Pythagorean Baseball
Garrett Garlits
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Joined: May 2017
#1
01-17-2020, 08:10 AM

I belong to alternatehistory.com, and over the last couple of years I've been rewriting baseball and football history using what is called Pythagorean wins and losses. Simply put, the stat shows how many games a certain team should have won and lost based on the number of runs or points they scored in a given season. The NFL thread is updated through last season, and I'll share it (at least the portions relevant to the Steelers) once I get some time to copy and paste it. 

For now, though, I'm going to use this thread as a storage unit of sorts; alternatehistory.com is going through an upgrade, and has some display issues that leave me temporarily unable to post. Rather than lose a significant amount of posting time while the problems straighten themselves out, I'm going to post a couple of days' worth of games here and then do a copy and paste once I can post over there again.

Rather than start the people here in the middle of a series between teams that they don't care about, I'm going to start the one remaining series in this universe that features the Pirates, as the 2014 National League Central Division champions (regular season record 87-75, one win fewer than their real-life record) take on the Western Division champion Los Angeles Dodgers in the best-of-five National League Division Series. The winner will face the San Francisco Giants in the National League Championship Series, as the Giants have already defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Wild Card Game, then eliminated the Washington Nationals in four games to take their NLDS. (I use real-life series and parts of series where they apply in order to keep the exercise grounded in reality. In the case of the Cardinals and the Giants, I used Game 3 of the real-life NLCS, since the Wild Card Game was supposed to take place in San Francisco.)

At any rate, here are the scoring innings for Game 1. The date is Friday, October 3:

Pirates 1st: With two out, center fielder Andrew McCutchen banged a double off the wall in right field against Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw. Catcher Russell Martin grounded a base hit to right center to bring Cutch home and give the Buccos a 1-0 lead. Left fielder Starling Marte grounded to first to end the inning, but the Pirates have scored first thanks to a run on two hits. Now let's hear from the Men in Blue.

Dodgers 1st: Second baseman Dee Gordon lined a leadoff double down the right field line. He held at second while center fielder Yasiel Puig's liner was caught by Pirates first baseman Gaby Sanchez for out number one, but Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez's single to right center brought him home to tie the game at one. Right fielder Matt Kemp beat out a grounder to third to put two men on, and shortstop Hanley Ramirez's double into the left center power alley brought both runners home and gave the Dodgers a 3-1 lead. Stolmy Pimentel began to get loose in the Pitsburgh bullpen while Volquez faced left fielder Carl Crawford, who beat out an infield single to short to put runners at the corners. Third baseman Juan Uribe popped to Harrison for the second out while the runners held, but catcher A.J. Ellis' base hit up the middle scored Ramirez, and the Dodgers were up 4-1, with Crawford moving to third.

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle summoned Pimentel, whose first pitch glance off of Martin's glove and rolled to the backstop. The official scorer ruled it a passed ball, and Crawford came home to make it 5-1 Los Angeles while Ellis moved to second. Kershaw struck out swinging to end the inning, but the Dodgers have scored five runs on six hits and a passed ball while leaving a runner at second. After 1, it's Dodgers 5, Pirates 1.

Pirates 3rd: Harrison led off with a single to left. Mercer's liner was speared by Gordon for the first out, but J-Hay stole second. McCutchen's grounder to first moved him to third, and he scored when Martin beat out a grounder to deep third for an infield hit. Marte's bouncer to short ended the inning, but the Bucs have gotten a run back thanks to two hits, a productive groundout, and a stolen base. After two and a half, it's Bums 5, Buccos 2.

Dodgers 4th: Pimentel hit Gordon in the knee with a pitch after one out. Gordon stole second, but had to hold while Pirates second baseman Neil Walker made a diving stop of Puig's line drive for out number two. Gonzalez's lined single to left center scored Gordon to put the Dodgers up 6-2, but Harrison made a leaping grab of Kemp's line drive to end the inning. The Dodgers have restored their four-run lead thanks to a hit, a hit batsman, and a stolen base. We've played four, and it's Los Angeles 6, Pittsburgh 2.

Dodgers 5th: Ramirez lined a leadoff single to left, then stole second after Crawford had popped up to Walker for the first out. Uribe's fly to shallow left center held Crawford at second, but Ellis lined a single to left center to bring Carl home with the seventh LA run. Kershaw walked on five pitches to put two men on, but Pimentel finished his day by striking Gordon out swinging to retire the side. The Dodgers have added a run on two hits while leaving runners at first and second, and they lead the Buccos 7-2 through five.

Dodgers 6th: With two out, Kemp faced new Pirates pitcher Jeanmar Gomez. Here's Joe Buck with the count two balls and one strike:

"Kershaw has done a whole lot better in this oppressive heat than the Pirates' pitching staff, at least to the moment. He's given up just two runs on six hits through five, while the Dodgers have hit almost at will; they've outhit the Pirates eleven to six. Gomez has been effective so far, getting the first two outs of this inning in just five pitches; now he's behind Matt Kemp two balls and one strike. Gomez ready with the next pitch, WHICH IS LIED DEEP TO LET, BACK IS MARTE, AT THE TRACK, AND THE WALL, AND THIS BALL IS GONE!......Matt Kemp hits the first homer of this series, and it's 8-2 Dodgers here in the sixth."

