Cubs Clinch

This blog has been offline for awhile while working on the baseball-handbook site which is starting to take shape. The purpose of this public log book was to ferret out table formats and test the code that produces them from data sources. All tables produced by this code had to be manually copied and pasted into these WordPress posts. All this code was reused to quickly put together the clickable site that provides player, team, and handicapping information for any team, any player, any game since 1900 in a (hopefully) easy to use format.

Ironically the Cubs clinch a playoff spot almost the same time in current year 2020 as they did in 1984. This year there was little to no fanfare.

Last night in 1984 when the Cubs beat the Pirates 4-1 clinching NL East Cubs fans celebrated as intensely as they did in 2016 after winning a World Series. Unlike in 2016 however, Cubs had to play another game the next day on September 25.

Cubs lost that game 7-1 with all their regular players nursing hangovers or something. Reggie Patterson who previously pitched 1 inning in 1984 started and Cubs lineup went from a typical tier 4.00 to a tier -1.97 today.

Lineups are dynamic from game to game so that would be reflected in the handicapping. With only one inning pitched, Patterson would disqualify simulation for this game and handicapping would be a discard. One of the problems with simulation is it only takes into account data model factors and not other influences like most players not playing with their normal competitive mindset. Factors like this would be difficult if not impossible to model mathematically.

Cubs were cruising to the playoffs after our matchup post over a month ago so it was only a matter of time before it became official. Memories of the 1969 season lingered but collapses like that are unusual and considered anomalies with low probability of occurrence.

Dredging up 1984 was in response to no baseball this year. Since then MLB has concocted an exhibition season which is coming to a close in a couple of days. Cubs and White Sox are in post season and both teams have interesting profiles.

By calendar days, if this were a normal year, we would be at the beginning of June. A normal baseball season is a marathon enveloping summer. This year it is a sprint. This data model right now has just enough data to start handicapping and the season is almost over.

We’ll cover both 2020 and 1984 playoffs with commentary and links into baseball-handbook data which are already up for 1984 playoffs.

The days of posting Cubs matchups and status here are over as that is all done automatically with more colorful tables for any team you choose. This log book will still stay active for various coding rants as the handbook site develops and becomes an app for that. There’s also an issue with WAR and 1969 Ernie Banks which is rather peculiar. Until then ….