Throw It Like a Ballplayer

providing baseball commentary and ponderings since April 2010

Posts Tagged ‘NL Central’

Mid-Season Review, Part Deux

Posted by dannmckeegan on July 2, 2010

Part Deux, as one might guess, implies that this entry will focus on the Cubs middle infield.  With the May promotion of Starlin Castro to the majors from Double A Tennessee, everyone else’s role changed.  Ryan Theriot moved from short to second.  Fontenot became a backup at second.  And Jeff Baker found himself on the bench, for the most part, pinch hitting until Aramis Ramirez went to the DL in June.  As a group, the best descriptor is probably “frustrating,” but each man merits that adjective for different reasons.  So without further ado, let’s begin.

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The NL Central Quarterly, pt. 2

Posted by dannmckeegan on May 21, 2010

With the 2010 season now past the 40-game mark, a quarterly report is due. This is the second part of a two-part analysis. The first half of was published here yesterday. It covered the relationships between the records of the six teams in the NL Central and runs both scored and allowed. Today’s entry will deal with the two questions left unanswered yesterday:

1) What relationship exists between the 4-run barrier and the individual teams’ runs scored and runs allowed?
2) Does the cumulative view change much when we separate runs for and against each team into categories above and below the 4-run barrier?

If you missed the article yesterday, this 4-run barrier is simply a binary split of games in which a given team’s offense was or was not able to score 4 or more runs. My interest in this split began with the Chicago media’s harping on the Cubs’ 1-17 record when they score three or fewer runs. The next angle that interested me was that a team receiving a quality start would probably be in a position to win those games with a minimum of 4 runs of support. Read the rest of this entry »

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The NL Central Quarterly, pt. 1

Posted by dannmckeegan on May 20, 2010

A quick glance at the NL Central standings through the season’s first quarter isn’t all that surprising. The clear-cut favorite and the sexy long-shot are neck-and-neck atop the division. The veteran team with some clear holes is lingering. The perennial doormat is surprisingly competitive. The all-hit, no-pitch team looks to be in freefall. And the expected loser has struggled as much as was expected.

I began looking at the standings and scoreboards, but then I became curious about the breakdown of records. Specifically, the oft-mentioned Cubs record of 1-17 when they score 3 or fewer runs was of interest. Obviously, most teams will do poorly when they don’t score any runs. On the other hand, they may be expected to do well when they do put runs on the board. So as of Wednesday night, the other half of the Cubs’ split is an 18-5 record when they score 4 or more runs.

A few questions arise. First, is there anything we can learn from the straight runs scored/runs allowed difference? Second, how does the Cubs’ low/high offense split compare to that of the other teams in the NL Central? Third, what relationship exists between the 4-run barrier and the individual teams’ runs scored and runs allowed? Fourth, does the cumulative view change much when we separate runs for and against each team into categories above and below the 4-run barrier? Read the rest of this entry »

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