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Cyclone792
04-11-2008, 02:48 PM
Disclaimer: We're 10 games in so before you read this, scream out the phrase "SMALL SAMPLE SIZE!!!" Repeat it as much as necessary.

Now on to the fun stuff ...


Playoff Odds Report
Average wins by position in NL Central: 98.1 90.1 84.5 79.4 73.9 66.0 98.1

NL Central W L Pct3 Avg W Avg L Champions Wild Card Playoffs
Cardinals 7 3 .488 80.6 81.4 12.70342 7.41798 20.12140
Brewers 6 3 .503 82.5 79.5 16.58958 8.87472 25.46430
Cubs 6 3 .510 83.7 78.3 19.23623 9.64599 28.88222
Reds 6 4 .539 88.2 73.8 31.90140 11.61558 43.51699
Pirates 3 6 .492 77.9 84.1 9.12039 5.62953 14.74992
Astros 3 7 .502 79.1 82.9 10.44898 6.38899 16.83797



Adjusted Standings Report

NL Central W L RS RA W1 L1 EQR EQRA W2 L2 AEQR AEQRA W3 L3 D1 D2 D3
Reds 6 4 48 37 6.2 3.8 47 33 6.5 3.5 52 32 7.2 2.8 -0.2 -0.5 -1.2
Cubs 6 3 49 43 5.1 3.9 51 38 5.8 3.2 45 39 5.1 3.9 0.9 0.2 0.9
Brewers 6 3 48 37 5.6 3.4 42 41 4.6 4.4 38 37 4.7 4.3 0.4 1.4 1.3
Astros 3 7 37 44 4.2 5.8 39 50 3.8 6.2 43 42 5.1 4.9 -1.2 -0.8 -2.1
Pirates 3 6 49 61 3.5 5.5 44 55 3.5 5.5 43 49 4.0 5.0 -0.5 -0.5 -1.0
Cardinals 7 3 40 30 6.2 3.8 45 37 5.8 4.2 39 45 4.3 5.7 0.8 1.2 2.7

Unassisted
04-11-2008, 02:52 PM
Small, but nonetheless encouraging, sample size. :)

I don't know the magic that goes into those predicted outcomes. Should we credit this statistical optimism to the Reds clicking on all of the right cylinders or just that they're clicking on more cylinders than their division-mates? Either is good. I'm just curious.

Tom Servo
04-11-2008, 02:54 PM
Division title, here we come.

M2
04-11-2008, 02:57 PM
This is where I bring up the cumulative impact of 5-4. Do that 18 times and you finish 90-72.

Point being, the Reds have shown us the kind of baseball they need to play to be successful over the course of the season - and it revolves around good pitching. Whether they can do 17 more times remains to be seen, but I love that they've gotten off on the right foot.

Cyclone792
04-11-2008, 04:18 PM
Small, but nonetheless encouraging, sample size. :)

I don't know the magic that goes into those predicted outcomes. Should we credit this statistical optimism to the Reds clicking on all of the right cylinders or just that they're clicking on more cylinders than their division-mates? Either is good. I'm just curious.

It just means they've played a better brand of baseball over the first 10 games than everyone else in the division. If the Reds can continue that trend for the bulk of the season, then they'll give themselves a pretty good chance. If not, well ...

The good news is this season's decent start is actually a bit more realistic than some recent good starts. The Reds aren't really piecing together some lucky wins like they did in say 2004. That hot start was largely luck-driven, and we saw the implosion that took place as the season progressed.

WMR
04-11-2008, 04:21 PM
Also, I wouldn't label this offense as "hitting on all cylinders" by any stretch. The offense will get better. If the pitching can hold (semi)steady, watch out!

Roy Tucker
04-11-2008, 04:28 PM
Keep chopping wood, don't let your highs get too high, your lows get too low, keep your nose to the grindstone, don't listen to your best critics, don't listen to your worst critics, sometime you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains, and one day at a time.

Highlifeman21
04-11-2008, 04:29 PM
Enjoy this while it lasts, but don't hold our breath for it to last?

RedsManRick
04-11-2008, 04:36 PM
Keep chopping wood, don't let your highs get too high, your lows get too low, keep your nose to the grindstone, don't listen to your best critics, don't listen to your worst critics, sometime you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains, and one day at a time.

Hmmm... how to get cork back in bottle...?

