Dugout Central Challenge Update

by KerryWhisnant

Right before the season started, Dugout Central readers and staff were challenged to predict the number of wins for each of the thirty MLB teams. The predictions were given in previous articles for the AL (here) and NL (here). Now that we are five weeks into the season, let’s take a look at the current standings.

This year there are two different contests – one uses average win difference (AWD) and the other root mean square difference (RMSD). The difference scores are projected to the end of the season in two ways – extrapolate the current team wins to 162 games or prorate our 162-game predictions to the current number of games. One method overstates the error, while the other understates it. By taking the geometric average (square root of the product) of the two methods those effects tend to cancel out. The standings below use this combined score. In practice, the two projection methods give almost identical results for the ordering, even though numerically they are far off from each other and the final scores.

The projected scores for the two contests are shown in the following table, ordered by the AWD score. All games through May 8 are included.

AWD RMSD
–Diamond Mind 4.53 5.88
–DM-CAIRO 4.53 6.00
–Over/Under 4.55 6.02
–DM-Bill James 4.56 5.93
–BaseballProspectus 4.61 5.97
–DM-Marcel 4.62 5.88
Chuck Johnson 4.78 6.28
–81 Wins 4.90 5.92
–Average 5.01 6.58
John Bowen 5.02 6.75
–2010 Pythagorean 5.14 6.92
Kerry Whisnant 5.20 6.69
Patrick Greco 5.20 6.70
–2010 5.26 6.95
–TheHardballTimes 5.26 7.05
Jon Ellis (Seven) 5.34 6.99
Robert Owens 6.08 7.80

Chuck currently leads by both the AWD and RMSD accounting – John is second in AWD and I’m second in RMSD. Of course, it’s still early and the standings are very volatile from day to day – just within the last two weeks, Chuck’s lead has been cut in half.

The other predictions in the table belong to various computer picks and algorithmic formulas. Average is the average of our six picks for each team. The 2010 and 2010 Pythagorean use last year’s wins and Pythagorean wins, respectively. 81 Wins is just like it sounds – it predicts 81 wins for each team. Sadly, only Chuck is doing better than 81 Wins, thanks in part to an AL Central that is so far completely upside-down compared to expectations. The Over/Under predictions are from the preseason Vegas line, and as usual they are near the top.

The Diamond Mind predictions are from the Replacement Level Yankees Weblog – they use the Diamond Mind simulations of hundreds of thousands seasons to get average win totals. For player inputs they used player projections from Bill James, CAIRO, Marcel, Oliver and PECOTA. For a detailed description of their method and the win predictions, click here. The DM-CAIRO, DM-Marcel and DM-Bill James are the results of using just those particular player projections, respectively. Also shown are predictions from the Baseball Prospectus (here) and The Hardball Times. These use the PECOTA and Oliver player projections, respectively. Overall the computer predictions are doing well, except for The Hardball Times.

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16 Responses to “Dugout Central Challenge Update”

  1. JohnBowen Says:

    How much longer do you think the Indians will keep playing like this?

    I mean, my roommate’s an Indians fan, so I spent 3 weeks telling him it was a fluke. But it’s May 10 and they have the best record in baseball.

  2. Cameron Says:

    I call sub-.500 by the break.

  3. Chuck Says:

    “How much longer do you think the Indians will keep playing like this?”

    What time is it?

    Seriously, if you want to make some good money, bet your roommate they won’t finish above .500.

    The teams they’ve played so far are a cumulative nineteen games BELOW .500.

    The two best teams they’ve played so far, record wise, are a combined six games above .500.

    They have yet to play Tampa, Toronto, the Yankees and Texas.

    They’ll be below .500 by Father’s Day.

  4. Cameron Says:

    Ha, Chuck. One of those “best teams” they faced was Kansas City. How fucked up is that? This could very well be our best season since 2003.

    And it’s KC @ NY tonight. Gonna have some good banter for the next few days.

