The underlying assumption of my first attempt at simulation was that a player will perform in 2015 as he did in 2014. This was quite reasonable in order to get the simulator working, but it’s a bit of a stretch in reality to say the least. I decided to generate transition-state probabilities based on the events of the past three seasons as a better (i.e. more reliable) source of information.
I combined the Retrosheet event files for 2012, 2013, and 2014 and reran the simulation. Think of the new transition-state probabilities as the result of one big season that was three times as long.
Here are the results:
|AL East||NL East|
|AL Central||NL Central|
|AL West||NL West|
These seem to be quite reasonable. I like these better simply because they are based on the analysis of three times as much data. On the other hand (as confirmation bias rears its ugly head), I ‘like’ the suggestion that the Cubs might win ~81 a lot better than ~91 :-þ
Once again, these results are for the lineups of early January, and many changes have occurred over the past couple of weeks. Next on the list will be to update the lineups and rerun the simulation.