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   1. CFiJ Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:18 PM (#2927347)
You know, I was kinda reeling -- four losses in a row! WTF happened?

Then I thought, what if rather than W, W, L, L, L, L, the last six games had gone W, L, L, W, L, L, or L, W, W, L, L, L, how would I feel? Probably a lot better. And just now I looked at the standings and see the Cubs are still the best team in the Majors, and still have a 4 1/2 game lead on the Brew Crew. So they split a series with a good Phillies team, and lost a road series to the surging Astros. Yeah, it looks ugly with the losses all coming in a row like that, but they were bound to scuffle a bit this month. I think they'll get back on the horse and turn it around pretty soon.

Of course, I thought Wood was going to dominate Game 7, so what do I know...
   2. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:20 PM (#2927352)
You can all blame me, actually--for last night and for the entire 4-game skid. I forgot to turn the Cubs calendar in my office ahead to September before I left work Friday.
   3. CFiJ Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:25 PM (#2927360)
Of course, this series with the Astros is not a road series. This is what happens when you follow a season on Gameday.
   4. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:31 PM (#2927367)
So they split a series with a good Phillies team, and lost a road series to the surging Astros

Agreed. 20 for the division and 15 for the WC with 24 left to play. My guess is that they run off 5 of 7 starting tonight and make this little hiccup a distant memory.

You can all blame me, actually--for last night and for the entire 4-game skid. I forgot to turn the Cubs calendar in my office ahead to September before I left work Friday.

You ###### ###### - I #### ######### and ##### if ########### ###### the ##### ######## when they ##### and ######. The ####### ##### ############# if I ###### #### the Cubs. You should be ########## ###### ###### ######### or at least apologize. ####.
   5. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:34 PM (#2927375)
You should have just said so, retro. Could have saved me the time it took to write this.
   6. Voodoo Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:36 PM (#2927378)
I agree with your sentiments in the third paragraph. The game was not lost directly because of any of Lou's moves. There's plenty of blame to spread around for last night's debacle (Lee, Ramirez, Soriano, Wood). Having said that, watching last night's game was absolutely maddening for a number of reasons, chief among them Lou's decisions. I can't remember ever throwing #### at the television while cursing a Pinella decision, but it happened at least twice last night. You pretty much rattled them all off, but I think it bears repeating that he pinch hit with the two WORST hitters he had available in crucial situations. The bunting? Well, the bunting drove me ####### crazy and I knew that other Cubs chatterers were thinking the same thing as I was watching it unfold. Were they defensible decisions? Sure, if a no-out bunt with a runner on first and a good hitter up is ever a defensible decision. I hate it and I know a lot of Primates feel the same way, though that could be a case of BBTF groupthink and aesthetic preference.

So anyway, last night sucked. Lou annoyed me more than I can ever remember him annoying me in one game and I was pretty pissed when the game ended. But in the long run, it's much ado about nothing. I love this team, but it's time for them to resume putting the P ttmf' M!

(Side note: It's interesting to watch the game while being away from the Chatter and know exactly what everyone is thinking/saying during the game...and when the game is over, take a look at it, and be exactly right. Howry, Lee, the bunts, the pinch hitters, as it all unfolded I knew precisely what the Cubs Chatterers would be saying about it...)
   7. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:41 PM (#2927383)
The bunting? Well, the bunting drove me ####### crazy and I knew that other Cubs chatterers were thinking the same thing as I was watching it unfold. Were they defensible decisions? Sure, if a no-out bunt with a runner on first and a good hitter up is ever a defensible decision. I hate it and I know a lot of Primates feel the same way, though that could be a case of BBTF groupthink and aesthetic preference.

Aren't there run expectancy tables out there? I seem to recall that you're more likely to score 1 run with a runner on 2nd and 1 out than with a runner on 1st with no outs. I can't seem to find any right now. I do think it's a case of aesthetic preference, but when all they need is 1 run to win I'm fine with it. I'd have been more pissed if DeRosa grounded into a DP while swinging away.
   8. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:46 PM (#2927391)
Yeah, I was ok with DeRosa's bunt attempt (the execution sucked, obviously).

We knew Howry coming into the game was a bad move (as it has been most of the year), but with Z leaving quickly with an injury, Lou had to think fast. BPJ or Marshall would have been the obvious choices, but they weren't available. Guzman wasn't getting the call into a tie game in his first appearance this year, he doesn't like Wuertz, and Lieber v. Howry's probably a toss-up.

Lee failing in two big spots was the biggest disappointment of the night, I think.

It sucked, but I'm not that discouraged. Tonight'll be better.
   9. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:51 PM (#2927395)
Tonight'll be better.

