss in 12 innings. So here's what else was happening (click on the pics for a larger view):

The official 2008 Pirates fan's home uniform, complete with black Tekulve t-shirt

A one-hour game of catch. Sorry guys, the Pirates aren't scouting the parking lot. Yet.

Bill Mazeroski throws out the first pitch. This was recently voted as the Dapper Dan Greatest First Pitch of All Time.

PNC Park: Celebrating its eighth season of bad baseball in a quaint atmosphere

It's not easy to time a picture of a flyover. Try it sometime.

Donnie Iris belts out the National Anthem. A stirring rendition, as expected. The Parrot looks on in awe.

Former Povertyneck Hillbilly Chris Higbee works the fiddle. The Parrot still has not moved.

Everyone's favorite time-waster, the Pierogi Race.

In case you were wondering, no, it's not too late to jump on the Fukudome bandwagon. You've got one more week.

Chaos ensues at the Hall of Fame Club. Looks as exclusive as it sounds.
"Screw it, I'm wearing the Kuwata t-shirt jersey anyway."
So there you have it. In a game eerily reminiscent of last week's season opener against Atlanta, one team has a big lead, one team blows a big lead, and ultimately the game is decided in the bullpen.
It looks like it could be a common theme, and that's not good news for the Pirates. If they're going to try and be competitive this year, it's hard to have a luxury like a rule-5 pitcher on your roster for the entire season, especially in a bullpen that's going to get a fair share of work.
While it's true that the Pirates of years past would have seen an early 7-0 deficit and packed it in, this team is showing (at least so far) that it's willing to put up a fight. That's definitely an admirable quality that will go far with the ticket-buying public, but habitual hole-digging may get really old really fast. Of course, so will bunts that kill a 9th-inning rally, but who am I to judge?
The Buccos have an off day tomorrow, and then it's back to the grind on Wednesday as Zach Duke and Ryan Dempster lock horns. Sadly, I will have no in-person correspondent to recap the Pierogi Race, so we'll just have to make do with a recap of the actual game.


Sky Davis said...

I live out of town so I havn't gotten to hear the explanation of that Bautista bunt. Was it called? Was it Bixlers fault? What was the deal with that?

The Duckworth said...

I think we were near you where we were tailgating.My drunk ass friend even yelled something about your shirt.

Anonymous said...

you forgot to mention adam laroche using his scoreboard pictures to promote his damn hunting videos.

Anonymous said...

The paper bag look should be required at all Bucco home games.