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Random thoughts on the Pirates and the playoffs

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-P- Whether the Pirates win or lose today, the one-game playoff is a stupid idea, and I'd hate for the Pirates to lose this game and then miss the playoffs for several years after this one. I don't think that's a very likely outcome, but you've got to admit, it's pretty Piratey.

-P- I keep losing track of how I ought to feel about things. This season has already been far more successful than I'd imagined. I tend not to get overly emotional about wins and losses either way; that's just a product of two decades of losing. But I feel like, at some point this season, someone knocked on my door with some balloons and said, 'Hey, you won a sweepstakes! Here's a million dollars!' And now the Pirates have a chance to win a playoff series or two, and it's going to be like Ed McMahon showing up again and saying, 'Hey, you won another million dollars!'

Hey, great! That's fantastic, and yes, I'll take the second million. But it's not the same as winning the first one.

A World Series win, which of course is the ultimate goal here, is in a completely different category. But short of that, I already feel like the season has been a massive success, and the Pirates' performance in these next couple days or weeks isn't going to change that very much.

-P- The PNC Blackout is an awesome idea.

-P- As Tim points out, the Rangers dealt for Matt Garza and Alex Rios this summer, and missed the playoffs anyway. The trade deadline usually isn't all it's cracked up to be.

-P- The Rangers' loss to the Rays tonight means the 2014 MLB Draft order is set. The Pirates will pick at No. 27, which is bizarre.