Comments on: Most Rings Since American “I’ll Never Forget Where I Was When” Moments This and that about baseball stats. Tue, 16 Jul 2013 17:01:55 +0000 hourly 1 By: Matthew Conrwell Wed, 02 Nov 2011 04:29:56 +0000 Since 1982, the Cardinals have occupied...

13% of all NL playoff spots and 17% of all NLCS spots.

It would be expected that they would run the spectrum of reasonably expected wins (82), reasonably expected losses (96, 04) very unexpected losses (85, 87, 05) and very unexpected wins (06,11).

When you are always in the running...anything/everything can and will happen over time.

Consider any championships to be a reward for the organization's constant ability to put out good/above average teams. Not a chance that I will undermine that winning organization one bit.

By: John Q Tue, 01 Nov 2011 23:54:51 +0000 @80 Richard Chester,

Yeah part of the problem was the expansion MLB during the 90's because the teams wanted to re-coup the loses they had during collusion. The league was kind of out of balance anyway because of the '77 expansion in the A.L.. I never really understood why they expanded one league and not the other.

The thing they should have done from the beginning was to have two wild cards with a 1 game play in game so they can strengthen the value of winning a division.. I always thought that they should have a 7 game lds as well.

Three 5 team divisions with one inter-league game going every series makes sense. Or they can expand to 32 teams and have 8 four team divisions with no wild card.

By: Richard Chester Tue, 01 Nov 2011 20:58:40 +0000 @78, @79

John Q., Todd:

For the most part I agree with your ideas. What bothers me is the large number of teams ,14 or 15, in a league. (It should be an even number.) With that many teams a team that gets off to a bad start, for example being last in mid-May, will have one heck of a time getting into the pennant race. Their fans would consider the season to be over. With fewer teams in a league they would have at least have a fighting chance.

Of course doing so would mean four 8-team leagues with two new teams being created.

By: John Q Tue, 01 Nov 2011 20:06:18 +0000 @78 Todd,

Well you couldn't have two 15 team leagues with no inter-league play because you would essentially have one team in each not playing every day because of the odd number of teams. You would need to have two leagues of 14 teams or two leagues of 16 teams or you could have two leagues of 15 teams with an inter-league match every series.

To me the whole thing was kind of done on an ad-hoc basis without that much attention to long term problems. What they did is weaken the value of the regular season by adding the additional round of playoffs.

One of the big problems I see is that baseball is still kind of half in the whole division pennant winning system of 1969-1993 and half in the NBA style of top 8 teams in each conference making the playoffs each year. That baseball has a system where a team can be eligible for an 8 team playoffs like the Padres in 2005 and still have the 15th best record in the sport is ridiculous. That the '06 Cardinals could have a WORSE record than 5 other teams and still make the playoffs and win the World Series is equally ridiculous.

Baseball is also very odd in that the way the game is played during the regular season and the playoffs is equally ridiculous. #5 pitchers aren't needed in the playoffs and #4 pitchers are barely needed in the playoffs. How exactly does it make any sense that a second place team 6 games back gets home field advantage in the World Series like the Cards did in 2011??

How does it make any sense that the Rangers are forced to change the way they play by having their primary DH (Michael Young) play 1b in game 6 & 7 because there's no DH used in the NL parks?? Young plays 1B in game 6 and makes two key errors.

The one good thing these playoffs do is balance somewhat the financial inequities of the big market teams and the smaller market teams. As I've said before you really don't have to build a 100 team anymore. At a certain point those extra wins become superfluous and expensive. A smaller or mid market team should probably shoot for a budget to win 90-92 wins a season because you'll make the playoffs about 85% of the time with 90-93 wins per year. And I think 93 or less win teams have won about 60% of the WS in the since 1996.

The Phillies were still going to make the playoffs without Cliff Lee. Maybe they'd win 95 games but they'd still make the playoffs. The Phillies only reason to sign Cliff Lee was to pitch in the playoffs which he did and he performed terribly. They still owe Lee $120 million in the next five years while he's between the ages of 33-37. In two years there going to have about $75 million in Halladay, Lee and Howard and all three are going to be around 33 years old.

By: Todd Tue, 01 Nov 2011 17:53:02 +0000 I agree with John Q regarding the expanded playoffs.

Although I am old school and liked the pre-1969 set up the best, as the best teams were rewarded with a trip to the World Series, I recognize that system is not coming back. Too many fans are emotionally wrapped up in "exciting" divisional and wildcard races (witness all the excitement on these boards over the battles between the 4th and 5th-best teams in each league to make it to the postseason).

What I would like to see, though, is the elimination of many of those factors that John mentioned that make the current system so arbitrary. The first thing to do would be to eliminate the divisions and have 15 teams in each league. Each team would then play the other 14 teams in their league the same number of times. Interleague play would be eliminated. The idea would be to make each team clear the same hurdles by playing, for example, the Yankees 14 times and the Mariners 14 times, instead of playing the Mariners 18 times and the Yankees 6 times. Things like that.

Now, this precise proposal will never happen, but something akin to it might. And if it does, I think it would create more interest in the long run by keeping teams like the '06 Cardinals and '05 Padres out of the playoffs while rewarding teams that do well during the regular season but would otherwise be left out.

Another possibility is to give the best team in the league that season a bye as occurs in the first round of the NFL for the top two teams. In other words, I'd like to see some kind of advantage go to the team that proved its worth over a full season.

By: John Q Tue, 01 Nov 2011 17:22:47 +0000 @73 Mike,

The way baseball is structured now is kind of wacky arbitrary and kind of schizophrenic. On the one hand they want to create extra levels of playoffs like the NBA but on the other hand they want to hold onto arbitrary divisions and the integrity of the 162 game schedule.

