Category Archives: Matchups

Cubs White Sox Matchup

Apparently the Cubs play the White Sox in their final 3 games of this 2020 exhibition season. In past seasons there would be a lot of copy/pasting of tables but now we can just copy/paste links.

Click here for team status.

Not as concise but you can see the Cubs struggling in the BAT category and CHA with good BAT and very good PITCH. Lineups align with BAT for both teams. White Sox have better relief than Cubs who are around league average.

Cubs starting one of the best pitchers in MLB this season, Yu Darvish, who is currently ranked #6. Dylan Cease, former Cubs prospect traded in the Quintana acquisition is unranked but above average.

All this boils down into Tier Combos used in simulation giving White Sox a 58% chance of winning today despite Darvish on the mound. Cubs lineup is very underwater at tier -1.58. The new tier combo table shows a color coded comparison between the two teams.

Vegas has Cubs heavily favored at 63.6% making CHA a definite betting opportunity. White Sox are on a 5 game losing streak which may factor into the Vegas line.

Right now White Sox are receiving normal home field advantage which is baked into simulation and cannot be removed for many reasons; the best being this is a one off season and removing it causes a lot of complication in the code base. It is unclear whether or not there is home field advantage with no fans in the stands and with players from both teams sleeping in their home city.

This model favored CHA against Cleveland these last three days going against Vegas and was wrong each game. Losing streaks happen and right now this data model doesn’t correct for them. The results from TC Sim and the Tier Combo table should be considered advisory understanding that this data model compiles probabilities based upon historical data. If you flip a coin heads 4 times in a row the probability of the next flip being heads is the same as the first flip.

That is all for now. Game starts in 20 minutes. Despite what this model says, Go Cubs! Until then ….

Cubs Reds 8/18/1984

Cubs are in the middle of a 3 game set with the Reds in Cincinnati and this game is kind of interesting so let’s have a look at these two teams again at the beginning of day on August 18, 1984.,

NL_East 19840817


Cubs in first but only by 1 1/2 games ( 3 WAA ) ahead of the Mets.  Cubs PITCH has improved to almost exactly even steven based upon run differential.   This means the number of runs scored against them minus Unearned Runs is almost exactly the team league average for all 24 teams on this day.

Let’s look at the Reds team status who happen to be in the NL West even though they reside east of Chicago.


Bad everything about this team right now.  Let’s dive down further into this game.

Tier Data


Cubs have a maxed out Tier 4.00 lineup, Reds have an almost maxed out Tier -4.00 under water Relief staff.  Reds Lineup well under water as well.  The differences in WAA, Lineup, Starter, and Relief get fed into Tier Combo simulation which give Cubs a 66% advantage today.  Vegas lines would 



This is Ron Robinson’s first start of his career.  Sutcliffe still climbing out of the hole he dug himself in Cleveland at the beginning of this season.  Let’s see what happens.

Line Scores

CHN710 001 0401333151
CIN100 310 2221118165

Cubs pound 7 runs off Robinson in the first knocking him out after pitching one out.  Six of those 7 runs were unearned as the Reds commit 5 errors in this game. Sutcliffe gives up 5 runs in 5 innings which isn’t good but he gets the W regardless.  Relief on both sides give up a flurry of runs. Had the Reds not made so many errors Cubs would have lost this game due to poor pitching.

CHN Lineup 198408180


CIN Lineup 198408180


Lineups are what you would expect based upon each team’s BAT number in teams status above.

CHN START Roster 19840818


This is actually improving from the last time Cubs starting rotation was posted. Sutcliffe is going to take another hit on his WAA after this game. He does recover it all and some by the end of the season as we’ll see in the next 6 weeks.

CIN START Roster 19840818


CHN RELIEF Roster 19840818


Might have to check the code because 3 relievers seems kind of low.  If there are more on the roster then some guys have been riding the bench for more than a week.  Notice that Rick Reuschel is missing again.  In modern baseball these rosters are filled with at least 8 player, all playing frequently.

CIN RELIEF Roster 19840818


This concurs with CIN PITCH in team status.

That’s all for now.  Reports similar to this with more handicapping detail  will soon be up for all games at  

We’re also approaching the 2020 season halfway point at which player ranking can begin in eanrest.  More on that later.  Until then ….

Cubs Expos 8/9/1984

Cubs start yet another 4 game set with the Expos in Montreal after finishing a 4 game series with them 4 days ago at Wrigley Field  Schedulers haven’t been very creative this season.  Not much will have changed since we covered that series here except the Cubs are now solidly in first place after sweeping the Mets.

