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Daily Notes: Adjusting NERD for the Playoffs, Already?

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

1. Reluctantly Featured Game: Houston at Colorado, 20:10 ET
2. MLB.TV Free Game
3. Today’s Complete Schedule
4. Today’s Complete Schedule, Adjusted for Playoff Odds

Reluctantly Featured Game: Houston at Colorado, 20:10 ET
What the Reader Is Likely Saying
The reader is likely saying — with regard to the selection of this game, featuring a pair of teams that are a total of ca. 20 games out of their respective division races — the reader is likely saying, “I protest!”

What a Different Sort of Reader Might Be Saying
A different sort of reader — one who’s not a member of England’s landed gentry, for instance — might be saying something more like, “I hate this author” or “This author’s an idiot” or “I hate this author’s face part of his face.”

Regarding All Those Comments
All those comments by all those fictional readers I just invented are probably reasonable.

What’s Going On
What’s going on is, is NERD (the blanket term for our very proprietary watchability scores) doesn’t know that the Rockies are already 14.5 games behind the Dodgers, and have less than a 5% chance of making the playoffs.

What to Do About That
One thing to do about that, obviously, is factor a playoff-odds adjustment into the NERD Game Scores.

What the Author Just Did About That
I factored a playoff-odds adjustment into the aforementioned NERD Game Scores. You can see that below, in the section marked “Today’s Complete Schedule, Adjusted for Playoff Odds.”

One Thing to Note
One thing to note is that Colorado’s starter, right-hander Alex White, is both rather young (23) and has demonstrated the skills that lead to run prevention. To wit: 23.2 IP, 15.7% K, 5.9% BB, 51.9% GB, 3.63 SIERA, 93 xFIP-, 0.6 WAR.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast
Per the results of our offseason crowdsourcing project, FanGraphs readers prefer Houston Television (link).

MLB.TV Free Game
Oakland at Minnesota | 14:10 ET
Scott Diamond, who continues to resemble an ace somehow (25.1 IP, 67 xFIP- 0.6 WAR), pitches for Minnesota.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Oakland Radio.

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 5.1.

Regard, a magnificent and sortable table:


Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Cole Hamels PHI 9 4 6 1 6 NYN Jonathon Niese 13:10
Lance Lynn STL 7 10 6 7 4 ATL Tommy Hanson 13:10
Jor. Zimmermann WAS 8 4 5 4 3 MIA Carlos Zambrano 13:10
Bronson Arroyo CIN 5 4 5 1 7 PIT James McDonald 13:35
Doug Fister DET 7 3 6 5 7 BOS Felix Doubront 13:35
Travis Blackley* OAK 6 3 6 2 8 MIN Scott Diamond 14:10
Jeff Suppan SD 0 3 2 3 4 CHN Travis Wood* 14:20
Chris Sale CHA 8 5 6 6 5 TB Matt Moore 15:10
Wandy Rodriguez HOU 5 6 6 7 6 COL Juan Nicasio 15:10
Nathan Adcock* KC 3 6 5 4 7 CLE Josh Tomlin 16:05
Trevor Cahill AZ 5 5 3 6 0 SF Barry Zito 17:05
Tommy Hunter BAL 4 6 5 6 5 TOR Drew Hutchison 19:07
Kevin Millwood SEA 2 5 5 10 5 TEX Matt Harrison 20:05
Jordan Lyles* HOU 6 6 7 7 8 COL Alex White 20:10
Shaun Marcum MIL 5 7 5 5 4 LAN Aaron Harang 20:10
Phil Hughes NYA 5 5 4 3 4 LAA Jered Weaver 21:05

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.

Today’s Complete Schedule, Adjusted for Playoff Odds
Here are today’s games, adjusted for the playoff odds (per Cool Standings) of each team. Essentially, a team gets credit for being closer to 26.7% (the generic playoff chances for all teams when the season begins).* The methodology of the adjustment likely isn’t ideal, but it appears to produce decent results.

*Or, at least, as was the case in 2011. A switch to 33% probably wouldn’t alter the following numbers very greatly.

Note: the right-most column (marked “POFF”) reflects each game’s playoff-odds adjustment.


Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home POFF
Cole Hamels PHI 9 4 8 1 6 NYN Jonathon Niese 1.7
Lance Lynn STL 7 10 6 7 4 ATL Tommy Hanson 0.1
Jor. Zimmermann WAS 8 4 6 4 3 MIA Carlos Zambrano 0.8
Bronson Arroyo CIN 5 4 5 1 7 PIT James McDonald 0.0
Doug Fister DET 7 3 8 5 7 BOS Felix Doubront 1.9
Travis Blackley* OAK 6 3 4 2 8 MIN Scott Diamond -1.7
Jeff Suppan SD 0 3 0 3 4 CHN Travis Wood* -2.1
Chris Sale CHA 8 5 6 6 5 TB Matt Moore -0.2
Wandy Rodriguez HOU 5 6 6 7 6 COL Juan Nicasio -0.1
Nathan Adcock* KC 3 6 6 4 7 CLE Josh Tomlin 0.8
Trevor Cahill AZ 5 5 4 6 0 SF Barry Zito 1.1
Tommy Hunter BAL 4 6 6 6 5 TOR Drew Hutchison 1.4
Kevin Millwood SEA 2 5 3 10 5 TEX Matt Harrison -1.4
Jordan Lyles* HOU 6 6 7 7 8 COL Alex White -0.1
Shaun Marcum MIL 5 7 3 5 4 LAN Aaron Harang -1.4
Phil Hughes NYA 5 5 6 3 4 LAA Jered Weaver 1.5