After posting an impressive 18-10 won-lost record in June, the Pittsburgh Pirates slumped to 10-18 in July, putting a momentary damper on their chances at the top spot in the Phillies-controlled NL East. The good news is, the two teams blocking their path, the Cubs and Expos, also had disappointing records in July. The bad news: the two teams trailing them, the Mets and Cardinals, are closing in fast, setting up a possible 5-team August logjam for second place in the East. And along with that, one glaring fact remains: the Bucs are still in fourth place, 18 games back of first place, with just two months to go in the regular season.
Outfielder Bill Robinson led the squad in July with a .366 average, and his 26 hits were second best behind Dave Parker, who had 28. But as a team the Pirates hit just .234, and Parker’s four home runs were—sadly—enough to lead the Bucs’ power-deficient offense. Starter Jim Rooker had an earned run average of 2.12 in five starts, and a trio of relievers (Kent Tekulve, Bruce Kison, and Grant Jackson) all had ERA’s hovering around 1.75. But the team lost 18 games in July, tied for the NL lead, and they carry a 4-game losing streak heading into August.
To check out the Pirates page for stats through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will be added after all NL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been picked.