Note: The Expos have the WAS franchise tag because they move to Washington to become the Nationals and win a World Series one day.

NL East 19840808

CHN 68 45 74.7 -7.5 6.1
NYN 62 48 -42.7 31.5 -11.9
PHI 60 52 26.2 38.5 -29.9
SLN 56 57 -42.7 22.5 5.1
WAS 54 58 -67.3 49.5 12.1
PIT 49 65 -48.3 65.5 5.1

Cubs hitting way up since the beginning of Mets series which will show up in their lineup below.  Expos hitting is declining but pitching pretty good which we’ll also see below.

Tier Combo

  WAA Vegas TC Sim EV L S R
CHN 23 X 0.554 X 3.38 -1.91 -1.19  
WAS -4 X 0.446 X -0.64 1.96 -1.43  

TC Sim gives Cubs a 55% advantage today.  I would have expected it to be higher but Cubs Lineup is far less than their usual maxed out Tier 4.00 which means they’re probably resting players today.  Expos have a starter advantage today and both relief squads equally under water.


Rank WAA IP Name TeamId Rest Tier
-061- -2.06 154.0 Dennis_Eckersley CHN 5 -1.91
+077+ 2.39 81.0 Dan_Schatzeder WAS 5 1.96

We know from being in the future that Eckersley will have a great end to this season.  Those not from the future wouldn’t know this.  Vegas lines would tell us what people are thinking about both these teams right now but we don’t have that data.  Let’s see what happens.

Line Scores

TeamID Linescore R TB H E
CHN 000 000 000 0 0 4 4 2
WAS 000 000 000 1 1 7 6 2

Now this is a true pitching duel.  Eckersley pitches a complete 9 innings letting up no runs.   Schatzeder pitches 10 innings letting up no runs and actually gets a W that was truly earned.  Apparently Expos manager didn’t want to let their under water relief staff lose this one — and neither did Frey but he succumbed in the 10th.

CHN Lineup 198408090

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX 0.92 Bob_Dernier CF 428
+012+ 4.41 Ryne_Sandberg 2B 512
+040+ 3.28 Gary_Matthews LF 435
+082+ 2.33 Keith_Moreland 1B 355
+042+ 3.25 Jody_Davis CR 422
XXXXX -0.42 Henry_Cotto RF 119
+039+ 3.34 Ron_Cey 3B 399
-023- -3.00 Larry_Bowa SS 311
XXXXX -0.55 Dennis_Eckersley PR 34
TOTAL 13.56

Leon Durham missing today but he did come in late to pinch hit.  Sandberg must have had a good series with the Mets because he’s almost in top ten of MLB, ranked #12, his highest ranking this season.

WAS Lineup 198408090

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX 0.61 Tim_Raines CF 492
XXXXX -0.23 Max_Venable LF 15
+151+ 1.34 Andre_Dawson RF 397
+038+ 3.34 Gary_Carter CR 460
XXXXX -0.08 Dan_Driessen 1B 284
XXXXX 0.23 Tim_Wallach 3B 445
-021- -3.04 Doug_Flynn 2B 273
XXXXX -0.55 Mike_Ramsey SS 38
XXXXX -0.27 Dan_Schatzeder PR 21
TOTAL 1.35

This is a slightly below average lineup based on today’s league average for lineups.

CHN START Roster 19840809

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
-061- -2.06 Dennis_Eckersley 154.0 0
XXXXX 0.42 Steve_Trout 132.3 1
+155+ 1.32 Scott_Sanderson 85.0 2
-096- -1.58 Rick_Sutcliffe 174.3 2
-117- -1.43 Dick_Ruthven 84.7 3
TOTAL -3.33

Sanderson back.  Numbers above are from beginning of today which are what you would know in order to bet this game.  Eckersley will be much higher tomorrow which we’ll see in our next matchup post.4 days from now.

WAS START Roster 19840809

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+077+ 2.39 Dan_Schatzeder 81.0 0
XXXXX 0.25 Bill_Gullickson 149.0 1
+076+ 2.42 Bryn_Smith 145.0 2
-009- -3.63 Steve_Rogers 105.3 2
+020+ 3.76 Charlie_Lea 171.7 3
TOTAL 5.19

Three decent starters.  If Expos had half way decent hitting and relief they would be in contention with this starting rotation.

