The Odds Of Winning
The guys at Replacement Level Yankee Weblog posted their season simulation blowout on Tuesday, using the inputs of five different projection systems and running them through Diamond Mind’s baseball simulation engine 1,000 times each to produce projected standings for the 2010 season. Since we’re all trying to figure out just how good this team may be, and how likely they are to give us a playoff team to root for this year, I thought it’s worth pointing out.
If you aggregate the projections together, the Mariners are projected to finish 81-81 and place second in the AL West. That might sound like a disappointment, but the key is in the playoff odds – in those 1,000 seasons, the Mariners ended up on top of the AL West 25.6 percent of the time and won the wild card 3.8 percent of the time. In other words, in nearly 3 out of 10 runs of the season, the M’s ended up playing October baseball. I’ll take that. Given where the team was just two years ago, who isn’t happy with 30 % odds of making the playoffs?
Even better, Dan Szymobrski’s ZIPS system (which wasn’t included in RLYW’s run because they were licensed by ESPN for use in their baseball preview) actually has the M’s as favorites in the AL West and winning the World Series more often than all but six other MLB clubs.
This is a roster with flaws. We all know that. We’ll spend a lot of time dissecting every last possible spot to upgrade the team as the year goes on, I’m sure. But, warts and all, there is a non-zero chance we’ll be throwing a parade this winter. Be concerned about the offense, the back of the rotation, the lack of depth on the middle infield, but don’t lose sight of the big picture – the 2010 Mariners are a legitimate contender.