The Pirates' bullpen ERA of 2.88 ranks second to the Braves (2.42) and Pittsburgh is tied with Atlanta for the league lead at 51 saves. The Shark Tank as the Pirates' pen has become known is one enormous reason why Pittsburgh is looking at postseason play for the first time in two decades.

But suddenly things have spun off kilter and now the Pirates will look to old closer Jason Grilli and not Mark Melancon if there is a save situation against the Reds on Saturday night.

Beyond that? Too soon to say for sure what will happen.

Manager Clint Hurdle and pitching coach Ray Searage spoke with both pitchers Saturday afternoon following the roughest 72 hours of the season.

"I'm taking it one day at a time right now" Hurdle said Saturday afternoon. "Jason's going to throw. I think he's at the point where he can go back-to-back days he very well might be. I think he is.

"I'll worry about tomorrow when it gets here. We'll focus on tonight."

On Friday night Melancon was charged with a blown save when one out from preserving what would have been a 5-2 win over the Reds shortstop Jordy Mercer's throwing error led to a devastating defeat.

On Wednesday night just after Andrew McCutchen's two-run home run (after getting the green light on a 3-0 pitch) put the Pirates ahead of the Padres 2-1 in the seventh inning Melancon surrendered two runs in the ninth to lose that one too.