Diamondbacks News

How the Diamondbacks can still make the playoffs. Really.

By Christopher Gaine
Apr 15, 2016; San Diego, CA, USA; The Arizona Diamondbacks celebrate a 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 15, 2016; San Diego, CA, USA; The Arizona Diamondbacks celebrate a 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Diamondbacks’ descent into summer obscurity rolled on yesterday, with another grueling loss to the Astros. They finished May 11-17 on the month, putting them at 23-31 overall. The playoffs seem like a farfetched thought at this point, as the “Evolution” the Diamondbacks have planned has not come to fruition.

Despite this dreary notion, it’s still only June 1. Nobody’s mathematically eliminated yet. But with the Diamondbacks 8.5 games out of the Wild Card, it’s not looking too good for them. To change that, they would have to have one of the most epic turnarounds in baseball history.

Since the second Wild Card made its debut in 2012, the mean number of wins for second wild card teams in the NL is 90.75. So let’s say the Diamondbacks will need 91 wins to make the playoffs. That would mean they will need to go 68-40 from here on out to win that second wild card. That’s a .629 winning percentage for a team that currently has a .426 mark.

If that sounds a little unattainable, that’s because it probably is. The odds of the Diamondbacks making the playoffs at this point seem to be very, very slim. Even if, say, 85 wins were required of a second Wild Card team, the Diamondbacks would have to go 62-46 from today until the end of the season.

However, this team still has a more realistic path to a winning record. To go .500, they would need to go 58-50 from this point forward. 59-49 would put them at 82-80 on the season. So this may be the chase that Diamondbacks fans have to look forward to this season.

Never say never, though. The Mets were only a .500 team until the trade deadline last year. In 2011, the World Series champion Cardinals were 10.5 games out of the Wild Card on August 24. That soccer team won the British championship with 5,000:1 odds. These may be the exceptions rather than the rule, but exceptions do happen…

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