Editor’s Note: This post is by P.Pemberton, a contributor to the BallHyped Sports News Service.

Way to go, Pirates — you blew my plans to look cool.

Losers.

You see, I had this idea. I was going to get one of those old school, retro, vintage baseball hats, right? But I also wanted to be unique about it. Because, like, that’s where the cool part comes in. If you’re one of, say, a million guys wearing a Yankees hat, that doesn’t show coolness. There’s no rebel streak there.

But if you’ve got your own thing going on, well, then you’ve got it going on, you hear what I’m saying?

So I figured I’d get a Pirates hat. Because for the past 19 years, the Pirates have sucked so bad, even Pirates fans don’t wear Pirates hats. In fact, I’m guessing if they wore anything, it was a paper bag the Saints fans used to wear when their team sucked so bad.

Or a Phillies hat.

So I was going to get one of those yellow and black deals — like maybe the one Roberto Clemente wore back in the day. Or maybe even one of those shriner-inspired, flat-topped ones that Dave Parker and Willie Stargell wore in their ’79 championship days. (Everybody sing along: “We. Are. Famileee . . .”)

But now look at what they’e done: Here we are, at the All-Star break, and those one-eyed losers – who haven’t finished with a winning record in close to 20 years — are actually four games above .500.

And just a game out of first place.

Note: I said the Pirates. Not the Steelers.

So I’ve got to give up on this hat thing. Because, unlike the Royals — whom everyone got all googly-eyed about in the first three weeks of the season — or the Nationals — who’ll finish ten games under by season’s end — I think the Pirates are here to stay. In fact, get this, Pirate Heads:

This is The Year.

I know. Bold statement. Especially with cross-state rivals the Phillies having a good year. And with the reigning champ Giants still tough. But, seriously, I’ve got a feeling about this. And when I get that feeling, well – I’m usually right.

About 28 percent of the time, anyway. But, heck, that’s a .280 average, which is apparently good enough to get you into the all-star game, judging by some of the dudes who played in this year’s summer classic.

So, enjoy your wild ride, Pirate fans. But while you’re winning, I’m gonna keep it cool.

That’s right — I’m gonna get me a Royals hat.

- P.Pemberton

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