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Silent James speaks his Mind


weams

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I'm a math major, teach high school math, and wholeheartedly believe in the power (and problems) with statistics. That being said, the big question of 'why do the orioles win' might be answered without using stats or math at all.

Could it be that they're so good at 1-run games, or so great in extra innings, or keep winning so many games because for once they actually believe in themselves? They finally believe their winners? People probably go to the Yankees and expect to win. I doubt many people who went to the O's in the last 15 years truly expected to win. Now that they are, and the mentality is spreading like wildfire. Those bullpen arms get called on with a lead and 25 players think the game's over. They reach the 10th inning and they've already won it in their mind. They're down 7-2 and have felt what its like to come back and win. They don't give up.

Perhaps I'm overselling the mental aspect of baseball a bit too much, but I truly believe that for the first time in many of these players careers, they think they're on a winning team and its motivating the hell out of them to find a way to win.

In the words of the venerable and virtuous Frobby (disclaimer: the tone here shouldn't be read as biting, or even critical, I'm just having fun): "I won't give up on a team that won't give up on itself."

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Just let me clarify. This little missive was not meant to say that the pythag was invalid. This was merely an attempt to uncover what could be causing the orioles' drastic difference this year.

There is an element of luck involved, especially with the run in extras/ one run games. However I postulate that the orioles, through most of the season were not exceeding their pythag by any real noticeable level and it was that 23 game stretch that was so remarkably bad that it has thrown off our numbers for the year.

This may sound simplistic, but sometimes the simplest explanation just fits.

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Just let me clarify. This little missive was not meant to say that the pythag was invalid. This was merely an attempt to uncover what could be causing the orioles' drastic difference this year.

There is an element of luck involved, especially with the run in extras/ one run games. However I postulate that the orioles, through most of the season were not exceeding their pythag by any real noticeable level and it was that 23 game stretch that was so remarkably bad that it has thrown off our numbers for the year.

This may sound simplistic, but sometimes the simplest explanation just fits.

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They were five games over it on May 23.

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There is an element of l--k involved

Now you have done it. I am heading for the herb cabinet for the eye of newt as soon as I finish clicking.

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Your DROID BIONIC is powerless against the ancient spells!

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Yes? And? The stretch I am talking about is from game 67 to game 90. June and july.

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Which means they were significantly outperforming their pythag long before that stretch, in a manner that - prorated - would still be problematic.

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Which means they were significantly outperforming their pythag long before that stretch, in a manner that - prorated - would still be problematic.

Outperforming, yes. But not to the level we are seeing right now. I address that in my write. In the other 4/5ths of the season so far the orioles are +18, and still outperforming their pythag. And please forgive me im on my phone right now and will loom up by how much in a bit, but I am willing to bet that it is about 6 games.

That is over performing, but not a historic deviation, nor a very rare one by any means.

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Outperforming, yes. But not to the level we are seeing right now. I address that in my write. In the other 4/5ths of the season so far the orioles are +18, and still outperforming their pythag. And please forgive me im on my phone right now and will loom up by how much in a bit, but I am willing to bet that it is about 6 games.

That is over performing, but not a historic deviation, nor a very rare one by any means.

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I'm done. This is exasperating.

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Outperforming, yes. But not to the level we are seeing right now. I address that in my write. In the other 4/5ths of the season so far the orioles are +18, and still outperforming their pythag. And please forgive me im on my phone right now and will loom up by how much in a bit, but I am willing to bet that it is about 6 games.

That is over performing, but not a historic deviation, nor a very rare one by any means.

So you're saying that if you remove the part of the season that's driving their run differential down there's no anomaly. Ok, then. Kind of like if you remove Markakis' obviously explainable slumps he's really a .900 OPS guy all the time.

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So you're saying that if you remove the part of the season that's driving their run differential down there's no anomaly. Ok, then. Kind of like if you remove Markakis' obviously explainable slumps he's really a .900 OPS guy all the time.

No its not like that. Okay, how many times have we said something to the effect of "Markakis had a terrible April but since.... Or He had a great may, but June was awful thus his overall numbers are bit skewed."

That is all I am saying here.

bbrefgraph.jpg

Look at that chunk stretching between Jun and July. That hole represents a -72 run stretch. That is a huge crater.

If the dates were slightly different we would be looking at the Orioles month to month record and be talking about a terrible June but how they had played well in other months. The fact that those dates get spread over the two months its sort of hides them a bit.

Normally I would agree that it is cherry picking, but it is such a significant chunk of the season that I feel it is sufficient evidence for what I am saying.

