Catching up in September

I’m working away on the 2009 Hardball Times Annual (preorder it now!), collecting articles from over 40 prominent baseball writers and preparing THT’s usual stable of stupendous stats. Among other things, we list each team’s wins, losses, ERA and other stats on a monthly basis. So I have a lot of spreadsheets of 2008 data to load.

I took last year’s monthly team spreadsheet and inputted each team’s monthly 2008 wins and losses through the end of August (got to wait for the season to end before inputting the September stats). As a result of combining this year’s monthly totals with last year’s year-end totals, I got an interesting picture of how each team will have to perform in September to match last year’s record….

For instance, the Orioles were 63-73 through the end of August. That’s pretty bad, but they’d only have to go 6-20 in September and October to match last year’s really bad record of 69-93. The Rockies, on the other hand, would have to post a 26 and -1 record to match last year’s (in other words, they’d have to take one of those games they’d already lost and turn it into a win).

So this “make up” record is a cute way of measuring how much each team has (or hasn’t) improved over last year. Here is each team’s “make up” record for September and October would have to be, starting with most improved to, um, least improved.

TB           -18      45
CHA           -5      31
CHN            0      25
MIN            2      23
FLA            2      23
HOU            2      23
MIL            3      23
STL            4      21
BAL            6      20
TEX            8      16
LAA           11      15
PIT           11      15
CIN           11      14
KC            12      14
SF            12      14
NYN           12      13
TOR           13      13
OAK           13      12
PHI           14      11
LAN           15      10
BOS           17       9
ARI           21       5
WAS           21       4
DET           22       4
NYA           22       4
ATL           25       0
COL           26      -1
CLE           31      -4
SEA           35      -9
SD            36      -9
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