I always hate those articles that start with “If the season ended today …”, but I’ll go hypocrite today and do that. I know a lot of you load up the Postseason Odds report each day to see what Clay Davenport’s Cray X1E cranked out with the million-season simulation.
I wanted to simplify it a bit and show you what the playoffs would be like if the season ended today. In the AL:
Red Sox (97-65, 95% to win) vs. Indians (92-70, 89%)
Angels (96-66, 98%) vs. Yankees (90-72, 63%)
Remember that the wild card team, in this case the Yankees, cannot play the division winner from their division, preventing the standard “best record vs. wild card” scenario and giving TBS a fit. Also of interest is that while the division races look interesting on paper, Clay’s computer is yawning, with all races at 89% or higher. Clay also has five AL teams “flatlined” - a 0% chance of winning anything - though no team is “mathematically eliminated” using the classic definition.
In the NL, we have:
Mets (91-71, 78%) vs. TBD
Padres (89-73, 53%) vs. Cubs (84-78, 55%)
Wild Card: Dbacks (87-75, 19%) vs. Phillies (87-75, 28%)
Much closer here, especially with the “tied” Wild Card. None of the races here are nearly as decided as in the AL. Clay’s computer also picks the Padres to come from behind, the only such division where that’s the case. The wild card race has the Phillies coming out higher if we move to decimal places.
It should be exciting on the field, but if you’re looking to gaze into the future, you can’t do any better than the Playoff Odds report. Wait, wait … Clay, where’d this 26.4% come from …
Note: All numbers were rounded off for simplicity.