AccuScore: Padres gain a sizable cushion

AccuScore uses past performance statistics to describe how players perform under different environmental, matchup, and game-situation conditions. Using projected starting lineups AccuScore simulates each game of the season one at-bat at a time. By repeating the simulation 10,000 to 20,000 times per game AccuScore calculates the precise probability teams have of winning each game, winning their division, making the playoffs, advancing in the playoffs and winning the World Series. Here is the AccuScore.com analysis of the 2010 season after 19 weeks of play. Visit AccuScore.com for daily updates to the season forecast and all game forecasts updated twice a day.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

A week after jumping more than 20 percentage points, the Chicago White Sox’s playoff chances suffered a severe market correction with a 34 percentage point decline in playoff probability. While a 2-5 week is always going to hurt, this week was especially bad because the White Sox were at home for six games and lost two of three to the Twins. The Twins were 5-1 and saw their playoff chances jump 20 percentage points. The Twins have a better than 88 percent chance of winning the division because they hold a three-game lead and they have six more home games than road games the rest of the season.

The Yankees were just 3-4 and their playoff chances dipped below 90 percent. The Rays were 4-2 and picked up seven percentage points as they are just one game behind. Even though they hold just a one-game lead in the AL East, AccuScore forecasts the Yankees to finish three games up. The Red Sox had a solid bounce-back week but are still a long shot to make the playoffs at just 23 percent.

The Rangers have run away with the AL West holding an 8.5 game lead. The Rangers could very well be the only team over .500 in the division by the end of the season.

AMERICAN LEAGUE WEEK 19 REVIEW PLAYOFF % CHANCE
TEAM 9-Aug 16-Aug % DIFF WIN DIV
Minnesota Twins 68.5% 91.4% 22.9% 88.5%
Boston Red Sox 14.3% 22.6% 8.3% 5.7%
Tampa Bay Rays 65.1% 71.9% 6.8% 29.0%
Texas Rangers 97.6% 99.1% 1.5% 99.1%
Baltimore Orioles 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Cleveland Indians 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Detroit Tigers 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Kansas City Royals 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Seattle Mariners 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Toronto Blue Jays 1.8% 1.6% -0.2% 0.2%
Los Angeles Angels 0.8% 0.4% -0.4% 0.4%
Oakland Athletics 1.9% 0.5% -1.4% 0.5%
New York Yankees 92.2% 88.9% -3.3% 65.1%
Chicago White Sox 57.7% 23.6% -34.1% 11.5%

NATIONAL LEAGUE

The San Francisco Giants may have done all the talking before their three-game series with San Diego, but the Padres clearly won that series taking two of three. The Padres went 5-1, beat their main competitor for the division, and the Dodgers and Rockies continued to play mediocre baseball. As a result the Padres led the NL with an 18.5 percentage point increase in playoff probability and everyone’s pre-season pick for last place in the division now have an 84 percent chance of winning the division.

The Braves were a solid 4-2 and hold an 86.5 percent chance of making the playoffs. The loss of Chipper Jones(notes) had no negative impact on the team’s playoff chances. The Phillies were also 4-2, but saw their playoff chances slightly dip. The Phillies chances will improve if Ryan Howard(notes) and Chase Utley(notes) return a week or two sooner than originally expected.

In the Central, the Cardinals are one game back of Cincinnati and the Reds swept the Marlins, but the Cardinals still saw their playoff chances improve from 52 percent to 66 percent. Cincinnati went 3-3, but saw their playoff chances drop 15 points all because the three losses were at home to the Cardinals. The Reds also still have six more road games than home games the rest of the season. On average, AccuScore simulations have St. Louis finishing one game ahead of Cincinnati.

NATIONAL LEAGUE WEEK 19 REVIEW PLAYOFF % CHANCE
TEAM 9-Aug 16-Aug % DIFF WIN DIV
San Diego Padres 71.9% 90.4% 18.5% 84.3%
Atlanta Braves 69.4% 86.5% 17.1% 72.4%
St. Louis Cardinals 63.5% 73.0% 9.5% 65.9%
Arizona Diamondbacks 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Chicago Cubs 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Houston Astros 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Milwaukee Brewers 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pittsburgh Pirates 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Washington Nationals 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Florida Marlins 0.9% 0.4% -0.5% 0.1%
New York Mets 1.0% 0.5% -0.5% 0.2%
Philadelphia Phillies 58.8% 57.8% -1.0% 27.3%
Colorado Rockies 4.6% 1.9% -2.7% 0.6%
San Francisco Giants 47.0% 38.0% -9.0% 13.6%
Cincinnati Reds 62.6% 47.3% -15.3% 34.1%
Los Angeles Dodgers 20.1% 4.1% -16.0% 1.5%