The worst team since the 19th century

How bad are the Oakland Athletics. A great vintage of losers. The end of the end of insignificance. The ultimate in mediocrity.

Posted at 1:16 a.m.

Updated at 7:45 a.m.

The last time there was such a rotten club in major league baseball was at the end of the 19th century.e century. The New York Yankees did not exist. Neither did the Boston Red Sox. This tells you how the current edition of the Athletics is just as unique as it is execrable. Never in my lifetime have I seen a team generate so many incredible, quirky, and useless stats. Warning: your brain could explode!

* * *

First, the facts. The Oakland Athletics sit very comfortably at the bottom of the standings. Their profile? 12 wins and 45 losses. Brrrrrrrr. If the trend continues, they will end the season with just 34 wins. It’s ridiculous. The Tampa Bay Rays, Baltimore Orioles and Texas Rangers have already surpassed that total – and they each have a hundred games left to play!

Under the circumstances, who wants to attend the Athletics’ home games? Hardly anyone. Even when the Expos received palliative care, at the end of their stay in Montreal, the Olympic Stadium welcomed more spectators than the Oakland Coliseum today.

Some recent crowds: 3261 spectators, 2949, 2685, 2583, 2064… Forget the wave. There are not even enough people to make a wavelet, as in Brice de Nice. Worse still, on May 15, the Athletics drew 2,600 fewer spectators than their Fifth Division parent club, Stockton Ports.

* * *

The Oakland Athletics, however, is a great franchise in the history of the major leagues. Three championships in a row in the early 1970s. Three consecutive appearances in the World Series in the late 1980s. The A’s are also Moneyball and the advanced statistics revolution with their then CEO, Billy Beane, now a consultant to the team. So what happened?


Athletics supporters express their dissatisfaction with management. The team recently bought land in Las Vegas, to build a new stadium in which they want to play from the 2027 season.

Management is poor. It no longer invests enough to keep its best players, which it exchanges for hopes that do not break anything. It is certain that if you replace Sean Murphy, Matt Olson, Marcus Semien and Matt Chapman with 33-year-old reservists and young people who are struggling, it is possible that the chain will go off the rails.

The attack is anemic. Many hitters have batting averages below their weight. No, that’s not a good sign.

  • Tony Kemp : ,155 / 160 lb
  • Kevin Smith : ,184 / 190 lb
  • Seth Brown : ,186 / 223 lb
  • Aledmys Díaz : ,194 / 195 lb
  • Jace Pederson : ,195 / 215 lb
  • Jesus Aguilar: .221/277 lbs.

Tsssss. Tsssss. Is your brain sizzling? Yet we are only at appetizers.

* * *

Of all the Athletics’ starting hitters, the case of Tony Kemp is the most fascinating. The second baseman started the season with an unusual streak: 0 for 41 in games played in the afternoon. The equivalent of a month and a half without a hit before 6 p.m.

No one has even touched that mark of mediocrity for 100 years. What did Kemp do after finally hitting his first daytime hit last week? The answer at the end of the column.


Tony Kemp

* * *

Do you think the Athletics hitters are rotten?


There is worse.

Team pitchers.

Here, we reach heights of inefficiency. A’s pitchers allow the most hits, the most runs and the most walks in all the major leagues. They are also the ones that hit the most hitters. All this, I insist, with deviations worthy of the electoral results of the greatest dictatorships.

A’s versus penultimate

  • Points : 391 (Rockies, 311)
  • Circuits : 98 (White Sox, 79)
  • Walks: 262 (White Sox, 227)
  • Hitters reached: 39 (White Sox, 33)
  • ERA: 6.68 (Rockies, 5.52)

The A’s pitchers are set to allow more than 1,100 runs this season. A huge number. Only one other team in history has allowed as many points: the Philadelphia Phillies in 1930. And again, it was under special circumstances. The Phillies played in a rectangular stadium. The fence in right field was just 280 feet — a distance befitting 15-year-olds, not professionals. In fact, that season, the Phillies offense set a hit record that still stands, nearly a century later.

* * *

You have a headache ? Are your brains overheating? I promise, the end is near.

We make a lot of case for the anguish of the goalkeeper at the time of the penalty. But any parent of a young baseball player will confirm that there is even worse: a pitcher who finds his head under water, alone on his mound. A terrible moment. Cruel. Unsustainable.

It’s happened a few times to A’s pitchers this season. My three favorite sequences?

– On May 10, Kyle Muller had two particularly unpleasant minutes.

  • Throw no 1: three-point circuit
  • Throw no 2: ball
  • Throw no 3: batter reached
  • Throw no 4: automatic ball, for delaying the match

– On May 14, Hogan Harris lost home plate. Just slightly.

  • Goal on balls
  • Goal on balls
  • Goal on balls
  • Batter reached
  • Goal on balls
  • Double
  • Goal on balls

His coach took pity, and replaced him with reliever Chad Smith, who of course reached the next batter.

– Finally, the worst streak of the season, which occurred on 1is april. Despite appearances, no, it’s not an April Fool’s joke. Here is Shintaro Fujinami’s sleeve:

  • Goal on balls
  • Simple
  • Double
  • Simple
  • Goal on balls
  • Simple
  • Ballon-sacrifice
  • Goal on balls
  • Simple

The coach had seen enough. He brought in reliever Adam Oller, whose outing was just as entertaining:

  • bad throw
  • Goal on balls
  • Simple
  • Ballon-sacrifice
  • Circuit
  • Rolling for the third out (finally…)

And a last one. The one that will blow your brain.

No, the Athletics are not the worst team in history.

This title goes to the Cleveland Spiders, 1899 edition. A formation that makes today’s A’s look like a superpower. That season, the Spiders lost 40 of their last 41 games. It helps put the Canadian’s lethargy into perspective. Their final record? 20-134. Their difference? -723!!!

Thank you, good evening, my brain exploded.

Answer: After his hit, Tony Kemp jokingly asked for the ball to be given to him as a souvenir, as if he had just hit an important home run. Made there, in fact, it is better to laugh.

Statistics were compiled prior to the May 31 games.

2023-06-01 11:45:43
#worst #team #19th #century


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