None and done



There’s a saying common among disappointed fans when their favorite sports team works hard to make the playoffs, then loses a single game and — poof, just like that — is done for the season.

It’s called “one and done.”

This year, my three favorite Major League Baseball teams mustered a collective “none and done.”

Meaning? They didn’t even reach the playoffs. Not a single one of them.

With the 2016 MLB playoffs swinging into action this week, I’ve got no one to root for.

  • The Oakland Athletics were weak all season and finished last among five teams in the American League West Division with a sorry record of 69 wins, 93 losses.
  • The Pittsburgh Pirates never really got it together and finished third in the National League Central Division with 78 wins, 83 losses.
  • The Detroit Tigers came close with 86 wins, 75 losses, good for second place in the American League Central Division, but not quite enough to earn of the five playoff spots.

The Tigers went out with a whimper, losing their last two games to one of the worst teams in baseball.

I had high hopes for the Pirates, since they had made the playoffs the last three years and seemed poised to make another run. Instead, they faded during the second half of the season and wound up losing 16 more games than they had the previous year.

Early in the season, I had the good fortune to see four baseball games in three cities during a five-day span in May.

I was so excited to see the Pirates play at home twice — and so bummed to see them get whipped twice by the Chicago Cubs.

Likewise, I traveled to Cleveland to see the Tigers on the road. They, too, got hammered.

I didn’t make it down to the Bay Area this year. Otherwise, I’m sure, I would have see the A’s lose, too.

Ah, well, it’s just a game.

This year, I hope the Cubs finally make it to the World Series and win the championship that’s eluded them for 108 years. Sad to say, the Cubs haven’t won the World Series since 1908 — and haven’t even played for the championship since 1945.

No longer a doormat, they were the best team in baseball this year, racking up 103 wins en route to the National League Central Division championship. They have all the pieces this year — great pitching, great hitting, a good balance of speed and power, and a smart manager. If they don’t win it all this year, I don’t know when they ever will.

As for my trio of also-rans, here’s hoping for better results in 2017.




5 thoughts on “None and done

  1. Good column as always, George. But it’s time you rooted for the Texas Rangers, since you know their winning it all would make one of your old buddies and his family very happy. (See past exquisite Rede column, about George’s trip to North Texas.) It’s an interesting year: The Cubs, the Indians and the Rangers all have chances. The Rangers have never won the Series, the Cubs have not win it since 1908, and the Indians have not win it since 1948. This year? If the Rangers play one of those two teams, it figures that one of them has to win. If the Rangers don’t appear in the Series, I have to root for the Cubbies. Hey, it’s time.

  2. Mike,
    You’re right about those three teams either never having won the Series or won it so long ago that we had just 13 colonies at the time.

    OK, maybe I exaggerate.

    But given that trio of longtime losers, I think it would be great if two of them matched up in the Series this year. Not sure if Cleveland can stand another championship just a few months after the Cavs delivered the NBA title.

  3. It’s the morally right thing to do.
    In about 60-plus years, baseball fans will be rooting for the Rangers to end a century of World Series futility. There, doesn’t that make you feel better?

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