Re: Did the Rays
posted at 9/27/2013 8:46 PM EDT
The greatest irony in all of these hypothetical schedule scenarios is that the Rays would likely have a few more wins if they didn't have to play the Red Sox so often.
Yes, we basically had the same schedule as the Rays, except they had to face the better team: us, while we got to face them. There were a couple other differences, but the Rays had one of the toughest schedules in MLB.
Other than the Sox, here are what the other teams that will end up with about the same or better record than the Rays got to face instead of Boston (.604), Baltimore (.522), NYY (.516) and TOR (.453) - keep in mind that the other AL East team records might have been much better had they not had to play each other so many times.
All AL East teams had a .500 or better record vs the 5 AL Central, and all but the Yanks had winning records vs the AL West (the Yanks were 14-16). All AL East teams had a winning record vs the NL, except NYY (9-11).
I'm not going to give a complete breakdown of the schedules, but here are a few insights:
The A's were 15-4 vs the Astros and every AL West team had a worse record than the same place team in the AL East.
The Tigers played 18 games vs MN and 19 vs CWS (the 2nd and 3rd worse records in the AL)
The Dodgers got to play the 4 teams in their own division 43 times so far this year. The best record of the 4? 80-79 AZ.
The Braves have 3 teams in their division under a .460 win%.
Only the Sox and Cards have 4 or more wins than the Rays and a comparable schedule. I'm not saying the Rays are the 2nd or 3rd best team in MLB, but if you factored in strength of schedule, I could see a computer placing them no lower than 3rd.