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— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

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   1. TomH Posted: July 13, 2006 at 06:52 PM (#2097733)
I'm not as optimistic as the BPro # crunchers.

Record to date: 53-33.
Extrapolating the runs scored / runs allowed so far this year forward, gives a (pythagorean) W-L for the rest of the year to be 44-32, which for the whole year would be 97 wins. But.
Overperformers: I'll nominate Lowell and Papelbon for 1 win less each (10 runs = 1 win; I already accounted for Jon's projected higher-than-microscopic ERA the rest of the year by assuming above they would not keep winning tons of close games). That's 95 wins. Some others have overachieved some, but I'll levae them alone, and I don't see any real significant underachievers.
Home/road: Bag an extra win for all those Fenway games still to come. 96 wins.
Injuries: It's been a fairly fortunate year so far. Subtract 2 wins for the real possibility of less fortune coming. I mean, nothing near what the Yankees have dealt with, merely normal wear for an older club.
Down to 94 wins.
Will Theo et al pull off a trade that will help? Could be. But it's hard to gain 10 runs in 60 games with an August trade. I'll give them another half a win - my final answer, 94 or 95 victories.
I say that's about a 50-50 shot. NYY may win fewer, or a small chance the White Sox or Tigers have a big slump.
   2. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 13, 2006 at 06:54 PM (#2097737)
BP uses a home field adjustment, so that's accounted for.

I look at the odds predictor as a fun toy, which I think is how Toby was looking at it, too. They don't regress half-season stats, so they just project as if Papelbon is a true 0.50 ERA pitcher. Also, I know of no systematic evidence that BP's 3rd order wins are a better predictor of performance than 2nd order or actual wins.

The Sox seem to be well set for hte second half, and I think the schedule thing is good to note. The bullpen seems to be stabilizing with Delcarmen, Lopez and Hansen taking over for Seanez, Foulke and Tavarez. I don't see very many weird performances among the position players, though I expect Crisp to improve and Lowell to decline. I'd really like to add another starter, but it's pretty unclear where such a thing could be found.
   3. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 13, 2006 at 07:04 PM (#2097756)
Overperformers: I'll nominate Lowell and Papelbon for 1 win less each (10 runs = 1 win; I already accounted for Jon's projected higher-than-microscopic ERA the rest of the year by assuming above they would not keep winning tons of close games).
10 runs? In order to cost the Red Sox 10 runs off his current projection, Lowell would need to put up a ~770 OPS the rest of the way.

And Jason Varitek's sudden drop to a .230 BA has to be at least partly unsustainable. It's certainly at hte same level of weirdness as Lowell's struggles.

It's hard for me to call the Sox team lucky on injuries. They've lost their CF for two months, their 10th man for two months, their #3 reliever maybe for the year, and their 4-5 starters for a while. They've been luckier than the Yankees or somebody, but I don't see 25 runs of luck in their injury report.

I don't want to be too fanboyish with the projections, but I think that the Sox first half performance looks pretty sustainable.
   4. Dizzypaco Posted: July 13, 2006 at 07:06 PM (#2097758)
The way I look at it, the Red Sox are about a 95 win team that overachieved a little in the first half. I expect them to win at about a 95 win pace in the second half, so I think the chances that they make the playoffs are pretty good.

I never liked the idea that you find only two players on the entire team that will change performance, and ignore everyone else. There's 25 guys on the team, some will get better, some will get worse. I agree that Lowell and Papelbon will not perform as well, but Tek could easily be a lot better, as could Crisp, plus they will have a full half season of Lester. I also can't imagine getting a 6+ ERA out of Clement or whoever is taking his spot in the rotation. There are other guys who I expect may drop off some - Nixon, Loretta.

All told, they would have to have a really disappointing second half to finish at 94 wins. That would suggest a 87 win pace for the rest of the season, despite the fact that they are pretty healthy and have a more games left at home.
   5. Josh Posted: July 13, 2006 at 07:16 PM (#2097766)
BP uses a home field adjustment, so that's accounted for.

IIRC, it is a generic homefield adjustment though (like 5% across the board). If you think that the RS enjoy a better than average homefield advantage (and I think that is likely), then you'd have to add a little to it.

This is a pretty good team; and a pretty fun team to boot. I'm certainly looking forward to seeing them for the next couple of months.
   6. Joel W Posted: July 13, 2006 at 10:49 PM (#2098061)
It also doesn't account for injuries.

Here is their PECOTA adjusted version: http://www.baseballprospectus.com/statistics/ps_oddspec.php
   7. Darren Posted: July 14, 2006 at 01:32 AM (#2098231)
Yeah, I wanted to mention the PECOTA version too. It gives us a similar outlook, but the Yankees look better.
   8. Toby Posted: July 14, 2006 at 02:56 AM (#2098365)
I saw that there was a PECOTA adjusted version but I have no idea what that means. I mean, I know what PECOTA is, but what does it mean that the odds are PECOTA adjusted?
   9. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: July 14, 2006 at 09:28 AM (#2098635)
Is there a Pecota adjustment for the stupidity in the latest Red Sox loss?
   10. Josh Posted: July 14, 2006 at 10:59 AM (#2098641)
I mean, I know what PECOTA is, but what does it mean that the odds are PECOTA adjusted?

