Friday, October 07, 2005

More baseball facts

The Monk likes looking for trends, even if he doesn't like what he sees.

First, the importance of game two. In the history of 5-game playoff series in the AL (ALCS 1969-1984, ALDS 1981, 1995-present), there have been eight times that teams split games one and two and the series ended in four. SEVEN of the eight times, the game one winner swept the next three; only once (Yankees, 1978) did the teams split games one and two and the game one winner also won games three and four. More surprisingly, in six of the seven series where the ALDS/ALCS winner won three straight after losing game 1, it won games 3 and 4 on the road! The Yanks turned that trick three times (1996, 2003, 2004). The one exception: the '02 Angels over the Yanks.

The Mess won game one and lost game two on the road in both the '99 and '00 NLDS (D'Backs and Giants, respectively), then took games three and four at home.

Next, the swept outs -- a (slim) possibility raised by the BloSax (who are down just 2-1 just tied the game on back-to-back fatboy HRs in the 4th as I type this). Since divisional play began in 1969, only two defending WS champs had been swept out of the playoffs in their first series the next season: the 1975 A's (who were trying to become the second-ever franchise to win four-straight) and the '02 Diamondbacks (slaughtered by the Cards). Only two other defending pennant winners ('00 Braves, '81 Royals) were knocked out of the playoffs the next season without winning a game. There have been plenty of defending pennant winners or WS champs who made the playoffs the next year, so the universe of possibilities is actually fairly sizeable.

That's all for now.

No comments: