May 13, 2021

Does The New York Post Understand How Baseball Standings Work?

Dan Martin, Post:

After four straight wins, the Yankees had a chance to move into a tie for first place with another victory on Thursday.

But their trip from the basement to the top of the AL East will have to wait, as they saw their winning streak come to a halt in a 9-1 loss to the Rays at Tropicana Field. . . .

[T]he offense was shut down by 41-year-old Rich Hill, while Jameson Taillon had another shaky outing. . . .

[T]he offense, unimposing for much of the early part of the season, has been quiet again.

They've been held to three runs or fewer in four straight games.

On Thursday, it was Hill, the former Yankee, who befuddled them over 6.2 scoreless innings, using a variety of soft —by today's standards — sliders and curveballs and a fastball that topped out at 90 mph. . . .

And Taillon, who allowed four runs in 4.2 innings, didn't help by putting the Yankees in a significant hole early.

I guess it's time for Baseball Standings 101.

Here is the AL East as of Thursday morning:

If Thursday's games included a Red Sox loss and a Yankees win, then the teams would be tied for first place, with the Red Sox possessing one additional win, but the MFY having a slightly higher winning percentage (by .004).

But the Red Sox won on Thursday, beating the Athletics 8-1. Thus, a win by the Yankees would not have put them into a tie for first place. They would have simply spun their wheels and remained 1.0 GB.

It's hard to fathom how the Post's sportswriter and his editor could both get this wrong. If the first place team and the second place team do the same thing on the same day, the distance in the standings between the two teams (i.e., the GB number) does not change.

But all that is moot. Because the Yankees fucking lost. So they are 2.0 GB and in third place.

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