June 03, 2019

SportsFilter: The Monday 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 - 17 comments

Boogie Cousins scored highly on the post-game Lacob Love Meter last night.

Bogut has become slower than late career Artis Gilmore, which scientists had not thought was possible.

posted by beaverboard at 12:11 PM on June 03

Pakistan hung a whopping 349 on England today, but at 250 runs with a little over 11 overs to go for England, will they be able to catch up?

posted by NoMich at 12:53 PM on June 03

I guess Trent Bridge is known for allowing teams to strike for big runs and that was certainly the case today. England fell short, but not by much. Excellent bowling and fielding by Pakistan with Wahab coming close to getting a hat trick

posted by NoMich at 02:11 PM on June 03

Yes! (?)

posted by bender at 02:12 PM on June 03

Bogut may be less fluid than granite, but he did outscore the Raptors 6-0 when he was on the court last night.

posted by cixelsyd at 05:03 PM on June 03

This thought occurred to me as I was watching the Stanley Cup playoffs tonight. In which of the major professional sports does playing at home offer the greatest advantage? There are 2 factors to consider, perhaps a 3rd that I will mention later. The first factor is the rules. For example in hockey, the home team gets the last personnel change, and on a face off the visitor must put his stick down first. The second factor is the crowd. Many players, particularly in basketball, claim that they gain energy from a loud home crowd. In football, a loud crowd can cause the visiting offense to alter its snap counts. The final factor is the rest and comfort available to a team on a long home stand.

What is the opinion of the pundits of Sports Filter? Name your preference and give a bit of justification. For me it's hockey. I believe all 3 factors strongly favor the home team. The idea of the last line change is an important factor, but the home crowd and sleeping in your own bed are also big.

posted by Howard_T at 10:57 PM on June 03

Baseball has the greatest advantage without taking into account stadium/location/fans/home-cooking/whatever.

Having the ability to bat in the bottom of the last inning is huge. The winning percentage for all teams in every game averages out to .500 (obviously). The home team winning percentage in MLB is .550 (and therefore the visiting team winning percentage is .450).

That 100 point difference in winning percentage is like comparing an 89 win team with a 73 win team.

Batting last is more advantageous than any other rules difference in any other sport.

posted by grum@work at 11:45 PM on June 03

Grum, how much of a factor is it that baseball is the only sport without a standard playing field shape/size (in the outfield at least)?

posted by kokaku at 08:32 AM on June 04

Home field in baseball is also a huge advantage defensively. With almost all fields having different dimensions having familiarity with the boundaries and how to play balls is huge.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:30 AM on June 04

and on a face off the visitor must put his stick down first.

Not since 2015, actually. Rule 76.4 was changed for the 2015 season, and now reads:

"At the eight face-off spots (excluding center ice face-off spot), the defending player shall place his stick within the designated white area first followed immediately by the attacking player. When the face-off is conducted at the center ice face-off spot, the visiting player shall place his stick on the ice first."

So that element of home-ice has been negated.

I'm a bit lazy to look up raw statistics, but this Bleacher Report article from 2013 (I know, questionable source) indicates that, in the playoffs at least, the NBA has the highest home-field advantage with the home team winning at a better than 60% clip.

posted by tahoemoj at 12:30 PM on June 04

tahoemoj: thanks for the info on the rule change for faceoffs. I was wondering why I would sometimes see a home team player put his stick down in the faceoff circle first.

posted by NoMich at 01:17 PM on June 04

I realize that I forgot to link the BR article in the last post. Instead, how about some more thorough statistical analysis from FiveThirtyEight?

posted by tahoemoj at 04:18 PM on June 04

Is there any analysis of home / visitor playoff win percentages with the 2-2-1-1-1 vs. 2-3-2 formats?

posted by beaverboard at 10:07 PM on June 04

the NBA has the highest home-field advantage with the home team winning at a better than 60%

No doubt. Bet a whole lot that the foul and free throw discrepancy aligns with this.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:12 PM on June 04

the NBA has the highest home-field advantage with the home team winning at a better than 60%

How much of this is due to the somewhat lopsided pairings in the early rounds of the playoffs. 1 vs 8 and 2 vs 7 might be considered mismatches. Otherwise, it is something to consider, and I didn't realize the discrepancy was that great.

On baseball, field geometry is a large factor. Fenway Park offers challenges to the outfielders in the entire outfield. What many people miss is the advantage a left-handed batter who can hit to the opposite field gains from the short left field wall. 2 words illustrate: Wade Boggs.

posted by Howard_T at 01:03 PM on June 05

How much of this is due to the somewhat lopsided pairings in the early rounds of the playoffs. 1 vs 8 and 2 vs 7 might be considered mismatches.

I certainly think that parity comes into play in this instance, as well. An 8 vs. 1 matchup in the NBA is virtually a predetermined outcome. In the NHL, not so much.

posted by tahoemoj at 01:45 PM on June 05

How much of this is due to the somewhat lopsided pairings in the early rounds of the playoffs. 1 vs 8 and 2 vs 7 might be considered mismatches.

I thought about this also and the fact that the stronger team has more home games. It would be interesting to look at just the final round of the playoffs for NBA, NHL, and MLB.


Also with the current NFL playoff schedule where conference winner gets home game against a wild card team. The conference winner could be a weak team in a weak conference and that would skew the statistics a bit.

posted by prof at 10:05 AM on June 06

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