PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Pirates went 98-64, the second-best record in the major leagues. Still, they needed a win on the final day of the regular season to clinch home field in the NL wild-card game.
They got that win behind J.A. Happ's stellar effort and Pedro Alvarez's long home run Sunday, 4-0 over the Cincinnati Reds.
The Pirates will host the Chicago Cubs (97-65) Wednesday in a winner-take-all playoff.
"We love playing at home," said Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle, whose team went 53-28 at PNC Park. "Our guys love pitching at home. There's opportunity for it to be a really good ballgame. I know our fans will show up and it will be loud and it will be proud. Our guys will be ready for it."