No group in skilled sports activities is extra dominant proper now than…the Tampa Bay Rays?
Neglect every part you may know in regards to the Rays—laughably small payroll, campy indoor stadium, was the Satan Rays and wore jerseys that appeared just like the 90s threw up—this version is kicking ass and taking names. (To be truthful, they’ve made the playoffs yearly since 2019. Nonetheless, although!)
Tampa Bay has not misplaced but. They’re a staggering 13-0. They’ve had extra video games determined by ten or extra runs (three) than video games that had been determined by two runs or much less (two). It’s going about in addition to baseball can realistically go, and that’s with a number of of their beginning pitchers on the injured record. This can be a glitch within the simulation, one thing that isn’t presupposed to occur in actual life.
If you happen to’re questioning how this occurred, what the historic significance is, or who’s accountable, we’ve received you lined.
Has this ever occurred earlier than?
Sure, nevertheless it’s been a minute.
The 1987 Milwaukee Brewers had been the final group to begin the 12 months with 13 straight wins. The 1982 Braves did it as effectively. Each groups misplaced their 14th sport. However earlier than that, you’ve received to return to the 1884 St. Louis Maroons to seek out the final group to storm out of the gates with 13 consecutive W’s. This makes the 2023 Tampa Bay Rays one in every of simply 4 groups in baseball’s lengthy and twisted historical past to begin the season on this sort of heater, a stat that makes me slightly dizzy if I give it some thought too laborious.
Additionally, you’re in all probability going to listen to little snickers about this from each nook of the baseball web, so let’s simply get it out of the way in which. Sure, these 1884 Maroons actually employed a man named Buttercup Dickerson, whose nickname, historians say, got here from mendacity within the grass as a result of he received too turnt. Buttercup was kicked off the group for drunkenness and didn’t even play the total season for St. Louis.
Had the Rays ever received 13 in a row earlier than?
That they had not! This formally marks the longest successful streak within the Rays’ 25 years of existence. Tampa Bay had by no means received greater than three video games in a row to start a season, and previous to this run, their longest win streak at any level of a season was 12 again in 2004, a 12 months the place they nonetheless managed to complete 21 video games beneath .500.
Are they beating good groups?
That is the best barb to shoot within the Rays’ route. Their 13 wins embody three apiece over the Detroit Tigers, Washington Nationals, and Oakland Athletics. All three of these groups are going to complete in final place of their respective divisions. And the Rays’ most up-to-date triumph was a four-game sweep of the Boston Pink Sox, who usually tend to end in final place than they’re to make the playoffs.
Nonetheless, 13 in a row is certainly one thing to rejoice, irrespective of who’s on the opposite aspect. The inherent wonkiness of baseball—a bizarre hop right here, some poor batted ball luck there—makes doing what the Rays have accomplished much more inconceivable.