For the past several years my beloved Colorado Rockies, the local semi-pro baseball team, has flirted with an historic achievement–100 losses in a season, a number which assures that a team is genuinely awful and not merely very bad.
Most fans will have tuned them out by now, given that by mid-June the Rockies are usually so far behind in the standings that they play no part in the pennant race. I, however, have found a way to stay interested in the fortunes of the team until the very last day of the regular season.
I am rooting for them to lose 100 games, a mark the Rox have never achieved in 24 years of mostly lousy baseball.
They have been so very, very close for the last four years, but have been unable to lose enough squeakers late in the season. One more bullpen meltdown here, a botched double play there, a failed bunt attempt or two, and they might have made it happen. But no. Inexplicably, they manage to avoid just enough fundamental breakdowns to pull out a handful more than the 62 wins required.
In 2012 they very nearly made it, losing 98. It was heartbreaking. They fell apart in 2013 with a mediocre 88, sometimes playing almost competent ball, but roared back last year with 96. This season they’ve given me new reason to hope. With a the worst starting pitching in baseball, a truly dreadful bullpen, a punchless lineup, at 24 games under .500 they are on track to lose 96 again this year, meaning that the final weeks of the season are critical.
One can only hope that the September call-ups, especially the pitchers, will be even more horrendously inept than the current roster of forgettables, and that they’ll manage to boot just enough games to make it to the magic century mark. How exciting it will be if they can reach the final contest with 99 losses, and that last game, against the Diamondbacks on September 30, really matters for a change. That will be one to watch!
Go Rockies! You can do it!