Hurdle's 2007 Colorado Rockies offer a pretty good precedent for what the Bucs hope to pull off.
Those Rockies bottomed out at nine games under .500 and peaked at seven games over until Sept. 16, when they took off on an 11-game winning streak that lit a fire not doused until a World Series loss to Boston.
These Pirates bottomed out at eight below, topped out at nine above and have yet to win more than four straight. They are one of only two National League teams to not have won more than four in a row (also the Mets' longest winning streak, with the D-backs' longest streak at three).
"In Colorado, we never had a big streak then caught fire late -- very late," Hurdle recalled. "We haven't yet gotten to the point where we played those complete games you need to put together a streak. I'm confident we've still got one in front of us."
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.