Every baseball season, there are teams that disappoint. I will say, there are more disappointing teams than what’s below. I took the top three, because there were so many, which sucks. We never want this many bad or disappointing teams, because it bad for baseball, and it’s even worse for their fans.
I was going to write about the surprising teams, but there were not a lot this year. The Royals were the only true surprise, and look at what they did.
Oakland A’s The A’s, in early May, looked incredible. I remember talking about a possible Giants-A’s World Series in gym class, and giving I lived in the Bay Area at that time, everyone was buzzing about it. They started 18-10, which wasn’t spectacular, but still got the attention of people, giving the way they were winning games.. Throughout May, they continued their run, and really didn’t let up for a while.
It wasn’t until July when they finally lost some steam. Unfortunately, they didn’t pick back up, and after making multiple big time moves before the July 31st trade deadline, the A’s completely feel apart in August. Those big time moves were acquiring Jeff Samardzija, Jason Hammel, and Jon Lester. They traded their star player Yoenis Cespedes, which didn’t sit well with anyone in A’s nation. I didn’t like it myself. They traded him for a pitcher who they were getting for three months and would take them to a World Series. It was risky, but could’ve had the ultimate victory come with it. It could’ve gone either way. I said in the Trade Deadline column it would kill this team or take them all the way. And really, the trade had affect on their season, but didn’t completely alter it.
In August, the team completely fell apart. Two separate times, they lost four straight games. It didn’t, whatsoever, set a good tone for Playoffs. The A’s found themselves in the AL Wild Card Game against the Royals after failing to win their division. Oakland collapsed as the Los Angeles Angels rose, and they ended up taking the AL West.
We all know what happened in the Wild Card Game, and I’m not going to touch on it, but it capped a overall disappointing season for a team that looked so great early. It’s probable that Jon Lester leaves, which sucks after what they gave up for him. The fact that they lost Cespedes to Boston is heartbreaking, but it’s baseball, and anything can happen.
Toronto Blue Jays
The Blue Jays first month of the season wasn’t so hot. Late in April, they had a four game losing streak, which capped the month with a record of 12-15 on the season. Mark Burhele though, had a phenomal start to the season. Coming out of the gate at 3-0, Burhele was at 9-1 by the end of May. For a 35 year old pitcher, it was super impressive, and even drove some people to think it wasn’t all him (not going to touch on that). The Blue Jays had a win streak of nine at one point, with one loss separating them from a 12 game win steak.
Burhele and the rest of the team came back to Earth by June, going along about average. Edwin Encarnacion had been lighting everyone up so far, and the Blue Jays had comfortable AL East lead. That division was never good this past year, and it was really a crapshoot between Baltimore and Toronto.
The bad month of June though, had cost the Blue Jays their division lead. At one point six games up in the AL East, the latter month stretch costed them the lead, and they only had a one game lead entering July, July was the Jays sketchy’s month, starting off really bad, then closing out strong. Toronto had completely lost their division lead to by mid month, but due to multiple games that didn’t end their way, though they should have, it set a bad tone for the rest of year.
Like the A’s, the Blue Jays had their peak, and when they came back, they never rebounded, and then the season ends dreadfully. Toronto won only nine games in August, as they kept falling and falling back in the division.
By the end of the month, the Orioles were running away with the division, and the Jays had fallen 10 1/2 games back. Their season was over, and they knew it. The Jays have some interesting and key players from the last couple years on the free agent market, and I guess they would try to resign all of them.. Check out these names:
- Colby Rasmus
- Melky Cabrera
- J.A. Happ
Happ is going to be a hot commodity, so they better jump on him early.
The Brewers started the 2014 campaign with a huge shock, starting the season 20-8, and taking a early 5.5 game lead over the Cardinals in the NL Central. The Brewers looked unbeatable. Mid April, they won nine games in a row, and had 7-1 streak after their run. It truly looked like they would run away with the division.
When May hit, Milwaukee slowed down, probably a little less than they wanted to. Losses to the Cubs and Diamondbacks, two teams whose Playoff chances seemed slim already at that point, hurt them, and contributed to their 13-15 record that month, playing poorly on the road. They were still in first, but St.Louis had secretly been creeping up, which costed them down the road.
June was a massive rebound month for the Brewers; they went 18-10, and had played good baseball. Their pitching was very good, with guys like Wily Peralta and Kyle Lohse having good seasons. They scored a ton of runs that month, which drove them back up the standings to a 6.5 game lead. Then July hit.
July was the Brewers worst month, even though the record says otherwise. They hit rock bottom. The pitching collapsed, with multiple guys having ERA’s of over 4.00. It got really bad. So bad that they lost seven in a row, part of a horrendous 1-9 streak. Milwaukee won nine games in July. They made on move at the deadline, acquiring Matin Prado from Arizona. Their NL Central lead went from 6.5 to 2.5, and with the Cardinals coming up on their speciality month, the timing couldn’t have been worse.
At this point, the Brewers had almost lost control of their season. They didn’t have another winning month over the rest of the season, and lost the division to the Cardinals. Their season was over by mid August, and it was truly pathetic. There was no reason for their collapse, and for a team that looked like a World Series contender in April, it was embarrassing.
I will have columns throughout the Winter, and possibly next week, regarding the free agent market.