Wednesday, May 25, 2011


You may remember our earlier look at eleven-game performance data. We thought we'd provide it periodically throughout the current season, and so the chart at the left shows the six baseball divisions in these eleven-game chunks.

At this level of "granularity," there is a fine line between playoff viability, mediocrity, and just plain "badness." The way 2011 is shaping up, a team that could post 6-5 records for fourteen consecutive eleven-game segments would be almost certain to have some kind of shot at the post-season (their 154-game won-loss record under such a scenario: 84-70).

Of course, as the charts for the first four of these eleven-game segments demonstrate, there is only one team who has posted a winning record in all four. That would be the Cleveland Indians.

There are only two teams who've managed to post losing records in all four: the Chicago Cubs (maddeningly consistent at 5-6 in each eleven-game chunk thus far) and the Minnesota Twins.

A distribution chart for these eleven-game segments will show that the Cubs are the poster boys for the slow slide to oblivion, as represented by their four consecutive 5-6 won-loss records.

Almost one-third of all eleven-game performances fall in the 5-6 zone, and in keeping with the bell-curve distribution that one expects from this data set, half of the eleven-game units thus far (60 out of 120) are either 5-6 or 6-5.

There have been 18 instances of a team dominating their opponents over an eleven-game chunk thus far. (We define that as having at least an 8-3 record.) Fourteen teams have done it: Colorado and San Francisco in the NL West; Cincinnati and St. Louis in the NL Central; Atlanta, Florida, and Philadelphia in the NL East; Boston and Tampa Bay in the AL East; Chicago, Cleveland and Detroit in the AL Central; Seattle and Texas in the AL West.

The only teams who've done it more than once thus far in 2011: Boston, Tampa Bay, Cleveland and Cincinnati.