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Thursday, November 07, 2013

Interactive World Series Probability Added Chart

With Mr. Cameron’s permissions, I combined FanGraphs’ win probability data with my World Series projections and developed an interactive World Series Probability Chart.

Some insights:
*  David Ortiz was indeed the MVP (with a whopping 0.368 WSPA)
*  But Lester made a pretty compelling case (0.223 WSPA)
*  Johnny Gomes’ Game Four dinger was the biggest play and the turning point (0.165 WSPA)
*  Molina was the Cardinal who contributed the most (0.112 WSPA)
*  The Sox overcame losing nearly 1/4 of their World Series chances when Breslow was on the mound (-0.254 WSPA).

J-Doug Posted: November 07, 2013 at 03:03 PM | 39 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cardinals, red sox, sabermetrics, world series

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. villageidiom Posted: November 07, 2013 at 10:18 PM (#4596157)
* David Ortiz was indeed the MVP (with a whopping 0.368 WSPA)
* But Lester made a pretty compelling case (0.223 WSPA)

After Game 5 I'd said that in a world where David Ortiz didn't exist Jon Lester deserved to be the WS MVP if Boston won, but since we're not in that world David Ortiz deserved to be the WS MVP no matter who won.
   2. tfbg9 Posted: November 08, 2013 at 08:49 AM (#4596238)
True dat.

Johnny F'ing Gomes. WS Hero.
   3. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 08, 2013 at 09:00 AM (#4596239)
*David Ortiz was indeed the MVP (with a whopping 0.368 WSPA)

*But Lester made a pretty compelling case (0.223 WSPA)

*The Sox overcame losing nearly 1/4 of their World Series chances when Breslow was on the mound (-0.254 WSPA)


But Farrell should have been fired for not starting Napoli instead of Ortiz in St. Louis, and for not pinch hitting for Lester in Game 5. Or so I've heard.
   4. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 11:09 AM (#4596342)
But Farrell should have been fired for not starting Napoli instead of Ortiz in St. Louis, and for not pinch hitting for Lester in Game 5. Or so I've heard.


You made up that first part. But what I've heard is that managers never make objectively terrible decisions and that they are above any serious criticism because they are Experts and have Inside Information and we want to appeal to their authority at all times while kissing their rings because we can't think for ourselves.
   5. villageidiom Posted: November 08, 2013 at 11:15 AM (#4596353)
You made up that first part. But what I've heard is that managers never make objectively terrible decisions and that they are above any serious criticism because they are Experts and have Inside Information and we want to appeal to their authority at all times while kissing their rings because we can't think for ourselves.
You made up all but the first part. What I've heard is that the only true authority one can appeal to regarding managing in MLB is Joe Sheehan.
   6. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 11:48 AM (#4596377)
You made up all but the first part.


Nope. That's exactly what the takeaway from the Farrell/Lester thread was, with the sole exception that my ending ("because we can't think for ourselves") was my editorial comment.
   7. SandyRiver Posted: November 08, 2013 at 03:30 PM (#4596605)
Maybe somebody's takeaway. Mine was that 80% of participants thought running Lester up to the plate was a suboptimal decision but not so awful as to justify firing the manager, maybe 10% thought it was an okay decision or even a desirable one, and the remainder calling for Farrell's firing (or summary execution.)
   8. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 08, 2013 at 03:40 PM (#4596622)
But Farrell should have been fired for not starting Napoli instead of Ortiz in St. Louis, and for not pinch hitting for Lester in Game 5. Or so I've heard.

You made up that first part.


But not the second. And I'm sure you'll think of others to replace the first.
   9. VoodooR Posted: November 08, 2013 at 03:54 PM (#4596641)
So did David Freese's poor postseason drop him out of the top spot on the all time weighted WPA list? If I recall Mickey Mantle was only slightly behind him entering the WS this year.
   10. JustDan Posted: November 08, 2013 at 04:11 PM (#4596667)
Maybe somebody's takeaway. Mine was that 80% of participants thought running Lester up to the plate was a suboptimal decision but not so awful as to justify firing the manager, maybe 10% thought it was an okay decision or even a desirable one, and the remainder calling for Farrell's firing (or summary execution.)


and that was probably 80% of people's takeaway of it (including mine).
   11. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 04:16 PM (#4596672)
Maybe somebody's takeaway. Mine was that 80% of participants thought running Lester up to the plate was a suboptimal decision but not so awful as to justify firing the manager


An objectively silly conclusion. (Not the firing part but that the decision to let Lester hit was suboptimal but not awful.) What would an "awful" decision be by Farrell, in comparison? Hitting Dustin Pedroia over the head with a baseball bat?
   12. SoSH U at work Posted: November 08, 2013 at 04:31 PM (#4596686)
What would an "awful" decision be by Farrell, in comparison?


