Ever since Major League Baseball was founded in 1869, franchises have been relocated, renamed, players have come and gone and legends have been born and enshrined in history.
In the 143 years since baseball has been deemed a profession in America, 30 franchises have stood the test of time, each of them with their own incredible histories and traditions.
As a personal vice and out of curiosity, I compiled a spreadsheet calculating the all-time winning percentage of every franchise, including how often they appear in the postseason, win pennants and world championships, as well as how many of their playoff trips result in World Series berths and titles, relative to how long each team has been in existence.
The placement of some teams will be obvious, but others were a shock to me and may be to you as well.
Here are my rankings of the 30 current MLB franchises based on all-time records.
43 seasons, 1 playoff appearance
With a single postseason berth in 43 years, the Washington Nationals are by far the least successful franchise.
Just 17 of those 43 seasons have ended with a winning record for the Nats, highlighted by their lone playoff appearance in 1981.
Things are looking up, though, as future superstars Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper have led Washington to a lead in the NL East halfway through the season.
35 seasons, 4 playoff appearances
As a die-hard Mariners fan, it pains me to admit that the Seattle Mariners are one of the worst franchises around.
They're one of two teams to never appear in a World Series, and have made trips to the playoffs just four times in 35 years.
The mid-90s and early 2000s were the glory days for the M's, most notably the magical playoff run of 1995 and the 116-win season in 2001.
The Mariners have been rebuilding for several years and hope to turn things around this decade.
Seattle has been home to future Hall of Fame inductees Ken Griffey, Jr., Randy Johnson, Alex Rodriguez and Ichiro.
50 seasons, 9 playoff appearances, 1 pennant
The Houston Astros finally made it to the World Series for the first time in franchise history in 2005, and their season would end shortly after. They haven't been back to the playoffs since.
'97 to '05 were the most memorable years for the 'Stros, as they made the playoffs in six of nine seasons, led by Craig Biggio, Lance Berkman and Jeff Bagwell.
43 seasons, 4 playoff appearances, 1 pennant
You may be wondering why Milwaukee is ranked ahead of Houston when the Astros have more playoff appearances. The Astros have been around longer, and a lower percentage of their playoff berths have resulted in league championships.
Following Milwaukee's lone World Series trip in 1982, they were plagued by mediocrity up until 2008 when they returned to the playoffs for the first time in over a quarter century.
All-time greats Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, Rollie Fingers and Hank Aaron have all played for the Brew Crew.
51 seasons, 5 playoff appearances, 2 pennants
Back-to-back American League titles are separating the Texas Rangers from being the worst current big league franchise.
Until 2010, Texas had made the playoffs on just three occasions without a trip to the World Series.
The team didn't win a division title until 1996, but has won each of the last two and the Rangers are in position to sit atop the AL West for years to come.
43 seasons, 5 playoff appearances, 2 pennants
From 1969 until 1983 the San Diego Padres finished in last place nearly every season. 1984 marked their first ever division title, and they made it all the way to the World Series before losing in five games.
It's been a topsy turvy road since then for the Pads, and they're now firmly in rebuilding mode with one of the top farm systems in baseball.
19 seasons, 3 playoff appearances, 1 pennant
The success of the Colorado Rockies can be best measured in terms of their short tenure within Major League Baseball.
In less than two decades they've managed to win a league title, which can't be said for two teams who have been around for twice that amount of time.
The Rockies are still in search of the elusive first division title, and their biggest problem to this point seems to be staying power, as the season following each of their playoff berths has resulted in a third place finish.
14 seasons, 3 playoff appearances, 1 pennant
MLB's youngest team, the Tampa Bay Rays, dramatically reversed their fortunes in 2008, winning 97 games and an American League pennant after never finishing higher than fourth in the NL East in the 10 seasons prior.
Manager Joe Maddon keeps the Rays in contention every season, with an arsenal of young talent such as Evan Longoria and David Price.
51 seasons, 9 playoff appearances, 1 pennant, 1 world championship
Other than from 2002 to 2009 and the mid 80s, the Angels have fared rather poorly.
Their first and only World Series title came in 2002 in a thrilling seven-game series over Barry Bonds and the Giants, and it began a stretch of AL West dominance for the Halos.
With the addition of Albert Pujols, the Angels look to once again challenge for the top spot out west and to return to the top of the baseball world.
122 seasons, 14 playoff appearances, 7 pennants, 2 world championships
The above numbers would be very impressive, if not for the 122 year existence of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Their most recent World Series win in 2008 was the first for Phillies fans since 1980, and prior to that the team was either horrible, or the season ended in heartbreak in October.
Their streak of five straight NL East crowns is in jeopardy this year, as they currently sit at the bottom of the division.
111 seasons, 10 playoff appearances, 5 pennants, 2 world championships
Poor Indians fans. Just 10 postseason berths in over a century is tough to swallow, but luckily they managed to notch two world titles over the course of all the years.
1995 to 1999 were great years in Cleveland, but unfortunately for Indians faithful they ended in playoff heartbreak, including a World Series loss in '95, and Edgar Renteria in '97.
