The year-long battle between the Cincinnati Reds and the Pittsburgh Pirates for second place in the National League Central division continued this week with a huge four-game series with major playoff ramifications. Four big games between two of baseball’s best teams so we could finally see one of them pull out in front and chase down those evil St. Louis Cardinals and their pesky best record in Major League Baseball.
Now all four games are in the books and the Reds accomplished absolutely nothing. Going into the series the Reds were 2.5 back of the Cardinals and the Pirates were 3.0 back. With a Cardinals win against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday night those numbers will be 3.5 back for the Reds and 4.0 for the Pirates. That’s right it is entirely possible that the only thing either team will have accomplished is that somehow they both managed to lose a game to the Cardinals.
Really it is kind of funny when you think about it. They are fighting amongst themselves and falling from the Cardinals. Of course the Reds are the leaders in the Wildcard race over the Pirates by one half game and that also didn’t change during the split series that saw each team win two. The big deal for the Reds was when their MVP Brandon Phillips came through with a game winning single in extra innings of Wednesday night’s game.
If they had not won that one in overtime then the Pirates would have been the team on the move. For now though we are all still in a holding pattern to see what happens between these two and if either of them can catch the Cardinals. My money is on the Reds.