It better be, I'm going tonight.
   10. base ball chick Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:52 PM (#2927397)
i thought howry was a FINE choice

for the astros that is

but honestly, who would YOU have put in if all yall were lou? and he pulled him pretty fast, too.

why doesn't lou like wuertz?

- but actually all yall can blame DLee a lot more. because GIDP with bases loaded 1 out against brocail who couldn't find the effing plate is a LOT worse than anything lou did/didn't do

and who knows about tonight? the psychobilly cadilly-ack from houston is running great on all 9 cylinders
   11. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:52 PM (#2927399)
It better be, I'm going tonight.

Hope so; surely you have better luck than I do. I'm 1-3 this season (with the 1 win being a nail biter in LA where Wood tried to cough it up).
   12. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:53 PM (#2927400)
You should have just said so, retro. Could have saved me the time it took to write this.

Sorry, man. Didn't occur to me till I got to the office this morning and I saw the calendar stuck on August.
   13. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:54 PM (#2927403)
but honestly, who would YOU have put in if all yall were lou? and he pulled him pretty fast, too.

Uh, anybody other than Howry? Apart from Howry, the Cubs have a really good bullpen, plus Lou had the benefit of the expanded roster. (And by "benefit of the expanded roster," I don't mean "ability to send Casey McGehee to the plate with the winning run on base when a half-dozen better options are available.)

And how much slower could he have pulled him? He gave up 3 rockets.
   14. Voodoo Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:55 PM (#2927405)

Aren't there run expectancy tables out there? I seem to recall that you're more likely to score 1 run with a runner on 2nd and 1 out than with a runner on 1st with no outs.


You are right. The odds of scoring one run increase slightly, while the odds of scoring multiple runs decreases. The Cubs only needed one run, so maybe the odds were with them. Of course, that's assuming a 100% sac bunt success rate.....

DeRosa has been so clutch all year long. I hated seeing the bat taken out of his hands, and I hate giving outs away, especially when they were bringing in a cAAAsey friggin Mcgehee up next (he was already on deck before the bunt failed, if that answers your initial question).
   15. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:56 PM (#2927407)
Oh, and I hated the DeRosa sac bunt.

So what's the deal with Z, anyway?
   16. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:56 PM (#2927408)
Oh, and I hated the DeRosa sac bunt.

Or, what VoodooR said in 14.
   17. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 03:58 PM (#2927410)
Oh, and not that it really affected the outcome, but it was annoying as hell to see Wesley friggin' Wright getting the multiple vintage Tom Glavine strike calls on pitches that weren't even over the plate when they were finished curving toward it and in the catcher's glove.
   18. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:03 PM (#2927413)
14: But the goal isn't to score exactly one run, it's to score at least one run. Win expectancy (according to Tango) for the two situations is .715 for first base/none out, and .703 for second base/one out. That difference is made substantially worse when you add in the difference between one of the better hitters on the team and a AAA scrub.
   19. Voodoo Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:06 PM (#2927418)

Oh, and not that it really affected the outcome, but it was annoying as hell to see Wesley friggin' Wright getting the multiple vintage Tom Glavine strike calls on pitches that weren't even over the plate when they were finished curving toward it and in the catcher's glove.


Totally. And what about that 3-2 pitch from Wood to Berkman that was right over the plate, belt high and the ump called it a ball four??? Two pitches later, Blum homered.
   20. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:06 PM (#2927420)
In other words, the issue isn't the probability of scoring 1 run (exactly 1, anyway, which is what would be in the table). The issue is the probability of scoring 0 runs.
   21. Voodoo Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:08 PM (#2927422)
Win expectancy (according to Tango) for the two situations is .715 for first base/none out, and .703 for second base/one out.

Interesting. Glad to see the data jibes with my aesthetic preference...
   22. base ball chick Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:12 PM (#2927434)
well actually, the only hard hit ball howry gave up was pence's triple

newhan just hit a grounder single and so did quintero. but walking reggie abercrombie???!!! and bourn hit a single up the middle

so i wouldn't say he got slammed. and he got pulled immediately after that.

AND the pitchers shut berkman/wigginton DOWN all freaking night

- but i was REAL surprised when i saw a really good hitter like derosa bunting.
   23. base ball chick Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:15 PM (#2927435)
and what was so surprising about wesley wright getting some of those calls was that quintero was catching and he is lousy at framing pitches.

but sorry, ball 4 to berkman WAS ball 4. or i should say that the ump called pitches that high a ball all night

and yes, it is unusual to see the astros getting the borderline calls
   24. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:34 PM (#2927463)
What baffles me is that this thread exists. I was recently lectured on how Cubs fans don't fret.

I must have wandered into some alternate universe.

