• The Power Of Four

    Posted by on August 30th, 2008 · Comments (2)

    To date, this season, when the Yankees pitchers hold the other team to four runs or less in a game, New York has gone 57-19 in those games.

    To date, this season, when the Yankees pitchers have allowed the other team to score five runs or more in a game, New York has gone 15-43 in those games.

    To date, this season, when the Yankees batters have scored four runs or more in a game, New York has gone 54-22 in those games.

    To date, this season, when the Yankees batters have scored three runs or less in a game, New York has gone 18-40 in those games.

    This tells you that the Yankees plan, for the rest of this season, should be a simple one: Score four or more runs per game and hold the other team to four runs or less each time. (Yeah, I’m writing that with my tongue in cheek.)

    It’s amazing how symmetrical the Yankees have been this season, so far, around that line in the sand of four runs.

    Yankees pitchers have held the other team to four runs or less in 76 games – 57% of the schedule.

    Yankees batters have scored four runs or more in 76 games – 57% of the schedule.

    Yankees pitchers have allowed the other team to score five runs or more in 58 games – 43% of the schedule.

    Yankees batters have scored three runs or less in 58 games – 43% of the schedule.

    When you see that 57% mark, it kinda/sorta explains why the Yankees have only won 53.7% of their games so far ths season.

    There’s an old saying that goes like this: Each season, every big league team is going to win 60 games, no matter what, and, every big league team is going lose 60 games, no matter what – and it’s what they do in the other 42 games that will define their overall record.

    Those “42 games” represent 26% of the schedule. I have to wonder how many games in the Yankees 2008 season pie (to date) fall into that 26% of the schedule that separates the good teams from the bad teams?

    By, this I mean: How many times have the Yankees lost this season when their pitchers held the other team to 4 runs or less in a game and their batters have scored 3 runs or less in the same game? And, how many times have the Yankees lost this season when their batters scored 4 runs or more in the game and their pitchers have allowed five runs or more? Here’s the answer to both questions:

    Games where the Yankees have lost this season when their pitchers held the other team to 4 runs or less in a game and their batters have scored 3 runs or less in the same game:

    April 9, 2008
    April 12, 2008
    April 26, 2008
    May 7, 2008
    May 13, 2008
    June 6, 2008
    June 9, 2008
    June 20, 2008
    June 29, 2008
    June 30, 2008
    July 1, 2008
    July 10, 2008
    July 13, 2008
    August 1, 2008
    August 10, 2008
    August 11, 2008
    August 13, 2008
    August 15, 2008
    August 19, 2008

    That’s 19 games.

    Games where the Yankees have lost this season when their batters scored 4 runs or more in the game and their pitchers have allowed five runs or more:

    April 4, 2008
    April 13, 2008
    April 17, 2008
    April 24, 2008
    April 25, 2008
    April 29, 2008
    May 1, 2008
    May 9, 2008
    May 17, 2008
    May 27, 2008
    June 2, 2008
    June 11, 2008
    June 24, 2008
    June 27, 2008
    July 4, 2008
    July 28, 2008
    July 29, 2008
    July 31, 2008
    August 4, 2008
    August 5, 2008
    August 8, 2008
    August 9, 2008

    That’s 22 games.

    Combined, 19 plus 22 equals 41 games. Those 41 games represent 31% of the Yankees schedule to date. That’s pretty close to 26%, no? Remember, it’s said that 26% of the games on your schedule are the ones that separate the winners from the losers.

    Anyway, there are a lot of numbers here to digest. And, I may have taken a left at times here when I should have taken a right. It’s happened before – without question. In any event, what do you take away from some of these stats? Feel free to leave you comments in the comments section below.

    Comments on The Power Of Four

    1. August 30th, 2008 | 2:44 pm

      This is a lot like one of my early posts, that you linked to in February 2007:

      http://www.immaculateinning.com/2007/02/dyjs-giant-data-set-of-doom.html

      I called what you are tracking above “Did Your Job Stat,” reflecting that if the offense scores five runs, they’ve done their job (similarly for the pitching holding the other team below five runs).

      What I showed then was that teams the ability to score and prevent runs at a greater than average rate (in individual games) tend to win more games. This was more true of pitching, where allowing four or fewer runs in a game had a 65.7% correlation with win percentage. This is almost identical to the correlation between total runs scored and win percentage.

      I concluded that there was no greater predicting power given by run scoring/preventing “consistency” than by simply using Pythagorean Winning percentage.

    2. August 30th, 2008 | 5:19 pm

      [...] file this one away in that 26% drawer. It’s games like this one as to why the Yankees are where they are this [...]

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