Starting Napoli over Ortiz in St. Louis, of course. (-:
   13. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 04:53 PM (#4596704)
Starting Napoli over Ortiz in St. Louis, of course. (-:


Yes, because everyone knew that Ortiz would hit .800 or whatever in St. Louis and be the only Red Sox player to hit, and everyone knew because they can predict the future with 100% certainty that Napoli wouldn't have contributed in St. Louis even if he'd been the starter instead.

Please stop with this. It's hindsight analysis based on how the players actually performed while pretending that it would always be that way and that if we played the St. Louis games again it will always be that way.

In real life, to people who can actually be bothered with logic, the expected value of Ortiz for three games is not a gazillion times the expected value of Napoli as it may have appeared to simple minded people who are just looking at the results of the three games in St. Louis.
   14. Nasty Nate Posted: November 08, 2013 at 05:04 PM (#4596713)
Yes, because everyone knew that Ortiz would hit .800 or whatever in St. Louis and be the only Red Sox player to hit, and everyone knew because they can predict the future with 100% certainty that Napoli wouldn't have contributed in St. Louis even if he'd been the starter instead.

Please stop with this.


The little symbols after the sentence that look like this (-: indicate that he was joking. I don't have enough time to explain what 'joking' is to you.
   15. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 06:02 PM (#4596741)

I suppose he was joking all the other times he referenced this as well.
   16. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: November 08, 2013 at 06:17 PM (#4596746)
You made up all but the first part. What I've heard is that the only true authority one can appeal to regarding managing in MLB is Joe Sheehan.

And MGL! He's an expert dontcha know.
   17. BDC Posted: November 08, 2013 at 06:22 PM (#4596748)
80% of people's takeaway

"Takeaway" is not in the OED or American Heritage yet in that sense, though it is in Macmillan and Wiktionary. (The longer-established senses all refer to food.) I was talking to a grammar class about the morphology of compound nouns, and how some are still being formed all the time; "takeaway" was a prime example, though I think they thought I was crazy; they must not yet work in settings where it's common.
   18. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: November 08, 2013 at 06:54 PM (#4596759)
So did David Freese's poor postseason drop him out of the top spot on the all time weighted WPA list? If I recall Mickey Mantle was only slightly behind him entering the WS this year.

Yes. He's down to the #4 spot now, behind Mantle, Pete Rose, and... Lance Berkman.
   19. SoSH U at work Posted: November 08, 2013 at 07:40 PM (#4596771)
I suppose he was joking all the other times he referenced this as well.


Well, I was having a little fun this time, seeing how you basically teed it up.

But since you decided to go all whiny ######## in response, I'll repeat (for just the third time, for what it's worth):

This was not hindsight-based analysis (you may remember Nate and I were trying to convince you of the foolishness of your position before the series started).

You were wrong then, and now, because:

1) You underrated Ortiz's defensive abilities. He's not good, but he's not an embarrassment, and never has been. You should have known that.
2) You overstated the importance of first base defense. First base is where they stick the worst gloves, because it's pretty ####### easy to play. You should know this.
3) You understated the difference in offensive ability between a 160 OPS+ ballplayer with the platoon edge vs. a 129 OPS+ hitter without the platoon edge. This is really basic stuff. You should know better.

Your analysis before the fact was shoddy, based on nothing more than an unfounded hunch (he's probably going to make a series-turning error). A guy like you would have insisted on firing a guy like you, had manager you been so crazy as to start Napoli. The sooner you come to grips with your pre-series dalliance with supreme irrationality, rather than getting irritated at me for mentioning it in response to your repeated Farrell is an Idiot claims, the better off we'll all be.

   20. DavidFoss Posted: November 08, 2013 at 07:58 PM (#4596774)
These are great. They should do it for other series as well. Like a see-saw game 7 (2001 WS) or a big comeback (2004 ALCS).
   21. J-Doug Posted: November 08, 2013 at 08:59 PM (#4596800)
These are great. They should do it for other series as well. Like a see-saw game 7 (2001 WS) or a big comeback (2004 ALCS).


I've been thinking about it. I'll do it if enough people yell at me.
   22. Bourbon Samurai Posted: November 08, 2013 at 11:08 PM (#4596827)
HEY J-DOUG YOU #### FACE DO SOME MoRE OF THESE
   23. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:01 AM (#4596839)
#21, it would be great to see one for the 2004 ALCS Boston vs Yanks.

