When is it ok to panic?

Why is it that baseball slumps always seem worse than slumps in every other sport? Is it the daily losing that gets to our psyche? That daily reminder of suckitude that doesn’t allow you to forget about the losing?

Baseball has the longest season and therefore stretches of losing have less of an impact than in other sports, yet I never take a string of losses so hard as when my baseball team does it.

The Brewers are in the midst of a 1-8 stretch. Picked to possibly win the division this year, Brewers’ fans hopes were high heading in to the season. DL stints for Corey Hart and new acquisition Zach Greinke meant we had to temper expectations a little in April, but now we’re heading towards mid-May, the Brewers bats have been silent, and as a fan I’m starting to get depressed.

I haven’t reached the level of some fans, who’ve already given up on the season and are asking when the team will start putting Prince Fielder on the block and become sellers.

However, I’m also not in the “it’s only May” and “every team goes through this” group either. The awful defense and lack of hitting are real concerns.

It’s mid-May and the Brewers are in fifth place and 5.5 games back of division-leadingSt. Louis, who they just lost two of three to. I’m starting to panic. This was supposed to be an “all-in” season. Management mortgaged the future, traded away a bunch of prospects and basically made the push to win now or forever hold their peace. And yet, here we stand.

Even last week’s return from the DL of Greinke was ruined by shoddy defense.

I figure there’s got to be something I (or Brewers fans) in general can do to bust the slump. I haven’t watched a full nine innings in about 10 days because I get disgusted by the fourth inning and turn it off in favor of season 4 of The West Wing on DVD.

We’re going to the game tonight for Greinke’sMilwaukeedebut. Do I need to wear a tinfoil hat? Dress like Bernie Brewer? Pray to Jobu over a dead chicken (or bucket of KFC)? Perform a no errors dance in the parking lot near the Hank Aaron statue?

Am I too far off? Is it to early to contemplate panic? 87 or so wins is probably going to take the NL Central this season, but in order to make that pace, the Brewers have to win about 60% of the rest of their games – something they haven’t come close to doing so far.

So Ladies… when do you panic? And what are you favorite slump-busting traditions?

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