Friday, August 20, 2010

With a 7-2 loss tonight to the New York Mets, the Pittsburgh Pirates saw their record for the season fall to a dismal 40-82. The significance of this record is that, in a 162-game season, the break-even point would be 81-81. The Pirates' 82nd loss thus officially guarantees them of a losing record. And the losing record gives Pittsburgh an unenviable streak, namely 18 straight years without a winning record. As this game article notes about the Pirates:

Their 82nd loss in 122 games extended the longest streak of consecutive losing seasons in major American pro sports history.

They'd never secured a losing season so early, either, accomplishing it on Aug. 20. Previously, the earliest they had done so during the streak was on Aug. 27, 2001.
For a team that's been this pathetic for this long, a more thorough autopsy is in order. Fortunately, Sports Illustrated conducted one earlier this summer.

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