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Thread: Article: The Twins Binary Hope

  1. #41
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaBombo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post

    A. The Cards did win the world series in 2006 with 83 Wins. You can't dismiss that and turn around and use it to make your point by saying it's only been done once since 2003. It's been done!!! It's actually a point against your thesis.

    B. If you are going to use playoff win percentage of teams with 85 wins or less as reasoning... You are going to have to factor in how many teams with 85 wins or less are eligibale to win the world series(IE Make the Playoffs). It's only fair. Only 4 teams(since 2002) have reached the playoffs with less than 85. 4 teams out of 88... That has to reduce the odds of it happening doesn't it....

    ...You'll have a hard time convincing me otherwise.
    First, I'm not using 85 wins as the yardstick/milestone/divider/whatever. John is, and I'm working from that starting point.

    Second, my final point was that it doesn't matter if 85 win teams are just as effective at winning the World Series as teams with 90 or more wins (and no, I don't believe they are), if 85 win teams almost never make the playoffs, just like you pointed out as well. 85 wins is next to worthless with respect to making the postseason.

    So why shoot for 85 wins if it comes at the expense of seldom making a push for more? Because of our 'weak division', in which 85 wins captured exactly one division title in the last 10 years, and during which the Central champ averaged 93 wins? I'll take a pass on that strategy. But I agree with your final point!
    OK... Call me Emily Litella! I misunderstood your point. Yes... Winning 85 decreases your odds of winning the WS because it decreases your odds of making the playoffs.

    My Next question would be this then... What GM would design a baseball team to win 85 games specifically? That point will never make any sense to me. I would never want to be hung up on a specific number.

    The Gist of it... Is get into the playoffs? It doesn't matter if you win 80 or 100... just get in... Don't place your eggs in one year... Build something that can challenge for the playoffs every year. That increases your chances of winning it. Play meaningful baseball in September... That way you'll know for sure what kind of players you have. Have something for the players to get up and look forward to.

    As for the the "pretty freaking far from 85" comment. On Paper I agree... Common sense... I Disagree... 19 more wins gets you to 85. 1 more win every 8.5 games is not freaking far at all. It's baseball... Everybody is close! Some Pitching would help immensely.

  2. #42
    Senior Member All-Star LaBombo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post

    OK... Call me Emily Litella! I misunderstood your point. Yes... Winning 85 decreases your odds of winning the WS because it decreases your odds of making the playoffs.

    My Next question would be this then... What GM would design a baseball team to win 85 games specifically? That point will never make any sense to me. I would never want to be hung up on a specific number.

    The Gist of it... Is get into the playoffs? It doesn't matter if you win 80 or 100... just get in... Don't place your eggs in one year... Build something that can challenge for the playoffs every year. That increases your chances of winning it. Play meaningful baseball in September... That way you'll know for sure what kind of players you have. Have something for the players to get up and look forward to.

    As for the the "pretty freaking far from 85" comment. On Paper I agree... Common sense... I Disagree... 19 more wins gets you to 85. 1 more win every 8.5 games is not freaking far at all. It's baseball... Everybody is close! Some Pitching would help immensely.
    Not your fault; it's all pretty convoluted at this point! And I understand intangible advantages of the hypothetical 85 win bar...attendance/revenue, ability to attract free agents looking to play for a winner, etc. And if the Twins can squeeze out 85 wins without parting company with their best prospects, have at it. Still looks like an uphill battle to me for 2013, though. But I'll still be pulling for them, even while Gardenhire has me pulling my hair out.

  3. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by Craig in MN View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Bonnes View Post
    I'll go a step further - and I think this might be important. This suggests that the best strategy for an organization to win a championship is NOT to push all their chips to the middle of the table and become really, really good (as judged by wins) for a few years. It is to extend their window of opportunity as long as they possibly can and make the postseason as many times as they can.
    You are probably right, but I don't see where Regular Season Wins leads us anywhere in the argument. I wonder if can figure it out with simple probability and some thought exercises. Hopefully my math here is right:

    Let's say the playoffs are a crapshoot and every team (excluding one wildcard) has a 1 in 8 chance of winning. If an average/crapshoot team makes the playoffs (with a a .125 probabilty of winning) five times, they've got a 50/50 chance of winning at least one World Series. What about if it's not a crapshoot? Say you can create a playoff team with 1 in 5 chances of winning the series: .200 probability. They team would have to have about 59% chance of winning each playoff series to get to 1 in 5 odds overall that year. That's a really good team. If that elite team make the playoffs 3 out of 5 years, they have basically the exact same odds....50/50 chance of winning at least one World Series in the same stretch...
    Taking the stats a step farther, I recalled this reference from a book I had read and thankfully someone else has put it on the internet. More ammo that in a short series, anything can happen (as John says, the playoffs are a crapshoot). See this link. http://goo.gl/lxSM9. Basically, it says that mathematically, you can't determine the true best team in a 7 game series, even if one team is significantly better. For instance, if one team has a 2/3 probability of winning, then they would need to have best of 23 game series to have the better team come out on top 95% of the time...Click the link for more probability and examples from the book The Drunkards Walk: How randomness rules our lives by Leonard Mlodinow (highly recommended).

