We may not have swept the Rangers, but I'm thinking....
Do Your Homework! Score Your Last GOG - Texas #44
1. Series Outcome, 4 Games. [4 points]
2. Game Scores. Which starter has the Higher Game Score in each game? Name the starter from each team that gets the Highest among all starters for that team. [2 points each, 12 total]
Peacock, Game 1 / Griffin, Game 2 / Straily, Game 3 / Colon, Game 4
Oakland: Straily (79) - Gray (64) - Colon (64) - Griffin (50)
Astros: Peacock (67) - Oberholzer (59) - Keuchel (21) - Harrell (17)
3. Dinger Derby. Although the 15 game homer streak is over, the A's are still a constant threat: Cespedes, Suzuki, Donaldson, Moss, Smith, Lowrie, and Coco have all hit one out in my recent memory. Guess: Total A's Homers / Total Astros Homers. Then, guess as many players as you like from either team who hit one, 3 points for every one correct, -1 for every wrong guess. [3 points each, then +3/-1 points, lots possible, no negatives]
A's, 4 HRs / Donaldson,Cespedes, Lowrie, Smith
Astros, 0 HRs
4. I would be More Confident if his Name was Brandon! The errantly named "Michael" Choice has a great chance to contribute to the A's stretch run. Guess his: PA / R / H / RBI / BB / Outfield Put-Outs. [2 points each, 12 points total.]
2 PA / 0 R / 0 H / 0 RBI / 0 BB / 2 Outfield Put-Outs
5. RE24, Baby! I've always been unhappy with how reliever performance is evaluated, since ERA obviously doesn't cut it, WPA depends too highly on the situation leverage, and I don't know whether to trust xFIP at the low inning numbers. That is why I was so happy to come across the Fangraphs article on "Relief Pitching in Context," which explains how RE24 is calculated from the run expectancy (RE) for any situation. Here's the crucial part of the explanation:
"While it has a complicated name, RE24 takes the team’s expected runs scored in the inning before the play and subtracts that from their expected runs scored in the inning after the play. In other words, how much did the hitter, or conversely the pitcher, help his team maximize runs scored?
Let’s apply that to the case of inherited runners [...]. When the manager brings in the reliever with the bases loaded and two outs, the batting team was expected to score about 0.7 runs for the rest of the inning given an average offense and defense. However, the reliever then gives up a three-run double followed by the third out. At the end of the inning, the batting team obviously has a run expectancy of zero. Therefore, the run expectancy dropped from 0.7 to 0 from when the reliever entered the game, but three runs scored. The 0.7 run change in run expectancy minus the three runs scored means that the reliever’s RE24 for the inning was -2.3. In contrast to the official Runs Allowed, in which the reliever is assigned zero runs, RE24 assigns him almost all of the runs that scored, minus the runs that were expected to score when the starter left the game."
Now, as awesome as that is, I still don't know how to make a question out of it. Let's try this: For any four of the A's relievers of your choice, guess whether they generate a positive or negative total RE24. To see how it works, you can look at the Play Log or the Box Score for any game on Fangraphs. Run Expectancy (RE) for every inning starts at .42 and ends at .00, so if you pitch a complete inning without giving up a run, your RE24 is 0.42; if you give up one run in a complete inning, your RE24 is -0.58. [2 points each, 8 points total]
Positive: Cook (0.64), Doolittle (1.24), Anderson (.26)
Negative: Balfour (-0.58), Otero (-0.78)
6. Obligatory WPA, Starz 'N Goatz. Can we try this again, in a series that doesn't include James Loney? Which position player, for each team and each game, has the Highest and Lowest WPA each game? Scoring takes place for each of the four "sections" independently (Oak High, Oak, Low, Tex High, Tex Low, 4 players in each, 16 players total). Point totals increase in each section: 1 point for the first correct, then 2 points for the next, then 5 points for the third correct, and another 5 for the fourth - for a total of 13 veritably impossible points. [1, 2, and 5 points each, 52 points impossible.]
Oakland High: Callaspo (.115), Lowrie x2 (.252 & .117t), Cespedes (.117t), Moss (.231)
Oakland Low: Cespedes (-.156), Callaspo (-.153), Donaldson (-.086), Coco (-.068)
Houston High: Altuve x2 (.159, .075), Villar (.135), Krauss (.078)
Houston Low: Villar (-.073), Castro (-.190), Crowe (-.153), Wallace (-.047)
7. Ranger Watch. Three games against the Los Angeles Angels [of Anaheim], that is, "The Angels Angels [home by a river]." Guess the series outcome. [3 points]
LAA, 2-1, Yea!!
(Possible points = like 97 plus the Dinger Derby, but more like 57 points plus, in reality.)
Answers must be posted by Gametime (Thursday, 7:05 p.m., left coast time).