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The Pirates season: poor even by their own awful standards

Sep 23, 2009, 10:55 AM EDT

Dejan Kovacevic had a lot of time to do some research in the PNC Park press box last night:

Perhaps the one good thing about the Pirates’ many miseries in
recent years is that they have resurrected the classic names of Crazy
Schmit, Phenomenal Smith and Peek-A-Boo Veach.

Those were just a few of the farmers and mill workers who comprised
the 1890 Pittsburg Alleghenies, the infamous worst team in franchise
history and the one invariably cited anytime a futility record is
challenged . . . That 3-21 stretch now is the second-worst in such a span over the
franchise’s 123-year history, with the 1890 team’s… um, phenomenal
3-35 finish to that 23-113 season still standing alone.

Kovacevic is one of my favorite beat writers.  Seeing his work during the heat of a pennant race would be nice, but at this point I’d love to see what he could do if he had even a run-of-the-mill bad team to cover.

  1. Patrick - Sep 23, 2009 at 1:28 PM

    It’s a damn shame the Pirates are this bad. MLB needs to really take a look at the ownership of this team. They need to come down hard on them about the horrible way they run this team. I remember the Pirates of the 70’s with Willie stargell, Dave Parker, Steve Blass and a cast of other great players. They were in the pennant race every year battling the Reds. Help us MLB to return to those great great days of Pirate baseball.

  2. Mike Barrett - Sep 23, 2009 at 1:40 PM

    Of course they suck. Most MLB teams seasons are over in March.
    No cap makes MLB a joke. same top payroll teams every year.
    The Pirates (or ano other number of non -top quartile in payroll teams) will just be a schedule filler until MLB gets it.
    The real idiots in all this are “fans” of hopeless teams. You know the system is structured to ensure your team will go nowhere yet you remain a fan – textbook delusion.

  3. AMusingFool - Sep 23, 2009 at 1:59 PM

    I gotta say, the only team I constantly hear about in reference to futility are the 1899 Cleveland Spiders.

  4. Dan Friedman - Sep 23, 2009 at 3:58 PM

    Are you watching the same game as the rest of us? In actuality, the Pirates’ horrible run of losing seasons is not the norm, it’s an aberration. Many small market teams have had a lot of success (Rays recently, A’s earlier in the decade, Indians in the ’90s); not constant success, mind you, like the Yankees or Red Sox, but still. The Pirates’ 17-straight losing seasons is not indicative of a problem with MLB, just a problem with the Pirates

  5. SJ - Sep 23, 2009 at 5:09 PM

    Market size only explains a small part of the difference in success. The Cardinals are not a large market team, but rather consistently do well. Of course, in terms of attendance, they are big and they have a big company backing them. Their success breeds success. At the other side of the state there is a team that used to be just as successful, but a sad history of terrible management and now an owner that is personally as wealthy as the people in St. Louis, but whose corporate mentality (for the business and for the Royals) to is to do things as cheaply as possible. It’s not market size that makes the difference between St. Louis and Kansas City, but there is a real difference in outcome.

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