By: Kim Garafola
The Pirates began their season on April 5th, 2012. Thousands of fans gathered to be a part of Opening Day and to cheer on the team against the Philadelphia Phillies. The weather was perfect, the crowd was loud and the team was ready, or so they would have you believe. None of this, however, helped the Pirates to win Opening Day. The day was lost in the 7th inning as the Phillies scored only one run.
A rough start to the season, the Pirates have continued to play hard. Currently they hold a record of 10 wins and 12 losses. But there is much time to come back and have a winning record. The Pirates will play their last regular season game on October 3rd at home against the Atlanta Braves.
The Pittsburgh Pirates, also know as the Bucs or the Buccos (derived from Buccaneer), play at PNC Park, located on the North Shore of Pittsburgh, the Pirates fifth home. It opened on March 31st 2001. Before PNC Park, there was Three Rivers Stadium, in a similar location, Forbes Field, in Oakland on the site of a portion of the University of Pittsburgh, Recreation Park and Exposition Park. If you have never been to PNC Park, it is highly recommended that you visit. Tickets are cheap and can be bought at the box office right before a game, and are well worth the view if nothing else.
The team is part of the National League and has five World Series: 1909, 1925, 1960, 1971 and 1979. They also currently have a 19 consecutive year losing streak, meaning they have lost more games than they have won, the longest in professional American sports history.
With die-hard fans, pierogi races, “catch a hotdog,” and free t-shirts, a good time is a sure thing at the game. (Free t-shirts every Friday home game.) Make sure to have your gear though! There are many Andrew McCutchen t-shirts, with only the outline of his face on it, or some “Hammer Time” shirts, meaning it’s time to bring out our closer, Joel Hanrahan.
Grab an “Ameribuddy,” a family member or just another friend and treat yourself to a night (or afternoon) of fun. There are many games all summer, and with the great view, the good food and the affordable cost, there’s almost nothing better to do in Pittsburgh than enjoy a ball game!