(And if folks cannot stand this level of minor tweaking then nobody is any type of fun anymore)
   25. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:37 PM (#2927467)
But the goal isn't to score exactly one run, it's to score at least one run. Win expectancy (according to Tango) for the two situations is .715 for first base/none out, and .703 for second base/one out. That difference is made substantially worse when you add in the difference between one of the better hitters on the team and a AAA scrub.

In the bottom of the 9th of a tie game, the goal is to score exactly one run.

In other words, the issue isn't the probability of scoring 1 run (exactly 1, anyway, which is what would be in the table). The issue is the probability of scoring 0 runs.

There has to be a different number when we're talking about a walk off situation.
   26. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:38 PM (#2927470)
What baffles me is that this thread exists. I was recently lectured on how Cubs fans don't fret.

I was the one arguing with you, and you're intentionally missing the point. Both in that thread, and in this one.
   27. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:42 PM (#2927476)
Moses:

Sigh. Still won't relax.

Okey dokey.
   28. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:45 PM (#2927481)
Nah, I'm just getting a little tired of the act. I really do like you as a poster, so maybe it's just me.
   29. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:52 PM (#2927495)
Moses:

Well, there is no act.

The original comment was innocuous on my part. I specifically wrote "few" meaning not many or of small quantity. It was nothing.

And you jumped on me with both feet like I was an addled schoolchild or worse yet some dimwitted Brewer fan looking to start some silly namecalling episode.

If it's at the point of the season where folks can "taste it" and cannot separate the wheat (good posters) from the chaff (you know who among Brewer fans) then I will work to just stay in the background.

But as a reminder, I was a Cubs fan before most of the folks here PARENTS were born. In my heart of hearts I still root for the Cubs.
   30. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:56 PM (#2927498)
In the bottom of the 9th of a tie game, the goal is to score exactly one run.

Right, but the way you'd score exactly one run in a generic inning (which would appear in a run expectancy table) and the way you'd do it in the bottom of the ninth are not the same. In the walkoff situation, all innings in which you would score one run or more are equivalent - but you still have to add all of them up to find the chances of scoring a run in that situation.

What I meant by the zero runs statement... that's not really the issue either; of course the issue is the probability of scoring any runs, which is 1-(probability of scoring 0 runs). In other words, if the run expectancy table looks like this:
First base/0 out: 40% 0 runs, 30% 1 run, 30% multiple runs
Second base/1 out: 45% 0 runs, 35% 1 run, 20% multiple runs
then the sac bunt is still a bad idea, because you still win the game if you score multiple runs.
   31. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 04:58 PM (#2927501)
If it's at the point of the season where folks can "taste it" and cannot separate the wheat (good posters) from the chaff (you know who among Brewer fans) then I will work to just stay in the background.

It's not really fair to single out NTN like that, is it HW?
   32. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:04 PM (#2927505)
I just went back to re-read that thread, and well, I don't see your reading of my comment. I called CC fat! That's tweaking right back. NTNGod and I went back and forth on the fat jokes for a while. You got defensive, and then came in here and said you were lectured. I even clarified that all I meant was to point out your about face on the Brewers (post 15).
   33. Voodoo Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:05 PM (#2927508)
But as a reminder, I was a Cubs fan before most of the folks here PARENTS were born. In my heart of hearts I still root for the Cubs.

Wow. Quite a revelation. I was not aware of that. Here's hoping that you are further torn in your "heart of hearts" come NLCS time...
   34. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:06 PM (#2927512)
I see what you're saying Eric, but in that situation the only way the Cubs score multiple runs that inning is with a HR. Can you link me to the table you're using?
   35. Spahn Insane Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:07 PM (#2927513)
Moses:

Well, there is no act.

The original comment was innocuous on my part. I specifically wrote "few" meaning not many or of small quantity. It was nothing.

And you jumped on me with both feet like I was an addled schoolchild or worse yet some dimwitted Brewer fan looking to start some silly namecalling episode.


I can settle this easily. A pox on all your houses. You're all worthless and weak!! Now drop and give me 20!!
   36. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:08 PM (#2927515)
And you jumped on me with both feet like I was an addled schoolchild or worse yet some dimwitted Brewer fan looking to start some silly namecalling episode.

Oh, and for the record, Moses doesn't need me to stick up for him, but I don't think this is an entirely fair representation of what occurred, assuming that I'm looking in the right place.

Here's what Moses said:

"You think Cubs fans are fretting, Harvey? Ha. Sounds like your confidence is this team has grown and is almost as big as CC's waistline."

Seems innocuous enough to me, but then you DID respond with a dig at his reading comprehension. Here's his followup:

"Hey, I don't know a single Cubs fan that's been half as worried about 2 (2!) losses as you were about the Brewers the majority of the season. That's all I'm getting at...