The Tribe have a chance to return to October baseball this season, currently slotted in second place in the AL Central.
136 seasons, 16 playoff appearances, 16 pennants, 2 world championships
I thought I felt bad for Cleveland fans, then I remembered the Chicago Cubs.
Since the Cubbies won back-to-back World Series titles in 1907 and '08, they've been mired by failure, a curse, and a man named Bartman.
The Cubs currently hold the longest championship drought among American pro sports teams, and it certainly won't end this season.
When the World Series rain once again graces the Chicago plains, many a Cub fan can die happy, if there are any left.
43 seasons, 7 playoff appearances, 2 pennants, 1 world championship
I strongly considered using Billy Butler for the picture, but in spite of his disappointing All-Star performance, I couldn't bring myself to do it.
For the Kansas City Royals and their fans, the last 26 years have been very, very rough.
Since the team's lone world championship in 1985, the Royals have failed to win a division title or make the playoffs.
The glory years of '76 to '85, in which KC made all of their trips to the playoffs, won't soon be re-lived, at least not this season.
111 seasons, 9 playoff appearances, 6 pennants, 3 world championships
The Chicago White Sox ended their 88-year World Series drought with a title in 2005, finally giving Chicago baseball fans a breath of fresh air.
Former Chi Sox third baseman Robin Ventura has his surprising club sitting atop the AL Central at the All-Star break.
Stat of the day: the White Sox have never made the playoffs in two consecutive seasons in their 111 year history.
111 seasons, 14 playoff appearances, 6 pennants, 3 world championships
The Minnesota Twins had a nice run of AL Central dominance in the 2000s, but haven't been able to return to their championship form of 1987 and '91.
The late Kirby Puckett highlighted one of the best World Series ever, with his unforgettable game six in which he made a leaping catch to rob Ron Gant, and of course his walk-off home run in the 11th inning to send the series to a deciding seventh game.
111 seasons, 11 playoff appearances, 7 pennants, 3 world championships
The nine-year span from 1966 to 1974 was exciting for the O's, as they won four American League Pennants and two world titles, led by the Hall-of-Fame Robinsons: Brooks and Frank.
Cal Ripken, Jr. was a catalyst in Baltimore's next World Series win in 1983, and Orioles fans have been waiting for another championship ever since.
The O's are currently second in the competitive AL East.
136 seasons, 21 playoff appearances, 17 pennants, 3 world championships
Bobby Cox and the braves finally won a World Series in 1995 after losing back-to-back Fall Classics in 1991 and '92.
Atlanta's unprecedented streak of 14 NL East division championships in 15 years, including 11 straight from 1991 to 2005 yielded just one world championship in five trips to the World Series.
The Braves may never return to the dominant force they were when they fielded Andruw and Chipper Jones, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and John Smoltz, but they appear to be on the rise in the wide open NL East.
130 seasons, 14 playoff appearances, 9 pennants, 5 world championships
The Pittsburgh Pirates haven't had a winning season since 1992, but don't let that fool you; the franchise has experienced a great deal of success.
Willie Stargell and the late Roberto Clemente led the Buccos to a World Series win in 1971, and the team was at their best throughout the 70s, making the playoffs on six occasions and hoisting the Commissioner's trophy once again in '79.
Rising star Andrew McCutchen is in MVP conversations around the league and Pittsburgh is a contending team once again.
130 seasons, 13 playoff appearances, 10 pennants, 5 world championships
The Big Red Machine of the 70s was one of the best teams in baseball history, winning four NL pennants and two World Series championships.
The team featured three Hall-of-Famers in Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan and Tony Perez, as well as the controversial, yet HOF-worthy, all-time hit king Pete Rose.
The Reds won another title in 1990 headed by Lou Piniella, but have been back to the playoffs just twice since.
Joey Votto might be the best hitter in baseball, and the future looks promising for Cincinnati.
111 seasons, 13 playoff appearances, 10 pennants, 4 world championships
The 111 years in which the Detroit Tigers have been in existence have seen extreme highs, and extreme lows.
The team has won four World Series Titles, making a trip to the WS as recently as 2006, three years after losing 119 games on their way to one of the worst regular season records of all-time.
The early 2000s are certainly years to be forgotten, as the Tigers suffered through three 90+ loss seasons, and two consecutive years in which the club lost 100 or more ballgames.
They haven't had a particular period of dominance, but the Tigers have brought four titles to the Motor City, and they currently employ the best pitcher in baseball and reigning CY Young and MVP Justin Verlander.
50 seasons, 7 playoff appearances, 4 pennants, 2 world championships
The New York Mets are primarily known for losing 100 or more games in six seasons, underachieving, and being the Yankees' little brother.
The Mets crack the top 10 due to their accomplishments in a relatively short period of time.
They've advanced out of the first round in each of their seven playoff appearances and have reached the World Series in more than half of their trips to the postseason. Playoff efficiency is highly rewarded, even if it takes a historic ground ball through the legs to win a title.
