What a game!
That was one roller coaster of a game! If the Bucs had lost, it would have been a heart breaker. As it stands, I think it vaults them to take over the division and not look back.
The truth is, the Cardinals have been playing over their heads. Seriously. They are a great team that is well run, but they’ve been hitting too well as a team and are bound to come back to earth. We can say the same about the Pirates’ pitching, but the Pirates hitting has been below average. So, as the pitching regresses some, the hitting is due to erupt. That is what great teams do, just like yesterday.
Pedro Alvarez won’t hit HRs everyday like the last four, but he will produce. He’ll hit close to .250 minimum the remainder of the way and make a run at 40 HRs. Andrew McCutchen will finish the season over .300 which means he’s due to hit even better than he has been. Those two have the capacity to carry the offense on their own. Let alone that Neil Walker is due to hit better (recently he has been). Jordy Mercer is a definite upgrade at SS. If they can get marginal better production from RF, this team is hard to beat.
The only fear is their lack of hitting depth. If something happens anywhere, it will require a trade or some out-of-the-box thinking. From AAA, the only option might be to bring Tony Sanchez up to catch and move Russell Martin to whatever position needs replaced. Let’s pray that doesn’t have to happen.