Pittsburgh Goes Pirates Crazy

Much of baseball is taken with the storybook Pirates of Pittsburgh. National baseball writers pat themselves on the back publicly for finally giving the public their due. Meanwhile, Yinzer cartoon characters dressed as local columnists bemoan the lack of local coverage.

The people of Pittsburgh don’t seem to care too much about their public perception, they’re too busy embracing their Buccos.

The famous line from Field of Dreams claims “if you build it, they will come.” This cliche served as a rallying cry for opportunistic owners looking for public handouts to help fund new stadiums for years. The Pirates always proved the opposite is the case. Their ballpark is, arguably, the finest in baseball yet it sat nearly empty for years. A bad product on the field made to look worse when compared to successful neighbors like the NHL’s Penguins and the Steelers, one of the NFL’s most successful and beloved franchises.

With the Pirates finally playing great baseball behind a surprising pitching staff, baseball fans in Western Pennsylvania are coming out of the woodwork. First, the anecdotal evidence courtesy of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:

How about something a little more concrete, like Google searches? Google has a window into your soul, especially if you’re from Pennsylvania and you’re searching “pittsburgh pirates.”

The good people of PA are coming around on the Bucs. Not only them, America has a new sweetheart, and his name is “McCutchen.”

Sure, Pirates fans are making themselves known with the keyboard, what about with their wallets? Are they coming up to the ballpark now that the team sits tied for the division lead? In a word: yes.

Pirates fever!This weekend series with the Cardinals at PNC Park? Sold out! Wearing a Pirates hat in public? Mobbed! Everything is coming up Hurdle!

The Pirates continuing to hang in the NL Central depends on a lot of things, most of which look like wings and/or prayers. They’re in tough with three other good teams battling for the same spot atop the division. With a young core in place and a few decent arms in their system, the swelling ranks of Pirates fans have plenty of reasons for optimism.

Comments (6)

  1. I’m actually really glad for Pittsburgh. After so many years of failure, they’re actually somewhat in contention, in a division that, at this point, is wide open. I hope they do well.

    Meanwhile, when’s 2013 coming, again? Or perhaps, when are the Jays being realigned out of the same division as Boston and New York?

    Never? Okay, guess I’ll go back to watching Jose Bautista.

  2. If the Pirates make the post-season, will that mean that only the Royals have had a longer post-season drought than the Jays? It really says something about the challenges the Jays face that only perennial bottom feeders struggle as much to make the post-season.

  3. I’ll lol pretty hard if Milwaukee’s all-in, playoffs-or-bust strategy is ruined by…the Pirates

  4. The fans in pittsburgh dont have a leg to stand on when it comes to complaining about the lack of local coverage. Maybe if they had gotten off their asses to support the team in the past 10 years there would be more media coverage.

  5. Man what a sports town Pittsburgh would be if the Bucs get a run going. And what a huge boon for baseball if they became a solid team year over year. But there really is no way they hang in this year really, I dont think there pitching will keep it up among other things.

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