Well, so far so good regarding my predictions. The Pittsburgh Pirates won the NL Wild Card on Tuesday night defeating the Cincinnati Reds 6-2 in front of a boisterous crowd at PNC Park.
Francisco Liriano has regained the form he had when he came up with the Minnesota Twins in 2006. Liriano pitched seven innings allowing only one run on four hits.
The same could not be said for Reds starter Johnny Cueto. After giving up a solo home run to Marlon Byrd, the Pirates fans shouted, “Cueto!!! Cueto!!!” He ended up dropping the ball and moments later gave up another home run, this time to Bucs catcher Russell Martin. The Canadian born Martin would hit a second HR in the 8th inning.
The Reds have made three post-season appearances in the past four years there is no joy in Cincinnati. The Reds were eliminated in the NLDS in both 2010 and 2012 (by the Philadelphia Phillies and San Francisco Giants, respectively) and now have been eliminated in the Wild Card game.
The Pirates will now head to St. Louis to face the Cardinals in the NLDS. Game 1 begins on Thursday afternoon.
Tomorrow night, the Cleveland Indians and Tampa Bay Rays face off in the AL Wild Card game.