Table of Contents show

378 EWP of World Series Teams

Posted by Charles Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:17:50 -0400
Filed Under: expected winning pct teams world series

The recent surprising success of the Kansas City Royals prompted me to ask how often the better team won the World Series. A quick survey of the World Series, 1969 to 2013, shows that the better team wins about half the time, at least when using the Southpaw EWP metric to determine team quality.

The table below lists World Series winners and losers by year, going back to 1969, the year divisional play began. Since 1969 at least four teams have made the playoffs each year. The EWP columns are the expected winning percents of the corresponding teams for the season those teams played in the World Series. EWP is calculated using the individual performance ratings of the teams' players that season. It is an indication of fraction of games a team is expected to win given a set of player performances. The delta is the difference between teams' EWPs. A negative number indicates the worse team won.

YearWS WinnerEWPWS LoserEWPDelta
2013Boston Red Sox0.619St. Louis Cardinals0.629-0.010
2012San Francisco Giants0.541Detroit Tigers0.552-0.011
2011St. Louis Cardinals0.543Texas Rangers0.605-0.062
2010San Francisco Giants0.563Texas Rangers0.5330.030
2009New York Yankees0.621Philadelphia Phillies0.6020.019
2008Philadelphia Phillies0.599Tampa Bay Rays0.5340.065
2007Boston Red Sox0.613Colorado Rockies0.5580.055
2006St. Louis Cardinals0.532Detroit Tigers0.547-0.015
2005Chicago White Sox0.530Houston Astros0.559-0.029
2004Boston Red Sox0.654St. Louis Cardinals0.6240.030
2003Miami Marlins0.512New York Yankees0.627-0.115
2002Anaheim Angels0.611San Francisco Giants0.6070.004
2001Arizona Diamondbacks0.594New York Yankees0.5760.018
2000New York Yankees0.555New York Mets0.5490.006
1999New York Yankees0.654Atlanta Braves0.6340.020
1998New York Yankees0.683San Diego Padres0.5820.101
1997Miami Marlins0.559Cleveland Indians0.5490.010
1996New York Yankees0.563Atlanta Braves0.604-0.041
1995Atlanta Braves0.594Cleveland Indians0.651-0.057
1993Toronto Blue Jays0.572Philadelphia Phillies0.588-0.016
1992Toronto Blue Jays0.575Atlanta Braves0.584-0.009
1991Minnesota Twins0.563Atlanta Braves0.5500.013
1990Cincinnati Reds0.545Oakland Athletics0.616-0.071
1989Oakland Athletics0.615San Francisco Giants0.5530.062
1988Los Angeles Dodgers0.552Oakland Athletics0.592-0.040
1987Minnesota Twins0.491St. Louis Cardinals0.558-0.067
1986New York Mets0.633Boston Red Sox0.5770.056
1985Kansas City Royals0.537St. Louis Cardinals0.587-0.050
1984Detroit Tigers0.634San Diego Padres0.5230.111
1983Baltimore Orioles0.571Philadelphia Phillies0.5640.007
1982St. Louis Cardinals0.544Milwaukee Brewers0.597-0.053
1981Los Angeles Dodgers0.575New York Yankees0.609-0.034
1980Philadelphia Phillies0.545Kansas City Royals0.566-0.021
1979Pittsburgh Pirates0.584Baltimore Orioles0.614-0.030
1978New York Yankees0.623Los Angeles Dodgers0.6010.022
1977New York Yankees0.630Los Angeles Dodgers0.6030.027
1976Cincinnati Reds0.643New York Yankees0.6060.037
1975Cincinnati Reds0.646Boston Red Sox0.5640.082
1974Oakland Athletics0.582Los Angeles Dodgers0.650-0.068
1973Oakland Athletics0.598New York Mets0.5040.094
1972Oakland Athletics0.614Cincinnati Reds0.5750.039
1971Pittsburgh Pirates0.613Baltimore Orioles0.639-0.026
1970Baltimore Orioles0.673Cincinnati Reds0.5420.131
1969New York Mets0.547Baltimore Orioles0.675-0.128
AveragesWinners' EWP0.587Losers' EWP0.585

Going by regular season games won, the better team went 20 and 23. Only once, in 2013, did both teams win the same number of regular season games. In nine of those 43 seasons, Southpaw disagrees with the win-loss records about which team was better during the regular season. Note the EWP average for winning teams is barely higher than the EWP average for losing teams.

Comments (2) hide

Comment by Joseph Tue, 21 Oct 2014 15:31:12 -0400

the '87 twins are the only team to make the series with a sub-.500 EWP.

to me this research says that either (A) our EWPs are meaningless, or (B) they don't correlate to playoff performance, or (C) the playoffs are not predictable.

my money is on B, and i think that if we calculated an EWP from just the events of the last month of season we'd have higher correlation

Comment by Charles Tue, 21 Oct 2014 18:53:30 -0400

I think it's both B and C. There aren't enough games in the playoffs to correlate with anything, including team quality.

Add a Comment:

Enclose player and team names in pipes (i.e. |John Grubb|) to auto-generate hyperlinks.
CSV Table Generator

Username: Password: