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At some point this season, the Philadelphia Phillies will lose their 10,000th game. The Phils are the losingest franchise in professional sports, just ahead (or behind, depending on how you look at it) of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

They imploded the Vet, but the Phils keep losing.

In order to mark this monumental milestone, Philadelphia Weekly’s blog, Philadelphia Will Do, has launched a series, “Road to 10,000 Losses.” It’s a rather cynical recap of each of the Phillies’ 2007 losses leading up to the big 10K.

As a Phillies fan, I think this series is indicative of the problem with Philadelphia sports fans (we take more pleasure in failure than is normal or healthy) . But as a baseball fan, I can understand that other people might find the Phillies’ futility amusing.

No Responses to “Following the Phillies’ failure”

  1. One thing here caught my attention – he’s 0-5 in his last 17 outings against the Mariners. He’s only had five decisions in these 17 outings? Doesn’t this seem odd?

    So I looked it up. And it’s a misleading stat.

    Since that five-hitter he threw against them in July of ’97, out of those 17 games that Yahoo is referencing, Wakefield only started seven of them. While it’s true that three of his last four starts against them have been terrible, the Yahoo article does correctly point out that his last start against them went well, throwing a complete game but being the hard-luck loser in a 3-0 loss (On a side note, guess who started for the Mariners that game – holding the Red Sox to no runs, five hits, two walks, five Ks in 6 1/3 innings? It was current Red Sox punching bag, Mr. Joel Pineiro!). on 4/15/06.

    Within his last 17 outings against Seattle, Wakefield hasn’t been that bad. He’s pretty much been regular old Tim Wakefield:

    ERA: 4.18
    K/9: 6.80
    BB/9: 4.30
    HR/9: 1.27
    WHIP: 1.58

    I also looked at all of his games since that July ’97 five-hitter (as in, not just against the Mariners). His ERA has actually been better against Seattle over that time (4.18 vs. 4.40), and he missed more bats (6.8 K/9 vs. 5.9 K/9). The big difference is that he’s been wild, walking almost two additional batters per 9 innings, which accounts for a good chunk of the high 1.58 WHIP. Also, the Red Sox defense, for whatever reason, did him no favors. While his ERA against Seattle over that span is 4.18, errors ballooned his runs allowed per game to 5.07. That’s a pretty big disparity. You can win games allowing 4.18 runs per game. But 5.07? That’s tough.

    So I wouldn’t put too much stock into the 0-5 record. Wakefield probably deserved to win a couple of those seven starts. And he’s been just as mediocre against Seattle as he’s been for pretty much everyone else.

  2. Sarah Green says:

    Wakefield hasn’t gotten good run support in a long, long time. I feel for him.

    Josh Beckett, on the other hand, got a number of wins last season that he didn’t deserve, simply because the Red Sox swung the bats well when he was pitching.

    Oh, ye fickle, fickle game.

  3. Coley Ward says:

    Paul, I think the lesson to be learned here is that Sox fans shouldn’t worry about Wakefield tonight, they should worry that their team seldom plays well behind him. I wonder why that is?

  4. On second thought, I’m wondering if a bunch of these errors that the Sox commited with Wakefield on the mound weren’t passed balls. I don’t envy anyone who has to catch knuckleballers. But kids, there’s a lesson here – if you want to be a ballplayer but can’t hit, throw, run, or do anything lefthanded, learn how to catch a knuckleball. That’s the Mirabelli way.

    By the way, I wonder who’s catching Charlie Haeger now?

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