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Pythagorean Baseball Revisited

With each Major League team having played over 100 games thus far this season I felt like now would be a good time to revisit the discussion on Pythagorean Method that I started in June. Back then the teams had played over 60 games. With about 40 more games upnder their belts let’s see if the theory holds true.

For those who don’t recall the earlier discussion Pythagorean Method is a theory (created by Bill James) that attempts to predict a teams win percentage based on the number of runs they score and allow. The formula for figuring this out is as follows:

Runs Scored2/(Runs Scored2+Runs Allowed2)= Winning Pct.

According to figures I calculated this morning the standings in every division are exactly as Pythagorean Method predicts. The only difference between the standings printed in your morning newspaper and the standings predicted by Pythagorean Method is the NL West where Arizona and San Diego have an identical Win-Loss records. The standings list Arizona ahead of San Diego because it comes first alphabetically. However, the Padres have a 2 percentage point lead on the Diamondbacks in Pythagorean Pct. (.500 to .498) so Pythagorean Method lists San Diego first.

Here are the standings including Pythagorean Pct. as of this morning:

Division Team Runs
Scored
Runs
Allowed
Pyth.
PCT
W L Pct.
AL East New York Yankees 617 521 .584 67 44 .604
Boston Red Sox 618 563 .546 65 48 .575
Toronto Blue Jays 602 560 .536 61 54 .530
Baltimore Orioles 551 640 .426 51 64 .443
Tampa Bay Devil Rays 504 617 .400 47 68 .409
AL Central Detroit Tigers 594 447 .638 76 38 .667
Chicago White Sox 642 553 .574 67 46 .593
Minnesota Twins 585 517 .561 67 47 .588
Cleveland Indians 616 572 .537 49 64 .434
Kansas City Royals 522 684 .368 41 73 .360
AL West Oakland Athletics 511 515 .496 62 52 .544
Los Angeles Angels 559 541 .516 59 56 .513
Texas Rangers 599 572 .523 58 58 .500
Seattle Mariners 530 527 .503 56 58 .491
NL East New York Mets 607 507 .589 69 44 .611
Philadelphia Phillies 583 589 .495 55 58 .487
Florida Marlins 529 551 .480 53 61 .465
Atlanta Braves 586 583 .503 52 61 .460
Washington Nationals 526 589 .444 50 64 .439
NL Central St. Louis Cardinals 567 551 .514 62 52 .544
Cincinnati Reds 565 597 .472 59 56 .513
Houston Astros 528 528 .500 56 58 .491
Milwaukee Brewers 520 602 .427 54 60 .474
Chicago Cubs 483 585 .405 48 66 .421
Pittsburgh Pirates 506 593 .421 42 73 .365
NL West Los Angeles Dodgers 581 530 .546 59 56 .513
San Diego Padres 512 512 .500 58 56 .509
Arizona Diamondbacks 572 574 .498 58 56 .509
Colorado Rockies 514 501 .513 55 59 .482
San Francisco Giants 525 533 .492 54 60 .474

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