The difference is that the W3% in the normal odds sheet is regressed towards .500 -- as if every team were equal. The W3% in this is regressed towards the PECOTA projected W3% - in other words, BPs best guess at actual talent.
   11. Russ Posted: July 14, 2006 at 11:41 AM (#2098648)
The W3% in this is regressed towards the PECOTA projected W3% - in other words, BPs best guess at actual talent.

Their best guess before the season or including the season to date... the former way is the more correct way to do it, otherwise you're using (approximately) the same data twice (once in calculating the W%, then again including the same type of information in getting the PECOTA projections).

That's really smart though if they do it the first way... probably a much better method of shrinkage.
   12. Toby Posted: July 14, 2006 at 01:32 PM (#2098687)
So, for example, under the PECOTA adjusted method the Yankees get credit for having Matsui and Sheffield in their lineup, even though they aren't in the lineup?
   13. Josh Posted: July 14, 2006 at 02:16 PM (#2098727)
Their best guess before the season or including the season to date

I'm pretty sure it is the former - I don't think they either make new pecota projections in season nor change play time distribution best-guesses.

So, it could be a smart way to do it - or it could completely miss reality, as Toby's post points out.
   14. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: July 14, 2006 at 06:32 PM (#2098936)
Is the schedule really the Red Sox' friend? I don't see any more NL East teams to beat up on. I don't see how Boston does as well in the second half against better (arguably, I know) competition.

With Toronto getting Burnett back, and the Yankees maybe getting Abreu or something, I think it's a pretty hard road ahead for Boston.
   15. Bob Loblaw Posted: July 14, 2006 at 06:46 PM (#2098963)
Well, of their final 75 games, the Red Sox do have 23 against the Royals, Orioles and Devil Rays...
   16. Josh Posted: July 14, 2006 at 07:17 PM (#2099015)
They had (if my manual count is right...) 24 games against the Orioles a DRays thus far.

The tough thing is that, though they haven't played the Royals yet, they also haven't had a West coast trip. I think August (two off days, a nigh/-night East-West trip, followed by a day/night West-East trip) will really set the stage. A decent mix of the horrid (KC), a tough trip, and some teams that could be good or not on any night (Cle., LAA, Oak) -- all surrounding NYY/DET series in the middle.
   17. Dave Cyprian Posted: July 14, 2006 at 07:36 PM (#2099057)
#13, yes you are correct. Pecota-adjusted regression of the 3rd order W%. Pecota is only updated once a year therefore it is all pre-season.
   18. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: July 14, 2006 at 08:17 PM (#2099140)
Well, of their final 75 games, the Red Sox do have 23 against the Royals, Orioles and Devil Rays...

That's cool, but the Yankees have 26 games against those same teams. I don't want to overstate my point, I think the Red Sox have a good team, but the Yankees and Blue Jays aren't going to go away.
   19. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: July 14, 2006 at 08:44 PM (#2099175)

Well, of their final 75 games, the Red Sox do have 23 against the Royals, Orioles and Devil Rays...


The Devil Rays have Scott Kazmir

I'm convinced when we get Kazmir/Santana/Halladay, we should just put out the House Money Lineup and always send out Matt Clement/Jason Johnson/Krapass start du jour, becasue we're not going to win ANYWAY
   20. Darren Posted: July 15, 2006 at 03:02 AM (#2099581)
Could the Red Sox just run away with the division for once? For once in my darn life? This is very frustrating.
   21. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: July 15, 2006 at 03:31 AM (#2099595)
1995 didn't do it for you, Darren?
   22. Dave Cyprian Posted: July 15, 2006 at 03:34 PM (#2099820)
I'm with you Darren. Thats all I want this year... no meaningful September baseball in the Bronx.
   23. Darren Posted: July 15, 2006 at 07:47 PM (#2100027)
Now's not the time, RB.
   24. ericr Posted: July 15, 2006 at 07:52 PM (#2100035)
#19, Halladay was 5-3 with a 4.34 ERA against the sox from 03-05. This year he ain't been so hot either.
   25. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: July 16, 2006 at 07:08 AM (#2100558)
I'm with you Darren. Thats all I want this year... no meaningful September baseball in the Bronx.


Good point, last September was so painfull and stressfull that I was drained when the playoffs arrived and it didn't kick in that we had been eliminated for a week!!
   26. Darren Posted: July 16, 2006 at 09:44 PM (#2101241)
Thats all I want this year... no meaningful September baseball in the Bronx.

Careful what you wish for. You may get it, but not the way you want it.
   27. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: July 17, 2006 at 04:08 AM (#2101940)
Careful what you wish for. You may get it, but not the way you want it.


That's looking real good now as we have failed to break away from the EE. Ponson goes 8-2 on the stretch...I can feel it.
   28. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 17, 2006 at 04:35 AM (#2101961)
That's looking real good now as we have failed to break away from the EE. Ponson goes 8-2 on the stretch...I can feel it.

He's Tim Redding, not Aaron Small.

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