IslandRed
04-11-2008, 04:38 PM
Let me toss in a guide to the numbers, for those who don't subscribe to BP:

The Playoff Odds report is a "if we played the season a million times" simulation, based on how they've measured the team's performance to date and factoring in the remaining schedule. This gets really interesting near the end of the season.

In the Adjusted Standings, W1/L1 is using the Pythagorean formula of projecting wins and losses based on runs scored/allowed. W2/L2 extends that by looking at the components (hits, homers, walks, etc.) to figure out how many runs it thinks the team should have scored and allowed. And finally, W3/L3 adjusts those results for the level of competition faced. Since we've gone 6-4 and have a solid plus run differential against three clubs that were above .500 last year, it gives us extra credit for that.

Vada Pinson Fan
04-11-2008, 09:07 PM
Sure the Reds start is encouraging but injuries are going to occur and if they happen to Phillips, Harang, Dunn, etc. the Reds are so thin in their ability to replace them for any length of time.

All in all I'm tempering my optimism but I couldn't be happier with the performances of Cueto, Volquez and of course- Harang.

Falls City Beer
04-12-2008, 11:13 AM
No one wants to hear it, but the Cards sure don't look like a flop to me. Stay tuned. Right now (and it's early, sure), it looks like the Reds and Cards are the class.

And I know folks like to beat up on OBM in the game threads over the offense, but he's right. The O needs some help.

pahster
04-12-2008, 11:18 AM
No one wants to hear it, but the Cards sure don't look like a flop to me. Stay tuned. Right now (and it's early, sure), it looks like the Reds and Cards are the class.

I've seen five or six Cards games this year. They don't look too impressive to me. They look to be a fourth or fifth place team to me.

Falls City Beer
04-12-2008, 11:24 AM
I've seen five or six Cards games this year. They don't look too impressive to me. They look to be a fourth or fifth place team to me.

Does any team in the NL Central "look" impressive, though? All the Cards do is continue to outscore their opponents by a bigger margin than any other team in the Central. It may not last, I have no way of knowing. But I think the Reds should not dismiss any of the following: Cubs, Brewers, or Cards.

PuffyPig
04-12-2008, 11:51 AM
Does any team in the NL Central "look" impressive, though? All the Cards do is continue to outscore their opponents by a bigger margin than any other team in the Central. It may not last, I have no way of knowing. But I think the Reds should not dismiss any of the following: Cubs, Brewers, or Cards.

The Reds have looked fine vs.some of the best teams in the league.

The Cards have looked fine vs. some of the worst teams in the league.

That's a huge difference.

It's too early to tell. Let's check back in 4-6 weeks.

I still think the Cubs are the only team good enough to run and hide.

And the Cards don't "continue" to outscore their opponents by a bigger margin than other Central teams. Before last night, Cincy had the lead.

Jpup
04-12-2008, 12:02 PM
No one wants to hear it, but the Cards sure don't look like a flop to me. Stay tuned. Right now (and it's early, sure), it looks like the Reds and Cards are the class.

And I know folks like to beat up on OBM in the game threads over the offense, but he's right. The O needs some help.

imagine that.

Falls City Beer
04-12-2008, 12:52 PM
The Reds have looked fine vs.some of the best teams in the league.

The Cards have looked fine vs. some of the worst teams in the league.

That's a huge difference.

It's too early to tell. Let's check back in 4-6 weeks.

I still think the Cubs are the only team good enough to run and hide.

And the Cards don't "continue" to outscore their opponents by a bigger margin than other Central teams. Before last night, Cincy had the lead.

What's kind of ironic is that this year's Cards remind me A LOT of those late 90s Dusty Baker Giants' teams. A perennial MVP hitter (Bonds/Pujols), some interesting character actors in supporting offense roles, solid defense, solid (if not remarkable) veteran rotation, nightmare-inducing closer at the back end (Izzy/Nen). Those Baker teams were generally the opposite of sexy, but that didn't stop them from winning all the time in a shaky division.

boognish
04-12-2008, 01:17 PM
If Ankiel can continue to provide huge power and complement Pujols, and the cobbled together starting staff can avoid making several disaster starts in a week, the Cards aren't an afterthought. They compare favorably to the Reds in my opinion, and I think it can be reasonably argued the Reds might have even more question marks.

M2
04-12-2008, 01:32 PM
Does any team in the NL Central "look" impressive, though? All the Cards do is continue to outscore their opponents by a bigger margin than any other team in the Central. It may not last, I have no way of knowing. But I think the Reds should not dismiss any of the following: Cubs, Brewers, or Cards.

