(ed. note - Join Today's Game Thread HERE.")
My mathematical education ends with Algebra II some 15 years ago or more (I just can't add the years :(...but my education ends after Algebra II in high school, and after the 200 or so times I've watched Darren Aronofsky's film, "Pi"...(ed. note "Have you ever heard of gematria? It's defined by dictionary.com as:
"...a cabbalistic system of interpretation of the Scriptures by substituting for a particular word another word whose letters give the same numerical sum."
...or as the character "Lenny Meyer" explains by example to mathematician "Maximillian Cohen" in Mr. Aronofsky's film:
"Each letter's a number. Like the Hebrew A, Alef is 1. B, Bet is 2. You understand? But look at this. The numbers are inter-related. Like take the Hebrew word for father, 'Ab' - Alef Bet... 1, 2 equals 3. Alright? Hebrew word for mother, 'em' - Alef Mem... 1, 40 equals 41. Sum of 3 and 41... 44. Alright? Now, Hebrew word for child, alright, mother... father... child, 'Yeled' - that's 10, 30, and 4... 44.)
Fascinating...but I bring up my fascination with numbers that I understand about as much as I understood the end of Mr. Aronofsky's film, because I've started to believe in the statistical side of things, when it comes to baseball at least, and oddly enough, it started during the last presidential election, when I became familiar with the work Nate Silver was doing at fivethirtyeight.com, and then remembered when I heard Mr. Silver talking baseball with Keith Olbermann one night that he was the same writer whose work I'd been trying to understand over at Baseball Prospectus.com for some time...
Knowing that I'd spend fruitless hours trying to interpret the statistics Mr. Silver and others were producing, I enlisted the help this winter of the estimable Doghouse, who had frequently contributed a series of posts he called "Tuesday Nats Stats", which I'd always enjoyed, and which spoke in this (to me) mystical language...and Doghouse has since fearlessly led you, the Federal Baseball.com reader through the Federal Baseball.com W.A.R. effort with the help of tools provided by Sky Kalkman at the SBN's site with "Statistics Gone Mad", Beyond The Box Score, and with the season almost upon us, I thought we should take one more look at what they and others have done, because I think they've determined pretty much what to expect from the Washington Nationals in the 2009 season...
The Federal Baseball.com W.A.R. Effort: By Doghouse...
Steven at FJB...(who does a great job in this area, and whose work I always enjoy)...just published an article entitled, "Optimizing The Nationals Batting Order", which I actually found through a link in Sky Kalkman's article at Beyond The Box Score entitled, "Lineup Optimization Hub".