So with the sox needing to win at a clip of .667 wins per remaining games for the rest of the season (assuming the Yankees go .500) it feels like our backs are against the wall. One more loss and Yankee win and we’re done.
It occurred to me that we could extrapolate these numbers backwards and forwards through the season to determine how many games back is too far, in other words the proverbial “back against the wall”. Well, time to break out "goal seek" and figure this crap out. Ok, I didn't actually use goal seek, but my spreadsheet is pretty shitty, however I can get a general sense of what I wanted. Here's the breakdown.
First off, a .667 clip is pretty amazing and probably really hard to maintain over a season. In fact, if you did you would win 108 games. I was too lazy to actually look up how many teams have been able to hit that number in the last 100 or so seasons but my assumption was no more than 30 times. On the flip side, winning 4 out 6 games is pretty common. In fact, the best teams do it more weeks than not during the year. After some crappy math I calculated that the chances of winning at a .667 rate were 2.5% for a year and 41% for any given week. (Crappy math available upon request). Assuming that the probability drops off radically relative to the length of the streak I was able to do some “fancy” (See “fuzzy math”) weighting of the number of wins a team would need to catch another depending on how many games were left.
Here is a sample of the results:
121 games left: First place has 23 wins, back against the wall would be 9 games back or 14 wins. (Makes sense, but I am sure if this analysis is done right it will show that this number is actually higher)
81 games left: First place has 46 wins, back against the wall would be 9 games or 37 wins (ok… this makes more sense)
41 games left: First place has 68 wins, back against the wall would be 5 games or 63 wins (seems about right given our current situation)
11 games left: First place has 84 wins, back against the wall would be 3 games or 81 wins (Sounds right to me)
So in conclusions, are chances are shot. I think it’s time to start talking about next year. Oh, and one more thing