MLB 2024: How bad are this year's White Sox?

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The Chicago White Sox have a chance to make history in 2024 -- and not the good kind. A season of despair has already taken root on the South Side.

With only three wins in their first 22 games, this team appears primed to make a run at the 1962 New York Mets, who finished 40-120, still the modern record for most losses in a season. There have been challengers to that level of ineptitude -- 12 teams since have lost at least 110 games, with the 2003 Tigers coming closest at 119 losses -- but no one has surpassed that long-held mark ... yet.

The Mets in 1962 managed a .250 winning percentage -- almost 100 points better than what the White Sox have managed so far (.120). On Monday, the White Sox lost 7-0 to the Twins, Chicago's eighth shutout in its first 22 games. That had never been done before, not by the '62 Mets (who were shut out only six times all season), not in the Year of the Pitcher in 1968, not even back in the deadball era when teams might hit seven home runs a season.

"It's not going to get any easier tomorrow," White Sox manager Pedro Grifol said after the team's seventh shutout, a 7-0 loss to the Phillies on Friday. "It's not going to get any easier on Sunday. We have to find ways to put good ABs together, execute and step on home plate."

Their hitters have looked helpless at the plate so far, with the team hitting .190 and slugging .285, both worst in the majors. The bad start -- albeit, not helped by the loss of key contributors like Luis Robert Jr. and Yoan Moncada -- is a strong indicator that they have a chance at catching the '62 Mets.

Of course, two years ago the Cincinnati Reds started 3-22 before finishing 62-100. Last season, the Oakland Athletics looked like strong worst-ever contenders after a 5-23 start (they finished at 50-112). Could Chicago actually make a run at 121?

Let's dig into some numbers the White Sox have posted through 22 games, compared with historical rates over the same time frame, to see what it tells us about how bad their situation really is.