Bucs hope to follow the lead of A's, Nats, O's

Bucs hope to follow the lead of A's, Nats, O's

PITTSBURGH -- The Orioles, Athletics and Nationals -- all recently downtrodden franchises which among them have had 27 consecutive non-winning seasons -- are all in the postseason.

You bet Clint Hurdle, manager of a Pirates club whose depression continues, has noticed, with a mixture of envy and hope.

"You feel the frustration, and some disappointment, definitely," Hurdle said. "We were right there among those clubs. They finished, and we didn't finish."

For comparison's sake, on Aug. 8, these were the teams' records:

• Pirates: 63-47.
• Nationals: 68-43
• Orioles: 60-51
• A's: 60-51

"At the same time, there's optimism," Hurdle added, "because the game is proving itself to be a game where if you execute over a long period of time, you're going to have a chance to get in.

"And it's not just the big-money markets," Hurdle went on, citing a popular alibi. "The teams that are in have played well. And the pitching for the most part has carried each and every one of them."