The Athletics had a losing record in each of the last two Aprils yet won the American League West in 2000 and a wild-card berth last year. While that might inspire teams that stumble out of the gate this year, they should know that of the 56 playoff teams since 1995 (the first year of the eight-team format), only the eight listed below had losing records in their first months. The chances of rebounding to a winning season are only slightly better: Of the 96 teams that have finished above .500 since '95, only 20 (21%) had a losing first month. No first-month loser has won the World Series.
[This article contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]