FanDuel - WFBC

September 29, 2012

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle:

A place to discuss the sports stories that aren't making news, share links that aren't quite front-page material, and diagram plays on your hand. Remember to count to five Mississippi before commenting in anger.

posted by huddle to general at 06:00 AM - 10 comments

Watching a CFL game - are there any of those replacement refs looking for work? HUGE upgrade if they are.

posted by cixelsyd at 08:44 PM on September 29

Sir Alex Ferguson claims amount of injury time added against Spurs "an insult."

Oh sweet, sweet karma.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:37 PM on September 29

The Nebraska v. Wisconsin game was a good one.

posted by NoMich at 11:46 PM on September 29

We waited 72 years for the win in 2005, and I never thought I'd see another one in my lifetime. One of the greatest Grand Finals ever.

And we love these guys, because they never give up.

posted by owlhouse at 12:41 AM on September 30

Just getting this down on (digital) paper for discussion later:

So the dream scenario is:

Sunday: Baltimore, New York, Detroit, and Texas (twice) all lose. Oakland, and Chicago win.
TEX 92-67
BAL 91-68
NYY 91-68
OAK 91-68

DET 85-74
CWS 84-75

Monday: New York, Baltimore, Texas, and Detroit all lose. Oakland and Chicago win.
TEX 92-68
OAK 92-68
BAL 91-69
NYY 91-69

DET 85-75
CWS 85-75

Tuesday: Oakland and Detroit lose. Texas, Baltimore, New York, and Chicago win.
TEX 93-68
OAK 92-69
BAL 92-69
NYY 92-69

CWS 86-75
DET 85-76

Wednesday: Texas and Chicago lose. Oakland, Baltimore, New York, and Detroit win.
TEX 93-69
OAK 93-69
BAL 93-69
NYY 93-69

CWS 86-76
DET 86-76

I'm pretty sure that TEX/OAK and BAL/NYY would have to play a one-game playoff to determine the AL West and AL East division winners, and the losers would then be the wild card teams.
Those wild card teams would then have to play one game against each other, with the winner going to the ALDS (against the #1 seed).
As well, Chicago/Detroit will have to play a one-game playoff to determine the AL Central winner, and the loser goes home.


This could lead a team playing on the road on Wednesday (game 162), travelling to a new location on Thursday (division/wc determination game), travelling to a new location on Friday (wc play-in game), getting one day off (Saturday) and then playing at home on Sunday. Four different teams, in four different cities, in five days.

posted by grum@work at 01:17 AM on September 30

Wait, it gets better:

In the final four games of the season:

Baltimore goes 0-4
New York goes 0-4
Tampa Bay goes 4-0
Los Angeles goes 4-0
Oakland goes 1-3
Chicago goes 4-0
Detroit goes 2-2
Texas goes 1-3 (or 2-2)

In this scenario:

Baltimore, New York, Tampa Bay, Los Angeles, and Oakland all end up 91-71. Detroit and Chicago end up tied for the AL-Central, and Texas wins the AL-West.

That's probably the best clusterf*ck I can hope for. I have no idea how that gets solved on Thursday and Friday...

posted by grum@work at 01:49 AM on September 30

First, nothing in the AL Central matters beyond the AL Central, so that we can disregard.

Second, unless they were complete idiots (always possible with the MLB front office), they should have rules in place for tiebreakers. Haven't we seen this come up in the past? In cases where two teams tie for a division lead, if a tiebreaker rule (such as heads-up record, or intra-division record) can be used to decide the division winner and the "loser" still makes the playoffs... they'll just go with that, right, and avoid a playoff game to decide the division?

Amazingly, BAL/NYY have split the season 9-9, so they'd have to go to intra-division record which leans heavily to BAL. Surprisingly, OAK/TEX are also tied in the season series right now with an 8-8 record... but with three games left against each other someone has to win outright.

The first order of business is always to decide the division winner; of those left we'd suss out the wildcard. The only way we'd have a 1-game playoff for the division in either the East or West is if your clusterf*ck of a 5-way tie comes to pass (with Texas winning the West and everyone else at 91-wins). Then you have 5 teams vying for 3 spots: AL East, and two wild cards.

The odds against this are extraordinarily long; it starts by presuming that NYY and BAL go 0-4, OAK only wins 1 game, TB wins its remaining games, and LAA goes 4-1 exactly. It'd certainly be interesting, but I'm betting by even mid-day on Sunday we've seen at least one final score that has closed most those branches of possibility. I just checked the count, and there are 18 games left of importance to the AL East and AL West, which means there are 2^18 (262,144) possible outcomes of all these games, of which very very few (20?) lead to a 5-way tie with TEX winning the West. That list:

  • Day 0: LAA/TEX (makeup game from today, in doubleheader)
  • Day 1: NYY/TOR, BOS/BAL, TB/CHW, LAA/TEX, SEA/OAK
  • Days 2-4: BOS/NYY, BAL/TB, TEX/OAK, LAA/SEA
It could happen, but the computation would be pointless until we at least see tomorrow's scores: like I said, the odds are strong that by mid-day tomorrow a lot of clarity has been reached. Because if TB and LAA flinch, then they're out of the hunt: you'd be left with four teams to fill 4 playoff spots in two division winners and two wild card teams. And they only would need 1-game playoffs at all if they all tie for the same record; but even then, they could use the heads-up or intra-division standings as an instant tiebreaker.

posted by hincandenza at 05:09 AM on September 30

Which incidentally is why this two-team, one-game-playoff WC is such a shitty idea: not only is it making the playoff picture much harder to understand, and tiebreakers much more likely to be invoked... but it's removed a lot of the drama (BOS/TB would have had no tension last year, since the last few games- even with Boston's epic slide- would always have meant the two teams were going to have a one-game playoff anyway), and unfairly penalizes the Wild Card team because they may have as good a record as two other division winners but have to put their entire season on the line in one game, wasting their best starter. The single WC entrant meant the two best teams were in the playoffs from each league; a second WC entrant is just bullshit all around.

posted by hincandenza at 05:12 AM on September 30

Second, unless they were complete idiots (always possible with the MLB front office), they should have rules in place for tiebreakers. Haven't we seen this come up in the past? In cases where two teams tie for a division lead, if a tiebreaker rule (such as heads-up record, or intra-division record) can be used to decide the division winner and the "loser" still makes the playoffs... they'll just go with that, right, and avoid a playoff game to decide the division?

I'm pretty sure because the Wild Cards have to participate in a "play-in" game that they won't be using tie-breakers to decide who gets the division title if there is a tie. They'll have to play a game to decide the division winners, and the losers go into the wild-card play-in game.

MLB doesn't recognize the WC play-in game as a true "playoff" game, so they won't assign someone that spot by tie-breaker only.

posted by grum@work at 10:41 AM on September 30

(continuing this in Sunday's huddle).

posted by hincandenza at 03:47 PM on September 30

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