25
Aug
06

Pirates: What will become of the season?

The Pirates are now 128 games into the 162-game season.  What should we expect for the rest of the season?

Since the All-Star Break, the Pirates are 20-18 or .526, so it’s clear that their play has improved substantially from the beginning of the season.  Still, their poor record prior to the All-Star Break (30-60; .333) will keep them out of the post-season for yet another year.  With the Wild Card all but out of reach, what can we hope for from this season?  Based on the fact that the Pirates’ cumulative record for the year is 50-78 with 34 games remaining, here is a summary of some possible outcomes, from best to worst.

If the Pirates:

  1. win all of their remaining 34 games, they will finish at 84-78 (.519)
  2. only lose 3 of their remaining games, they finish at 81-81 (.500)
  3. win 15 of their remaining games, they finish above .400 (65-97)
  4. win at least 13 of their remaining games, they avoid a 100-loss season
  5. lose all of their remaining games, they finish at 50-112 (.309), to tie the 1952 Pirates for 2nd place in most losses in a season for the franchise.  The 1952 Pirates lost 112 games in a season of only 154 games for a win percentage of .273.  First place goes to the 1890 Pirates, who lost 113 games in a season that was only 136 games long, for a win percentage of .169.

I don’t think that options 1, 2, or 5 are at all likely.  Given their recent play, I think that both 3 and 4 are attainable.  In fact, I expect the Pirates to win at least half of their remaining games, which would exceed both outcomes 3 and 4.  Unfortunately, at this point, having a season like that of the 1909 Pirates is out of reach for this year.  However, perhaps the Pirates will be able to turn it around next year and replicate the .724 win percentage the 1909 Pirates recorded on their way to their first World Championship.

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7 Responses to “Pirates: What will become of the season?”


  1. August 25, 2006 at 5:28 pm

    I like how none of your options are based on what’s already happened. Here are a couple of my options to give a feel of what’s probable:
    1. Keep winning at their post All-Star-Break percentage of .526 (final 68-94 ,.419).
    2. Stay at their current win percentage of .391 (63-99).

    I’m going to put my money on somewhere in between those. I’ll say 66-96 (.407), winning 18 of their last 34.

  2. 2 Colin
    August 25, 2006 at 6:26 pm

    I guess my enumerated outcomes were mostly looking at various possible numerical milestones they could reach rather than any kind of extrapolation. I was going to include your #1, but I decided against it for some reason. Also, I did include your #2 – it’s basically #4, just in different words. I more or less agree with your prediction, though there’s an error in your math. They’ve won 50 so far, so an additional 18 leaves them at 68, not 66. I expect them to win in the neighborhood of 17 (which is half of their remaining games) give or take 1 or 2. Either way, I expect them to finish above .400 and avoid a 100-loss season.

  3. August 25, 2006 at 10:22 pm

    Yeah, winning 16 of their last 34 mine should have read.

  4. 5 Colin
    August 26, 2006 at 12:58 am

    I think there might be some interesting numerical analysis to be done on the Pirates’ record as it has evolved over the course of the season. There’s a definite upward trend amid the noise. If anyone is interested, here’s the data you’ll need in a convenient tab-delimited format:

    1 MIL L 0.000
    2 MIL L 0.000
    3 MIL L 0.000
    4 CIN L 0.000
    5 CIN L 0.000
    6 CIN L 0.000
    7 CIN W 0.143
    8 LAD L 0.125
    9 LAD W 0.222
    10 LAD W 0.300
    11 LAD L 0.273
    12 CHC L 0.250
    13 CHC W 0.308
    14 CHC L 0.286
    15 STL L 0.267
    16 STL W 0.313
    17 STL L 0.294
    18 HOU L 0.278
    19 HOU L 0.263
    20 HOU L 0.250
    21 STL L 0.238
    22 STL L 0.227
    23 STL L 0.217
    24 PHI W 0.250
    25 PHI W 0.280
    26 PHI L 0.269
    27 CHC L 0.259
    28 CHC W 0.286
    29 NYM L 0.276
    30 NYM L 0.267
    31 WSH L 0.258
    32 WSH W 0.281
    33 WSH L 0.273
    34 ARI W 0.294
    35 ARI L 0.286
    36 FLA W 0.306
    37 FLA L 0.297
    38 FLA L 0.289
    39 CIN W 0.308
    40 CIN W 0.325
    41 CIN L 0.317
    42 CLE L 0.310
    43 CLE W 0.326
    44 CLE L 0.318
    45 ARI L 0.311
    46 ARI L 0.304
    47 ARI L 0.298
    48 HOU W 0.313
    49 HOU W 0.327
    50 HOU L 0.320
    51 MIL W 0.333
    52 MIL W 0.346
    53 MIL W 0.358
    54 MIL W 0.370
    55 SD L 0.364
    56 SD W 0.375
    57 SD L 0.368
    58 COL W 0.379
    59 COL L 0.373
    60 COL L 0.367
    61 SF L 0.361
    62 SF W 0.371
    63 SF W 0.381
    64 SF W 0.391
    65 STL L 0.385
    66 STL W 0.394
    67 STL L 0.388
    68 MIN L 0.382
    69 MIN L 0.377
    70 MIN L 0.371
    71 ARI L 0.366
    72 KC L 0.361
    73 KC L 0.356
    74 KC L 0.351
    75 LAD L 0.347
    76 LAD L 0.342
    77 LAD L 0.338
    78 CWS L 0.333
    79 CWS L 0.329
    80 CWS W 0.338
    81 DET L 0.333
    82 DET W 0.341
    83 DET L 0.337
    84 NYM W 0.345
    85 NYM L 0.341
    86 NYM L 0.337
    87 NYM L 0.333
    88 PHI W 0.341
    89 PHI L 0.337
    90 PHI L 0.333
    91 WSH W 0.341
    92 WSH W 0.348
    93 WSH L 0.344
    94 COL W 0.351
    95 COL L 0.347
    96 COL W 0.354
    97 FLA W 0.361
    98 FLA L 0.357
    99 FLA L 0.354
    100 FLA L 0.350
    101 MIL L 0.347
    102 MIL W 0.353
    103 MIL W 0.359
    104 SF W 0.365
    105 SF W 0.371
    106 SF W 0.377
    107 ATL L 0.374
    108 ATL L 0.370
    109 ATL W 0.376
    110 CHC W 0.382
    111 CHC L 0.378
    112 CHC L 0.375
    113 HOU L 0.372
    114 HOU L 0.368
    115 HOU L 0.365
    116 STL W 0.371
    117 STL W 0.376
    118 STL W 0.381
    119 MIL W 0.387
    120 MIL L 0.383
    121 MIL L 0.380
    122 CIN W 0.385
    123 CIN L 0.382
    124 CIN L 0.379
    125 ATL L 0.376
    126 ATL W 0.381
    127 ATL W 0.386
    128 HOU W 0.391
    129 HOU L 0.388

    If any of you take a look and try some regression or extrapolation, please share your results.

  5. 6 Milkshake
    August 27, 2006 at 10:05 pm

    Which was the first game after the all-star break?

  6. 7 Colin
    August 28, 2006 at 6:53 pm

    Game 91, against the Washington Nationals.


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