1. Pirates move on. Incredible crowd in Pittsburgh last night to celebrate the team’s first postseason game in 21 years, and the Pirates did not disappoint, getting a strong start from Francisco Liriano and two home runs from Russell Martin to advance to the
ALDS NLDS (thanks Ron) with a 6-2 victory over the Reds. They’ll face the Cardinals starting Thursday.
2. Tampa Bay at Cleveland at 8 tonight, which might not sound great on paper, but it’s the last of the win-or-go-home games and therefore has potential to be great. Braves-Dodgers and Athletics-Tigers are going to be a lot of fun later this week. On Friday, all four division series are in action. Good day, this.
3. National interceptions co-leader, aspiring heart surgeon…wide receiver? Virginia Tech freshman cornerback Brandon Facyson is getting some offensive reps. Meanwhile, Antone Exum says he’s ready to play.
4. Cal Ripken Jr. managing the Nats? The Hall of Famer wouldn’t rule it out. I don’t think the Nats are crazy enough to entertain that idea seriously, though.
5. Anybody have a success story on learning Spanish? Any recommendations on programs? About to pull the $250 trigger on Rosetta Stone, I think, but I’m open to other possibilities. Five years of high school Spanish, while helpful, doesn’t get me very far in a Carolina League clubhouse. We can only sing the virtues of hamburgers, libraries and pants for so long.
6. If you want to avoid the deadline rush, today’s a good time to make your Fearless Forecasters picks. Air Force-Navy is on the slate, but that game might be canceled because of the government shutdown.