Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Friday, June 09, 2006

Testing the "par" hypothesis

So after saying that a team "should" go 2-1 in three game home series and 1-2 in three game road series, I thought I should do at least a little bit of work and test whether that is, in fact, what is most likely to happen. The data set isn't that big; I just looked at the Twins schedule from 2004 and 2005 and computed percentages of the possible ways a three game series could go (3-0, 2-1, 1-2, 0-3, for those of you whose brains are suffering from the summer blahs).

In very general terms, my expectations were as follows: for home series, the 2-1 category should be the largest, while the 1-2 bloc should be the largest for away series (that's the easy part). I also said, however, that I thought it more likely that a team would go 2-1 on the road than 3-0 at home, so I was interested in that number too. Here's what I found:

3-0: 10/42 - 23.8%
2-1: 18/42 - 42.9%
1-2: 13/42 - 31%
0-3: 1/42 - 2.4%

3-0: 5/41 - 12.2%
2-1: 14/41 - 34.1%
1-2: 19/41 - 46.3%
0-3: 3/41 - 7.3%

Conclusions? Well, how about hypothesis #1, stating that the home series numbers would be highest for 2-1 series, while the road series would be highest in the 1-2 category? You'll see from the numbers that that is exactly what happened, by pretty significant margins. If I weren't so lazy I'd tell you what the actual significance was, but I don't want to put too terrible much work into this. Hypothesis #2 was that it is easier to go 2-1 on the road than it is to go 3-0 at home, and that is also borne out (34.1% to 23.8%). So what I expected to find is what, in fact, I found. I suspect that if I added seasons, these findings would stay relatively consistent.

Is there anything else of interest in these numbers? Not really...I guess the thing that caught my eye the most was the fact that the Twins are MUCH more likely to sweep the visiting team than to get swept...but this, I expect, is nothing more than a 2 year anomaly that has more to do with the Twins being decent over that span, and sweeping the likes of the Royals, Devil Rays, etc. Perhaps in a future post I will explore that more fully.


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