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Pirates Dismal July Evokes Free Fall of Buccos Past (+)

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Pittsburgh Pirates. Quinn Priester

After Tuesday night’s 10-1 loss to Cleveland, the Pirates sit solely in the cellar of the National League Central, a season-worst 13 games below .500, with five straight losses out of the All-Star Break and a 2-12 record since July began.

The losing streak evokes the 2019 season, when the Pirates languished through a 1-6 rut in their first home stand out of the break and never recovered. The 2019 Buccos sat 2.5 games out of first place at the break: the 2023 team hung in there at 4.5 games back to open July. 

Both teams saw promising starts to their respective seasons—Josh Bell’s first-half MVP race, this year’s 20-8 start—fall apart as injuries piled up, youth struggled and the dog days of summer set in. From there, free fall.

This year’s Pirates sit just one win above last year’s team through 95 games (41-54, compared to 40-55). The potential for a third straight 100-loss season, unthinkable at the end of April, now sinks in as a legitimate possibility.

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