Saturday, March 19, 2005

Old-Stat Geek Stuff

Last quiz answer: Part 1: Sox radio network was called Campbell's Sports Network. Part 2: Sox radio announcers always tell you the name of the park and city the game's being played in before throwing to commercial specifically for a pitching change. i.e. "We have a pitching change, this game coming to you from Skydome in Toronto." I'll never forget Bob Starr in his first season going to commercial for a pitching change, and just saying, "We'll be right back" or something, and Castiglione waiting a second and then jumping in with the park name and town.

No one attempted to answer this quiz.

This next thing could be a quiz, but I'll just say it in non-quiz trivia form.

The Red Sox and yanks have only finished last and second to last two times in history. In '66, the yanks were last, the Sox 2nd to last. The '25 Sox finished last, with the yanks second to last. Had the '66 Sox and '25 yanks each won just one more game, the two teams never would've finished last and second to last. And it looks like they never will again at this rate.

This made me wonder, why did the 1925 yankees finish in last place? The '23 yanks won the World Series, the '24 yanks finished two games out of first. Then the mystery '25 team finished 28.5 games out of first, before going back to the World Series the next year. How did this happen? They had mainly the same players the whole time. Am I missing something here?

My other quiz would have been "Name the nine teams who've played in the A.L. East since it's inception in 1969." But it's so easy to look something like that up. I'd have gotten this wrong. I'd have thought 8: The "classic" seven (us, yanks, O's, Jays, Indians, Tigers, and Brewers), plus the Devil Rays. But the Washington Senators were in there from '69-'71. I just never think of them as being a team that existed during divisional play.

I was finding all this info on Retrosheet, while trying to come to the bottom of the Radatz/Mantle strikeout stat. Which will be the focus of tomorrow's post. Along with other stuff. Keep in mind, though, whenever I give a preview of a future post, it never happens when I say it's going to. So look for me to not do that Radatz post tomorrow. But we can all hope.

"Am I missing something here?"

Well, part of the answer is that Babe Ruth played in only 98 games, missing a decent chunk of the season because, as the legend goes, he had the clap. I think at the time the sportwriters who were covering up for him described it as ulcers or other stomach problems. When he played, he wasn't that good, compared to what he normally did: only a .393 on-base % v .513 in 1924, and .516 in 1926. His slugging percentage of .543 sounds good, but was about 200 points below what he normally would put up around that era.

Also, Lou Gehrig was only 22 and just starting out...

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Location: Rhode Island, United States