23 October 2014

MLB Postseason Projections 2014: Royals Get Even

This post is part of a series tracking the postseason series win probabilities throughout the 2014 MLB Playoffs. Click here to enjoy the full series of posts.

Kauffman Stadium • Photo credit: jimcchouCreative Commons 2.0

What the Kansas City Royals suffered in Game 1 they dealt back in Game 2. Against the San Francisco Giants, a five-run slugfest boosted the Royals' chances of winning it all by ~12% in the bottom of the sixth inning alone (if you combine my model's numbers with FanGraphs' Win Expectancy figures). The full win itself was responsible for a ~14% increase in their World Series probability.

It wasn't enough to help the Royals regain the WS% lead, however. By splitting the first two games in Kansas City, San Francisco now enjoys home field advantage, leaving them slim 53% favorites to take home the Commissioner's Trophy.

Home field is once again crucial in determining the slight favorite. Had the two squads split the first games in San Francisco rather than Kansas City, the Royals would be 51-49 favorites. Kansas City also remains the weaker squad in terms of their RP Power Score, since their revenge was slightly less thorough and took place on home turf.

As it was at the start of the series, the modal outcome is a Kansas City win in seven. The best bet for San Francisco is to finish the series before it reaches that seventh game, while 5-1 says the Giants close the series out before it returns to the Paris of the Plains. The Royals only enjoy 10-1 odds of doing the same. Three to one, one of these teams will win it all by the Bay.

Check back Saturday to see how the results of Game 3 affect the likelihood of Kansas City winning their first title in nearly three decades or the Giants' of winning their third in five years.

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