Top 5 Worst Teams in Baseball [aka the "Ouch Papi" All-Stars]
You can argue a million times as to who are the best and the worst franchises in baseball. Thankfully, I'm not going to argue that much, because this is my list. Make yer own in the comments. Also, no ranting if teams like the Devil Rays don't make this list, because this list is based on the time-honoured tradition of "expectation vs. reality". Teams who were bad to begin with will not make this list. Teams with some desire of success shall populate it all season long.
5. Atlanta Braves [13-18, Home 6-5, Road 6-10]
The perennial pennant winners have hit the skids a little bit this season, getting schooled in their own division a number of times already. Losing two series to the Mets and playing unconvincingly against the Phillies [1-4 vs. PHI in 2006], several big stars are misfiring and their pitching staff is feeling the loss of Leo Mazzone.
While there is still plenty of time [and an 8-game deficit to make up] in the year for Atlanta to be Atlanta, they need a much better output from young superstars like OF Jeff Francoeur [.231, 6 HR, 22 RBI], 2B Marcus Giles [.211, 25 K], and 1B Adam LaRoche [.200, 5 HR, 15 RBI, 32 K]. Better pitching from ace Tim Hudson [2-3, 5.09 ERA] wouldn't hurt either.
4. Minnesota Twins [13-19, 5-12 vs. AL Central]
Even though everyone picked them to finish 3rd in the division, they've always been crafty and scrappy enough to stick around until late in the game. Ruled by excellent pitching and good defense, the star-starved Twins relied heavily on guys like Johan Santana, but even his presence might not be enough this time.
Having been swept by Cleveland, the White Sox AND Detroit already in this short season, they're on the ropes and will continue to be. Boy Wonder 1B Justin Morneau is having a horrendous season thus far [.206, 26 K], and their normally-reliable rotation is equally bedwetting to date [Team ERA : 5.77]. With three veteran starters having ERAs north of 7.50, the Twins are an ugly team to watch. They also employ 3B Tony "He's still playing?" Batista, which can never be a good thing.
3. Seattle Mariners [14-20, Home 8-12, Road 6-8]
To Everett, or not to Everett? That is the question. Having this fire-charged asshole in the dugout will only get uglier as their losing ways continue. Where's Ichiro [.277 BA, .342 OBP]? Without his almost daily multi-hit games, the Ms will keep finding runs hard to come by.
The rotation is shakier than a meth-filled Keith Richards, as young phenom Felix Hernandez struggles [1-4, 5.40 ERA] to live up to the hype, and veterans like Jarrod Washburn [2-5, 3.61 ERA] pitch well but don't get the run support or the magic W.
2. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Disneyland, Santa Ana and Fullerton [14-19, Last 10 2-8]
Fuck. After gleefully watching them dispatch the Yankees from another postseason in 2005, I am shocked to watch the worst ineptitude on an area of grass since my IM soccer team in college [Guys, I kid. Agent Orange were the shit! Hoo-Haah!]. They're just plain bad, although having a blown Colon on the DL [man, couldn't resist] will always set you back some. It's not everyday that Cy Young winners and All-Stars can sit on the unable list without it effecting your fortunes [heck, ask my #1 team in just a minute], but man, the Angels still can't get it done.
Vladimir Guerrero is doing his best [.320 BA, 8 HR, 28 RBI], but with a Team BA of .247 and a laughable absence of runners on the basepads [Team OBP : .294], and the lack of a true #1 pitcher in the rotation [Kelvim Escobar will not pitch this well all season : 4-2, 2.78 ERA] all mean heartache and heartbreak for the geographically ambiguous Seraphims.
1. Chicago Cubs [14-17, 7-Game Losing Streak, Last 10 1-9]
Boo hoo hoo, yes, wakka wakka, we all saw this coming, didn't we? A veritable smorgasbord of tasty free agents and contract extensions in the off-season, and what does it all add up to? 3 All-Stars on the DL for a significant period of time [don't give me bullshit about Prior, I reckon he won't be back until after the All-Star break], the most troubling drop-off in run production in recorded history since Derrek Lee went down [we've all seen the gory stats : 1.25 runs per game in our last 8 games], and there's no real sign of any upturn.
When we're collectively doing the rain dance and praying for salvation at the creaky elbow altar of Kerry Wood, armageddon must surely be close at hand. It's fucking laughable - our rotation includes a tired Maddux working his ass off, and three rookies with constant edge-of-your-seat efforts on the mound, not to mention the insanely weak lineup that regularly includes the power and fury of Neifi Perez, Jerry Hairston Jr and Jacque Jones [sometimes all 3 at once!] -- dark days loom large for this Wrigley summer.
The bright spot comes in the form of Murton and Cedeno, both of whom have truly proved that they belong in an everyday major league lineup, but if Aramis Ramirez [.223 BA, 6 HR, 13 RBI] doesn't get his act together, heads like Dusty Baker's might surely roll.