A team who can't win more than 2 in a row.
A team where the really clutch hitting isn't confined to what Nick Swisher does.
Sometimes a .500 team has grossly over-paid stars who aren't contributing relative to their cost. A team that has these aging, slowing players under contract until the moon becomes a state.
It is a team that can't find a pitcher, or more than one, who can deliver more than two quality outings out of four appearances.
It is a team whose average age is 37.9, and a roster with no rookies close to getting time on the field. Perhaps it is a team with no rookies at all (who play "positions" other than pitcher).
Often a .500 team has no meaningful position prospects above "A" ball ( Editor's note; everyone has hot prospects at "A" ball.) Some will say that it is for this reason that said team has no position-playing rookies on its roster.
It is a team whose "slugger " first baseman seems to have lost about 10 yards of distance on his potential home run drives. Still, he is hitting in the low .200's.
Often a .500 team is one who expects a "savior" in the form of a returning hero now two years out of the game, and who is looking in the rear view mirror at the 40 year old threshold. Someone who will be on an innings count all season.
Occasionally, a .500 team will make off season trades that give away youth and potential for players with disability and/or lack of ability. A team that daily reads the bad news as to the positive performances of those traded away, and who waits patiently for medical updates on the "stud" they received for Jay Buhner.
Usually, they have a top draft pick pitcher, still young, who seems to have lost his abilities and potential. Often, they have traded away a peer of this top pick who now wins 20 games in another division. Another way of saying; they kept the wrong guy.
A .500 team is one that goes to the ballparks of other struggling teams in their division and makes them well. Heals them. Loses to them.
Watch and remember.