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Know your baseball history: The 1988 Baltimore Orioles

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On April 28, 1988 the Baltimore Orioles lost 4-2 to the Minnesota Twins and Mike Boddicker's record dropped to 0-5. In the grand scheme of things this that isn't such a big deal until you realize that the Orioles record fell to 0-21 on the season, the worst beginning to a Major League Baseball season in history.

The once proud Orioles franchise was now just a shell of it's former self. Cal Ripken Jr. and Eddie Murray were still around but little else was left in the cupboard. The offense averaged just 3.42 runs a game for the season and during the losing streak it was just 2.09 runs per game. In ten of those games the team scored zero or one runs ten times.

On the other side of the ball the team wasn't any better. During the streak the opposition averaged 6.11 runs scored. That did at least improve to 4.90 runs over the full season.

Cal Ripken Sr. started the year as manager and was dismissed after just six games. Hall of Famer Frank Robinson was brought in and things didn't get any better. The Orioles finished in the cellar of the then seven team American League East, 34 1/2 games behind the Boston Red Sox.

Ripken Jr. led the team with just 84 runs batted in. Dave Schmidt and Jeff Ballard led the pitching staff with eight wins apiece. In the end the Orioles wound up one of the worst teams in baseball history.


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