A manatee is a giant aquatic mammal often referred to as the “sea cow.” I learned this from an episode of Family Guy.
Manatee is also a county in Florida — named after the mammal, presumably — that is home to Manatee Community College.
Like most community colleges, Manatee houses a baseball team. Unlike most community college baseball teams, however, the Lancers of Manatee can claim victory over a Major League Baseball franchise.
On Thursday, the Lancers pulled off what locals are calling the “Miracle on Grass,” when they knocked off the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-4.
There’s really no way to spin this without just saying it. We knew the Pirates were bad, but who knew they were this bad?
In fairness to the big-league Pirates, the Pittsburgh ballclub that fell to mighty Manatee was considered Major League in name only. In fact, the majority of the Pirates’ big-league roster was playing a split-squad contest in Cincinnati.
Still, the team that Manatee defeated was no slouch of a ballclub. They wore the jerseys of their Major League affiliate and boasted a roster primarily composed of Double- and Triple-A ballplayers.
Perhaps the most notable Pirate to crumble before Sea Cow U. was 2005 first-round draft pick Andrew McCutchen, an outfielder with a whole lot of “upside,” as the experts say.
I’ll admit I’m no Baseball America aficianado. No fountain of knowledge when it comes to the Minor League systems of various big-league teams. But I would have to imagine that this does not bode well for the Pittsburgh Pirates’ farm system. We all have our bad days, but losing to a community college? That’s tough to comprehend.