Thursday, August 28, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

A Poor Four-For-Four

It could soon be four straight non-winning seasons for Philly sports teams.

A Poor Four-For-Four

Eagles fans watch as their team losses to the Bengals 34-13 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Thursday, December 13, 2012. (Steven M. Falk/Staff Photographer)
Eagles fans watch as their team losses to the Bengals 34-13 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Thursday, December 13, 2012. (Steven M. Falk/Staff Photographer)

One of the advantages in having a team in each of the four major sports is that rarely is the time when none are good ... "good" here being defined as finishing with a record over .500.

Ladies and gentlemen of Philadelphia, welcome to "rarely."

Assuming the NHL season is shot — and all indications are that it is — and that Andrew Bynum is no closer to appearing in a Sixers game than I am, it will be four consecutive seasons that none of the Philly teams will have finished over .500. That will be the third-longest stretch of mediocrity for the city since the Flyers debuted in 1967 to make it a four-for-four town.

The city went six straight seasons (1971-72) without a club with a winning record once, and five straight (1993-94) another time.

Conversely, there is the stretch of 19 consecutive winning seasons by the four teams, running from the 1977-78 winter campaigns through the 1982 Phillies. (And boy, what we wouldn't give for that kind of run now.)

Below are the seasons (chronologically) in which each team finished with a record over .500. The "P" column indicates number of rounds advanced by that team in the postseason.

   PHILLIES       EAGLES                 FLYERS               SIXERS      
 Season  RS          P  RS         P  Season  RS                  P   RS          P 
 1967  82-80        1967-68      62-20  1
 1968          1968-69      55-27  
 1969          1969-70      42-40  
 1970          1970-71      47-35  
 1971          1971-72        
 1972          1972-73  37-30-11  1    
 1973          1973-74  50-16-12  3    
 1974          1974-75  51-18-11  3    
 1975  86-76        1975-76  51-13-16  2  46-36  
 1976  101-61        1976-77  48-16-16  1  50-32  2
 1977  101-61        1977-78  45-20-15  2  55-27  1
 1978  90-72    9-7    1978-79  40-25-15  1  47-35  1
 1979  84-78    11-5  1  1979-80  48-12-20  3  59-23  3
 1980  91-71  2  12-4  2  1980-81  41-24-15  1  62-20  2
 1981  59-48    10-6    1981-82  38-31-11    58-24  3
 1982  89-73        1982-83  49-23-8    65-17  3
 1983  90-72  1      1983-84  44-26-10    52-30  
 1984          1984-85  53-20-7  3  58-24  2
 1985          1985-86  53-23-4    54-28  1
 1986  86-75        1986-87  46-26-8  3  45-37  
 1987          1987-88  38-33-9      
 1988      10-6    1988-89    2  46-36  
 1989      11-5    1989-90      53-29  1
 1990      10-6    1990-91      44-38  1
 1991      10-6    1991-92        
 1992      11-5  1  1992-93        
 1993  97-65  1      1993-94        
 1994          1994-95  28-16-4  2    
 1995      10-6  1  1995-96  45-24-13  1    
 1996      10-6    1996-97  45-24-13  3    
 1997          1997-98  42-29-11      
 1998          1998-99  37-26-19    28-22  1
 1999          1999-00  45-22-15  2  49-33  1
 2000      11-5  1  2000-01  43-25-14    56-26  3
 2001  86-76    11-5  2  2001-02  42-27-13    43-39  
 2002      12-4  1  2002-03  45-20-17  1  48-34  1
 2003  86-76    12-4  1  2003-04  40-21-21  2    
 2004  86-76    13-3  2  2004-05  —    43-39  
 2005  88-74        2005-06  45-26-11      
 2006  85-77    10-6  1  2006-07        
 2007  89-73        2007-08  42-29-11  2    
 2008  92-70  3  9-6-1  2  2008-09  44-27-11      
 2009  93-69  2  11-5    2009-10  41-35-6  3    
 2010  97-65  1  10-6    2010-11  47-23-12  1    
 2011  102-60          2011-12  47-26-9  1  35-31  1
 2012            2012-13  TBD    TBD  
Bob Vetrone Jr.
About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

To listen to Boop on 94WIP, click here.

Reach Bob at vetronb@phillynews.com.

Bob Vetrone Jr.
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