It shouldn’t surprise you that the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Second Annual Playoff Collapse is wearing me out; last year’s collapse nearly killed this blog over the course of the winter and this year’s team is better, with more wins, more talent, and a stronger playoff position to piss away. That makes the unraveling that much more exasperating to me.
Here’s what I’ve been dreading all weekend, and thus the reason that I just didn’t write and mostly ignored the Pirates: after almost a full season of being a real baseball fan, it’s time to go back to being a Pirate fan. That means that games can’t be watched just for their individual value and the drama that they create inside of the playoff race; everything that’s done now has to be done with an eye towards the future. What made this Pirate team good enough to stay in contention for most of the season? What can be counted on to happen again in 2013? What can’t be counted on? What holes does this team have that truly need filled next year? Can they be filled?
It’s not that the Pirates are out of playoff contention right now, just that they probably will be soon and now that that’s happening, it’s time to move our sights from the present off to some distant, murky, uncertain future yet again. Just thinking about having to do this again makes me tired.