July 15, 2007: The Philadelphia Phillies become the first franchise in any major American sport to reach 10,000 all-time losses.
Led by two home runs from first baseman Albert Pujols and seven shutout innings from ace Adam Wainwright, the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Phillies 10-2 to salvage the final showdown of a three-game series.
While the loss pushed the Phillies further behind the New York Mets in the NL East division race, it had a more historical meaning for the longtime struggles of the franchise.
With the loss, the Phillies' all-time record since their 1883 creation as the Philadelphia Quakers fell to 8,810 wins and 10,000 losses. The San Francisco Giants, also founded in 1883, hit 10,000 wins during the 2005 season, but the Phillies were the first to hit five digits in the loss column.
"I try to concentrate on wins," then-manager Charlie Manuel said after. "[10,000 losses is] something we haven't really talked about."
Despite the apparent negative feelings that record-setting losses could bring, the mood was indeed pretty jovial at the time. As this fan's video shows, the notorious deed was actually celebrated by the Philly faithful:
While Manuel's ball club was the first to hit the milestone, the franchise's age was just as crucial as any on-the-field struggles. According to Baseball-Reference, the Phillies actually only have the sixth worst all-time win percentage out of the 30 active MLB franchises, with a 9,493-10,612 overall record and a .472 win percentage.
However, the five teams below them were all founded in the second half of the 20th century, giving Philadelphia a very substantial head-start. As a result, the Phillies were alone in their achievement until 2011, when the Atlanta Braves finally dropped their own 10,000th game to join the infamous club.
Since then, the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates have also joined the 10,000 loss club, but the Phillies remain the only team with 10,000 losses and without 10,000 wins -- and they might own that distinction for years to come.
Even if the Phillies are able to recover from their tough start to 2015 and win at a .500 rate from here on out, they still will not reach the 10,000 win club until the 2021 regular season. The Baltimore Orioles (who currently are the closest to 10,000 losses out of all sub-.500 teams with a 8,466-9,307 overall record), playing at a .500 rate, would not join the 10,000 loss club until 2024.
Although the Phillies' history might look bad, the team proved Manuel's words right by quickly disregarding any emotional setbacks. The squad rebounded late in the 2007 regular season to surpass the Mets and win the division title, starting a streak of five straight NL East championships going through 2011. In addition, only a year later, Manuel led his team to the 2008 World Series with a five-game series win over the Tampa Bay Rays.