Sunday, May 22, 2016


On the other hand, we prefer more direct comparisons than what Cat Garcia (omnivorizing in sync with the octupoidal reach of Baseball Prospectus' franchiseable flatulence)... tossed into her salade niçoise the other day.

There, as always, you get the serially-massaged percentage probability along with error bars (where, unfortunately, last call comes before the first pitch...) and the type of writing that reminds us of L. Frank Baum's Princess Langwidere, the girl with a different head for every occasion.

Here, also as always, we do things with the blunt elegance of a jitterbugging caveman, one who's still saddened that Madonna never took the advice of her first agent and bought the kitsch capital of San Luis Obispo (and no, we're not talking about the mission).

So when we give you a projection, it's based on actions that focus on verbs, not adjectives that have been put through a post-Procrustean strainer and set forth against the sky like an etherized prepositional phrase laid out in the chaotic scrum of an emergency room.

How did we come up with the projection in the title of this blast-from-the-past post? (As in "past blasts" against our ancient fee-fi-foe-fum, who've brought us many emperors who have remained blissfully ungarbed through thick--mostly thick, we think--and thin.)

Houseley Stevenson and his terrible towel...
Here's how. We went to Forman et fils (and though we know Sean prefers to downplay it, he was a BBBA boy before he became emperor--the fully-clad emperor, BTW--of numbers) and dialed up in the Play Index all of the teams since 1901 who've started the season 28-11. (Prior to the 2016 Cubs, there have been eighteen such teams.)

We hooked up with our sharp-tongued friend William of Occam, lathered up, shaved clean and close (as prescribed by Houseley Stevenson in his outré cameo in Dark Passage, where he then proceeds to perform plastic surgery on a pathetic, desperate guy in order to make him look just like Humphrey Bogart...), and added up the season-ending wins and losses for the team...

...Computed the won-loss percentage (.599), and multiplied by 162...

...And--holy Catwoman! We have a projection (as opposed to that other thing you're hoping to induce so that we'll be distracted, a la Carlos Santana--you know, the other Carlos Santana--from your evil ways).

In short, 97 wins.

Do we think the Cubs will actually win 97 games? We must still say no, we strongly suspect the final total will be somewhat lower than that. Not by a lot, as we've said before...but lower. The reasons are numerous, at least three or four more than the fact that we still think Theo's smugness ideally should have to coagulate a good while longer, while reminding you that late-blooming egotists like (Uncle) Joe Madden can only be humble if the humbling experience of not winning the Big One is part of their recurring psychological plat du jour.