Fighting irrationality with irrationality since 2006.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

One big BM

Okay, so as part of my inaugural post to FBM, I've decided that typing "Bob Matthews" repeatedly is only going to hasten the onset of carpal tunnel syndrome. Thus, I declare that (at least in my posts), the big man will from this point forward be referred to simply as BM.

Now onto the substance of my post (don't worry, most things I say/write are pretty light on substance). This past Monday, following the 132nd Kentucky Derby (insert obligatory comment about how horse racing should not be discussed on the sports page), BM bravely declared that Derby-winner Barbaro would go on to be the first Triple Crown winner in 28 years. First off, let me give props to BM for accurately predicting Barbaro as the eventual winner. Second, let me say that I know absolutely nothing about horse racing and so I'm not here at attack the prediction itself. This horsie may indeed go on to win the Triple Crown but BM gives no evidence supporting what he describes as a "fearless prediction" other than to say that "Barbaro appears to have the tactical speed and stamina to win both races [the Preakness and Belmont Stakes] if he stays healthy." Back in June of 2004, BM used similar "evidence" in declaring that Derby and Preakness-winner Smarty Jones was "a lock" to win the Belmont and take the Triple Crown. Needless to say, he lost.

My problem here isn't the prediction itself. Rather, I find this to be yet another example of sports writers trying to make instant history out of one singular event. The Patriots are the greatest dynasty in NFL history! The Colts will be the first team to ever go 19-0! The '06 Rose Bowl was the most exciting college football game ever!

To all sports writers (not just BM), CUT IT OUT!

I promise this is the last time I will talk about horse racing.


Blogger Brian said...

I have a short tea interval during protein purification, and I wanted to ask if you remembered what BM said about Smarty Jones, or if you looked it up?

See, this is relevant to an internal disscusion I have been having about the best way to keep track of long term predictions. For example, BM wrote a column the other day along the lines of "I will sleep with a llama if the Braves win the NL East," (note, not actual quote) and I would like to keep track of that statement for the future.

After having typed this, I looked it up, and I can access back to 1999 if I am here, or log in via vpn. That could come in handy.

4:49 PM

Blogger Matty Y said...

I found the article via the D&C archives, though I refused to freaking pay for it. So, admittedly, I was only basing my reasoning on the first three sentences of the article.

11:38 PM

Blogger GarbagePlates said...

Hi, I'm a Rochester native, and I've just got to say that you are right on in all your posts so far. BM (I chuckled the first time I saw that) really needs to pay more attention to the sports world. He's a terrible statistician, and I agree that the Rhino's need better coverage. Keep up the good work. I'll be checking back often.

1:28 AM

Blogger Brian said...

Thanks, we appreciate it.

10:10 PM


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