I read this today in the Inky.
How can you not be bitter when the Phillies have lost more games than any franchise in the history of professional sports and have only one World Series title in more than 120 years of baseball?
I constantly hear people reciting this trivia fact as if it’s really indicative of this town’s sports teams failures. Of course, this fact is completely meaningless, for a number of reasons. First, the Phillies play baseball, which has a 162 game season. That is roughly twice as many games as hockey and basketball have, and ten times as many as football has. So a bad football team would take about 9 years to equal the amount of losses that a great baseball team would have in a single season. In addition, the Phils began play in 1883. The NHL began in 1917, the NFL in 1920, and the NBA began play in 1946. The Phils have played several thousand more games than most of those teams, so of course they’ve lost more games. Ok, so what about baseball? There are only three teams in the majors that have been around as long as the Phils, so you can really only measure them against those three teams. So the Phils have more losses than the Reds, the Cardinals, and the Giants. Nothing to be proud of, but not really that shameful. There are many sports franchises more woeful than the Phillies when you use the only meaningful stat as a comparison, winning %. The Phils have a .467 winning percentage. Again, nothing to brag about. However, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a winning % of .382, and the LA Clippers (who really are the worst team in the history of pro sports) have a % of .358. Numerous other teams have a % worse than .467. The point is, there are plenty of fun facts you can point to about the Phils phailures, so why go the lazy route and write (or say, b/c I hear people saying it on WIP all the time too) the most cliched and worthless stat about Philadelphia sports futility? As for the 2nd part of that sentence, “…and have only one World Series title in more than 120 years of baseball.”, he would have been better served to write one championship, not one World Series. The Series has only been around since 1903, but they had baseball championships in the 20 years before that and the Phillies not only never won one, they never even made it to the championship game.