Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Everyone knows the Miami Marlins are bad, really, really bad. But the team could be headed to some historical levels not seen in the last 50 years in Major League Baseball.
The loss by the Miami Marlins Monday night to the Tampa Bay Rays sent the team’s record to a Major League worst 13-38 record on the season, a full 17.5 games behind National League East leading Atlanta Braves.
The measuring stick, if you will, for all-time futility in the modern era of Major League Baseball is the 1962 New York Mets. The Mets were beyond awful that season, finishing the year with a record of 40-120 on the season and scored 331 fewer runs than their opponents while only scoring 617 runs.
Here’s where the Marlins are through the first 51 games of the regular season. The Fish are dead last in the Major Leagues in runs per game, runs scored, home runs, RBI’s, batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, and OPS.
Miami’s pitching staff has posted the fewest wins and most losses in the National League and has the fewest saves of any staff in the NL.
Put another way, it’s almost as if this Marlins team was constructed to be one of the worst teams in the history of Major League Baseball. Now, it should be noted, the Marlins have been without slugger Giancarlo Stanton for much of the year and Logan Morrison all season.
However, even adding those two back into the equation might not be enough to derail the Marlins’ path to historical ineptitude.
According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, as of a few days ago, the Marlins were on pace to score just 431 runs this season. If that came to fruition, Stark said it would be the second-fewest any team has scored over a non-strike shortened season since 1918, beating out only the 1942 Philadelphia Phillies.
Going further, ESPN reported that since 1969, only one team has finished the season without scoring at least 500 runs, the 1971 San Diego Padres. That Padres team finished the year with a record of 61-100 and still scored 486 runs.
As ESPN’s Stark pointed out, the Fish are on pace to be shut out 31 times this season, which would be within striking distance of the all-time record of 33 shutouts in a season by the 1908 Cardinals. Miami would also score three runs or less 128 times this season, obliterating the old record of 112.
That brings everything back to those 1962 New York Mets. Projecting the Marlins season out from here, according to ESPN.com, would give the Fish a 45-117 record. If that came true, the Marlins would finish just five wins short of the 62 Mets’ 40-win season.
And then there is this.
Going back several years, if the Marlins had not decided to blow up the team so many times, the team would still have a third-baseman on the squad named Miguel Cabrera, who on the current pace he’s on will be a back-to-back AL MVP award winner.
In other words, if fully healthy and the constant salary dumping insisted upon by owner Jeffrey Loria hadn’t taken place, the Marlins could have a lineup that included: SS Jose Reyes, 3B Miguel Cabrera, RF Giancarlo Stanton, plus top prospect Christian Yelich in the minors waiting to be called up.