Pittsburgh Pirates Team History
The new owners also signed up several players from American Association teams. One of them was highly regarded second baseman Lou Bierbauer, who had previously played with the A.A.’s Philadelphia Athletics. The Athletics failed to include him on their reserve list, and the Alleghenys picked him up. This led to loud protests by the Athletics, and in an official complaint, an AA official claimed the Alleghenys’ actions were “piratical.” Similarly, the Philadelphia papers complained that the deal was “an act of piracy on the high seas”. This incident which is discussed at some length in The Beer and Whisky League, by David Nemec, 1994 quickly accelerated into a schism between the leagues that contributed to the demise of the A.A. Although the Alleghenys were never found guilty of wrongdoing, they made sport of being denounced for being “piratical” by renaming themselves “the Pirates” for the 1891 season. The nickname was first acknowledged on the team’s uniforms in 1912.
The 1909 World Series featured the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Detroit Tigers. The Pirates won the Series in seven games to capture their first championship of the modern Major League Baseball era and the second championship in the club’s history.
In the 1925 World Series, the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the defending champion Washington Senators in seven games.
The 1960 World Series was played between the Pittsburgh Pirates of the National League (NL) and the New York Yankees of the American League (AL) from October 5 to 13, 1960. It is most notable for the Game 7, ninth-inning home run hit by Bill Mazeroski, winning the game for the Pirates 10–9, and also winning them their third World Championship overall and first since 1925.
Ground was broken in April 1968 and an oft behind-schedule construction plan lasted for 29 months. The stadium opened on July 16, 1970 when the Pirates played their first game. In the 1971 World Series, Three Rivers Stadium hosted the first World Series game played at night. The following year the stadium was the site of the Immaculate Reception. The final game in the stadium was won by the Steelers on December 16, 2000. Three Rivers Stadium also hosted the Pittsburgh Maulers of the United States Football League and the University of Pittsburgh Panthers football team for a single season each.
The 1971 World Series matched the defending champion Baltimore Orioles against the Pittsburgh Pirates, with the Pirates winning in seven games. Game 4, played in Pittsburgh, was the first-ever World Series game scheduled to be played at night. The two teams proved to be evenly matched, as the Series went the full seven games, with the Pirates’ Steve Blass pitching a complete game four-hitter in winning Game 7, 2–1, against Mike Cuellar and the Orioles. The Pirates’ Roberto Clemente, who turned into a one-man gang in the Series, became the first Spanish-speaking ballplayer to earn World Series MVP honors. Clemente hit safely in all seven games of the Series, duplicating a feat he had performed in 1960.
The 1979 World Series matched the National League’s Pittsburgh Pirates (98–64) against the American League’s Baltimore Orioles (102–57), with the Pirates coming back from a three games to one deficit to win the Series in seven games. The Pirates were famous for adopting Sister Sledge’s hit anthem “We Are Family” as their theme song.
The Pirates opened a new stadium, PNC Park, in 2001. Due to its simple, unpretentious concept and strategic usage of the remarkably beautiful Pittsburgh skyline, it is frequently regarded as in a recent ESPN article as currently the best park in baseball. Despite this, the Pirates’ performance has translated to subpar attendance figures. Through the end of the 2012 season, the Pirates had failed to compile at least a .500 winning percentage in 20 straight seasons. This streak is the longest in any of the country’s four major professional sports leagues.
The Pittsburgh Pirates are an American professional baseball team based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Pirates compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) Central division. The Pirates play their home games at PNC Park; the team previously played at Forbes Field and Three Rivers Stadium, the latter of which was named after its location near the confluence of the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio Rivers. Founded on October 15, 1881 as Allegheny, the franchise has won five World Series championships. The Pirates are also often referred to as the “Bucs” or the “Buccos” (derived from buccaneer, a synonym for pirate).
2000 – Present Major League Baseball
1887 – 1999 National League
1882 – 1886 American Association
Pirates – After the Players League collapsed in 1890, the National League’s Pittsburgh club signed two players, including Lou Bierbauer, whom the Philadelphia Athletics had forgotten to place on their reserve list. A Philadelphia sportswriter claimed that Pittsburgh “pirated away Bierbauer” and the Pirates nickname was born. Alternate nicknames such as “Bucs” or “Buccos”, short for “buccaneer”, have been used through the years.
1882 – Present Pittsburgh Pirates
World Series 5
1979, 1971, 1960, 1925, 1909
2001 – Present PNC Park
1970 – 2000 Three Rivers Stadium
1909 – 1970 Forbes Field
1891 – 1909 Exposition Park II
1884 – 1890 Recreation Park
1882 – 1883 Exposition Park I
2007 – Present Robert Nutting
1996 – 2007 Kevin McClatchy
1985 – 1996 Pittsburgh Associates
1946 – 1985 John W. Galbreath
1932 – 1946 Bill Benswanger
1900 – 1932 Barney Dreyfuss
1891 – 1900 William Kerr & Phil Auten
1887 – 1891 William A. Nimick
1882 – 1887 Denny McKnight
1 Billy Meyer
4 Ralph Kiner
8 Willie Stargell
9 Bill Mazeroski
11 Paul Waner
20 Pie Traynor
21 Roberto Clemente
33 Honus Wagner
40 Danny Murtaugh
42 Jackie Robinson
1979 – Present Pirate Parrot
*Blue is this team’s history