In 16-plus years as a Yankees reliever, Mariano Rivera only once lost as many as six games in a season -- and never more than six.
In 47 games with the A's, Brian Fuentes now has six losses.
According to baseball-reference.com, only one relief pitcher since 1919 has ever lost more games this early in a season. Gene Garber lost seven of the first 47 games with the 1979 Braves (who, not coincidentally, were 18-29 on the way to a 94-loss season). Before Fuentes, the only pitcher in the last 20 years to lose six of his team's first 47 games was Vic Darensbourg, who did it with the fire-sale Marlins of 1998.
Yes, I realize that wins and losses don't tell the full story for any pitcher. But when your closer keeps losing games (and Fuentes is the A's closer, with Andrew Bailey on the disabled list), you've got trouble.
Seven times this year, A's manager Bob Geren has put Fuentes in a tie game. He lost five of those games, an amazing (and devastating) stat for a pitcher who almost never works more than one inning. Fuentes' other loss came after one of his two blown saves.
If you're wondering how the A's could be below .500 this year despite a rotation that has by far the lowest ERA in baseball (2.67, which is 0.38 better than the second-best Mariners), obviously their weak lineup is part of the answer. But so is Fuentes.