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Significant Digits For Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.

2 draft picks

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred announced that the St. Louis Cardinals would be fined $2 million and have their top two draft picks sent to the Houston Astros after an investigation found that former Cardinals scouting director Chris Correa illegally tapped into the Astros database. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch]

2 regulations

President Trump signed an executive order Monday that would require two federal regulations to be rescinded for every new federal regulation implemented. This is fantastic news, as I have been a long-standing proponent of the idea that the government that governs best is the government that governs like it was cursed by a woods witch after getting caught in her garden in a German folktale. [POLITICO]

3 states

Gregg Phillips — a self-proclaimed voter fraud authority who has said without any evidence that there was illegal voting this past election and who has enjoyed the ear of the president in such matters, namely a campaign against people registered to vote in more than one state — was found to be registered to vote in Alabama, Texas and Mississippi. That doesn’t mean he — or anyone, really — votes in more than one state. It just means that sometimes people decide to go to another state to live their lives. Shocking, I know. [The Associated Press]

12th incarnation of Doctor Who

Peter Capaldi will step down from his role as The Doctor — the 12th incarnation of the iconic U.K. science-fiction character — after the 2017 Christmas special. And, look, I’m just aware enough of this science fictional canon to be pretty ticked off about Capaldi calling it quits after a mere three seasons. We’re talking about an entity that can regenerate just 13 times, and Capaldi is playing the penultimate one. (This is how they recast a character that has been around for actual generations.) Unless they contract a contemporary of Prince George of Cambridge’s for the part, this show will run out of gasoline by the mid-2020s. [The Hollywood Reporter]


Average attendance at the NHL’s New York Islanders games, the third-worst in an NHL that includes multiple teams in the American South. Brooklyn’s Barclays Center has decided it is no longer worth it to be the home of the Islanders. Good news for me: The team may kick the tires on moving to Queens, according to Bloomberg. [Bloomberg]

Nearly 2.3 million members

Number of members of the Boy Scouts of America ages 7 to 21. On Monday the group announced that it would accept new members based on the gender they list on their application, the latest advance of LGBT rights within the group. Once again, while the Boy Scouts made social progress, they were beat to the punch by the Girl Scouts by several years. [The New York Times]

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Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.