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No More WeekdA’s: The A’s by Day/Time

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Maybe make your plans on Wednesdays and Thursdays for the rest of the season.

Tampa Bay Rays v Oakland Athletics Photo by Don Feria/Getty Images

Over the course of a baseball season, LOTS of numbers get thrown around. It's what we do as baseball fans - compare players with minuscule differences and make mountains of of molehills, try to project numbers years into the future for guys who are just a year or two removed from high school, and just generally latch onto whatever information we can that gives us hope for the future. This is especially the case for a team in the position that the A's find themselves in, where the season has not turned out as planned and it has become time to hit the reset button and take stock of what we have for the future.

Some of these numbers really do mean something - rookie pitcher Sean Manaea's K/9 rate will probably give us a good idea of whether he can hit his ceiling of "top of rotation pitcher," and the numbers really do seem to confirm that Jake Smolinski is a certified lefty-murderer. Other numbers are almost certainly just noise. A pitcher struggling in minor league A+ ball is pretty much impossible to peg (beyond the usual "most of them don't make it") and until we've seen more of Max Muncy or Arismendy Alcantara, it's hard to say whether they can hang in the majors.

And then there are numbers like those I wanted to discuss in this post: again, almost certainly meaningless, but fun numbers to chew on as we wait for the stove to (FINALLY) heat up and for some of our trade chips to be on the move (and likewise, for a Reddick extension that I won't give up hope on until he's on a flight to another team).

So yeah, there's my proviso for this post. These numbers almost certainly mean nothing, both because the sample sizes are small and because even if the sample were larger, I'm not sure what the takeaway would be. Do you disagree and think that there is meaningful insight hidden in this data? Let's discuss in the comments! Either way, for your consideration:

Record by Day of the Week

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Record 7-5 7-8 5-10 3-6 8-7 9-8 6-10
Run Differential +11 -13 -28 -19 -10 0 -14
1-run game record 1-2 2-4 1-1 1-0 4-2 3-2 4-4

As the designated Wednesday game recap person, I had a hunch that Wednesdays were one of the team's worst days of the week, and the numbers seem to confirm it. Wednesday is tied for the worst day by win/loss rate and is easily the worst day by run differential - though if the A's had played the same number of Thursday games as Wednesday games, they'd be rocking a gaudy -31 run differential, meaning the small sample of Thursday games actually helps them there.

So the A's are really, really bad on Wednesdays and Thursdays. What else do I notice when looking at this data?

  • The A's started the season by going 0-5 on Mondays, and have won 7 consecutive Monday games since then. @Trainman, you should definitely bet on the A's today.@
  • The A's have played 1-run games each of the last 3 Fridays and Saturdays. If you want exciting, down-to-the-wire baseball, it seems those days are your best bets.
  • The above table includes the Orioles doubleheader due to the Friday rain delay. If you want to bump the games around to when they should have been, the Friday record would be 9-7 and Saturday would be 8-8.

1st/Last Game of Series

The A's are 18-13 in the first game of the series. Considering our overall record, why do you think we're so good in that circumstance? Is it small sample noise (probably), or something to do with our overall good bullpen being more rested on the 1st day of a series? Considering the standings of the team, having a significantly positive record in the 1st game of a series is interesting, especially considering...

The A's are 9-22 in the last game of a series. I think that's kind of bad? I believe it was jANAF that pointed this out originally and I went back to confirm that, indeed, the A's already have one foot out the door when they're wrapping up a series. This includes a drought of ZERO final game wins for over a month, from June 12 to yesterday, July 24 - strange, especially considering the team as a whole has been playing much better for the last month or so.

Again, do I hear any theories? Or is that just the hissssssing of the Small Sample Size Snake?

Day/Night

The A's are 16-23 in day games and 29-31 in night games. Nothing really outlandish here - seems like about what you would expect given the team's overall record.

That's about all I dug up. What does everyone make of these totally-just-for-fun numbers? Has anybody noticed any other calendar oddities? What insane hypotheses can we generate based on this data? Let the scrying begin!