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Monday Bantering: The Quarter Pole

Atlanta Braves v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images

I know nothing about horse racing, but the Quater Pole is a thing, right?

Actually, I have a story about horse racing. Several years ago, SB Nation had a meetup of bloggers in Vegas. It was a good time. They had talks about the world of blogging. And I met Tyler Bleszinski (who started up SB and is the nicest guy, so nice he could almost be Canadian), Rob Neyer, Al Yellon, and several other baseball bloggers.

On the last evening, we had a dinner and came in at the same time as the CEO, we were chatting, and he bought me a beer (I like anyone who buys me a beer), and we sat for the meal. On my other side was the fellow who wrote SB’s horseracing blog. I thought, ‘I have no idea what to say to this guy. But he turned out to be great, far more interesting than me. He was telling us that he just returned from a trip to Europe and that the tracks weren’t groomed as perfectly as in North America and weren’t as flat. He was explaining a different kind of horse won there. Bigger, heavier, stronger horses would win. Here leaner, sprinter-type horses would win.

After a bit, I asked ‘If you know nothing about racing, what should you look for when betting?”. He said, ‘Bet on the favourite’. He explained that there are enough people that will bet on long shots the favourite’s odds are never as low as they should be. He said you won’t make much money but’ll come out ahead over time. I meant to try it out sometime, but I haven’t been to a race track since.

But I digress....

A quarter of the way through the season, the Jays are 24-16, translating to 97 wins. And yet we are third in the AL East. And that’s with only 15 of 40 games played at home. We are 12-3 in those 15 games at home. I’d be ok we that continuing for the rest of the season.

Our starters have a 4.03 and have averaged 5.6 innings per game. Amazingly, each of our five starters has pitched in 8 games.

The Yankees have also only used five starts, averaging 5.1 innings.

The Rays have used eleven different starters (some of them have been openers), but being the Rays, whoever they throw out there does great. Their starters are averaging 4.6 innings.

The Orioles have used six starters, averaging 5.2 innings.

And the Red Sox have used eight, averaging 5.1.

Our relievers have a 3.76 ERA. Batters have a .677 OPS against them. We have 4 blown saves and a 73% success rate.

The other AL East teams:

Yankee relievers have a 3.20 ERA. Batters have a .675 OPS. 5 blown saves, 64% success rate.

Rays relievers have a 3.51 ERA. Batters have a .650 OPS. 7 blown saves, 59% success rate.

Orioles relievers have a 3.05 ERA. Batters have a .639 OPS. 8 blown saves, 60% success rate.

Red Sox relievers have a 3.98 ERA. Batters have a .704 OPS. 4 blown saves, 73% success rate.

I hate when we get Laz Diaz’s umpiring crew. Last night’s Umpire Scorecard for Andy Fletcher:

Three Blue Jays were struck out on balls well off the plate. It would be great to get Robo umps.

At the Quarter Pole, who is your team MVP? Team Cy Young? Who is the most underrated?