The Pirates 125th Season ... Nowhere to Go But Up!
While those of us who live in Pittsburgh are experiencing the last vestiges of winter with the snow, muck and mire, the Pittsburgh Pirates are in Chicago to launch the 2011 Major League baseball season…the clubs' 125th seasons.
As the old adage goes, hope springs eternal in the hearts of Pittsburgh baseball fans. While the Steelers and the Penguins have taken over the limelight and the adoration of Pittsburgh sports fans – and for good reason - the Pirates down through the years have captured the admiration of Pittsburgh sports fans - but not recently.
There have been many high points for the Pittsburgh Pirates; from the days of Honus Wager...to Pie Traynor...to Willie Stargell...to the Pirates of ... "We are Family" fame. As we say, those were the good old days... when the Pirates won pennants and championships!
But that is - as we know - history. The Bucs have had 18 consecutive losing seasons and a 57-105 record last year. But every year, as we approach the season's opening game, we are given hope that this will be the year for the big comeback.
For those familiar with the"Peanuts"comic strip, we all remember Charlie Brown running forward to kick off the football that Lucy is holding and then, at the last second, Lucy pulls the ball back and Charlie lands on his face.
Those of us who are Pirate baseball fans can relate to that. Bob Nutting, who owns the Pirates, has said that just having a winning season for the first time in 18 years is not good enough; nothing short of a pennant should be our objective.
As we know, baseball…like football and hockey is a big money business. Payrolls vary from one team to another with the New York Yankees at the top end and small market teams like the Pirates on the low end. In truth, it probably was ever thus…or was it?
It was not...for those of us a bit longer of tooth senior citizen Pirate fans, who still hold dear the memory of that fateful October 13th, 1960 late afternoon World Series 7th game at old Forbes Field between the super rich, in payroll and talent, New York Yankee, and our nearer subsistence level beloved Bucs. We won 10 to 9 on Bill Mazeroski's home run in the ninth inning!
Such may not be the scenario for success in this 2011 season but hope springs eternal... so... as has been our clarion call in previous seasons... Beat 'em Bucs!!!
Robert W. Dickey
President & General Manager
Broadcast: March 31, & April 1, 2, 3, 2011
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