Posts Tagged ‘disagreeing with Joe Posnanski’

Not a Crapshoot? Or, We’re Disagreeing with Joe Posnanski Again?!?!?

Joe Posnanski doesn’t like the Division Series—in fact, he ranks Division Series games as the seventh most exciting games in a baseball season, behind “Cool mid-season matchups between great starting pitchers” AND “Important pennant race games in August.” He makes a pretty compelling argument, but he falls back on one piece of conventional wisdom that I don’t think is quite true: that the Division Series is a crapshoot.

People say this all the time: The Division Series is too short. It’s a crapshoot. Great teams get upset all the time by mediocre teams that snuck into the playoffs. One great starting pitcher can exert too much influence. But is this really true? Let’s quote Posnanski himself:

“You know how people always say that in baseball the playoffs are a crapshoot? Well, there’s a reason they say that: It’s because the playoffs are a crapshoot. Since 1998 — an arbitrary cutoff point, yes, but I’ll give you the whole set of numbers in a minute — since 1998, teams with better regular season records are 42-42 in series against teams with worse records. You can’t get much more crapshooty than that. Continue reading

Monday Medley

What we read while letting go…

  • Sure, it was cool of Mikhail Prokhorov to handpick a blogger to sit down with for one of his first American interviews. But, we can’t help but feel a little spurned. I mean, Tim loves the Nets!
  • Our favorite Canadian magazine’s June cover story explores the shifting ownership of hockey and asks if Canada can really claim the NHL as its own after the league has expanded into the American sunbelt. It’s an interesting read on how the differences between how Canadians and Americans view hockey stand for the country’s larger distinctions: “Americans, on the other hand, do not need to worry about something as abstruse as the dignity of hockey. They may not have hockey in their DNA, as advertisers keep telling us we do, but this gives them the enormous advantage of being able to assess hockey without their view being obscured by the claptrap of national identity that so confounds the Canadian perspective.”

Roy Halladay Should Win the AL Cy Young Award

Roy Halladay

A groundswell has been growing (budding? Swelling? What do “groundswells” do, exactly?) in the race for this year’s American League Cy Young Award. Zack Greinke had a dominant season, on par with historically great pitching seasons (Pedro in ’99, Guidry in ’78, Clemens in ’86, etc.*), but he’s in danger of losing out on the award. Since Greinke’s team, the Royals, was as bad he was good in 2009, Greinke finished with a mere 16 wins. Six pitchers in the league had more wins than he did.

*We’re not even going to count Bob Gibson’s 1968 season, because the pitching statistics for that season were so aberrational that I’m not sure what he was playing technically constitutes “baseball.” Continue reading