From professional handicapper to casual fan, the overwhelming consensus among pro sports prognosticators is that the Phillies are going to stink this year. Of course, the same was said about the 1993 Phils team, which defiantly over achieved despite even heavier odds stacked against it.
Can lightning strike the same bottle twice?
Cole Hamels, Chase Utley, and a promising band of young bullpen arms are the reliable ones of the group (Opening Day notwithstanding). And maybe that's a strong enough base to keep this Jenga tower standing long enough to pull off a miracle.
The Royals won 86 games in 2013 with an eerily similar rotation to the Phils' current unit. They batted just .260 as a team, and no one in KC blue hit more than 20 home runs that year.
There are precedents for hope-- though, Vegas might disagree.
The Phillies currently have, by far, the longest odds to win the World Series, set at 500-1, according to Vegasinsider.com. Considering the growth of parity in today's game, this number seems profound.
Despite my optimistic disposition, and earnest hope that our Fightin' Phils can at least make things interesting this season, I thought it might be fun to see what, statistically, is more likely to occur this season than a parade down Broad Street...
- You are six times more likely to die in an automobile accident (84-1).
- It is almost four times more likely for a thoroughbred to win the Triple Crown this year (130-1).
- The Floyd Mayweather- Manny Pacquiao fight is 25 times more likely to end in a draw (20-1)
- Dating a millionaire is a safer proposition (215-1).
- It is four times more likely that zero touchdowns will be scored in next year's Super Bowl (125-1).
- PGA Pro Darren Clarke is as likely to win the Masters this weekend (500-1), despite registering just four top-25 finishes over the past nine seasons.
- Rutgers is as likely to win next year's College Football FBS Championship (500-1).
- You are more likely to die of a heart attack this year (265-1).
- Forget one-- Getting TWO books on the New York Times Best Seller List carries better odds (440-1).
- It is almost twice as likely to be dealt a five-card straight in your very first hand of poker (254-1).
- The likelihood that California, over the next year, will suffer the highest rated earthquake in its recorded history-- 8.0 or higher-- is actually greater... Than the Phillies winning this season's World Series (428-1).
I don't know if this makes me feel better or worse.
But I'm counting on a miracle.
And I'm 53 percent serious as a heart attack.