Cubs Mets Matchup 7/27/1984

Today is Friday July 27, 1984 and Cubs, after taking 2 out of 3 from the Phillies, travel to New York for a 4 game series which culminates in a scheduled double header on Sunday.  Let’s look at these two teams.

Below are NL East standings as of end of day yesterday 7/26.

NL East 19840726

NYN 58 37 -37.4 54.6 -5.1
CHN 56 42 51.0 -16.4 7.9
PHI 54 44 35.5 29.6 -30.1
WAS 48 50 -57.0 46.6 8.9
SLN 47 53 -41.9 10.6 -0.1
PIT 44 57 -33.0 55.6 2.9

Cubs 3 1/2 games behind Mets who suffer from bad hitting but very good PITCH.  Cubs are the opposite but their PITCH is less bad than Mets’ BAT. Seasonal run differential can be deceptive late in a season as teams contending for playoffs make acquisitions to fix problems they know they have.  

Tier Combo

  WAA Vegas TC Sim EV L S R
CHN 14 X 0.446 X 4.00 -1.83 -0.74  
NYN 21 X 0.554 X -1.12 2.49 3.44  

The WAA column is simply team wins minus team losses defined in this data model as WAA’; the same value used for players.  Mets are 7 WAA ahead of Cubs.  Divide that by 2 and you get 3 1/2 which is number of games they are ahead in first place.  Not too complicated.

L, S, and R columns are tier numbers representing team Lineups, Starters, and Relief squads for today’s game.  Cubs starting a massive maxed out tier 4.00 lineup which is more than 2 standard deviations above league average for lineups as of beginning of today.

Mets starting a much better pitcher than Cubs and have much better relief. 


Rank WAA IP Name TeamId Rest Tier
-082- -1.64 66.0 Dick_Ruthven CHN 6 -1.83
+043+ 2.96 127.0 Dwight_Gooden NYN 7 2.49

Every 2 tier numbers is one complete standard deviation above league average for the complete set of MLB starters.  Gooden is more than that today.  Ruthven is almost a complete standard deviation below current league average. 

Pitchers however face opposing lineups, not opposing pitchers — except when they’re batting in a lineup.  Gooden must deal with a lineup better than him.  Ruthven faces a much weaker lineup, yet that lineup is still better.  Let’s see what happens.

Line Scores

TeamID Linescore R TB H E
CHN 100000000 1 7 4 0
NYN 10000010 2 8 8 0

This is commonly known as a pitchers duel.  Each superior lineup had trouble scoring against the pitcher they faced.

Gooden pitches 8 giving up one run, Jesse Orosco in for the save in the ninth.  Ruthven gives up 2 in 6 1/3 and Tim Stoddard finishes the game for Cubs.  

CHN Lineup 198407270

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX 0.73 Bob_Dernier CF 395
+020+ 3.59 Ryne_Sandberg 2B 445
+030+ 3.25 Gary_Matthews LF 381
+012+ 4.30 Leon_Durham 1B 325
XXXXX 0.90 Keith_Moreland RF 294
+063+ 2.39 Jody_Davis CR 368
+073+ 2.27 Ron_Cey 3B 345
-022- -2.71 Larry_Bowa SS 282
XXXXX -0.27 Dick_Ruthven PR 26
TOTAL 14.45

Leon Durham back in the clean up spot but it didn’t matter much today. This lineup scores 11 runs tomorrow however.

NYN Lineup 198407270

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX -1.18 Wally_Backman 2B 319
XXXXX -0.65 Mookie_Wilson CF 372
+130+ 1.43 Keith_Hernandez 1B 395
+074+ 2.25 Darryl_Strawberry RF 374
XXXXX 1.11 George_Foster LF 360
XXXXX -0.36 Hubie_Brooks 3B 364
-110- -1.36 Mike_Fitzgerald CR 221
XXXXX -0.29 Rafael_Santana SS 30
XXXXX -0.71 Dwight_Gooden PR 48
TOTAL 0.24

At 0.24 total WAA this is an almost completely even steven lineup based upon seasonal numbers.  As a season progresses the league average for lineups goes up as teams replace negative value players with new guys, thus making this lineup below average with a tier number of -1.12, a little over 1/2 standard deviation below current league average for lineups.  This concurs with Mets’ negative BAT in team status above.

