Fringe Friday – the Streaks keep streaking edition

on June 2017 | in Sports | by Dario Passarelli | @PapaDart | with No Comments

There have been a couple of streaks in the MLB that are worth talking about because, well, I don’t think we’ll ever get a chance in our lifetime to ever discuss them again. The streaks are not of the good variety, that’s for sure and something the teams would like to see end as quickly as possible. As of Friday morning, they are still alive and strong and therefore like watching a train wreck unfold, we won’t be able to keep our eyes off of it. So let’s head to the American League East where the Toronto Blue Jays have an issue with getting to .500 let alone over it while the Baltimore Orioles can’t seem to get under 5.

.500 – it’s a state of mind

Seriously, how hard can it be to win one game? Just one. It’s not like the Blue Jays haven’t won that before. In fact, they have won at least 35 games this season by the time you have read this. But to get to an even record of .500, Toronto has failed to do so not once, or twice or even 8 times… but 9. That’s right, since that terrible 2-11 start to the season, there have been 9 separate times this year where a win will take them to an even .500 record but they have failed to do so. I mean, it is great that in a couple of months they have been able to climb out of that hole but why is it so hard to get that next game? You have to go way back to 1924 the last time a team went 0-for-9 trying to get to .500 and I believe it was the St. Louis Cardinals if I heard correctly.

At first you would have to think that to lose at this juncture is just a coincidence, but now after this many times, you have to believe it is gotten into their heads. Who knows, maybe they are waiting to break the record and will lose their next opportunity on purpose. Just kidding, none of us believe that is the case, but with this amount of failure, you would think this has to be some sort of mental issue. Personally, I don’t think players think about it when they are at bat or on the mound or on the field so I don’t think it is a mental issue; they are just losing games they should win. I do think that once they get over this hump however, their confidence will grow and they will pull ahead of that .500 mark and up the standings. Until that happens though, you just have to be blunt and say that the Toronto Blue Jays are no better than a .500 team because… well, they’re not a .500 team.

5 is not enough

For the last couple of years everyone realizes that the Baltimore Orioles have a deficiency when it comes to pitching, so in preseason rankings, no one ever picks them. Yet despite how much I hate Buck Showalter (and I really do hate that grumpy old man) you have to respect that they are in the race consistently. This year has turned out a little differently. We already knew they weren’t going to have the best pitching in the league, but they weren’t supposed to be this bad either. And by saying bad I mean, really, really bad. They just broke an American League record where they have allowed opponents to score 5 or more runs in 19 straight games. I know, I know, you need me to repeat it because it sounds so unbelievable. I’ll even spell it out for you this time. The Baltimore Orioles have allowed FIVE or more runs in NINETEEN straight games.

In last week’s Fringe Friday edition, I revealed how numbers sometimes aren’t what they look like. So if we take a deeper dive into this streak we find that… nope. It still is pretty darn ugly. They gave up 145 runs (7.6 / game) during that stretch while only scoring 83 (4.4 / game) runs themselves. Also, if giving up five runs isn’t enough, they allowed double digits in 26% (5) of those games.

The record does have both a surprising and sad side to it. The positive part is that they actually managed to win a few (6) of those games. The sad part though was a three game series with the New York Yankees where they were outscored a combined 38-8. Ouch. The “really real” sad part about this record breaking streak however (for Blue Jay fans anyway) is that regardless of how bad they Orioles have been playing (and it has been pretty darn bad) they have the exact same record as the Toronto does. Go figure.

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