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Beside The Points For Monday, Oct. 23, 2017

Things That Caught My Eye

Judgement Day

Aaron Judge, the rookie right fielder for the New York Yankees, set the record for most postseason strikeouts at 27, topping the 26 times Alfonso Soriano struck out for the Yankees in 2003 (although that was across 17 games, whereas Judge needed only 13). The Yankees’ hopes of reaching another World Series were dashed by Houston on Saturday, but if his debut season is any indicator Judge is poised to have a terrific career for New York. [NBC Sports, ESPN]

Joe Thomas streak ends

Joe Thomas, Cleveland’s left tackle who holds the iron man award for most consecutive snaps played, was injured during Sunday’s game against the Titans and subsequently pulled out. His streak ended at 10,363 consecutive snaps — a run that had lasted since the Bush administration. [ESPN]

Top media market to host out-of-town visitors instead of Yankees in series of games

The Dodgers are slightly favored to win the World Series against the Astros, with a 56 percent chance according to our MLB predictions. Tuesday’s Game 1 has L.A. with a 60 percent chance of winning given their home field advantage and stronger pitcher, but Wednesday’s Game 2 — where Justin Verlander takes the mound for Houston — is nearly even odds for both teams. [FiveThirtyEight]

NAFTA throws down in hockey brawl

The U.S. Women’s national hockey team faced Canada’s team for the first of six games leading up to the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea on Sunday, winning 5 -2 and setting expectations for the team high. The U.S. hasn’t won gold in the sport at the Olympics since 1998. [Excelle Sports, Hockey Canada]

And thus social progress was made

Jenny Boucek was hired by the Sacramento Kings as the assistant coach for player development, making her the second woman currently on an NBA staff full-time. [ESPN]

A win is a win

Rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky completed four of seven passes in the Bears game against the Panthers, notching a total quarterback rating of 4.2. That would have been the worst QBR of the week except that isn’t enough action to actually qualify. The defense carried the team and supplied both of Chicago’s touchdowns in the 17-3 victory, proving yet again that even the ugliest wins are still wins. [ESPN, Deadspin]

Make sure to try your hand at our fun NFL can you beat the FiveThirtyEight predictions? game!

Big Number

95.5 percent

The New York Jets fired back at critics who have been baffled by the team’s strong performance and seeming inability to properly tank. They did this by losing to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday 31-28 despite at one point having a 95.5 percent chance of winning the game according to ESPN analytics. [ESPN]

Leaks from Slack:


[screenshot of “Most Wins by Manager to Not Win World Series: Gene Mauch, 1,902; Dusty Baker, 1,863; Buck Showalter, 1,504; Clark Griffith, 1,491]


i forget, what’s the 538 line on dusty


I think he’s actually kinda underrated

[THE TRUTH: Last September we published a table of the worst bullpen managers since 2000 and Baker was ranked fourth. However, this past May Neil wrote a piece that ranked Baker sixth on wins above projected since 1961. You decide!]


Oh, and don’t forget
This is the most crazypants play I’ve seen in ages and if I saw it in a comic book I’d criticize it as unrealistic

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.