Hey, I'm all for applying wonkery in all the weird corners of the world, but there is something perverse about that story and the Pirates endless losing streak. Moneyball is about how Billy Beane used some fundamentally econometric techniques to actually improve Oakland's performance on the field. The Pirates' version of that skips the box score and focuses entirely on squeezing more efficiency from the box office. I think that article says it all.
No matter what appeared to have happened at mid-season (we will skip the obvious pension analogy).. does this picture show anything different this year compared to any of the 18 that preceded it? Still a few days of pain left. Might wind up being one of their relatively worst years.