Daily Notes: Every Game Previewed Amazingly

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of Daily Notes.

1. A Note on the Title, Its Decided Ambiguity
2. Every Game Previewed Amazingly
3. Today’s Complete Schedule

A Note on the Title, Its Decided Ambiguity
The reader will note that the title of this post is phrased ambiguously. On the one hand, one might suppose that, within the confines of this post, he will find all of today’s games, previewed in a way — owing to an impressive combination of logic and rhetoric, perhaps — that will amaze readers. One might suppose, alternatively, that the mere fact that every game has been previewed is, itself, the amazing thing.

While it’s true that much of writing is a purposeful struggle against ambiguity — and that the strategic insertion of a comma might make the author’s intentions perfectly clear — I’m prepared to submit that present case represents an instance of pleasant ambiguity.

Every Game Previewed Amazingly
These are all of today’s games today.

Detroit at Boston | 19:10 ET ***MLB.TV Free Game***
Of the 158 pitchers who’ve thrown more than 20 innings as a starter, right-hander Max Scherzer, who goes tonight for Detroit, is one of only ten with a perfect NERD score. (See below for more on NERD.) Owing to a .394 BABIP and 16.7% HR/FB, Scherzer’s ERA is 5.67, but there are indications that he’s pitched much better than that. For example, here’s what two defense-independent ERA estimators say: 2.78 SIERA, 3.16 xFIP (76 xFIP-). Also for example, consider how only Jeff Samardzija (12.9%) and Cole Hamels (12.8%) possess a batter swinging-strike rate better than Scherzer’s (12.5%) — a figure better than even his teammate Justin Verlander’s (12.2%).

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Red Sox Radio.

Houston at Colorado | 20:40 ET
Of some interest regarding the Rockies is their league-leading team Speed Score — a sort of shorthand stat that accounts for stolen-base percentage, frequency of stolen-base attempts, percentage of triples, and runs-scored percentage — their league-leading Speed Score of 5.8. Such a thing doesn’t necessarily suggest that the offense is very good (in fact, it’s almost precisely average), but it does suggest that the Rockies run around a lot, and are relatively efficient in so doing. (It also maybe suggests that the Rockies play in a park that inflates triples.)

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Houston Television.

Milwaukee at Los Angeles NL | 22:10 ET
Nerd Challenge: name the three offensive WAR leaders for the Dodgers, in order. Answer here.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Both Milwaukee Radio and Los Angeles NL Television.

Today’s Complete Schedule
Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. The average NERD Game Score for today is 5.7.

Note: the following Game Scores include the poorly conceived playoff-odds adjustment discussed in a recent edition of Daily Notes. Also note: the following table is entirely sortable.

Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Max Scherzer DET 10 4 8 5 6 BOS Josh Beckett 19:10
Bud Norris HOU 6 6 3 8 0 COL Jer. Guthrie 20:40
Zack Greinke MIL 10 6 6 6 5 LAN C. Billingsley 22:10

To learn more about Pitcher and Team NERD scores click here.
To learn how Game NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
* = Fewer than 20 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.

Carson Cistulli has published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.

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Andrew Ethier has more WAR than Matt Kemp? Who knew? Also, personally I believe that the playoff odds are weighted too heavily this early in the season. Personally, I don’t take playoff chances into account until the all-star break when I am finding a game to watch.