Harold Reynolds: "Gomez hung a slider right in the heart of the strike zone, which is fresh meat to a hitter like Matt Kemp. This ball flew off of his bat, Joe, and you could hear the crack of the bat all the way up here."

John Smoltz: "The Pirate bullpen hasn't been up to the task so far, and if this keeps up the Dodgers will have an easier time in this series than anyone could have ever thought possible."

Ramirez followed with a base hit to left, but Crawford bounced to second to end the inning. Kemp's homer has extended the Dodgers' lead to 8-2 after six.

Pirates 7th: Right fielder Travis Snider lined a leadoff single to left. Gregory Polanco batted for Gomez and took a pitch off of his shin to put two men on, but was forced by Harrison, with Snider moving to third, Mercer's infield fly was caught by Gordon for out number two, but Cutch's base hit to left scored Snider to bring the Pirates to within 8-3 with Harrison moving to third. Martin struck out swinging to end the inning. The Pirates settle for a run on two hits, and as we stretch at Chavez Ravine they trial the homestanding Dodgers 8-3.

Dodgers 8th: Gordon lined a leadoff single to right. Puig smacked a double into the left center power alley to bring Gordon home and make it 9-3 Los Angeles. Justin Wilson came out of the Pirates bullpen and that point and walked Gonzalez on five pitches to put two men on, then retired the next three batters in order: Kemp and Crawford each struck out swinging, and in between Ramirez flew to McCutchen in shallow left center. The Dodgers have added a run on two hits and a walk while leaving runners at first and second, and as we head to the ninth they now lead 9-3.

Pirates 9th: Pedro Alvarez batted for Wilson and singled to left center. That brought Harrison to the plate against new Dodgers pitcher Brandon League. Here's Joe with the count one ball and one strike:

"The Pirates are looking to put this loss behind them and even the series tomorrow night when they'll send their young lefthander Jeff Locke to the mound against the Dodgers' other ace, Zack Greinke. They jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first, but the Dodgers answered with a five-spot and haven't looked back since. Alvarez is no threat to run at first, especially with the Pirates down by five. Here's the two-one pitch to Harrison...…...HIGH FLY BALL TO LEFT CENTER, BACK IS PUIG, AT THE TRACK, AT THE WALL, AND IT'S GONE!...….Josh Harrison is now three for five, and this is now a 9-5 game here in the ninth."

Smoltz: "Josh Harrison wasn't even supposed to make the Pirates' roster in his rookie year because he didn't have any discernible skills. All he's done is play multiple positions well, steal bases with his speed and baserunning ability, and hit home runs more than occasionally. This ball was gone from the second it left the bat, and this home run may prove to be a catalyst for the Pirates going forward. It's happened before."

Reynolds: "Don't ever count out a team from the Steel City, no matter what the sport."

League settled down to retire the next three batters, as Mercer flew to Puig in left center, McCutchen struck out swinging, and Martin grounded to third to end the game. Our final: Dodgers 9, Pirates 5, and the Dodgers lead the best-of-five series one game to none.

Gordon was named Player of the Game by FS1. He finished three for four and scored three runs. Ramirez finished three for five with two runs scored and two RBIs, and Gonzalez and Ellis each had two his and drove in two runs apiece. For the Pirates, Harrison was three for five with a homer and two RBIs.

Final totals: Dodgers 9-15-0, Pirates 5-12-0.

W- Kershaw (1-0)
L- Volquez (0-1)

HR- PIT: Harrison (1)
      LAD: Kemp (1)

The series will continue with Game 2 tomorrow night here at Dodger Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for shortly after 9:30 PM Eastern, and Joe gave us the pitching matchup earlier: Jeff Locke (Pirates) against Zack Greinke (Dodgers).

Next: We look at Game 2.

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Garrett Garlits
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Posts: 495
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#2
01-18-2020, 08:36 AM

Now it's time for Game 2 of the second 2014 National League Division Series from Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. The date is Saturday, October 4:

Lineup Changes:

Pirates- Travis Snider moves up to second. Neil Walker moves up to the cleanup spot, while Neil Walker moves down to sixth and Jordy Mercer to eighth. Finally, Ike Davis gets the start at first base and will bat seventh.

Pirates 1st: With one out, Travis Snider whacked a double to center off of Dodgers starter Zack Greinke. After Andrew McCutchen took a called third strike for out number two, Neil Walker stepped to the plate. Here's Joe Buck with the count one ball and no strikes:

"Neil Walker is one of the most interesting stories of this postseason. He grew up a Pirates fan in Pittsburgh during their back-to-back National League East championship years in 1991 and '92, then was drafted by the Pirates as a catcher. He bounced around to several different positions during his time in the minor leagues, then became the Pirates' starting second baseman at the start of 2010 and has been there ever since. He also played third very early in his career, but now Josh Harrison is manning that position very nicely. One-ball pitch from Greinke…….HIT HIGH IN THE AIR DEEP TO LEFT! BACK IS CRAWFORD, AT THE WALL, AND IT IS GONE!...….A two-run homer from the man they call 'The Pittsburgh Kid", and Neil Walker has put his Pirates up 2-0 against Zack Greinke here in the first."

