John Dewan’s Stat of the Week™

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.  A big THANK YOU from me to you for reading Stat of the Week. Each week I do a Stat of the Week radio segment on WSCR—670 The Score in Chicago. Ninety percent of the time I focus on the Chicago teams. For my web and email Stat of the Week, I normally take a national perspective. Just for fun, today I’m going to share with you my Thanksgiving Day Numbers that I did on the radio.

Thanksgiving Day Numbers—numbers that Chicago sports fans have to be thankful for.

Chicago Bulls fans—1.7%
This was the percentage chance that the Bulls had to get the number one draft pick in the 2008 NBA draft. They were sitting in the ninth position overall yet beat the odds to get the number one pick. That pick became Derrick Rose. Rose put the team on his shoulders in the fourth quarter on Monday leading the Bulls to a 101-100 victory against the Utah Jazz. At Utah. Breaking their 13-game winning streak.

Blackhawks fans—1952
That’s the year when Rocky Wirtz was born. Rocky was two years old when his dad, Bill Wirtz, took over the Chicago Blackhawks. Now Rocky took over the team when his father passed away last year. What does that mean? It means televised home games in Chicago. It means bringing back Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita. It means a brand new era for hockey in Chicago. The Hawks are off to a great start this year.

Bears fans—11 to 4
That’s Kyle Orton’s touchdown passes verses his interceptions this year so far. It’s the best ratio in the last 24 years for the Bears, except for one incredible year (1995) put in by Eric Kramer when he had 29 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Orton has been something the Bears haven’t had in a long time, a real quarterback! Maybe going all the way back to Jim McMahon. And even McMahon didn’t generally have a 3-1 ratio of touchdown throws versus interceptions.

White Sox fans—17
The White Sox increased their victory total by 17 wins last year. They won 72 in 2007 and improved to 89 victories in 2008. That was the second highest increase in baseball (Tampa Bay increased by 31). Before the season everyone was raving about the Detroit Tigers and their incredible offensive firepower. They laughed at White Sox GM Kenny Williams when he said, “Well maybe the Tigers will be looking up at us, trying to catch us.” No one is laughing now.

Cubs fans—636
Is that how many years it’s been since the Cubs have won the World Series? OK, that’s not funny.
Since 2003 here is how Cubs hitters have ranked in drawing walks among National League teams:
     2003 14th of 16 teams
     2004 14th of 16 teams
     2005 16th of 16 teams
     2006 16th of 16 teams
     2007 15th of 16 teams
In 2008, Cubs hitters finished first in the National League in walks with 636. During the five previous years the Cubs averaged 737 runs per year. With their newly-found patience at the plate, the Cubs increased their run production by over 100 runs, also leading the 2008 NL in runs scored with 855.

Here are a couple of additional numbers for and Sox Cubs fans to be thankful for:
White Sox second baseman Alexei Ramirez hit .380 with runners in scoring position last year, fifth best in the American league. Quite amazing for a first year player. On the Cubs, Aramis Ramirez led the National League hitting in the late innings of close games. He hit .423. Not too shabby.

Happy Thanksgiving to all Chicago fans out there.

Used with permission from John Dewan’s Stat of the Week™,

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    November 27, 2008   Posted in: John Dewan

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