Monday night Clint Hurdle relaxed. He helped his daughter Maddie with her math homework. He played chess with his son Christian. He spent time with family and friends in town for the festivities Tuesday. He went to bed at 10:30 p.m.
It didn't sound like Hurdle did much fretting about the game Tuesday night despite the stakes: Lose to the Cincinnati Reds and the Pirates' successful season the bookend to 20 years of incompetence and disappointment would end with only a toe dipped into the playoff waters.
The Pirates validated Hurdle's attitude when they defeated the Reds 6-2 at PNC Park in the wild-card game and earned their first playoff victory since Oct. 13 1992. A small early lead only grew as the game progressed.
The win sent the Pirates to the National League Divisional Series against another Central Division opponent the St. Louis Cardinals beginning Thursday in St. Louis.
The 40487 in the crowd the largest paid attendance in the history of PNC Park channeled their inner co...