Bucs notes: Cutch hurls ball into Allegheny

Center fielder: 'I always wanted to throw a ball in the river'

Bucs notes: Cutch hurls ball into Allegheny

PITTSBURGH -- A few seconds after Adam Duvall's home run off A.J. Burnett with one out in the seventh inning of Saturday night's game had entered the right-center-field stands of PNC Park, it came back out.

Buccos center fielder Andrew McCutchen turned to watch the rejected ball land about 90 feet to his left, and casually jogged over to retrieve it as fans in those seats waved to get his attention hoping to get the boomerang souvenir.

Not quite.

• Dress like the Pirates this postseason

Instead, McCutchen reared back and heaved the ball on a majestic arch over the stands, out of the yard, into the Allegheny River -- if not over it.

"If they didn't want the ball, I certainly didn't want it," McCutchen said lightly Sunday morning. "I always wanted to throw a ball in the river. That was my chance."

The five-time All-Star can check that one off the bucket list.

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Touching all the bases

• First: Aramis Ramirez suited up for his 2,195th and final regular-season Major League game on Sunday -- but was not in the starting lineup as Josh Harrison got the nod at third base in the finale. Burnett and Ramirez, both in the final games of their careers, were saluted on-field prior to the game.

Ramirez's RBI triple

"Aramis filled a huge gap for us with the two injuries [to Jordy Mercer and Harrison] when he came in," GM Neal Huntington said of Ramirez, who has started all but 102 of those 2,194 games played.

Added manager Clint Hurdle, "Aramis' presence has been impactful, and significant. We heard a lot about his professionalism and awareness -- then we got to see it, and to listen to it."

• Second: Starling Marte's walk-off homer on Friday night accounted for his 19th game-winning RBI, a Pirates record since MLB recognized the stat in 1980 as the run driven in to put the team permanently ahead.

Must C: Marte's walk-off party

• Taking a 36-17 (.680) record in one-run games into Sunday's finale, the Bucs were in line to lead lead MLB in that department for the first time since 1958. The Angels ranked second both in wins (35-17) and winning percentage (.673).

• This Pirates team is only the sixth in the club's 129-history to post 97 wins, joining editions in 1909 (110-42), 1902 (103-36), 1991 (98-64), 1979 (98-64) and 1908 (98-64).

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer and on his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.