Giants vs. Tigers World Series to feature plenty of former Pirates

Ezra Shaw

Jim Leyland and Ryan Vogelsong will highlight a long list of former Pirates who will play in the Fall Classic.

The San Francisco Giants' 9-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 7 of the NLCS on Monday sets up a Giants vs. Tigers World Series that will feature plenty of former Pirates. (And yes, it's sad that I have to discuss former Pirates this way in order to make the World Series seem relevant to Pittsburgh, but after 20 straight losing seasons, that's where we are.)

The Giants feature Ryan Vogelsong, who pitched badly for the Pirates from 2003 to 2006 before heading to Japan, then returning to the states in 2010 and emerging, improbably, as a good starting pitcher. Javier Lopez, a lefty reliever who the Pirates traded to the Giants in 2010 for the now-forgotten John Bowker and Joe Martinez, will join him. Xavier Nady is also on the Giants' roster, but he's less likely to make an impact.

The Tigers feature Octavio Dotel, who began the 2010 season with the Pirates before heading to the Dodgers for James McDonald and a minor leaguer. They've also got Don Kelly, who played for the Bucs in 2007 and went to Mount Lebanon High School. But it's the names of the Tigers' coaches that Pirates fans will be quickest to recognize: manager Jim Leyland, hitting coach Lloyd McClendon and third-base coach Gene Lamont are all former Bucs skippers, and coach Rafael Belliard played with the Bucs from 1982 to 1990.

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