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MLB’s Most Embarrassing Teams of 2017

Travid d'Arnaud engages Yasiel Puig at home plate at Dodger Stadium.

Travid d'Arnaud engages Yasiel Puig at home plate at Dodger Stadium. An embarrassing MLB club will have distractions that accompany long stretches of losing. The New York Mets offer a perfect example. | Getty Images

At what point does a Major League Baseball team become an embarrassment? There is no defining moment, but you know it when you see it. Telltale signs include: getting swept by last-place teams; losing repeatedly with scores like 12-10; and blaming the umpire or manager for your troubles. If your team exhibits any of these symptoms, get prepared for a long summer.

In 2017, a few ballclubs took the concept of embarrassing and ran with it. Though we have not seen any chicken-and-beer or dugout-choking episodes yet, this year’s imploding teams are showing the potential to sink to the lowest standards. Here are the seven MLB clubs that have become the most embarrassing teams in the game.

1. Cincinnati Reds

Bronson Arroyo of the Cincinnati Reds looks down after giving up a two-run home run.

Bronson Arroyo of the Cincinnati Reds looks down after giving up a two-run home run. Spitting in the wind: No matter how bad things get, never let the Padres sweep you. | Denis Poroy/Getty Images

If you only watched the Reds bat, you might think you had a contender on your hands. This team slugs with the best clubs in baseball, and they get extra points in our book because (outside of Joey Votto) they don’t walk too much. Cincinnati hitters go up there looking to do damage, and they do it enough to be among the top 10 in home runs and RBI.

Unfortunately, the opposing team gets to face Reds pitchers the other half of the inning, and things go very wrong in those moments. The rotation that included Bronson Arroyo (7.35 ERA, 71.0 IP) and Amir Garrett (7.41 ERA, 58.1 IP) ranked dead last in MLB across every meaningful category. Sure, there are injuries to two key starters, but any club that gets outscored 19-7 in a three-game sweep by the Padres should be ashamed of itself.