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Articles Tagged Playoff Probabilities 

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Announcing a multi-year partnership to share data and analysis for new and exciting features coming to MLB.com and BaseballProspectus.com.

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BP announces a new partnership with MLB Advanced Media.

Baseball Prospectus and Major League Baseball Advanced Media have partnered to present our playoff probabilities to a new audience at MLB.com. To see the second home of the playoff probabilities, go to MLB.com, click on Standings, and navigate to the Postseason Probabilities tab. There you'll find some of the same stats you're used to seeing on our Playoff Odds Report: each team's chances of winning a division title or a wild card, as well as its overall chances of making the postseason. If you'd like to see the probabilities for any other day during the season, just select the date you want from the calendar on the upper left or use the arrows to go back or advance by one day at a time. 

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September 7, 2009 4:23 pm

Checking the Numbers: Pujols and the Simulation Gauntlet

9

Eric Seidman

So, how unlikely is unlikely as far as that bid for the Triple Crown goes, anyway?

While scoping out the season of the one and only Albert Pujols a couple of weeks ago, I attempted to quantify his chances of attaining the Triple Crown. At the time, Pujols led his league in dingers, stood deadlocked in the RBI race with Prince Fielder, and trailed Hanley Ramirez in batting average by a rather large margin. The methodology implemented in that piece was back-of-the-envelope at best, as the dependency of the inherent variables should have precluded the multiplication of separate probabilities. Since home runs automatically correlate to runs batted in as well as batting average, and because a higher batting average would, in theory, lead to more steaks, the three legs of the race are not independent of one another and therefore cannot be multiplied together to determine the Triple Crown likelihood. Though a more accurate process is unlikely to yield drastically different results than the 0.74 percent I found initially, the perfectionist in me felt it necessary to re-run the numbers through a more complex and accurate simulation in order to determine Pujols' chances.

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July 15, 2009 1:17 pm

Prospectus Hit and Run: Changing the Odds

3

Jay Jaffe

The state of play has changed radically since Opening Day, but who has it changed for the most and least?

The three-day All-Star break is a convenient time to begin the grieving process, and so yesterday made for a timely opportunity to shovel dirt on three teams whom PECOTA tabbed as potentially playoff-bound back in April. The Diamondbacks, A's, and Indians may not be mathematically eliminated from post-season contention yet, but with their odds of joining the dance falling below 0.5 percent, a burial seemed in order.

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The hows and whys of three teams that have done so much to disappoint so many.

In this week's exercise of 'Pair Up in Threes,' we'll discuss how projections are not destiny. At a team level, our PECOTA-based forecasts are a shorthand for a wider range of probabilities centered around the won-loss records we trumpet at the outset of the year. For as much as we put into them, and for as well as they've done over the years, they're not on target every single time thanks to injuries, bad luck, and mismanagement. It happens, because as the not-so-great skipperJoe Schultz once said, "It's a round ball and a round bat and you got to hit it square."

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An AL powerhouse against a Rocky Mountain-high Cinderella--who has momentum, and who's got the advantage?

Tonight, the Colorado Rockies will become the fifth franchise in the past 11 years to make its virgin appearance in the World Series, following in the footsteps of the 1997 Marlins, the 2001 Diamondbacks, the 2002 Angels, and the 2005 Astros. The Rockies combine elements from each of those clubs. Like the 1997 Marlins, they are an odd mix of veteran talent and youth, and squeezed into the playoffs as a Wild Card team in a league that featured a great deal of parity. Like the 2001 Diamondbacks, they are an expansion club from the Mountain West that is set to square off at long odds against one of the AL East's superpowers. Like the 2002 Angels, they are a 'small ball' team that has excelled by vacuuming up with their defense when their opponents tried to put the ball into play. And like the 2005 Astros, which at one point were more than 200:1 underdogs to reach the postseason, they saved their best baseball for late in the year.

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July 27, 2006 12:00 am

Lies, Damned Lies: Playing Matchmaker

0

Nate Silver

Three big bats, seven true contenders...Nate sorts out who'd be best served by making a big deal this weekend.

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November 22, 2005 12:00 am

Lies, Damned Lies: Defending Jeffrey

0

Nate Silver

The Marlins are undertaking another fire sale, but as Nate argues, this one can be justified by the numbers.

In the face of all that, I'm here to make the case for the Great Florida Fire Sale.

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August 13, 2003 12:00 am

Lies, Damned Lies: A Roll of the Dice

0

Nate Silver

The Red Sox ended Tuesday night four games behind the Yankees in the AL East. What are the odds that they can make up that deficit to take the division? And, failing that, what are their chances to edge out the A's for the wild card? Seriously. Grab a pencil and a piece of paper, come up with your best guesstimate, and write it down. Harder than you thought, huh? Keep reading, and we'll have an answer for you in a bit. Whether they realize it or not, major league teams are making calculations like this all the time. Implicitly or explicitly, they can determine the direction that a team chooses to take: whether to move prospects for veterans at the trade deadline, whether to shut a young pitcher down for the season, or try (injury risk be damned) to get as much work out of him as they can. Wins are the currency that baseball transacts in, but for many purposes, they're only as good as the pennants and postseason appearances that they can be redeemed for. Much as some pundits like to talk about Mystique, Aura, and Veteran Leadership, the postseason is a lottery of sorts. Winning 11 playoff games is often a lot easier than winning 90 or 95 in the regular season, and many teams consider their season a success if their postseason ticket is punched, and they get to take their chance in the playoffs.

Seriously. Grab a pencil and a piece of paper, come up with your best guesstimate, and write it down. Harder than you thought, huh? Keep reading, and we'll have an answer for you in a bit.

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