Skipper Alex Wakely admits there were echoes of last season's struggles as Northants Steelbacks were beaten by 53 runs at Derbyshire Falcons on Friday.
The Steelbacks were bowled out for just 215 in reply as they suffered their second defeat in as many Royal London One-Day Cup matches this season.
Luke Procter threatened to mastermind a late fightback as he made an unbeaten 50, but Ben Sanderson's 31 was the next best score for the Steelbacks as they fell short.
Derbyshire had earlier finished on 268 for six, having battled back after being 137 for five after 31.5 overs.
And Wakely, whose side won just two of their eight matches in the 50-over competition last year, said: "There were a lot of similarities to last year really.
"We had no partnerships, lost wickets in clusters and no one grabbed the game with the bat.
"With the ball, we haven't set the tone very well this year.
"We bowled a wide first ball, gave away a lot of extras and probably leaked 20 runs and even when we started taking wickets the scoreboard was still ahead of us.
"So for the whole game we were playing catch-up cricket and if you are going to win 50-over games you can't do that."
Billy Godleman was the star of the show with the bat for Derbyshire, making 87, while Matt Critchley contributed a superb unbeaten 64.
And captain Godleman, who won the toss and opted to bat, said: "Although it was our choice to bat first we definitely didn't have the easy end of the conditions so to find a way to get a score on the board and then the way the guys bowled and fielded in the first 10 overs was what won us the game.
"I was finding it hard work out there but I did just have a feeling if we were able to post 250 or 260 and bowled well up front we would be well in the game so it worked out nicely."