Hanshin Tigers off to woeful start, but not quite in historically bad territory yet
TOKYO — The Hanshin Tigers have gotten off to a terrible start. They won just one of their first 15 games and now just six of their first 27. Their offense is terrible. Their pitching is just as bad. Fans are calling for the manager’s head.
But are they the worst team ever?
The Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, established in 2004 to fill the gap left by the merger of Orix and Kintetsu baseball teams, were manned by the resultant castoffs and unwanted reserves from other teams. They won their first game behind the pitching of future major leaguer Hisashi Iwakuma, but lost the second game the next day by the lopsided score of 26-0. The Eagles got just one hit, in tying the worst shutout in NPB history. That was followed by losing streaks of 4 and 11 games, giving them a record of 2-22 — a winning percentage of .100. They were the slowest team ever to 10 wins.