In Wednesday afternoon action, the Cubs beat the Cardinals, 7-0, and lowered their magic number to one. So the Cubs have clinched at least a tie for the NL Central title and that division race is basically over. We could have said that for a while, so let’s focus in on something a bit more newsworthy.
The loss was the 41st at home this season for the Cardinals, meaning they will end up with a losing record in Busch Stadium. That hasn’t happened at all since 1999 and it has only happened nine times since 1920 for this decorated franchise.
In fact, with eight games left at home, the Cardinals are 33-41 and in danger of posting one of their worst home records ever. Here are the worst 10 home records in franchise history:
1913: 25-48 (.342)
1994: 23-33 (.411)
1970: 34-47 (.420)
1990: 34-47 (.420)
1954: 33-43 (.434)
1918: 32-40 (.444)
2016: 33-41 (.446)
1976: 37-44 (.452)
1978: 37-44 (.452)
1938: 36-41 (.468)
Perhaps most ridiculous about this is that the Cardinals have been so good on the road that they still have a realistic shot at making the playoffs. How difficult is it to make that happen? Only two teams have ever pulled this off and one shouldn’t even really count.
The 2001 Braves were 40-41 at home en route to going 88-74 and winning the NL East (again). The other team is the one that carries an asterisk, as it was the 1981 Royals. They actually went 50-53 overall, but thanks to the strike, MLB divided the season into two halves and the Royals made the playoffs thanks to a 30-23 second half.
As far as advancing to the World Series after having a losing record at home in the regular season, it’s unprecedented. The 2001 Braves swept the Astros in the NLDS, but lost, 4-1, to the Diamondbacks in the NLCS. The 1981 Royals were swept in the ALDS by the A’s.
So I guess Cardinals fans could choose to look at the bright side here: Your team now has a chance to make history, from this point of view.
Plus, they are about to go on a 10-game road trip and they are 43-28 on the road. Hey, keep that glass half full.
Source: CBS Sports / The Cardinals will have a losing season at home for first time in a very long time