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Friday, June 15, 2007

For the Yankee Haters Out There

I will have more to say about this particular box score, but I wanted to post this amazingly poor performance by the New York Yankees on June 12, 1907:



Update: I grabbed the retro-sheet game logs going back to 1871 and ported them into Stata. Unfortunately, the game logs are incomplete in the early years of professional baseball - complete box scores start in 1911. However, the retrosheet game log for this June 12, 1907 game between Detroit and the Yankees does indicate the umpire, the score, the managers, and the starting pitchers.

Here is the frequency of home errors amongst the 100,878 games since 1911 for which the number of home errors were recorded:

herrors | Freq. Percent Cum.
------------+-----------------------------------
0 | 47,260 46.85 46.85
1 | 33,492 33.20 80.05
2 | 14,010 13.89 93.94
3 | 4,525 4.49 98.42
4 | 1,144 1.13 99.56
5 | 335 0.33 99.89
6 | 84 0.08 99.97
7 | 25 0.02 100.00
8 | 2 0.00 100.00
9 | 1 0.00 100.00
------------+-----------------------------------
Total | 100,878 100.00

Here's the tabulation for the number of visiting team errors:
. tab verrors if !missing(herrors)

verrors | Freq. Percent Cum.
------------+-----------------------------------
0 | 47,187 46.78 46.78
1 | 34,012 33.72 80.49
2 | 13,965 13.84 94.34
3 | 4,264 4.23 98.56
4 | 1,116 1.11 99.67
5 | 264 0.26 99.93
6 | 54 0.05 99.98
7 | 12 0.01 100.00
8 | 4 0.00 100.00
------------+-----------------------------------
Total | 100,878 100.00

Therefore, the 11 errors the Yankees performed in this game were more than for any home or away team for any game recorded (and included in retrosheet) since 1911.

As a lot of people love to hate the Yankees (although I personally don't have any animosity for the team), I thought this was an interesting box score for Yankee haters.

The article that described the game pointed out that the shortstop had 4 errors in the second inning which allowed nine runs to score. After that the home crowd turned on the Yankees and actively cheered for the Tigers and booed and derided the Pinstripers. Isn't that interesting. Fans of yesterday acted just like fans of today - they were quick to turn on the home team.

Moreover, the article points out that one of the Yankees had to leave the game after "being spiked at second base." The spiker was not named, but one might suspect Detroit's right fielder (batting fourth in the line up) - he had a reputation of such behavior.

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