This isn't saying "lop our 20 worst games off and we are great!" I am talking about a consistent period of 23 games, back-to-back, that makes up roughly 20% of our season - in that one fifth of the season is where 29% of the runs given up for the year were surrendered. That segment of the season has had a significant impact on our overall run differential and that the team was better than that stretch showed.

20 games removed from that stretch the Orioles the Orioles are 13-7 with a +5, overperforming? or do we take into consideration that in two losses in that stretch account for 18 of the 41 runs surrendered.

The Orioles to me are the following.

A team with an excellent bullpen that, when given a chance to win the game will win the game. A middling offense that does not have the ability to score a ton of runs and blowout teams very often and an inconsistent starting pitching staff that is very prone to getting blown out by strong offenses.

That stretch in June/July saw the Orioles' rotation in turmoil, the loss of Nick Markakis, Davis, Wieters, Reynolds and Hardy all in massive slumps, the implosions of Hunter, Matusz and Arrieta. The Orioles started that stretch at 11 games over - ended it at 2 over. It was a significant period that has had a larger impact on the overall run totals.

That is basically all I am saying.

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Another quick thing about that chart. We are all used to seeing that crater. We see it all the time, waht is different about THIS team is that it seems that they have snapped out of it over the last 20 games.

Whether or not they can keep it up? Pythag says no, but I think that the bad "month" is less representative of this team's abilities going forward.

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So you're saying that if you remove the part of the season that's driving their run differential down there's no anomaly. Ok, then. Kind of like if you remove Markakis' obviously explainable slumps he's really a .900 OPS guy all the time.

No. But you have to be careful about the validity of projection of past statistical results.

We all think that flipping a coin over a long term basis will result in 50 heads and 50tails. But if you start out with 10 straight heads flips you are faced with a logical conundrum. Supposedly each subsequent flip is a fifty-fifty proposition -- it bears no relation to past results. But if that's true how do you recover your original deficit?

Long-winded way of saying that there's no particular reason to think that the Birds will flop in the last third of the season. Their performance from here forward has no relation to what has come previously. They will either win or lose each game depending on how well they play that individual game. And that's a statistical fact.

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No its not like that. Okay, how many times have we said something to the effect of "Markakis had a terrible April but since.... Or He had a great may, but June was awful thus his overall numbers are bit skewed."

That is all I am saying here.

bbrefgraph.jpg

Look at that chunk stretching between Jun and July. That hole represents a -72 run stretch. That is a huge crater.

If the dates were slightly different we would be looking at the Orioles month to month record and be talking about a terrible June but how they had played well in other months. The fact that those dates get spread over the two months its sort of hides them a bit.

Normally I would agree that it is cherry picking, but it is such a significant chunk of the season that I feel it is sufficient evidence for what I am saying.

This isn't saying "lop our 20 worst games off and we are great!" I am talking about a consistent period of 23 games, back-to-back, that makes up roughly 20% of our season - in that one fifth of the season is where 29% of the runs given up for the year were surrendered. That segment of the season has had a significant impact on our overall run differential and that the team was better than that stretch showed.

20 games removed from that stretch the Orioles the Orioles are 13-7 with a +5, overperforming? or do we take into consideration that in two losses in that stretch account for 18 of the 41 runs surrendered.

The Orioles to me are the following.

A team with an excellent bullpen that, when given a chance to win the game will win the game. A middling offense that does not have the ability to score a ton of runs and blowout teams very often and an inconsistent starting pitching staff that is very prone to getting blown out by strong offenses.

That stretch in June/July saw the Orioles' rotation in turmoil, the loss of Nick Markakis, Davis, Wieters, Reynolds and Hardy all in massive slumps, the implosions of Hunter, Matusz and Arrieta. The Orioles started that stretch at 11 games over - ended it at 2 over. It was a significant period that has had a larger impact on the overall run totals.

That is basically all I am saying.

So over a period that we weren't hitting well and weren't pitching well, we lost a lot of games.

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So over a period that we weren't hitting well and weren't pitching well, we lost a lot of games.

Yes, but we lost a lot of games by A LOT of runs, and it has skewed our overall run differential south.

We may have been outperforming our differential before/ after that, but in the other 4/5ths of the season the Orioles are only up 6, not 10. 6 is a lot - but its not the eye-popping there is no way they will keep this up kind of number.

My contention from the get go is that the run of games in question were losses that were so bad, (again almost 30% of the year's total runs allowed were surrendered during those 23 games) threw off our numbers significantly.

This isn't a bad team getting exceptionally lucky, rather the opposite - it is a good team that went through an unbelievably bad stretch, as far as run differential goes.

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