Harold Reynolds: "Greinke thought he could get Neil Walker to swing at a high fastball, and he did, but Zack sure didn't want him to hit it like that. The heat here in Los Angeles helped it go a little further than it might have otherwise, but that was definitely a home run swing."

John Smoltz: "With temperatures in the nineties tonight, this could be the first of many balls flying out of here. What's going to tell the difference in this game is how the pitchers who give up the home runs react to them. Zack Greinke is known all over a baseball as a cool customer, so this one mistake shouldn't get him off of his game."

Russell Martin almost made it back-to-back home runs, but his fly to right center died slightly at the warning track, allowing Yasiel Puig to make an inning-ending catch. The Black and Gold are on the board thanks to Walker's two-run homer; now we'll see what starter Jeff Locke can do against the Dodgers.

Dodgers 1st: Dee Gordon drew a leadoff walk, but was thrown out trying to steal second. Puig lined a single to right, but Locke struck Adrian Gonzalez out swinging for the second out. Next was Matt Kemp, who doubled over Starling Marte's head in left to score Puig and tie the game at one. Hanley Ramirez walked to put two men on, but Locke struck Carl Crawford out swinging to end the inning. The Dodgers have hit the board with a run on two hits and two walks while leaving runners at first and second. After one, it's Pirates 2, Dodgers 1.

Dodgers 3rd: Puig drew a leadoff walk, but was forced by Gonzalez. Kemp flew to McCutchen in center for out number two, but Ramirez kept the inning going by lining a single to right. Crawford's base hit up the middle scored Gonzalez to tie the game at two with Ramirez moving to third, and Juan Uribe's lined single to left center cashed in Ramirez to give the Dodgers a 3-2 lead while Crawford moved to third. A.J. Ellis made it four singles in a row by lining a single to center. Crawford scored, and it was 4-2 Dodgers. Runners were still at first and second for Greinke, but his bouncer to Harrison at third stranded the runners and ended the inning. The Men in Blue have taken the lead with three runs on four hits and a walk, and after three it's Bums 4, Buccos 2.

Pirates 8th: With two out, Walker faced Grenke. Here's Pirates broadcaster Greg Brown with the count one ball and one strike:

"The Pirates got off to a flying start with Walker's homer in the first, but since then Greinke's pitched like the Cy Young candidate he is. (Jordy) Mercer blooped a single to left center field in the second, and Martin doubled to left in the sixth; that's been it as far as hits since the first. He's allowed three walks, one to Snider with two out in the fifth. The Bucs actually got two on with two out in the fourth on back-to-back walks to Marte and Davis, but Jordy Mercer struck out swinging to end the inning. Now we're in the eighth, and Walker needs to get something started. Here's the one-one pitch......HIGH AND DEEP TO RIGHT FIELD! KEMP IS BACK, HE'S AT THE WALL, AND YOU CAN CLEAR THE DECK! CANNONBALL NUMBER TWO TONIGHT FOR NEIL WALKER, AND THIS IS NIW A 4-3 GAME IN THE EIGHTH!"

John Wehner: "Greinke's insisted on trying to get Neil out up high all night, and this is the second time he's been taken deep. This wasn't really deep like the homer in the first inning, but it carried enough to get out of here."

Martin followed with a seeing-eye single to let, and Marte beat out a bouncer to short for an infield single. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly called for closer Kenley Jansen, and Pirates manager Clint Hurdle countered by sending Pedro Alvarez to the plate to bat for Davis. Jansen won the battle, as Alvarez bounced to Gordon at second to retire the side. Walker's second home run of the night has cut the Dodgers' lead to 4-3 after seven and a half, but the Buccos have also left runners at first and second. We'll see if it comes back to haunt them.

That was all the scoring. Gaby Sanchez, who entered the game at first in the bottom of the eight, was hit in he knee by a pitch with one out in the ninth, but Jansen retired Harrison on a pop to Gonzalez at first an struck Snider out swinging to end the game. Our final: Dodgers 4, Pirates 3, and the Dodgers lead the series two games to none.

Greinke was named Player of he Game by FS1. He pitched seven and two-thirds innings, giving up three runs on seven hits while walking three and striking out three. Walker was unquestionably the top dog for the Bucs, as he finished two for four with two home runs and all three Pirate RBIs.

Final totals: Dodgers 4-8-0, Pirates 3-7-0.

W- Greinke (1-0)
S- Jansen (1)
L- Locke (0-1)

HR- PIT: Walker 2 (2)

The series shifts to PNC Park in Pittsburgh for Game 3 on Monday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for shortly after 5PM Eastern, with Hyun-Jin Ryu starting for the Dodgers and Vance Worley taking the hill for the Pirates.

Next: We look at Game 3.

Thoughts?
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Garrett Garlits
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Posts: 495
Joined: May 2017
#3
01-18-2020, 10:36 AM

My display problem at the other board has been fixed, so hopefully I won't need this thread again. Thanks for the use of the board, Tim!
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