What just happened?
It was the question being asked around the Pirates’ clubhouse following a stunning 19-inning loss on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. All the reaction you will want will be on pirates.com shortly, but a few other items of note before I try to make it home before sunrise.
- Braves catcher David Ross chimed in on the play with the following: “I don’t know how I’d handle that being a catcher if he did tag him and he was out. That’d be a tough one to swallow. You grind it out. That kid, the whole team, but the catcher caught 19 innings. That’s a lot to swallow when you’re grinding it out, calling the game.”
- The Pirates did a pretty good job keeping their public comments clean and not too full of finger pointing. But what was being said when there was no tape recorder around was much more accurate in terms of how this team felt about that ending. The tag was frozen on the clubhouse video monitor. There was yelling. There was cursing. There were looks of bafflement. To have such a let down after playing for more than 6.5 hours was visibly excrutiating.
- Manager Clint Hurdle addressed his team in the clubhouse before media was allowed access. What was said was not revealed, but he did encourage players to “let it all out.”
- I have to imagine the Pirates are going to need at least one pitcher from Triple-A to come down for Wednesday’s game. No way Daniel McCuchen or Jason Grilli or probably Tony Watson could go after their workloads tonight. The tough call is figuring out who to send out. It’s not like the Pirates have an obvious weak link at this point.
- There were 599 pitche and 41 players used in this game. No position players went unused. Joel Hanrahan was the only reliever (for either team) not called into action.
- Braves’ Julio Lugo, who scored the winning run, said afterward that he didn’t feel the tag. Those words are meaningless. Look at his body language when he comes up after touching home plate. No way he believes he is safe based on the delayed reaction.
- Jeff Karstens ended up throwing only five more pitches than McCutchen did in relief.
- The game was the longest in Braves and Pirates history in terms of time (6 hours, 39 minutes).
- Only six Pirates games have ever ended at a later time — the latest being a 2:30 am ending in 1963
- The last time the club played at least 19 innings was in 1980, when Pittsburgh beat the Cubs.
- Hurdle has talked all season about making sure his team does not get too high with the wins or too low with the losses. The biggest test on that front will come when we see how the team responds after something like this.
Much more follow up one what happened tonight to come tomorrow. But first, a little sleep is in order.
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