Last Friday, I bumped into a guy from work at the bottom of a subway escalator. I didn’t know his name, but his hat, oh his hat; unmistakable; it had the C and R for Colorado Rockies. I had never seen one in Montreal. It proved to be a better conversation starter than a dog. I asked the obvious,
“So you’re a Rockies fan?”
He opened up right away, told me he loved the National League West. Then he reeled off the division’s teams. I said something about Coors Field being a real bomb. He said,
“Yeh, I’d like to go there some day.”
I countered with Diamondbacks being so good at the beginning this season, then so bad, and now leveling off, good again, still in first place.
“You know baseball…..” he said; as in nothing lasts forever.
“Yeh” I answered and with that he went through the turnstiles. I had to buy a ticket and by the time I had, he was gone. But I got to thinking of the Seattle Mariners winning 100 however many games back in 2001 and on the flip side, what team in recent memory lost the most games, maybe an expansion team or maybe one of the Astros or Royals teams that suffered three consecutive 100 loss seasons? I wasn’t sure so I waited patiently till I got back home and looked it up. Turns out the Tigers are the team. In 2003, they suffered a winning percentage under .300, going 43-119.
What’s remarkable to me is how close 119 losses is to 90 losses. If the Tigers would have simply won one more game per week or four per month, that would’ve been 24 for the season..easier said than done, but it would have brought their loss total to 95, barely better than the one year bankrupt Seattle Pilots who went 64-98.
Anyway, a team always offers intrigue, regardless of its place in the standings. Those 2003 Tigers had four guys hit double digit HR’s and well, if you prefer to visit funerals (like Harold in the movie Harold and Maude), there were three pitchers on that team flirting with 20 losses and one pitcher – Mike Maroth who did.
And so the Brewers beat the Cards two in a row, Thursday and Friday. Then they lost on Saturday and to make matters worse, Lorenzo Cain (grimace) left the game with hamstring cramps, same diagnosis that brought him out of Thursday’s game. He wasn’t in the lineup on Sunday and the Brewers didn’t win. Travis Shaw also left the game due to a wrist injury in the middle of his at bat. The Brewers were winning at the time 2-1, but went on to lose 8-2 as the Cardinals earned a split of the four game series and around dinner time, late Sunday afternoon, I heard an echo…”You know baseball.”