The second table is the same thing for the final series for all teams that could end up with a game 163.

The original article is linked in the first paragraph.

]]>For the sake of simplicity I will assume that all 6 of those games have the same probability of being won by the correct team. The break even point for those 6 games going your way (compared to the 3 50/50 games) is just under 71%. The team you’re chasing (for a playoff spot) having a 71% chance of losing each game is exceptionally unlikely.

In the present Tigers/White Sox situation if we assume 50/50 on all the games the White Sox have a 1/128 chance of making the playoffs (3 Chicago wins, 3 Detroit losses and Chicago wins game 163). If instead we assume that Detroit and Chicago each have a 60% chance of winning each of their 3 games then there is a 216/15625 (1.3824%) of forcing the extra game, slightly less than the 1/64 (1.5625%) for the 50/50 assumption. ]]>