  5. Raul Says:

    It’s becoming harder and harder for people to believe that I actually am a Yankees fan.

    Because I hate Joe Girardi, Jorge Posada and Derek Jeter so much.
    BTW, even A-Rod has been tanking lately.

  6. Bob Says:

    No reason to hate them, just because age is taking its toll. Reason to replace them, yes. Although if you hate A-Rod, I really don’t care.

  7. Raul Says:

    I hate Jeter way more than I hate A-Rod.
    I actually like Alex Rodriguez. His only problem is a need to be liked. I can understand all that.

    Jeter and Posada are just smug a-holes. It has nothing to do with their performance, although that gives me more reason to make fun of them.

    For the record, I was never a Jeter fan. Not even when he made that play on Jeremy Giambi.

    I probably started really hating Jeter when he told the media and fans to get off Giambi’s back when he was struggling — but a year later when A-Rod was struggling, he refused to offer him the same support. Yeah, team captain — my ass.

    And while we’re talking about that…
    Everything Alex Rodriguez said in that article was true. You never feared Jeter. You definitely had concern with Tino and Bernie and O’Neill. That’s just the truth. So yeah, Alex was right about what he said, even if he was too naive to understand the consequences of saying so publicly.

  8. Bob Says:

    Raul, we all know why A-Rod was not defended by Jeter. True or not, his comments were uncalled for. Everybody and their sister knew it. Everybody that is except A-Rod.
    Furthermore, by opting out of his more than fair contract, he actually hindered the Yankees brass more than Jeter. Hal and Hank could have said no this past off-season to Jeter. Not Jeter’s fault they offered him 3x 15.7. Jeter was a free-agent, A-Rod said FU first then regretted it.

  9. Raul Says:

    “True or not, his comments were uncalled for.”

    Whatever. I understand that sometimes its best to keep your mouth shut. That is different from saying they’re uncalled for. The fact is a lot of this backlash comes from 3 things.

    1. The fact that Alex Rodriguez was better than Jeter.
    2. Alex’s contract.
    3. Alex did not play in New York and had won titles like Jeter did, and didn’t have big-city media defending him.

    So what? Alex announced his FA during the World Series. Big. F*cking. Deal.
    He came crawling back to the Yankees after opting out and getting A BIGGER CONTRACT? What a total scumbag.

    This guy is at worst, a clown and you people make it seem like he’s the f*cking Anti-Christ.

    Has Alex been arrested for drunk driving?
    Has he tried to run over kids on Halloween?
    Did he beat his wife?
    Is he coked up, trying to beat up strippers in the bathroom?

    Really, the only thing Alex has done that makes you people hate him so much is that he tries too hard to be liked an appreciated.

    Get off your high horses.

    The same people who hate A-Rod so much turn around and cried when they saw Joe DiMaggio at a golf course 20 years ago — probably the biggest scumbag to wear a Yankee uniform ever.

    Please.

  10. Cameron Says:

    ‘Sucse me, WAS better than Jeter?

  11. Raul Says:

    You know what I meant, Cameron.

    BTW, thank you Brandon Morrow. Yet another pitcher who has screwed me this week.

  12. Raul Says:

    Speaking of jerks…

    Bryce Harper is doing pretty well in A-Ball.
    The 24 strikeouts in 29 games does stand out a bit.

    Then again…it’s A-Ball…

  13. Raul Says:

    Catching up with 2010 draft picks

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110510&content_id=18873390&vkey=draftcentral2011

  14. Cameron Says:

    Just watched a nice little piece on Josh Johnson on the MLB Network. Cool guy and when asked about why he doesn’t seem to be discussed as an NL great pitcher like Halladay or Lincecum, his basic response was, “Don’t know, don’t care. The players know I’m good and that’s good for me.”

  15. Cameron Says:

    Wow, Neal Huntington is not fuckin’ around here.

  16. JohnBowen Says:

    I agree with everything Raul said about Jeter & Arod. Absolutely true.

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