The Pirates have spent two years talking about how important it is to change the losing culture of the franchise.

But, two years after Frank Coonelly joined the organization as club president and hired Neal Huntington as general manager, it is easy to wonder if the culture has really changed.

The Pirates are 59-96. Neither manager John Russell nor the players show much outward emotion after defeats, causing many fans to question if losing is too easily accepted by a franchise that has had 17 consecutive losing seasons, which is a major North American professional sports record.

However, Huntington insists the culture is indeed changing and the Pirates are bothered by the idea that they could wind up losing 100 games for the eighth time in the franchise’s 123-year history and just the second time in the past 55 years.

Though the Pirates whipped the National League West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers 11-1 on Monday afternoon at PNC Park, they still have to go at least 4-3 on their season-ending road trip to Chicago and Cincinnati that starts today to avoid 100 losses.

“Our manager is about as passionate about winning as you can find,” Huntington said. “He might not yell and scream. You’re not going to see me running around the press box yelling and screaming or throwing things, either. That doesn’t mean we have any less fire than anybody else in the game.”

Huntington said it is sometimes difficult for young players to separate team goals and individual goals because they are focused on proving they belong in the major leagues.

“Our players are young,” Huntington said. “We’re trying to help them develop. I think they know that if they go 2-for-4 and we lose that it’s not a good night. It’s a young step for a young player in survival mode who is focused on his own opportunity.

“We’re in the process of changing the culture. It’s not going to change overnight. It didn’t take months or two years to get where it is. We need to get the talent level to where it’s supposed to be and that culture will change.”

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Injury update: Shortstop Ronny Cedeno missed his fifth straight game and said he continues to feel significant soreness in both hamstrings when he tries to run. Cedeno is still hopeful of playing again this season but admitted that with six days left in the season that he might not return.

Luis Cruz started at shortstop again and was 2-for-4.

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Attendance update: The Pirates finished with a season attendance of 1,577,853, their lowest in the nine-year history of PNC Park. The previous low was 1,583,031 in 2004.

The Pirates averaged 19,480 in 81 home dates this season. That is the third-lowest average in the major leagues behind Oakland (17,450) and Florida (18,771) and the worst among teams with a baseball-only facility.

The Pirates’ total attendance was also down 31,223 from last year’s mark of 1,609,076.

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Up next: The Pirates open a season-ending seven-game road trip at 8:05 tonight when they face the Cubs in Chicago to begin a four-game series. Kevin Hart

(4-8, 5.48) is scheduled to start for the Pirates against Ryan Dempster (10-8, 3.68).

Hart has lost six straight starts, compiling a 7.31 ERA in that span, and is 1-7 with a 6.93 ERA in nine starts since the Pirates acquired him from the Cubs on July 30 in a trade.

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