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Lower the Jolly Roger! Pirates clinch losing season
2006-09-01 21:09
by Bob Timmermann

With their loss to the Cardinals Friday night, the Pirates dropped their 82nd game of the year. That means Pittsburgh has now guaranteed its 14th straight losing season. The Pirates have not had a winning season since they won the NL East in 1992 with a 96-66 record. The next year Barry Bonds was a Giant. And then it got worse.

The closest the Pirates have gotten to .500 since then was in 1997 when they finished 79-83 and in second place in the NL Central. Previously the Pirates longest stretch of sub .500 seasons was nine from 1949 through 1957.

The record the Pirates are shooting for consecutive losing seasons is 16 by the Philadelphia Phillies from 1933 to 1948. During that stretch, the Phillies had four seasons where they had winning percentages below .300. Their best record during that stretch was a 69-85 record (.448) in 1946.

The AL mark for consecutive losing seasons is 15 held by the Athletics from 1953 (starting in Philadelphia) through 1967 (the last season in Kansas City).

The longest current streaks of losing seasons in the American League belong to Tampa Bay and Baltimore. They are both at eight seasons. The Devil Rays have 81 losses and will soon clinch losing season #9 and the Orioles are going to need an incredible September to avoid a losing season.

2006-09-01 21:52:05
1.   Greg Brock
{Channeling Jim Tracy}

See, when you talk about the records, you're looking at a season from a standpoint of winning games, which isn't indicative of the types of things that we're trying to do with respect to winning. Could we have won more? Sure. Am I disappointed? Absolutely. The key is to do the type of things that are representative of the culture of positivity and indicative of the mentality we want here.

Uh, thanks Jim.

2006-09-01 22:31:22
2.   Icaros
You'll walk the plank for that sarcasm, mateys.
2006-09-02 01:34:03
3.   joejoejoe
I've followed the Pirates this year as a Yankee fan becaue they were out of the playoff picture early and when the Yankees had that run of injuries (Matsui, Sheffield, Cano) I thought Pittsburgh would be a team that would deal early. Pittsburgh has a lot of nice pieces on their roster.

They have a closer who is 24/24 in save chances in Mike Gonzales, a good hitting 2B playing 3B in Freddie Sanchez, Jason Bay, a great young catcher in Ronny Paulino, and a good SS in Jack Wilson. Zach Duke is a promising young starter.

The problem with Pittsburgh is they have weak power from 3 of the 4 classic power spots. Maybe if Xavier Nady pans out and you only have to address 2 of the 4. Throwing the dead wood that is Joe Randa and Jeremy Burnitz over the side frees up almost $11 million dollars for '07. Annoint Paulino the next Manny Sanguillen and dump your coveted catching prospects Cota and Doumit who are in high demand. Pick up a league average 3B and RF and things are looking up. I'll bet the Yankees would give you Craig Wilson back and pick up part of his salary. They only needed him as insurance.

A good catcher is very hard to come by and the teams that have one are usually in contention. Paulino is very good. If I'm a Pirate fan I'm optimistic for '07.

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