- Fellow O’s fan Tom Scocca explains why the Red Sox are the new Grateful Dead in the
*Boston Globe.*(Previously on Quomodocumque: why the Red Sox are John McCain.) - David Carlton is moving to Playdom to work for Steve Meretsky. Steve Meretsky! The guy who wrote
*Planetfall*! - From Baseball Reference: on August 18. 1998, the Braves got nine hits against the Giants, all doubles. Will this feat ever be repeated? About 20% of hits are doubles. let’s say that for some ballparks, or some batting lineups, the chance a hit will be a double goes up to 1/4. Then you might figure the chance of nine hits all being doubles would be (1/4)^9, about one in a quarter-million. (If the chance of a double is 1 in 5, this goes down to one in two million.) From that point of view, it’s not so shocking; there have been about three hundred thousand MLB games played this century, so why not? Two problems. 1. Doubles used to be a lot less common then they are now. 2. If you hit nine doubles off a team’s pitching staff, it probably means they’re having a terrible day, and it probably means at some point you’re going to hit a home run. I think a much better way to assess whether another team’s likely to match the Braves is to check how many times a team has managed eight doubles without a hit. And nobody has. Not seven, either, or six. And just five teams have had 5 doubles in a game with no other hits. I think the Braves are safe here. And I think this is a good example of a question where just looking at the data gives you a much more robust answer than a half-assed probability calculation.
- Not a link: based on the response to my question, tons of people follow the new postings on the arXiv. But hardly anyone follows it, as I do, in Google Reader — according to their stats, the RSS feed for math.AG has only 98 subscribers and math.NT just 83.

## Back to school linkdump

**Tagged**arxiv, david carlton, doubles, google reader, linkdump, outliers, playdom, red sox, tom scocca