CHN RELIEF Roster 19840809

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
XXXXX 0.02 George_Frazier 79.6 0
XXXXX 0.73 Lee_Smith 73.3 1
XXXXX -0.04 Warren_Brusstar 47.7 1
+143+ 1.43 Tim_Stoddard 71.7 1
-028- -2.79 Rick_Reuschel 81.0 4
TOTAL -0.65

Frazier gave up the only run in this game today.

WAS RELIEF Roster 19840809

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+103+ 1.93 Jeff_Reardon 61.7 1
XXXXX -0.57 Bob_James 62.0 2
XXXXX 0.08 Joe_Hesketh 1.0 2
XXXXX -0.40 Rick_Grapenthin 5.0 2
+134+ 1.57 Gary_Lucas 48.3 3
-009- -3.63 Steve_Rogers 105.3 5
TOTAL -1.02

Expos have excellent PITCH based upon seasonal run differential but it isn’t because of their relief staff.

That’s all for now.  The 2020 data portal starting with a very rough draft prototype of game day handicapping service almost ready.  This will allow you to keep track of any game this season, in progress or in the past.  More on this later.  Until then ….

Cubs Mets 8/6/1984

Cubs play the Mets once again in another 4 game series at Wrigley Field.  Cubs took 3 out of 4 from the Expos but Mets kept the pace and the two teams still very close in NL East.  Let’s look at these two teams again.

NL East 19840805

CHN 64 45 58.2 -5.9 8.5
NYN 62 44 -46.7 46.1 -9.5
PHI 58 50 28.2 31.1 -28.5
SLN 55 55 -36.2 19.1 3.5
WAS 52 56 -61.8 48.1 11.5
PIT 47 64 -43.8 60.1 3.5

Pretty much same with respect to BAT, PITCH, and UR for both Mets and Cubs when these two teams last met at end of July.  Seasonal run differential numbers move at a glacial pace for all teams in a league.

This late in the season roster value can be much different than what seasonal run differential may suggest.

Tier Combo

WAA Vegas TC Sim EV L S R
NYN 18 X 0.459 X -1.60 1.68 3.37
CHN 19 X 0.541 X 4.00 -1.61 -1.76

Tier Combo simulation giving Cubs a 54% advantage today which is exactly home field advantage if you knew nothing about either team playing.  We do, however, know a few things about both teams.

Cubs again with a top of MLB maxed out Tier 4.00 lineup which concurs with their BAT in team status above.  Mets starting a better pitcher today and have much better relief which we’ll see below.  This also concurs with their excellent PITCH in team status.

Pitching kept the Mets at the top of NL East this season, hitting has kept the Cubs on top this year so far.


Rank WAA IP Name TeamId Rest Tier
+096+ 2.06 138.0 Dwight_Gooden NYN 5 1.68
-095- -1.68 79.0 Dick_Ruthven CHN 5 -1.61

Luckily for Ruthven he faces an equally under water Mets lineups.  That matchup is even steven.   Dwight Gooden must face Cubs massive maxed out lineup today.  Let’s see what happens.

Line Scores

TeamID Linescore R TB H E
NYN 000102000 3 15 9 0
CHN 20401002 9 26 13 1

The Cubs top of MLB lineup tags Gooden for 5 earned runs and they knock him out after 4 innings.  Ruthven gives up 1 earned and 2 unearned runs in 5 2/3 innings.  That 1 error in the E column resulted in 2 runs for the Mets.  On average there are almost exactly 2 errors per unearned run based upon all runs in the history of baseball post 1900.

Dwight Gooden had a bad day today but he finishes this season strong ranked #10 in his first year in MLB.  He has many great years following this one as well.  Next year, in 1985, he’s ranked #1 by this data model and WAR.

NYN Lineup 198408060

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX -0.99 Wally_Backman 2B 348
XXXXX -0.82 Mookie_Wilson CF 412
+158+ 1.32 Keith_Hernandez 1B 438
+079+ 2.29 Darryl_Strawberry RF 410
XXXXX 1.11 George_Foster LF 397
XXXXX -0.69 Hubie_Brooks 3B 407
-081- -1.83 Mike_Fitzgerald CR 249
XXXXX -0.63 Rafael_Santana SS 67
XXXXX -0.80 Dwight_Gooden PR 52
TOTAL -1.04

CHN Lineup 198408060

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX 0.78 Bob_Dernier CF 413
+020+ 3.93 Ryne_Sandberg 2B 493
+035+ 3.23 Gary_Matthews LF 421
+004+ 5.04 Leon_Durham 1B 368
+130+ 1.64 Keith_Moreland RF 337
+056+ 2.75 Jody_Davis CR 409
+048+ 2.90 Ron_Cey 3B 384
XXXXX -0.46 Dave_Owen SS 82
XXXXX -0.29 Dick_Ruthven PR 32
TOTAL 19.52

Lineup value keeps rising for Cubs.  Keith Moreland makes it into top 160 for first time this season.