CHN START Roster 19840727

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
-082- -1.64 Dick_Ruthven 66.0 0
-032- -2.52 Dennis_Eckersley 140.4 2
XXXXX 0.69 Scott_Sanderson 73.3 3
XXXXX -1.20 Rick_Sutcliffe 153.0 4
XXXXX 0.65 Steve_Trout 112.7 5
TOTAL -4.02

These are the current set of starters for Cubs.  Sutcliffe still climbing out of the hole he dug the first couple of months with Cleveland.  He pitched well against Phillies.  Eckersley is also starting to rise which you can’t see from this static snapshot.  Since we’re from the future we know what happens these next few months which will unfold more with each of these matchup reports.

NYN START Roster 19840727

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+043+ 2.96 Dwight_Gooden 127.0 0
XXXXX 0.42 Sid_Fernandes 18.3 2
-046- -2.20 Bruce_Berenyi 101.0 3
+088+ 2.04 Walt_Terrell 128.3 4
+093+ 1.95 Ron_Darling 127.3 5
TOTAL 5.17

Mets have 3 solid starters which compensates for their under water lineups.

CHN RELIEF Roster 19840727

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+094+ 1.93 Tim_Stoddard 61.3 0
XXXXX 1.09 Rich_Bordi 59.0 2
XXXXX 0.13 Lee_Smith 62.3 4
-016- -2.94 Rick_Reuschel 77.3 5
XXXXX -0.63 George_Frazier 71.3 5
XXXXX -0.23 Warren_Brusstar 42.0 5
TOTAL -0.65

Reuschel dragged this relief squad into negative territory.  He’s on 5 day rest so Frey may make him a starter again soon.

NYN RELIEF Roster 19840727

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+051+ 2.62 Jesse_Orosco 56.3 0
XXXXX 0.32 Ed_Lynch 86.3 2
+150+ 1.28 Brent_Gaff 34.7 3
+019+ 3.76 Doug_Sisk 64.3 3
XXXXX 0.25 Tom_Gorman 35.0 3
TOTAL 8.23

This is a very good near top of MLB set of relievers which also concurs with Mets’ excellent PITCH in team status above.

That is all for now.  Cubs lose today but since we’re from the future we know they take the next 3 against the Mets sweeping the Sunday double header only allowing Mets 1 run in both games.  This series will bring the Cubs within 1 1/2 games ( 3 WAA ) of first place in NL East.  

Phillies come to Chicago on Monday 7/30 which we’ll cover next with another look at this matchup.  Until then ….

Update from the year 2020:

On this day in the year 2020 Cubs travel to Cincinnati to start a 4 game series.  Normally Aprils are when we fix broken scripts and get all the data moving smoothly again for ranking and handicapping in May.  

We have complete opening rosters for Cubs and all teams and ready to run a playoff horse race.   Vegas lines are also coming in even though they changed their API very slightly for the first time in 5 years of doing this.  It wasn’t much of a change so the data is coming in and everything seems to be working again.

Cubs are slight favorites at 52.6%, Reds at 49.8% tonight according to Vegas. Still tweaking the simulator to take 3 year split data.  I was going to rush to get all of this online but it appears the entire MLB season could be in jeopardy only 4 days into this shortened season.  This means there may be no reason to rush.

If things settle down perhaps a current season matchup post will happen when Cubs play Pirates on 7/31.

So we’ll see.  In the meantime, since we are from the future, we know the 1984 season finishes to completion and well into October without any controversy except  for that one team that loses home field advantage in the playoffs because they can’t play night games at home.

End of Update