Totally agree. One of the revelations of the early season is the NL Central is a lot better than people thought.

The Astros and Pirates are dogmeat, but the Reds have got starting pitching. The Cardinals, as you rightly noted, seem to have enough of a supporting cast to back the league's most dangerous bat. The Brewers starting eight is scary talented and Ben Sheets is healthy. The Cubs added Fukudome to a division winner.

We'll start to find out in May who's really built to survive the grind of the season and who's got a few winning runs in them, but the Reds had better be prepared for a free-for-all if they want to win the division.

OnBaseMachine
04-12-2008, 01:32 PM
If Ankiel can continue to provide huge power and complement Pujols, and the cobbled together starting staff can avoid making several disaster starts in a week, the Cards aren't an afterthought. They compare favorably to the Reds in my opinion, and I think it can be reasonably argued the Reds might have even more question marks.

The Reds starting pitching is much, much better than the Cardinals IMO. The Cardinals are throwing guys like Todd Wellemeyer, Joel Pineiro, Kyle Lohse, and Braden Looper out there every fifth day. It's only a matter of time before those guys start giving up runs in truckloads. And the offense is playing over their heads right now. Albert Pujols is great, we know that. Cheatin' Rick Ankiel has nice power due to HGH use. Glaus is a pretty good hitter when healthy, but he's played in 115 games or less three times in the last five years. Other than that they don't have much.

Falls City Beer
04-12-2008, 01:36 PM
The Reds starting pitching is much, much better than the Cardinals IMO. The Cardinals are throwing guys like Todd Wellemeyer, Joel Pineiro, Kyle Lohse, and Braden Looper out there every fifth day. It's only a matter of time before those guys start giving up runs in truckloads. And then offense is playing over their heads right now. Albert Pujols is great, we know that. Cheatin' Rick Ankiel has nice power due to HGH use. Glaus is a pretty good hitter when healthy, but he's played in 115 games or less three times in the last five years. Other than that they don't have much.

The problem with that equation is that neither Looper nor Lohse gave up truckloads of runs last season, so I don't necessarily expect them to do it again this season. Add Carpenter in July, and the Cards have a much, much better rotation than the Reds' kids. I love the Reds' kids, but they're kids. And I feel a bunch less warm about Arroyo and the Reds' fifth spot.

The only winner in this division might be "health."

OnBaseMachine
04-12-2008, 01:53 PM
Carpenter is nearly 33 years old and will be coming off his second surgery. I'm not so sure he'll be as good as he was the past few years, especially not this in 2008. Even with Carpenter in there I'll take the Reds starting pitching over the Cardinals. As for Kyle Lohse, his career ERA is 4.77. I expect him to regress to the mean and post an ERA around 4.50 or in that area. Looper posted an ERA slightly under 5.00 last season (4.94). I figure he'll be around that area again come September. Joel Pineiro is coming off an injury and hasn't pitched well since 2004 anyway. I'm just not overly impressed with this Cardinals squad. I figured they would get off to a hot start with the easy schedule they have to begin the season (Nationals, Astros, seven games against the Giants, Pittsburgh, and Houston again to end April).

PuffyPig
04-12-2008, 02:09 PM
What's kind of ironic is that this year's Cards remind me A LOT of those late 90s Dusty Baker Giants' teams. A perennial MVP hitter (Bonds/Pujols), some interesting character actors in supporting offense roles, solid defense, solid (if not remarkable) veteran rotation, nightmare-inducing closer at the back end (Izzy/Nen). Those Baker teams were generally the opposite of sexy, but that didn't stop them from winning all the time in a shaky division.


The Cards defense is not solid nor is the veteran rotation.

Playing the worse teams in the league has proven that the Cards aren't the worst team in the league.

It has, at this stage, proven little else.

Looper, Lohse, Wellemeyer, Pineiro and Thompson are basically Josh Fogg, more or less.

The difference is, we have one Josh Fogg. They have 5 of him fighting for 4 spots in the rotation.

pedro
04-12-2008, 02:20 PM
I'm not sold on the Cards. I think they're going to have a really rough time this year. I saw them in person the other night and I know it's only one night but they looked really bad.

pedro
04-12-2008, 02:25 PM
Any team starting Cezar Izturis, Adam Kennedy, Skip Schumaker and Chris Duncan is questionable in my book.