Monday, March 8, 2010

Rox Talk - Total Runs Scored vs Time of Game

Random Thoughts for the Week

Dexter Fowler is now 6' 5", guess he has grown 2 more inches since joining the organization... what happens if he keeps growing? That is one big center fielder!

Obvious Research Part II

Sometimes questions pop into my head and I write them down and when I have the time I try to answer the question. This one was pretty obvious but until you graph it ( ;-) ) you never know. So the question was to graph time of a game in minutes versus total runs scored by both teams. The obvious answer was as game time increased more runs should score or the more runs scored should lead to a longer game? My first attempt was the graph below (data from 2005 - 2009).

A monster blob of data. Generally I see an upward trend but the outliers were interesting. I mean the longer games (4 hours plus) generally aren't that high scoring...after that long of a game I think it becomes a game of wills. Who blinks first (22 inning affair in San Diego anyone?). To expand on the data, I took weighted averages for each total and got the graph below. Size of the point indicates the total number of games in those 5 years.

This seems about right. The average game time for about 800 games over this span was 174 minutes (sd, 26 minutes). The average runs scored was 10 (sd, 5). So a run about every 18 minutes! After pondering the data a bit more I wondered what about home/away splits. I mean games at Coors take forever right?

The purple data points represent home games and the grey points are away games. Interesting to note the overall average time for a Coors game is 174 minutes (sd, 26 minutes) while an away game is 173 minutes (sd, 26 minutes) but the average runs scored at Coors is 11 while an away total is 9 runs. It's also interesting to see on the away trend you have an uptick at about 3 runs (the 22 inning game was in San Diego, Rox won 2 - 1) then a decline until about 11 total runs. My guess here what is happening is that in a 1 - 0, 1 - 1, 2 - 1, game the managers do a lot of pitching changes or perhaps a lot more tie games are low scoring affairs.

Either way nice to know...expect a game to take about 3 hours (nice in the Summer not so much in April!)

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