Assuming arguendo two even teams the Sox had a 1/16 chance to come back from down 0-3.
   24. tfbg9 Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:23 AM (#4596845)
23-at the moment the count was 0-0 to Millar in the bottom of the 9th in Game 4, the odds would be at...1/100?
   25. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:49 AM (#4596848)
Well, they probably had a 10% chance to win that game when Millar was up. So I'm guessing the 1/16 gets reduced to 1/50 or so. Just a guess.
   26. SoSH U at work Posted: November 09, 2013 at 01:14 AM (#4596852)
Well, they probably had a 10% chance to win that game when Millar was up. So I'm guessing the 1/16 gets reduced to 1/50 or so. Just a guess.


I believe the bottom of the 10th of Game 6 in the 86 Series was the lowest probability ever reached in a series the team went on to win, even lower than Game 4 of the 04 ALCS. #######.
   27. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: November 09, 2013 at 07:04 AM (#4596866)
These are great. They should do it for other series as well. Like a see-saw game 7 (2001 WS) or a big comeback (2004 ALCS).

Fangraphs only has postseason games going back to '02. B-R has game graphs all the way through postseason history, though I don't know how closely Sean would guard the use of the graphs themselves.
   28. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 09, 2013 at 08:12 AM (#4596872)
23-at the moment the count was 0-0 to Millar in the bottom of the 9th in Game 4, the odds would be at...1/100?

Pretty close. According to BB-Reference, it was actually 2%.
   29. SoSH U at work Posted: November 09, 2013 at 08:20 AM (#4596875)
Pretty close. According to BB-Reference , it was actually 2%.


Nice guess Ray.
   30. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 09, 2013 at 10:42 AM (#4596912)
Yip.
   31. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:32 PM (#4596960)
The truth is that I misread that BB-Ref page. In reality BB-Ref states that the win probability for the Red Sox when they started the bottom of the ninth was 23%, not 2%, a figure which seems to have reflected the Red Sox's 1.042 OPS against Rivera in Fenway Park that year.

After Millar walked, the percentage jumped to 37%, and after Roberts' steal it was 47%. After Meuller's game tying single it hit 73%, and peaked at 83% when Damon reached first on an error after only one out, sending Mueller to third. But when the inning ended with the game still tied, it went back down to 50%.

So nobody was really all that close, and I know I never would've figured the Red Sox chances to be that high with just three outs to go against Mo, his previous struggles in Fenway aside.

   32. Nasty Nate Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:54 PM (#4596969)
The truth is that I misread that BB-Ref page. In reality BB-Ref states that the win probability for the Red Sox when they started the bottom of the ninth was 23%, not 2%, a figure which seems to have reflected the Red Sox's 1.042 OPS against Rivera in Fenway Park that year.

After Millar walked, the percentage jumped to 37%, and after Roberts' steal it was 47%. After Meuller's game tying single it hit 73%, and peaked at 83% when Damon reached first on an error after only one out, sending Mueller to third. But when the inning ended with the game still tied, it went back down to 50%.

So nobody was really all that close, and I know I never would've figured the Red Sox chances to be that high with just three outs to go against Mo, his previous struggles in Fenway aside.


I thought people were referring to the chances to win the entire series, not the individual game?
   33. tfbg9 Posted: November 09, 2013 at 01:05 PM (#4596971)
32-yes. The Series.
   34. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 09, 2013 at 02:04 PM (#4597000)
I thought people were referring to the chances to win the entire series, not the individual game?

Okay, that explains why tfbg9 and Ray were estimating rather than just going to BB-Ref. site. So if the Sox had a 23% chance of winning game 4 entering the bottom of the 9th, and would have been even choices for the next 3 games, then their actual probability of winning the Series with Millar in the batters' box would've been about 28 in 1000, or just shy of 3%.
   35. tfbg9 Posted: November 09, 2013 at 02:25 PM (#4597007)
Yeah, but does 23 percent accurately describe the Sox's shot to come back against "The Greatest Reliever of All Time"?
   36. tfbg9 Posted: November 09, 2013 at 02:27 PM (#4597008)
BTW, somebody ought to give that guy a day or something because he was pretty good.
   37. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 09, 2013 at 02:51 PM (#4597016)
Yeah, but does 23 percent accurately describe the Sox's shot to come back against "The Greatest Reliever of All Time"?

That's what BB-Reference says about game 4. This seemingly high percentage probably had something to do with the way the Sox had treated Mariano in Fenway that year: a 7.36 ERA and a 1.075 OPS in 4 previous games.
   38. tfbg9 Posted: November 09, 2013 at 03:38 PM (#4597022)
I don't think so Andy. I think it's just the straight odds on being down a run at home in the bottom of the 9th, from the WE tables.
   39. J-Doug Posted: November 09, 2013 at 03:59 PM (#4597028)
HEY J-DOUG YOU #### FACE DO SOME MoRE OF THESE


Noted! If I get to it it'll be late this year or early next. I'll post them here when they're done.

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