There’s nothing quite like a road trip to see the Giants.
This one was to Pittsburgh, a place I’ve always wanted to visit. When I was younger, and liked the Pirates in the 70s when they were known as the Lumber Company, the idea was more of a pipe dream. When we moved here to Washington in 1995, it became doable, a four-hour drive. Thought about it now and then but just kept putting it off.
Rained on the drive there but the clouds dried up by game time. We paid a little more than I wanted to for our hotel, but got good value out of staying at The Hilton. It’s located just a few blocks from the city’s Cultural District and a short walk across the Roberto Clemente Bridge.
PNC Park is indeed a beauty. The the comparisons with SBC Park are inevitable. I think the latter has an advantage with better surrounding beauty and the fact that the water is closer. PNC gains points in my book with its limestone look and double-deck coziness. The Pirates have also done a great job with honoring the franchise history. We saw statues of Honus Wagner and Willie Stargell and posters of players such as Pie Traynor and Bill Mazerowski.
We had good seats, about 25 rows back on the Giants side. J.T. Snow was on display, making several nice scoops and snaring at least two screaming line drives. The game was fairly exciting with two lead changes and a Pirate rally in the bottom of the ninth. It was fun seeing farm products Lowry, Feliz and Ellison, with the latter two having a hot start. And with all the pitching changes, I got to see a total of 18 Giants in action.
The discomfort came with the Giants pitching. They issued seven walks and seemed to be behind the count all night. The seven pitching changes did break up the rhythm of the game but I didn’t mind. We had just the short walk back and I was soaking up as much action as I could.
I wore my black Giants jacket with the big orange SF on the front. I knew The Eyes would be on me but it’s always great for a conversation starter. I met a Giants fan from Fredericksburg, Virginia. We agreed it will be great to finally see the Giants in D.C.
Pittsburgh has made a great comeback but the Pirates’ ninth inning rally fell one run short. The Benitez-less bullpen made it interesting, but we held on 7-6.