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NLCS Game 4 Projections: Phillies @ Giants

October 20, 2010

Sorry about not getting up any game 3 projections, but unfortunately school got in the way. However I’m back, and we have some lineup changes to account for.

Player wOBA rv600 ePA   Player wOBA rv600 ePA
Edgar Renteria .309 -11.8 4.8   Shane Victorino .351 11.2 4.8
Freddy Sanchez .335 3.3 4.68   Placido Polanco .335 2.4 4.68
Aubrey Huff .370 20.3 4.54   Chase Utley .385 29.1 4.54
Buster Posey .376 26.5 4.46   Ryan Howard .370 21.1 4.46
Pat Burrell .343 4.6 4.34   Jayson Werth .384 28.5 4.34
Cody Ross .331 0.8 4.23   Jimmy Rollins .328 -0.6 4.23
Pablo Sandoval .364 18.9 4.1   Raul Ibanez .361 17.1 4.1
Aaron Rowand .318 -5.8 3.98   Carlos Ruiz .343 5.6 3.98
Pitcher .216 -59.3 3.86   Pitcher .216 -59.3 3.86

wOBA – Weighted On Base Average

rv600 – Run Value (Above Average) per 600 PA

ePA – Expected PA per lineup slot in the NL

Expected Giants RPG: 4.32

Expected Phillies RPG: 4.79

Yes, this lineup is awful. Bochy has managed to take out one of his most productive players, and put possibly his worst hitter in the leadoff spot. Edgar Renteria should not be starting vs. righties in the post-season, and most definitely not in the leadoff spot. For a struggling and injured Uribe, I can somewhat understand, but Fontenot would be a better option. And then Aaron Rowand for Andres Torres. I won’t even go there. Good to see the Panda back in the lineup though.

The Game 4 starters will be Madison Bumgarner taking on Joe Blanton. Surprisingly both pitchers have very similar peripherals this season, but Bumgarner has a huge advantage in ERA.

Madison Bumgarner 2.90 3.73 3.85 6.4
Joe Blanton 4.41 4.56 4.62 6.2

tRA comes from StatCorner.

Bullpens are a fickle thing, and trying to eliminate the inferior pitchers from each team, as well as adjusting for injuries and such would simply create more noise (and work!) than necessary. Instead, we’ll just finish off each starter’s expected line with the bullpen performance this season (again using tRA). The Giants sit at 3.46 with the Phillies at 3.93.

  Starter IP Starter RA Bullpen IP Bullpen RA Total RA
Giants 6.4 2.74 2.6 1.00 3.74
Phillies 6.2 3.16 2.8 1.24 4.40

I exclude defense because of the volatility of it in a 7 game series, especially with no huge difference between the two defenses.

Using the Odds Ratio combined with the pythagorean records from these expected numbers, we get these results:

Team eRS eRA x-W% % Victory
Giants 4.32 3.74 .566 52.71%
Phillies 4.79 4.40 .539 47.29%


Here’s my method for factoring in home-field, which I implemented during the NLDS: Rather than applying the +5% in expected winning%, I’ll apply the expected runs scored and allowed to the NL runs scored averages in home ballparks, rather than the league average. By using runs scored and allowed rather than wins and losses, we of course get a more precise measurement of home-field advantages. This also gives me a way to predict a more accurate expected final score, which just makes this whole process more attractive. And on to the numbers:

NL Home Runs Per Game: 4.474

NL Road Runs Per Game: 4.175

NL Runs Per Game: 4.325

Here are the expected numbers when adjusting for home-field:

Team eRS eRA x-W% % Victory
Giants 4.39 3.67 .582 55.89%
Phillies 4.72 4.47 .524 44.11%

Expected Final Score: Giants 4.43, 4.20

Unless there’s really something wrong with Torres (which very well seems possible), then playing Rowand seems like a mistake. Well, I think it’s a mistake either way. Torres has been one of the most valuable players on the team this year, and I think you have to stick with him. The Giants have the pitching advantage and are at home, so hopefully they can win despite this extremely poor lineup and take a commanding 3-1 lead and shock the world.

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