FanDuel - WFBC

September 08, 2009

Pittsburgh Pirates Set Record for Futility: While September is often a time for one final push in baseball, the Pittsburgh Pirates made their push in another direction, becoming the first team in the top four U.S. pro sports to have 17 straight losing seasons.

posted by Debo270 to baseball at 07:57 AM - 20 comments

It is coming to an end here in pittsburgh, the time between the end of hockey and kickoff to the steelers season. While I have no reason to complain with the Lombardi and Cup currently living here, the Pirates did set a record for losing seasons in a row in all of sport. At the same time, they are also one of the most profitable teams in all of sports. How much longer do we have to wait tosee a team maybe in the race for a wild card spot this time of year. How many more 4 vyear plans do we need to go through. Will we ever pay an all-star and not trade him for a bunch of prospects and a bag of magic beans. WILL IT EVER END

posted by Debo270 at 08:04 AM on September 08

Makes me wish U.S. sports had promotion and relegation.

posted by rcade at 09:20 AM on September 08

Sorry to say but the state of the Pirates died on the night that Roberto Clemente passed away. Pittsburg is a great sports town and have always pretty much supported the Pirates but this is getting out of hand. Just a sad situation for this storied franchise.

posted by BornIcon at 09:49 AM on September 08

The Pirates' cost-cutting ways must be making the owners a profit every year. That's the only way I can fathom this kind of futility and the seeming uncaring attitude they have towards putting a competitive team on the field.

posted by dfleming at 09:58 AM on September 08

They are one of the most profitable teams in sports. Thats why ownership is ok with sucking.

posted by Debo270 at 10:10 AM on September 08

Recently read a good article about the Pirates management, and how they plan to turn things around. Hope that works out.

One of the things I hate most about baseball is that smaller market teams that used to be able to compete consistently and readily now have a much harder time doing so. I don't know if I'll see a Pirates - Royals WS in the remainder of my lifetime.

It's not that smaller market teams can't compete at all (some of them have done well). It's just that the deck is stacked against them succeeding. They have to be twice as smart, diligent, disciplined, and visionary as the larger market clubs just to be able to field a halfway decent team. Smaller teams that don't have a highly capable scouting operation, front office management team and/or ownership group are at a severe disadvantage.

The Twins shouldn't just have to assume that they're going to lose a player like Torii Hunter to a richer team. They should have a fair shot at hanging on to a player like that.

I hate the scenario of the smaller market teams serving as developmental feeder teams for the bigger market teams. It also pains me to see storied smaller market teams become progressively irrelevant after extended years of mediocrity.

posted by beaverboard at 10:35 AM on September 08

Sorry to say but the state of the Pirates died on the night that Roberto Clemente passed away.

You're forgetting the 1979 team that won the World Series and the 1990-92 teams that went to three straight National League championship series under manager Jim Leyland.

posted by rcade at 10:40 AM on September 08

At the same time, they are also one of the most profitable teams in all of sports.

They are one of the most profitable teams in sports. Thats why ownership is ok with sucking.

Is this statement true? I can't find (in a quick search) any numbers that would back it up.

posted by inigo2 at 10:45 AM on September 08

Recently read a good article about the Pirates management, and how they plan to turn things around

So it took 17 straight losing seasons to finally say enough?

The Twins shouldn't just have to assume that they're going to lose a player like Torii Hunter to a richer team. They should have a fair shot at hanging on to a player like that.

It's not like Torii Hunter was a Twin for one season, the guy was part of their organization for 10 years and earned along the way: 7 Gold Gloves, 4 MVP's and was a 2 time All-Star. They had Torii for most of his career but they just never surrounded him with the talent necessary in order to claim the biggest prize in MLB, a World Series ring.

posted by BornIcon at 10:48 AM on September 08

inigo, i know it is true. it is reported about all the time here in the burgh. i will try to find an article to back it up if no one else does.

posted by Debo270 at 11:07 AM on September 08

This is a few months back but here you go inigo, I hope this helps.

posted by BornIcon at 11:24 AM on September 08

I feel for the remaining few Pirates fans. I really am optimistic though. They did what was necessary all along in trading away almost every veteran, even the locally popular ones, while getting in return oodles of young talent. There were no senseless trades or signings a la Derek Bell and Matt Morris. If ever there was a franchise that needed 100% commitment to rebuilding, it is this one, and they've finally got that. Yinzers are understandably sick of hearing that word, but the Pirates in the past have only paid lip service to rebuilding, using it as an excuse for sucking. Now, finally, they are putting it in action. Now it just has to work...

posted by cl at 12:04 PM on September 08

hope you are right cl. this is year 14 of out original 4 year plan. you are right about one thing the Buccos def dont need anymore Derek "operation shutdown" Bell's

posted by Debo270 at 01:20 PM on September 08

They are one of the most profitable teams in sports. Thats why ownership is ok with sucking.

Bears repeating. Many professional treams are run as a business. The Knicks and the Rangers have been doing this for years. They're owned by Cablevision. Entertainment.

And you'd have to be a fool to think the modern NBA is more sport than entertainment.

Now some MLB teams have adopted that business model.

posted by The_Special_Juan at 01:34 PM on September 08

This is a few months back but here you go inigo, I hope this helps.

I'm not doubting that they turn a profit, just the fact that they're one of the most profitable teams in sports. I just don't see that (speaking as a former, albeit temporary, yinzer).

Anyways, not a big deal. I agree that (a) the owners suck, (b) they won't sell because they are making profit, and (c) Mark Cuban was interested in buying the team, at a premium I'm sure, and was turned down (because of b).

posted by inigo2 at 01:42 PM on September 08

Makes me wish U.S. sports had promotion and relegation.

Ah, but that would deny baseball fans a first month of the season in which Pittsburgh wins a few games, perhaps leads its division, and everyone saying "could this be the year in which the Pirates are not shit?" only to know by the All-Star break that all is as it was in the world, and the Pirates are indeed shit.

(Detroit, alas, has broken its long trend of reliable crapitude, and Jim Leyland is once more to blame.)

posted by etagloh at 12:57 AM on September 09

Sorry to say but the state of the Pirates died on the night that Roberto Clemente passed away.

I think it died when the slowest man in baseball (Sid Bream) beat out a throw from Bonds at home (that game is still my fondest baseball memory)

posted by bdaddy at 11:07 AM on September 09

I think it died when the slowest man in baseball (Sid Bream) beat out a throw from Bonds at home

Luckily Bonds got a lot stronger in the years following that event.

posted by inigo2 at 02:30 PM on September 09

I'm not doubting that they turn a profit, just the fact that they're one of the most profitable teams in sports

Sorry about that, I must of misread what you were asking. Or is it misremembered? Ah well.

I think it died when the slowest man in baseball (Sid Bream) beat out a throw from Bonds at home (that game is still my fondest baseball memory)

Has Bonds' throw even reached the plate yet?

posted by BornIcon at 02:40 PM on September 09

As a Pittsburgh'er, very few names can bring as many hateful looks as Sid Bream. Its like mentioning "the drive" or "the fumble" to people from cleveland

posted by Debo270 at 08:58 AM on September 10

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