A very small downside, but still ...
Tonight, NESN is running a show called "What If ...". They will be replaying, with Diamond Mind's computer simulations, what might have happened had Pedro been removed from Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS a little bit earlier than he actually was.
NESN has been carpetbombing us with commercials for this show during Sox games, giving me the "opportunity" to see a certain moron way more than I ever expected once he left town. Now that the bitterness of the World Series drought is over, NESN and the Red Sox have shown much more interest in the history of the team, but you know damn well that if 2004 had not happened, revisiting this particular wound in such detail would never have seen the light of day.
NESN is being pretty tight-lipped about the actual process, but I believe the rest of the game was simulated 100 times to get the most probable outcome. I'm intrigued by the idea of computer simulations, but I'm not sure this one is being done correctly.
When exactly do the simulations start? From the commercials, it appears it's after the mound visit when Pedro was not removed. Yet NESN's website says: "We're replaying the game, pulling Pedro with one down in the 8th ...", which makes it sound like he gets pulled after the first batter popped up (although there was also only one out at the time of the mound visit).
Using the mound visit would be a huge error. No intelligent person thinks Pedro should have been in the game at that point. The proper point would be at the beginning of the eighth inning. At the time I was okay with Pedro starting the eighth, yet from everything I've read about conversations in the dugout, he was done after seven. "Pulling him" with one out and no one on (or even after the first hit) would be the next logical point.
Is anyone going to watch this?