Thursday, March 31, 2011


Take your guesses now. Is it all a random crapshoot? Do teams that eventually go on to be in the post-season play coin-flip baseball on Opening Day?

Those of you who'd like to tally up the entire Opening Day results by team are directed to this link at BB-REF, where Forman and Co. have made it possible to look at the first day results for all teams going back to 1919.

Our slice is but a subset of that data, but it's kind of interesting. Do teams that wind up in the post-season do better on Opening Day than also-rans? Or is it, as noted above, simply a coin-flip proposition?

It turns out that the aggregrate winning percentage for post-season teams on Opening Day is: .595 (195-133). The charts break out the team-by-team totals.

Note that the Giants and Dodgers have both played exceptionally well on Opening Day when they have a postseason-bound team. Last year, the Giants knocked off the Astros, 5-2, in the season opener--and went on to win the World Series. In 2009, when the Dodgers won the NL West, they opened the year with a 4-1 win over the Padres.

Too bad for both of them that they faced each other on 2011's Opening Day.

And who won this year's matchup of post-season Opening Day stalwarts? Final score just in: Dodgers 2, Giants 1.