The above are values at the start of today; what you would know sitting in the grandstands at Wrigley waiting for this game to start.

NYN START Roster 19840806

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+096+ 2.06 Dwight_Gooden 138.0 0
+152+ 1.39 Sid_Fernandes 34.3 1
-024- -2.79 Bruce_Berenyi 111.7 2
+046+ 2.92 Walt_Terrell 145.3 3
+124+ 1.72 Ron_Darling 141.3 4
TOTAL 5.30

An above average staff.  Individual starters are tiered per game for simulation so the staff totals above are for informational purposes and used as a column in horse race tables to determine total team roster value.

CHN START Roster 19840806

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
-095- -1.68 Dick_Ruthven 79.0 0
+160+ 1.28 Rich_Bordi 72.0 1
-070- -1.93 Dennis_Eckersley 154.0 2
XXXXX 0.76 Steve_Trout 126.0 3
XXXXX -0.92 Rick_Sutcliffe 167.6 4
TOTAL -2.49

Not much different than from last time but Steve Trout is back.  Eckersley will be much higher next time we see him (just a hunch 🙂

NYN RELIEF Roster 19840806

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+132+ 1.60 Brent_Gaff 43.7 0
+047+ 2.90 Doug_Sisk 65.3 0
XXXXX 0.38 Wes_Gardner 4.3 1
+088+ 2.16 Jesse_Orosco 61.7 2
XXXXX -0.10 Tom_Gorman 41.0 2
TOTAL 6.94

This is a very good relief staff.  At Tier 3.37 they are over 1 1/2 standard deviations above league average for team relief.  Relief wasn’t the problem in this game even though the Cubs tagged them for 3 runs.  Cubs got all the runs they needed to win from Gooden.

CHN RELIEF Roster 19840806

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
XXXXX -0.06 Warren_Brusstar 44.7 0
+126+ 1.68 Tim_Stoddard 67.0 0
-026- -2.77 Rick_Reuschel 81.0 1
XXXXX 0.46 Lee_Smith 70.0 1
XXXXX -0.19 George_Frazier 77.3 2
TOTAL -0.88

Cubs relief is under water again because Rick Reuschel has returned. Reuschel had a great career but 1984 wasn’t a very good year for him as he finishes ranked #55 in the bottom 160, a list no one wants to be #1.

From our position in the future we know Cubs sweep this series to take a commanding 4 1/2 ( 9 WAA ) game lead over Mets in first place when they start yet another weekend series with the Expos on 8/9.

That is all for now.  Some 2020 season coverage of how TC simulation is working using historical data coming next.  Until then ….

Cubs Expos 8/2/1984

After winning 2 out of 3 from Phillies and Mets losing 3 in a row Cubs have slid into first place at the beginning of August, the beginning of the final third of any baseball season.  Today Cubs start a weekend series with the Expos so let’s take a look at these two teams to get an idea what the next 4 days will bring.

NL East 19840801

CHN 61 44 57.1 -8.2 8.0
NYN 59 43 -47.3 41.8 -9.0
PHI 56 48 28.6 28.8 -29.0
SLN 53 53 -33.3 19.8 2.0
WAS 51 53 -59.4 49.8 11.0
PIT 46 61 -39.4 59.8 4.0

Here are the NL East standings at end of day yesterday which would be what your read in the newspaper when waiting for this game to start in the grandstands at Wrigley Field.

Expos (WAS) have terrible BAT and very good PITCH which we’ll see why as we dig down further into this team. The Montreal Expos will one day become the Washington Nationals which is why they are listed under the WAS franchise tag.

Tier Combo

WAA Vegas TC Sim EV L S R
WAS -2 X 0.364 X -0.36 2.58 -3.12
CHN 17 X 0.636 X 4.00 -1.12 -0.85

Tiers represent how far above or below current league averages for today’s {L}ineups, (S}tarter, and {R}elief.  Lineups get matched with opposing team Starter and Relief and entered into a simulation which runs one million iterations of this game drawing from similar historical data.

Tier Combo simulation gives Cubs an almost 64% advantage today.  If Vegas lines were below 64% Cubs would be a betting opportunity.  If above Expos’ 36% they would be a betting opportunity.  The Expected Value (EV) column calculates how good of a bet it is if you assume the probability generated from TC simulation is correct.  We don’t have data for how Vegas handicapped this game.

