SOUTH HILLS – If you eliminate climate, street tacos, and time zone, there’s actually quite a number of similarities between the Pirates and Padres.
Pittsburgh ranks 22nd in television market size, according to 2014-15 demographics compiled by Nielsen, San Diego ranks 28th.
The Pirates play in a pitcher-friendly park and the Padres play in the most run-depressing environment in baseball.
Both teams have long title droughts, in fact, the Padres have never won. The Pirates were irrelevant for 20 years until back-to-back playoff berths. And the Padres have mostly been irrelevant until this offseason which they capped with the signing of James Shields today to a four-year, $75 million deal.
(The good news for the Pirates is Shields did not land in the division as the Cubs were thought to be interested).