April 1 is the earliest opening day in Pirates history, but no matter what day of the year it falls on, with 162 games on the schedule, game number one is always special.
“You don’t have opening day to this degree in the NBA, I don’t think,” said manager Clint Hurdle. “You don’t have it in the NHL unless you’ve won the Cup. You don’t have it in the NFL. It’s capitalized, and I’ve talked about it. It’s a big deal.”
Neal Walker, Pirates 2nd baseman agreed, “It’s everything you work for in the off season. You’re excited to get back to work and to play. We’ll see how it goes, but we’re prepared. We’re ready to go, and we’re happy this day is here.”
Russell Martin, the Pirates newest catcher, said, “It means the start of a new season, a new beginning. Opening day has a different feel, almost a playoff atmosphere.”
“You know, the energy you can’t describe,” added 1st baseman Garrett Jones. “It’s almost like a World Series game, but all the fans are ready for baseball. It’s just that fresh new game of the season, just the smells, everything, it’s a lot of fun.”
Centerfielder Andrew McCutchen continued, “We’re excited to go out and step on the field because we know what we’re capable of. I’m just looking forward to playing every single day.”
Hurdle concluded, “It’s Americana. It’s handed down from generation to generation, and we have a lot of people that have been in for a long time, waiting for a winning season.”
With game number one in the books, the Pirates search for that winning season that has eluded them for two decades is now officially underway.[lin_video src=http://eplayer.clipsyndicate.com/embed/iframe?aspect_ratio=3×2&auto_start=0&pf_id=9626&rel=3&show_title=0&va_id=4001403&volume=8&windows=1 service=syndicaster width=425 height=330 type=iframe]