But, man, it's a great day when 2 straight home losses can cause some concern."

I don't see either being jumpy or insulting, but maybe that's just me.
   37. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:08 PM (#2927516)
I can settle this easily. A pox on all your houses. You're all worthless and weak!! Now drop and give me 20!!

Quiet, calendar non-flipper.
   38. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:12 PM (#2927521)
in that situation the only way the Cubs score multiple runs that inning is with a HR.

Sure, in that particular situation. Not in the generic inning that would be reflected in a run expectancy table.

The run expectancy figures in #30 were hypothetical, for illustration only. The point is that, when using a generic run expectancy chart in a walkoff situation, the probability that matters is the chance of scoring the needed number of runs (in this case, 1) or more.

The win expetancy chart is here:
http://www.tangotiger.net/welist.html
   39. base ball chick Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:12 PM (#2927522)
well harvey,

so tell me are you rooting for an astros sweep tonight????
   40. SouthSideRyan Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:19 PM (#2927533)
To bunt or not to bunt is missing the point. The point is ####### Casey McGehee was on deck. I'd rather have Mark DeRosa up with the runner on 1st than McGehee with the runner on 3rd. Casey McGehee isn't a major league baseball player, but he's going to be our ####### #1 righty off the bench in September.
   41. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:24 PM (#2927540)
Eric, thanks.

---

SSR, if that's true, then yeah, that'll be a problem. Technically SYTH was the first righty yesterday. But he's not a big leaguer, and I trust Lou enough to not jump to the conclusion the he trusts McGehee. And just cause Len and Bob mentioned he had some big hits in ST doesn't mean that's why Lou made that decision.

But the bigger point is that it doesn't matter. It's 1 game, it just feels worse because of the losing streak. And the Cubs still had plenty of other chances to win.
   42. and Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:33 PM (#2927559)
NTNGod and I went back and forth on the fat jokes for a while.

I really wish you guys wouldn't talk about me behind my back.
   43. Weeks T. Olive Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:37 PM (#2927565)
Speaking of fat guys, did anyone else think that Casey McGhee looked like a thinner Sidney Ponson?
   44. SouthSideRyan Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:39 PM (#2927568)
Forgive me SYTH, I hate forgotten you. Still McGehee is going to get his share of pinch hitting opps this September, and it's really gonna piss me off. He was at best the 4th best right handed option in the minors (behind Fox, Dubois, & Craig)
   45. SouthSideRyan Posted: September 03, 2008 at 05:40 PM (#2927570)
And this isn't to say I'm worrying or anything. Just pissed that Casey McGehee is breathing Chicago oxygen.
   46. Walt Davis Posted: September 03, 2008 at 07:30 PM (#2927787)
I see what you're saying Eric, but in that situation the only way the Cubs score multiple runs that inning is with a HR. Can you link me to the table you're using?

As pointed out, what you really want is 1-p(0 runs) not p(exactly 1 run).

Think of it this way. Bottom 9, tie game. First guy walks, next guy triples. OK, the game is over and you've scored exactly one run but your "run expectancy" of this inning is now nearly 2 (1 in, runner on 3rd no outs). In the average run expectancy table, most of those scenarios are contained in the >1 run cells.

But really, probably easiest to think of it from the p(0 runs) perspective. Runner on 1st, 0 outs is less likely to lead to 0 runs than runner on 2nd, 1 out ... therefore you are more likely to score in the first scenario.

All that said, run expectancy tables kinda suck for this purpose. The outcomes are not limited to man on first no outs and man on 2nd 1 out. The quality of the batter up now and who's coming up next. The speed of the runner and batter. The defensive quality of the guys at 1B, 3B, P, C, 2B. Where defenders are positioned. If the Brewers were thinking like you guys were -- no way he's having DeRosa bunt here with that weak kid on-deck -- then the surprise factor was in the Cubs' favor and the chance a bunt ends up with 2 men on with no out increases.

Now, bringing in a leftie to face Ramirez, DeRosa and probably Soto -- that's a questionable managerial decision (not knowing who he had left in the pen).
   47. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: September 03, 2008 at 07:56 PM (#2927871)
not knowing who he had left in the pen

Len mentioned the Astros had 5 righties in their pen left. Outside of Valverde, I'm not sure how good any of them are.
   48. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 03, 2008 at 08:44 PM (#2928005)
Well said, Walt. As SSR noted, the quality of the current batter vs. the next one probably overrides all other considerations in this particular case.
   49. Meatwad Posted: September 04, 2008 at 05:41 PM (#2929134)
this streak is worrying me, after seeing them play so good this year and to all the sudden have them stumbling isnt good, i still have faith but if they blow who knows what im liable to do

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