35 seasons, 5 playoff appearances, 2 pennants, 2 world championships
The Toronto Blue Jays have never lost a World Series. Their back-to-back titles in 1992, '93 mark the last time the Jays went to the playoffs, as their unfortunate location puts them in the always-competitive AL East.
The Blue Jays are a fairly new franchise, and two world championships in 35 years is impressive, thus the high placement on the list.
Joe Carter's walk-off home run in game six to clinch the title is one of the most memorable and important long balls in baseball history.
14 seasons, 5 playoff appearances, 1 pennant, 1 world championship
The Arizona Diamondbacks were added to MLB in 1998 and achieved instant success.
After an average rookie season by expansion team standards, the D-Backs won 100 games and won the NL West in their second year in the league. Two years later, Luis Gonzalez singled over the head of one of the greatest shortstops ever, off a pitch delivered from the best closer of all-time in the bottom of the ninth inning of game 7 of the fall classic, giving the state of Arizona its first pro sports championship in over half a century.
The Diamondbacks' ability to win a championship in just their fourth year in the league is unrivaled, granted they carried two Hall-of-Fame pitchers on their roster in Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling. No, not Byung-Hyun Kim.
The D-Backs have stayed consistent, returning to the postseason three times following their championship, including as a division winner last season.
129 seasons, 23 playoff appearances, 21 pennants, 6 world championships
The Giants have employed some of the all-time greats, from Christy Mathewson, to Mel Ott, Willie Mays and the always controversial home run king Barry Bonds.
To go along with their six World Series titles, the Giants also have the second highest winning percentage among major league teams.
In the early 20s when they called New York their home, the Giants dominated baseball, winning four straight NL pennants and winning two championships.
They brought the trophy to San Francisco in 2010 for the first time since the team relocated following the 1957 season.
128 seasons, 26 playoff appearances, 22 pennants, 6 world championships
Another one of baseball's most storied and long-lived franchises, the Los Angeles Dodgers rank sixth all-time among MLB teams.
It wasn't until 1955 when the then Brooklyn Dodgers were on top of the baseball world after losing their first nine World Series.
Stat of the day: the Dodgers have won two World Series in three different decades (50s, 60s, 80s).
111 seasons, 20 playoff appearances, 12 pennants, 7 world championships
2004 may have been the most unbelievable, improbable and exciting postseason in baseball history.
Everyone remembers the 3-0 deficit in the ALCS to the hated Yankees and the seemingly uneventful sweep of the Cardinals to win their first World Series since 1918.
The best hitter, and arguably the best pitcher ever (Babe Ruth, Cy Young) both called Boston home in the early 1900s, and the Bambino, as well as Aaron Boone and Bucky Dent among others, cursed the BoSox for nearly a full century, until one faithful week in October put all curses to rest.
19 seasons, 2 playoff appearances, 2 pennants, 2 world championships
Shocker here, as the Miami Marlins check in at number four on the list of MLB franchises. I have them slotted here due to several factors:
One, They're averaging a championship every 9.5 years, which is better than all but one team.
Two, they've never lost a playoff series, so they earned huge points for playoff efficiency. I largely based these rankings on each team's success relative to how long they've been in existence, and how many playoff appearances it takes to win it all.
Each of Miami's championship runs were improbable, as the Marlins have never won a division title. Edgar Renteria's walk-off single in game 7 of the 1997 series will live on in infamy, and the 2003 series win against the Yankees was one of the biggest upsets in baseball history.
111 seasons, 23 playoff appearances, 15 pennants, 9 world championships
From 1972 to 1974, no team was better than the Oakland A's.
The team won three straight World Series, carried by Mr. October himself, Reggie Jackson.
The Athletics returned to the top in 1988, '89 and '90 when they won three straight AL pennants, defeating the Giants in the series in 1989, their most recent championship.
The great Billy Beane teams of the 2000s never quite got over the hump, getting eliminated in the first round of the playoffs four straight times from 2000 to 2003.
130 seasons, 24 playoff appearances, 22 pennants, 11 world championships
The defending champion St. Louis Cardinals are the second greatest baseball franchise of all-time.
They rank second in World Series wins, and despite their 130 year history, the club averages a title every 12 years.
Game 6 of the 2011 World Series was the best baseball game I've ever seen and became an instant classic in the baseball world.
The Cards have now won two championships in six seasons and have remained constant contenders year after year.
111 seasons, 50 playoff appearances, 40 pennants, 27 world championships
Love them or hate them, the New York Yankees are undoubtedly the greatest baseball team ever, as well as the best North American professional sports franchise.
27 World Series wins, 40 pennants, millions of fans world-wide, even more enemies.
The Yanks are favorites to win it all nearly every season, and rightfully so.
They won four straight championships from 1936-'39, five in a row from '49-'53, and achieved a three-peat from 1998-2000.
Countless legends have donned the pinstripes, including the player many believe to be the best ever, George Herman Ruth, Jr.
The Yankees will always be hated by many a baseball fan, but their success deserves the utmost respect.