Projected by FG to win 91.5 games (third-most in the NL), they spent 91 days in first place. On August 1 they had a 4.5-game lead; since then they're 17-31, their $341 million shortstop (who is hitting .232/.328/.404) has booed his own fans, and their billionaire savior owner has quit Twitter multiple times. They've scored the second-fewest runs in the league and will finish well below .500.
Huge splash in the offseason acquiring Darvish/Snell/etc. had them projected to win 94.7 games (second-most in the NL). At the All-Star break they were over 90% to make the playoffs. Since then they've gone 23-35, their two star infielders are fighting in the dugout, and they can't dump their horribly overpaid 1B. Yes they've had injuries and yes they've had a brutal late-season schedule, but instead of finishing a projected 18 games ahead of the Giants, they're now 22.5 behind and may fall to .500 this afternoon.
These guys were expected to be a .500 team and so they are. I only list them here because in Bryce Harper and Zack Wheeler they have legit candidates to win both the MVP and Cy.
Cincinnati was at 73% to reach the playoffs on August 27; since then they're 7-15 and have lost eight consecutive series -- including those against foes like Miami, Pittsburgh, Detroit, and the Cubs -- as the Cardinals have gone from 3.5 games behind them to 4.5 ahead.
Minnesota was coming off two straight division titles and was projected to claim a third with 88.2 wins. Then they lost nine of ten in mid April and were never heard from again. August was their only month over .500 -- they went 14-13 -- and in the AL only Baltimore and Texas have worse records.
Might still make it! They're a half-game up on Toronto for the second wild card spot and are just under 50% to make the playoffs. They're also outplaying their Pythagorean by six games, and apart from that 13-game winning streak in August have been thoroughly mediocre despite being initially projected to win an AL-best 95.4 games. They now have six games on the road against fellow wild card contenders Boston and Toronto followed by three at home against division-champion Tampa Bay. If they do miss the playoffs, one wonders whether Aaron Boone -- or Brian Cashman -- will survive the fallout.
― mookieproof, Thursday, 23 September 2021 13:23 (three weeks ago)