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BCB After Dark: Wave the Jolly Roger?

The late-night/early-morning spot for Cubs fans asks if you think the Pirates are actually good this year.

MLB: SEP 12 Brewers at Pirates Photo by Justin Berl/Icon Sportswire/Corbis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Welcome back to BCB After Dark: the happening hangout for night owls, early risers, new parents and Cubs fans abroad. We’re so glad you could join us this evening. Come on in and warm up. Or cool down, depending on where you’re coming from. There’s no cover charge on Wednesday nights. Take any table you’d like. Bring your own beverage.

BCB After Dark is the place for you to talk baseball, music, movies, or anything else you need to get off your chest, as long as it is within the rules of the site. The late-nighters are encouraged to get the party started, but everyone else is invited to join in as you wake up the next morning and into the afternoon.

The Cubs lost to the Padres 5-3 tonight. It was a game I think the Cubs should have won. I can’t really put a finger on how they lost, other than Brandon Hughes being less-than-sharp. But it’s unfair to put all the blame on Hughes. I think the Cubs should have been able to overcome that. I don’t have a good reason why I think that, but I do.

Anyway, it counts as a loss no matter what I think.

Last night, I asked you who you thought the Cubs’ MVP has been over the first almost-month of the season. It was a runaway vote as Nico Hoerner collected 63 percent of the vote. Second place was Justin Steele with just 16 percent.

Here’s the part where I talk about jazz and and movies. You’re free to skip ahead to the baseball question at the end. You won’t hurt my feelings.

Tonight’s performance comes from the Horace Silver Quintet in Rotterdam in 1968. It’s perhaps Silver’s signature tune, “Song for My Father.”

Everytime I hear “Song for My Father,” I hear the opening and think it’s “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number.” Because Steely Dan completely (and admittedly) ripped off the opening piano riff of “Song for My Father” for “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number.” Back then, you could get away with a little musical “borrowing” like that as long as it was just one riff and not an entire song. Today, Steely Dan would probably get the hauled into court over it.

So here’s Horace Silver on piano, Randy Brecker on trumpet, Bennie Maupin on tenor sax, John WIlliams on bass and Billy Cobham on drums.

Tonight, I’m just going to ask you about the most-famous director of all-time, the master of suspense Alfred Hitchcock. Or maybe the second-most famous director after Steven Spielberg. There aren’t objective ways of determining that. But Spielberg never served as the host of a TV show that had his name on it. (Although Spielberg has had TV shows.)

Both Hitchcock and Spielberg have had their names turned into adjectives, which is perhaps the highest compliment for a film director. I can think of a few other directors who have that honor as well: Howard Hawks, Frank Capra, David Lynch. I’m sure there are a few more that I’m not thinking of right now. But really, no one ever calls a film “Curtizian.” Not even Casablanca, which Michael Curtiz actually directed.

But I’m simply going to ask you what your favorite Hitchcock-directed film is. Hitchcock had a long career, starting in England with silent films in the mid-1920s and lasting until the mid-1970s.

Pretty much everyone who watches older movies has seen at least one Hitchcock movie. I’ve even known people who won’t watch old films or films in black-and-white who will make an exception for Psycho.

I’ve often quoted the BFI Sight and Sound poll of the greatest films of all-time and the most recent edition, which came out last year. There are six films directed by Alfred Hitchcock in the top 200 of that poll:

2. Vertigo

31. Psycho

38. Rear Window

45. North by Northwest

133. Notorious

185. The Birds

But you don’t have to agree with those selections. There are a lot of other good films directed by Hitchcock and maybe one those speak to you more Just in chronological order, there’s The Man Who Knew Too Much, The 39 Steps, Rebecca, Foreign Correspondent, Suspicion, Saboteur, Lifeboat, Spellbound, Rope, Strangers on a Train, The Man Who Knew Too Much (again) and many others. I personally haven’t seen the silent film The Lodgers, although I have seen the 1944 re-make (not directed by Hitchcock), but I want to see the original.

So tell us your favorite Alfred Hitchcock film or films. My personal favorite is North by Northwest, if only because it manages to be both a great Hitchcock film and a great parody of a Hitchcock film at the same time. But if you have a different favorite, then I won’t argue with you. Honestly, I didn’t like Marnie, although that film has its fans.

Welcome back to everyone who skips the movies and music.

Tonight I’m going to ask about the Cubs’ central division rival who is currently in first place. No, not the Brewers or the Cardinals. It’s the Pittsburgh Pirates, who are off to a 17-8 start. The Pirates are tied with the Braves for the best record in the National League at the moment.

Yes, this is the same Pirates team that lost 100 games last year. The same Pirates team whose biggest additions in the offseason were a 43-year-old Rich Hill, a 37-year-old Carlos Santana and and 36-year-old Andrew McCutchen. All three of those players didn’t have a lot of options before signing with Pittsburgh. This Pirates team also lost one of their best players, Oneil Cruz, to an injury after just nine games.

Yet they’re winning. The Buccos are winning more than two out of every three games. Now yes, their early-season schedule has been soft. They’ve had seven games with the Reds, three with the Rockies, three with the White Sox, three with the Red Sox and four with an unexpectedly bad Cardinals team. But last year they never would have won at a .680 clip over 25 games no matter who they played. Only the best teams in the game could be expected to win at a pace better than that over 25 games. And they did wallop the Dodgers this evening.

So tonight’s question is: Are the Pirates for real? Or more specifically, do you expect the Pirates to finish with a record above .500 this year? It’s not easy to go from 100 losses in one year to over .500 the next. I don’t know how many teams have done it, but it can’t be too many.

So will the Pirates finish above .500 this year? Or is this start just a mirage?


Will the Pirates finish above .500 this year?

This poll is closed

  • 31%
    (41 votes)
  • 68%
    (88 votes)
129 votes total Vote Now

Thank you for stopping in this evening. We hope you were able to put the score of the Cubs game out of your mind for a while and enjoy yourself. If you checked anything, let us get that for you. Recycle any cans or bottles. Tip your waitstaff. Please get home safely. And join us again next week for more BCB After Dark.