The Most Disappointing Season: A Series in 32 Parts
Everyone reads about the best in baseball. Best team, best player, best concession stands, best LOOGY on Tuesday in day games on grass, etc.
However, as The Spitter’s Crank Historian I said, “Balderdash to the best! Baseball is about disappointment for 29 teams and victory for one. Let’s celebrate disappointment!”
So here we are. I selected what I felt were The Most Disappointing seasons for each franchise (and did a separate one for the Expos, because they should still exist) in the Expansion era (1961-present).
This isn’t the worst team for each franchise – some teams may be rebounding (or tanking or in sell-off mode) and fans didn’t expect much. Here, I’ll pick teams that should have had a much better season (contending, over. 500) and fell short. Many were coming off of playoff or World Series appearances. Some were expected to take the next leap.
All fell flat.
Disappointing teams still have good players. I will crown each disappointing team’s “Chicken Wolf All-Star.” Chicken Wolf was a good-to-great player in the 19th century that played for the Louisville Colonels. They were good, wretched, mediocre and never dull. Wolf was steady as he could be, dealing with horrible sub-Loria owners, a drunken, deaf and petulant superstar in Pete Browning, zealous 19th century cranks and a nickname of Chicken.
I also will choose a runner-up disappointing team from the Expansion era, and a disappointment from the past. Following the series, the 32nd installment will be the 2015 Chicken Wolf All-Stars – a team of 25 from all teams 10 games or more under .500 in 2015 (White Sox, Tigers, Mariners, A’s, Marlins, Braves, Phillies, Brewers, Reds, Padres and Rockies – I’m sure we can find a competent 25 players there!)
So buckle in (some are very long reads, because disappointment is a tale slowly and painfully spun) and re-live (or revile) the Most Disappointing Teams in the Expansion Era.