How can you even justify a best of 5 LDS after playing 162 games? That would be like making the olympic gold for the marathon a 1 mile run.

Baseball has teams in 4,5,and 6 team divisions?? Baseball has one league with 14 teams and another with 16?? A team in the A.L. west has a 1/4 chance of winning it's division and a 1/14 chance of winning the wild card. A team in the N.L. Central has a 1/6 chance of winning their division and a 1/16 of winning the wild card. How does that make any sense?

There's only been 3 seasons since 1995 where the teams with the best 8 records in MLB made the playoffs ('96, '02, '04).

Then you have seasons like '06 where 5 teams had better records than the Cardinals yet didn't even make the playoffs. How can you justify a system where a team with the 13th best record in the sport makes an 8 team playoff in a 162 game schedule and wins the Championship??

How can you justify the '05 Padres, '07 Cubs, '08 Dodgers, and '09 Twins making the playoffs?

Where's the logic in not giving the Wild Card home field advantage under any circumstances in the LDS & LCS yet giving the Wild Card team home field advantage in the World Series???

There's only 4 seasons in the last 17 seasons where the WS consisted of at least 2 teams from the top 4 records in MLB: '95, '96, '99, '04.

I think what this has done is weaken the interest and value of the WS. The World Series does about a 15 Share now in the tv ratings. There are regular season football games that have better ratting than that. When I was a kid in the 70's, the WS used to do 50 shares!! There are other mitigating factors but I think a big part of the poor rating/lack of interest is lack of great teams meeting in a final championship.

By: John Q Tue, 01 Nov 2011 16:38:22 +0000 @73 Mike,

Well it's not like it was all bad, there were plenty of times when those bizarre tangents would actually be kind of hilarious in the directions they took. There were also plenty of excellent discussions/debates that went on all the time. For Example, I remember for about 4-5 months there were some really good questions debated (Best right handed hitter, Best player not to win a MVP, best pitcher not to win Cy Young etc.).

That site really needed a moderator or at least someone who was in charge of the ship and act like a arbiter. Chuck became the de-facto moderator because he was online all the time, he was the oldest, he had the most experience, and he was the most domineering etc. Chuck is really best suited to be a commentator and present a scout's viewpoint about the nuts & bolts of playing baseball.

I never doubted Chuck's knowledge about actually playing baseball or that his knowledge about hitting, fielding, base-running, and pitching was superior than my knowledge on the subject. For example he could spot dozens of little nuances about the topic of hitting; hands-arms-feet positions.

Chuck saying that "I" couldn't admit I was wrong is kind of hilarious when he was the poster child for not conceding on any topic/argument. Also Chuck would give brazen predictions or statements and then disappear when those statements were found to be false or when predictions wouldn't even remotely come true. Then he would give glib and oblique comments that did nothing except cause more of a break down in discourse.

Another major problem of that site was that articles were never able to breathe. From the first comments, people would entrench themselves into various orthodoxies and then the comments would turn into a kind of high school locker room forum.

As far as "not being tough enough", I'm 45 years old and that kind of comment comes off as juvenile. I mean it's only baseball, it's not a life and death subject. The threads and posts would get far too aggravating and mean spirited, and vulgar and I found myself exerting far too much energy and time on subjects that were really quite trivial.

I'm not without fault because I would join in on the fray and really didn't like the way I was expressing myself.

One criticism Chuck had of me that was 100% correct is that I would become hyper-critical or that I would feel the need to "correct" everyones articles and comments. I think this was something I was doing subconsciously because of the time I spent as a history teacher reading essays and correcting tests.

Another self criticism I have of myself is that I would become very pedantic with my comments as if I was some sort of omniscient baseball oracle.

By: Whiz Tue, 01 Nov 2011 15:12:54 +0000 Hah, I just read the article and it DID assume a 55% chance of winning one game.

That's the beautiful thing about math -- if you make the same assumptions and do the calculation correctly, everybody gets the same answer.

By: Whiz Tue, 01 Nov 2011 15:08:34 +0000 I've been busy, although I do sometimes look at what's going on. I still need to post the winner of the DC Challenge there. It was a bit of a miracle, too, just like this year's World Series -- Chuck tied for first! (I know Chuck reads bbref, too, so congratulations!)

Regarding the 257-game series, there must have been some assumption about how closely matched the teams are (I haven't read the article John linked). I calculate that it would take 257 games to make sure that a team with about a 55% chance of winning one game would win the series 95% of the time. Maybe that was the criterion.

By: Mike Felber Tue, 01 Nov 2011 08:30:23 +0000 Yes John, ideally I would have that single round of 21 games, AND find a way to reward teams that won each division, maybe a wild card. But it would have been better if only 2 teams played for the World Championships Maybe the others play also, but for some other honor or reward. It seems strange, but then the team selected would likely to be the very best.

The archives disapeared & there were all those problems. Chuck rationalizes it like those displaced were not tough enough, & does credit you with learning a lot more about SM since then. Though he thought you did not then, & would not admit wrong. I have called a some folks there on the sitels bullying, juvenile mentality-he still takes shots sometimes at someone long gone. Shaun was stubborn about some things that did not make sense, & eventually became mean at the end to, but it was like a schoolyard psychodrama

Recently a # said said they would stop all the cursing if it brought more folks in. I made clear that was secondary to the hostility directed. Some understand that it is chicken & egg-we have less content, but that is not the only reason for less traffic, some caused by the brittle machismo. But folks like Chuck often have made a noticeable effort to be civil when I mention it, to their credit.

When the bizarre tangents were fun & not personal attacks I did not mind them, & was guilty of my own occasionally! That is the upside of the loopiness there. truth is I have sen a couple get more faux-tough to conform to the tone there-you recall Hoss-who otherwise were quite intelligent & interesting (well, he was reactive also early on).