70 wins

Good morning. It is August 9th, 2013.

With last night's win, the Pirates are 70-44. Since 1992, the Pirates failed to win 70 games in the following seasons*: 1994, 1995, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010.

The two new additions to the list today are 1998 and 2000, which I think represents the most destructive period in this ignominoious streak. The 1997 Freak Show Pirates were much like the 2011 Pirates; unexpected contenders with a roster composed of exciting young players and castoffs. Except for the weird 1995 season, the Pirates hadn't really plummetted too deep into the depths by 1997. Things didn't go according to plan in 1998, though. Cam Bonifay and Kevin McClatchy were hellbent on getting a winning team on the field in PNC Park in 2001, though, and they abandoned their rebuilding plan by trading young players for veterans (the Jose Guillen trade is the prime example of this, but far from the only one). The results were disastrous, and Bonifay was fired in favor of Dave Littlefield in 2001. You'll note that the seasons on today's list make up the seasons in which the Pirates didn't even make it to 70 wins. You will also note that more than half of them are from 2005-2010, all of which are either directly or indirectly attributable to the Dave Littlefield era. 1998 and 2000 were really terrible.

This is just 11 total seasons out of 20. There is more work to be done.

*The strike shortened 1994 and 1995. The '94 Pirates were on pace for 75 wins, but the '95 Pirates were terrible and only on pace for 65 wins.

Pat Lackey

About Pat Lackey

In 2005, I started a WHYGAVS instead of working on organic chemistry homework. Many years later, I've written about baseball and the Pirates for a number of sites all across the internet, but WHYGAVS is still my home. I still haven't finished that O-Chem homework, though.