Thursday, June 15, 2006

Tigers Mauling Weak Competition

I didn’t get a chance to watch or listen to today’s afternoon game. It seems as if all the games I’ve been unable to watch lately have involved Zach Miner and, in the last couple games, it seems as if I may have missed something good. After holding the Blue Jays to 2 runs in 6 innings on Saturday, he came right back today and allowed 2 unearned runs on 3 hits and a walk in 7 innings against the Devil Rays. Miner, who was not on the Tiger 40 man roster this winter, had fallen off my radar somewhat but his performance this season for both Toledo and Detroit has been encouraging so far. Wil Ledezma (in his first appearance) and Fernando Rodney each pitched a scoreless inning of relief to seal the 6-2 victory.


Analysis


The Tigers took 3 of 4 from the Devil Rays this week which leads me to my next topic. Does it seem as if the Tigers have been beating up on weak teams this season while struggling against strong ones? As the table below shows, the Tigers have gone just 12-14 (.462 winning percentage) against teams that are currently above .500 for the season. Conversely, they have gone 31-10 (.756 winning percentage!) against teams with records below .500.



Not surprisingly, most of the top teams in the American League this year have done substantially better against winning teams than stronlosing teams but the Tigers have the biggest margin of all the teams. They have played .294 percentage points better against the sub-500 teams. The second biggest gap is Oakland at .210. Strangely, the White Sox have played worse against losing teams than winning teams.


Beating up on the weak sisters of the league while somewhat holding their own against the top teams has obviously worked for the Tigers to this point as they have the best overall record in the league. The final column shows the number of games remaining against above .500 teams. The Tigers play 40 more games against winning teams and 55 games against sub-500 teams. If they maintain the same winning percentages, they’ll win 105 games. That’s not likely mostly because I can’t see them playing .756 ball all year against the sub-.500 group. The formula is working out really well so far though.


Table: Records of Top AL Teams Versus Teams with Winning and Losing Records


Team

Overall

Record

Record Versus Winning Teams

Record Versus Losing Teams

Difference

In Win %

Games Left Vs.

Winning Teams

Detroit

43-24

12-14

31-10

+.294

40

Chicago

40-25

14-7

26-18

-.076

40

New York

37-27

20-18

17-9

+.128

38

Boston

36-27

17-18

19-9

+.193

40

Toronto

37-29

15-16

22-13

+.145

46

Oakland

35-31

13-18

22-13

+.210

47

Texas

35-31

17-21

18-10

+.196

42

2 comments:

  1. Lee,

    Good call on the "beating up of the weak teams." I've said, as well as numerous others, that in order to really be a good team you have to beat the teams that you should beat and hold your own against teams as good or better than you. The Tigers have done this so far, and that is why they are in first place with a great record.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I guess the good news is that there is a possibility if all goes well, we could be facing a losing AL West champion in the playoffs. I'll try not to look that far ahead though.

    ReplyDelete

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