An Open Letter to the Pittsburgh Pirates (update 2)
On July 22, 2009, I posted my open letter to the Pittsburgh Pirates. In that letter, I bemoaned the way the Pirates continue to trade (or sell) their only good players and asked what fans have to root for. On July 30, 2009, I posted an update following yet more trades. It is worth noting that, despite having sent my letter to the Pirates, I've not received any response (not that I really expected any; after all, what would they say: "Gee, sorry that the team is terrible and that we're more interested in keeping our salaries low than in putting a winning team on the field"?).
Anyway, I thought that I'd update that open letter one more time with some interesting statistics:
- Since July 22, the Pirates' record is 4-16 (.200). Before that, the record was 42-52 (.450).
- Since July 22, the Pirates are averaging 3.4 runs per game. That number is skewed upward somewhat by two games in which the Pirates scored 10 and 11 runs, respectively. If those games are factored out, the Pirates are averaging just 2.6 runs per game. Factor out the two games in which the Pirates scored 6 and 7 runs, and the average drops to a miserable 2.1 runs per game.
- Since July 22, the Pirates have been shutout 5 times. In other words, the Pirates have been shutout 25% of the time that they've played! To put that in perspective, for the entire season, the Pirates have only shutout their opponent 6 times. San Francisco, leading the league in shutouts, only has 15 for the whole season. But the Pirates, since July 22, get shutout 1 out of every 4 times they take the field.
- During that same period, the Pirates have given up an average of 6.05 runs per game.
- On July 22, the Pirates were in last place, but only 2 games behind Cincinnati (in 5th) and only 7.5 games behind St. Louis (in 1st). As of today, the Pirates are still in last place, but now they are 4 games behind Cincinnati (in 5th) and 17 games behind St. Louis (in 1st).
- On July 22, 7 teams (Baltimore, Kansas City, Clevland, Oakland, Washington, Arizona, and San Diego) had worse records than the Pirates. Today, just 2 teams (Kansas City and Washington have worse records).
- Thus, since my open letter, Pirates have lost 80% of their games by an average of 2.65 runs per game, fallen 2 more games behind 5th place Cincinnati, and 9.5 games further behind 1st place St. Louis.
Those numbers are beyond embarrassing; they are painful. So, I need someone to remind me again why I continue to root for the Pirates.