  4. #44
    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    I'll throw out a different question out there that I'm turning over in my head: under what circumstances should a MLB team play for next year versus playing for some year down the road? We could use the Twins as a case in point, if you like....

    The advantage to reloading and trying again next year is that it is one more shot at winning a winnable division. Plus, there is still quite a bit of talent that is not a sure thing to be around in future years. Finally, it's not like any money saved this year can be put towards future years when talend and payroll climb. It's just pocketed.

    The advantage to wiping off next year - maybe you invest in players that use that time to develop. Maybe the prospects that are receive in a trade become pieces in the future (or mabye they don't.) I'm having trouble thinking of others.

    I'm not sure the Twins are clearly on one side or the other. But I think unless I know there is a pretty clear path toward winning in the future, I'd prefer to play for any given year.

  5. #45
    Twins Moderator All-Star diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
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    A couple of others said it, and I'll echo. An 88 win team in a tough division may very well be better than a 95 win team in a weak division. That's what the unbalanced schedule does.

    I really hope that it is no one's goal to simply make the playoffs.. This bugs me. The goal is the series. The playoffs is a stepping stone to getting there, but if the focus is only on the playoffs, then you've missed the point.

  6. #46
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Bonnes View Post
    I'll throw out a different question out there that I'm turning over in my head: under what circumstances should a MLB team play for next year versus playing for some year down the road? We could use the Twins as a case in point, if you like....

    The advantage to reloading and trying again next year is that it is one more shot at winning a winnable division. Plus, there is still quite a bit of talent that is not a sure thing to be around in future years. Finally, it's not like any money saved this year can be put towards future years when talend and payroll climb. It's just pocketed.

    The advantage to wiping off next year - maybe you invest in players that use that time to develop. Maybe the prospects that are receive in a trade become pieces in the future (or mabye they don't.) I'm having trouble thinking of others.

    I'm not sure the Twins are clearly on one side or the other. But I think unless I know there is a pretty clear path toward winning in the future, I'd prefer to play for any given year.
    Honestly... I thought it was time to tear down and rebuild in late April... I guess it must depend on your owners... Pohlad and Ryan appear to be more steady for lack of a better word. If they are not tearing down right now... They must think they can fix it... The Marlins have a different style... Go big and bring some players in and start rebuilding the second it didn't work.

    Who's right? Lets see who gets there first.

  7. #47
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    A couple of others said it, and I'll echo. An 88 win team in a tough division may very well be better than a 95 win team in a weak division. That's what the unbalanced schedule does.

    I really hope that it is no one's goal to simply make the playoffs.. This bugs me. The goal is the series. The playoffs is a stepping stone to getting there, but if the focus is only on the playoffs, then you've missed the point.
    Of course the goal is to win the WS... But you can't skip step one.

  8. #48
    Senior Member All-Star 70charger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Bonnes View Post
    I'll throw out a different question out there that I'm turning over in my head: under what circumstances should a MLB team play for next year versus playing for some year down the road? We could use the Twins as a case in point, if you like....

    The advantage to reloading and trying again next year is that it is one more shot at winning a winnable division. Plus, there is still quite a bit of talent that is not a sure thing to be around in future years. Finally, it's not like any money saved this year can be put towards future years when talend and payroll climb. It's just pocketed.

    The advantage to wiping off next year - maybe you invest in players that use that time to develop. Maybe the prospects that are receive in a trade become pieces in the future (or mabye they don't.) I'm having trouble thinking of others.

    I'm not sure the Twins are clearly on one side or the other. But I think unless I know there is a pretty clear path toward winning in the future, I'd prefer to play for any given year.
    I think you absolutely try to reload and compete in a crappy division. If the Tigers can make it to the WS, the Twins could with something like 3 or 4 new pieces (mostly pitchers).

    The other option, I think, requires that you rush too many prospects. Attempting to reload solves two problems. 1) You don't punt on this season. 2) You delay rushing prospects to the majors and save some money over the long term.

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