PITTSBURGH -- The reward for the Pirates' nightmarish game on Friday night? A do-over. After they had booted and thrown away a 12-2 loss to the Cubs, the two teams they are contesting for a National League Wild Card berth both lost. The Dodgers' West Coast action and the Cardinals' rain-delayed extra-inning game both ended way past Clint Hurdle's bed time. But a morning call from his dad filled him in. "My dad pointed out that everyone lost. So, yeah, how about that?" the Pittsburgh manager said about having gotten the ultimate mulligan. "That would be one way to look at it."
Friday's results left the Pirates still tied with the Dodgers, and 1 1/2 games behind St. Louis, which currently holds the second Wild Card spot. "The fact other teams we're battling with didn't win either," Hurdle said, "means we caught a break." That was about all the Pirates caught Friday night, when their seven errors on defense combined with four hits on offense made them the first team since 1931 with that combination. The Boston Braves had seven miscues while getting three hits in dropping the second game of a doubleheader in Philadelphia -- by the same 12-2 score. "There's no way you can go through the 5 1/2 months we've gone through together and not feel the sting of a game like that," Hurdle said. "No doubt when you play the game we played, there's frustration out there in the clubhouse. "But I do not expect any carryover today. That's not acceptable."