According to this report over at SOTD, when the Yankees – over the last 5 years prior to this season – face a strong opponent, they have not been able to win as often as they lose. And, if you believe in Pythagorean Winning Percentage, the Yankees have actually under-performed in these situations – posting a W% of .395 compared to a pythW-L% of .454 (in the 38 games where they faced a strong team).
Now, sure, some will say “When you play a team with a winning percentage of .600 or better, you’re not going to do well.”
O.K., sure, but…then…
…explain why the Yankees have a W% of .395 (from 2004 through 2008) in these spots whereas the Angels have a W% of .536, the Red Sox have a W% of .447, the Twins have a W% of .421, the White Sox have a W% of .448? Should not the Yankees, with all their stars, be able to at least play .400 in these situations?
After all, a team with a winning percentage of .600 is going to lose 40% of the time, anyway, right? How could the Yankees then not be able to crack a W% of 40% in these spots? It will be interesting, at the end of the season, to see how the 2009 Yankees do in this situation.