NEW YORK 3, ATLANTA 2
ATLANTA 3, NEW YORK 2
ATLANTA 5, CINCINNATI 4
ATLANTA 10, CINCINNATI 9
ATLANTA 7, PITTSBURGH 0
ATLANTA 3, PITTSBURGH 2
PITTSBURGH 3, ATLANTA 2, 10 INN.
The Miracle On Hank Aaron Drive, of course, is the Braves' improbable ninth-inning comeback against the Cincinnati Reds last Thursday. I'd like to introduce a stat to some of you readers (any readers at all!) called Win Probability Added. This calculation attempts to track the probability of a player's actions contributing to his team's goal of victory.
At the start of the game, both teams essentially have an equal chance to win, so their WPAs are 50% each. Each play tilts the WPA in favor of the team it benefits.
By the end of the top of the second inning, the Reds had increased their WPA from 50% to 94% thanks to eight runs off of starter Tommy Hanson. The WPA didn't dip much in the Braves' favor throughout the entire game and by the bottom of the ninth inning, the Reds had a WPA of 100%, meaning they were essentially certain to win the game.
Note that it's not an absolute certainty; the statistic is most likely rounded off. But it was logical to believe that the Reds would be winning the game. But as long as there is one out for a team, they can conceivably do anything.
Mike Lincoln pitching for Reds
Play 1 - Troy Glaus singles to left (CIN -0%, 99%; ATL +0%, 1%) <- that's proof the numbers are rounded off.
Play 2 - Eric Hinske singles to right, Glaus to second (CIN -1%, 98%; ATL +1%, 2%)
Play 3 - Yunel Escobar singles to short, Cabrera drops ball, Glaus to third, Hinske to second (CIN -2%, 96%; ATL +2%, 4%)
Play 4 - Nate McLouth singles to right, Glaus scores, Hinske scores, Escobar to third (CIN -6%, 90%; ATL +6%, 10%)
Nick Masset pitching for Reds
Play 5 - David Ross walks, McLouth to second (CIN -8%, 82%; ATL +8%, 18%)
Play 6 - Martin Prado grounds to Miguel Cairo at third, Cairo can't get ball out of his glove, Escobar scores, McLouth to third, Ross to second, Prado to first (CIN -14%, 68%; ATL +14%, 32%)
Arthur Rhodes pitching for Reds
Play 7 - Jason Heyward strikes out swinging (CIN +12%, 80%; ATL -12%, 20%)
Francisco Cordero pitching for Reds
Play 8 - Brooks Conrad hits a grand slam to left (CIN -80%, 0%; ATL +80%, 100%)
We don't need the calculations to tell us that Conrad's slam was the most important play of the game, but when you see what it took to get to that point, it makes the stat interesting. The strikeout of Heyward was significant because it essentially negated the previous error (a -2% swing in two plays for the Reds) and set Cincinnati up for a game-ending double play.
The five most significant plays in the game, according to WPA, were:
1. Brooks Conrad's 9th inning grand slam (80%)
2. Joey Votto's 2nd inning grand slam (24%)
3. Miguel Cairo's 9th inning bases-loaded error (14%)
4. Jason Heyward's 9th inning strikeout (12%)
5. Miguel Cairo's 2nd inning bases-loaded single that gave the Reds their first run (10%)
All about the Braves and baseball events.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
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