By Roger Snell
With the recent passing of Yogi Berra, it seems perfect that the post-season is following two of his greatest quotes:
- “Good pitching beats good hitting – and vice versa.”
- “It ain't over 'til it's over.”
So, let's try again and see how the current teams match up. Using updated rosters from Out of the Park Baseball, I simmed 162 head-to-head games as follows:
Cubs vs. Mets
85-77 in favor of Cubs
621-597 runs scored in favor of Cubs
Blue Jays vs. Royals
84-78 Blue Jays win
732-743 (Royals actually out-score Blue Jays)
Cubs vs. Blue Jays
86-72 Blue Jays
789-777 runs scored in favor of Blue Jays
Before the season even started, the Cubs made it to the post season once in 10 sims, but they won the World Series in that one shot.
My sims just before the post-season used updated end-of-season rosters. And every projection was wrong except for the Royals advancing to the ALCS, with stronger pitching staffs being upset in all cases. I guess when the underdogs came to the fork in the road, they took it.
The Cubs overcame the odds by beating the Cardinals, and the Mets did the Cubs a huge favor by beating the best team in baseball – the Dodgers – according to repeated sims. Whether the Blue Jays or Royals advance (and the projections show the Blue Jays), the Cubs are not favored over either one of them.
But it ain't over 'til it's over.