PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It was a complete team effort for the Pirates Tuesday night.
Winds unleashed a runaway tarp during a rain delay and trapped a grounds crew member underneath. Fortunately, the crew got some back-up from some quick-thinking Pirates players.
All-Star Andrew McCutchen and infielder Sean Rodriguez grabbed sections on the tarp, billowing in the wind, despite the ground crews efforts to contain it.
“That’s why we were out here waiting, because we didn’t think they had enough helpers,” McCutchen said afterward. “So when that happened I was, like, it’s a plastic wave coming right at him.”
Field maintenance supervisor Matt Gerhardt was caught in a swirling embrace that dragged him across the infield. McCutchen, Rodriguez, and the bullpen crew, not to mention Pirates’ staff members tugged on the ropes to help him make his escape.
Meanwhile, the Pirates and a weary grounds crew, taxed by one rain delay after another, hoped Wednesday will not be a repeat performance.
Ball park operations director Chris Hiunter says his crew is accustomed to bouncing back.
“With the weather that we’ve had, these guys come in from the night before and make changes. They’re adapting and ever-changing,” he said.
And Pittsburgh’s baseball heroes… are they life-saving heroes as well?
“The heroes are overseas, the guys who fight over there,” Rodriguez argues. “We’re just fortunate to be there and help a guy out.”
And the man in the tarp? He, also, is back on the job.