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Game #79 vs. Nationals

PNC Park | 7:05 | Snell vs. Matt Chico | Box
Rarely do you see the Pirates erupt with a show of such sheer jubilation as you did on Friday night.
Jose Bautista’s sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth scored Jose Castillo, and the Pirates walked off with a 3-2 win.
As Castillo trotted home from third, Ian Snell vaulted the dugout railing and led his teammates down the first base line.  The Pirates mobbed Bautista in a display that you’d expect to see after a World Series win—not a meaningless June game against the Nationals.
It shows just how seriously these Bucs take their jobs.  Believe it or not, they enjoy playing the game—and it’s a lot more fun when they win.
A crowd of over 30,000 went nuts as Nationals’ reliever Jon Rauch fell behind in the count, 3-0, to Bautista with the bases loaded.  It’s clear that Pittsburgh has a passion for baseball.  We’re desperate to support a winner.
Recaps
Pirates.com
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
SI.com

Pre-game Thoughts
Said Dejan recently in a Post-Gazette live chat:

Lave_Dittlefield: How many games back do you think the Pirates need to be at the end of July to have a realistic chance of winning the division, if possible?
Dejan Kovacevic: As I look at the schedule, we will know before the All-Star break if the Pirates still have a prayer. Right after this bad [road] trip comes three against Washington, then the Brewers and Cubs. That is your season right there.

Not much more to it. The Pirates have three against a weak team followed by seven against the division leaders. They’ve got to win the ones they’re supposed to win and a few of the ones they’re not supposed to win.
The talk of protests, deadline deals and so on doesn’t matter right now—they’ve got to put together a winning streak.
Ian starts it off tonight.

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Randy Linville

Randy is currently living and thriving in suburban Dayton, OH with his wife and two kids. He was raised in Cincinnati, OH and attended Anderson High School. He went to Miami University (Ohio) and received a degree in Paper Science Engineering from MU. He is a devout Christian and a pop culture buff. He coaches his son’s baseball and basketball teams and his daughters softball and basketball teams. Randy has been a Pirates fan since the late 1970s and has fond memories of the 1979 World Series team. He began blogging for Most Valuable Network in 5/2004 after stumbling across a help-wanted sign for a Pirates blogger. He wrote for Pittsburgh Lumber Co. until the site merged with Pirates Prospects in 2/2011.

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