Cubs are way ahead in win/loss column (WAA), have a maxed out tier 4.00 lineup today which is 2 complete standard deviations above current league average for team lineups.  Expos have a better starter but much worse relief.


Rank WAA IP Name TeamId Rest Tier
+039+ 3.13 133.0 Bryn_Smith WAS 5 2.58
XXXXX -1.16 159.3 Rick_Sutcliffe CHN 5 -1.12

Sutcliffe is under water from a terrible start to this season at Cleveland.   Cubs are reaping all the benefit from his rise.  Simulation does not give out mulligans nor does it know the future.  Since we’re from the future we know Sutcliffe wins a Cy Young award this season and for good reasons.  Right now, with what we know today, Expos have a starter advantage.

Line Scores

TeamID Linescore R TB H E
WAS 000020000 2 17 8 0
CHN 00010110 3 11 6 0

And this becomes somewhat of a pitchers duel. here.  Sutcliffe pitches 8 1/3 allowing only 2 earned runs so his numbers will go up again tomorrow. Smith pitches all 8 innings, all 3 runs earned.

WAS Lineup 198408020

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX 1.07 Tim_Raines CF 460
XXXXX -0.13 Max_Venable LF 5
+154+ 1.32 Andre_Dawson RF 368
+032+ 3.30 Gary_Carter CR 428
XXXXX -0.13 Dan_Driessen 1B 263
XXXXX 0.36 Tim_Wallach 3B 414
XXXXX -0.21 Derrell_Thomas SS 163
-026- -2.75 Doug_Flynn 2B 245
XXXXX -0.50 Bryn_Smith PR 49
TOTAL 2.33

Although WAS has an above 0 Total, this late in the season that is more than 1/2 standard deviation below league average.

CHN Lineup 198408020

Rank WAA Name Pos PA
XXXXX -0.65 Henry_Cotto CF 95
+015+ 4.20 Ryne_Sandberg 2B 476
+031+ 3.36 Gary_Matthews LF 405
+006+ 4.75 Leon_Durham 1B 352
XXXXX 0.92 Keith_Moreland RF 321
+064+ 2.58 Jody_Davis CR 398
+054+ 2.77 Ron_Cey 3B 370
-020- -2.98 Larry_Bowa SS 303
XXXXX -0.50 Rick_Sutcliffe PR 27
TOTAL 14.45

This is very similar to all the other CHN lineups shown here before.

WAS START Roster 19840802

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
+039+ 3.13 Bryn_Smith 133.0 0
+018+ 3.99 Charlie_Lea 163.7 1
-007- -4.20 Steve_Rogers 96.0 2
+055+ 2.75 Dan_Schatzeder 77.3 3
XXXXX 0.00 Bill_Gullickson 135.7 4
TOTAL 5.67

Three excellent starters and one not so good.

CHN START Roster 19840802

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
XXXXX -1.14 Rick_Sutcliffe 159.3 0
-090- -1.66 Dick_Ruthven 79.0 1
+125+ 1.57 Rich_Bordi 68.0 2
-042- -2.29 Dennis_Eckersley 147.4 3
XXXXX 1.05 Scott_Sanderson 81.0 4
TOTAL -2.47

For some reason Steve Trout is missing as well as Rick Reuschel.

WAS RELIEF Roster 19840802

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
XXXXX 1.07 Gary_Lucas 42.3 1
+157+ 1.28 Jeff_Reardon 54.0 2
XXXXX -0.17 Bob_James 59.0 3
-007- -4.20 Steve_Rogers 96.0 4
TOTAL -2.02

CHN RELIEF Roster 19840802

Rank WAA Name IP Rest
XXXXX 0.25 Lee_Smith 67.3 0
XXXXX -0.34 George_Frazier 75.0 1
XXXXX -0.23 Warren_Brusstar 42.7 2
+115+ 1.74 Tim_Stoddard 65.0 2
TOTAL 1.42

A very slightly above average relief squad based on seasonal numbers but almost 1/2 standard deviation below current league average for team relief.

That’s all for now.  Cubs take 3 out of 4 in this series and will host the Mets on August 6 which we’ll cover.

More coverage of the year 2020 season coming.  The simulator is up and running well.  Handicapping early games using 3 year historical data looks unexpectedly good.  A very rough prototype portal into all data in this model is very close to a beginning.  More to come soon.  Until then ….