Visual Baseball:  What does an 0-6 start mean for Boston?

Here’s a visual of all teams that started 0-6 since 1900, measuring a rolling average of games over .500. Only two teams—the ’74 Pirates and the ’95 Reds—made the playoffs. The Sox will have some history to make if they’re to fulfill their preseason hype. Then again, they’ve gotten pretty good at defying the odds (i.e., 2004 and 2007 ALCS)!

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Comments

  1. BWC said...

    I’m sure it is tough to determine, but how many of those teams that started 0-6 would have made the playoffs if they had started 3-3 or even 6-0?  A 12 game swing is significant, so I’m guessing a handful but I’m still betting the majority would not have made the playoffs because the real question is whether the 0-6 is difficult to overcome or whether it tells you something about the team. Although a lot rides on Lackey, Dice-K and/ Wakefield in terms of making the playoffs, I don’t think the 0-6 start tells us much new about the Red Sox.

  2. Sharur said...

    I’d like to see dates on this thing, particularly because it looks interesting to see how late into the season the ‘74 Pirates managed to go before breaking .500. I also like how, in contrast, the Reds swung straight back up after the 0-6 and never looked back.

    I also think that a bigger deal is made out of this than probably should be on account of it being the beginning of the season. The ‘06 Cards had two 8-game losing streaks and a 7-game losing streak and still made the playoffs. Granted, they did so in an incredibly weak division, which hardly characterizes the AL East, but a single 6-game losing streak shouldn’t be insurmountable.

    In 2002, the Rams started their season 0-5, then went on a 5-game winning streak after Mark Bulger replaced Kurt Warner, and people in St. Louis started talking playoffs. Of course, they didn’t make it, going 2-4 after that to finish 7-9, but compared to that kind of situation an 0-6 start in baseball seems pretty minor (which might be one reason I don’t understand the fuss).

  3. Mitch said...

    Sharur,

    I see your point about 6-game losing streaks not necessarily meaning much, but “the fuss” refers to the second sentence of the article; that is only two teams have overcome it. Ever.

    What’s missing is the number of teams that have started 0-6. It appears that it’s about 50 just from eyeballing the picture.

  4. Mitch said...

    Kevin,

    What is meant by the term “rolling average” of games over .500? Don’t the lines represent individual teams and their number of games over .500? In that case it wouldn’t be an average, right?
    (Please note I am not a statistician).

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