While We’re Waiting serves as the daily gathering of Cleveland sports information for your early morning viewing pleasure. Have something else you think we should write about? Send it to our fancy tips email in the sidebar.
Rick’s franchise comparison to the Atlanta Falcons yesterday looks pretty solid next to these stats from the last few years. As long as they don’t go 0-16 this year… “A loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium would mark the second straight 0-3 start for the Browns and the third in four years. The exception was in 2007, when the team opened almost as bad – at 1-2 — and then quickly righted the ship en route to a 10-6 finish. But the two 0-3 starts in that span have signaled doom in the end. In 2006, the Browns went 1-5 overall out of the gate and then lost their last four to go 4-12. Last year, the Browns recovered to a 3-4 mark before collapsing down the stretch en route to finishing 4-12 again.” [Steve King/Orange and Brown Report]
Our favorite Cleveland sage details the last championship the city celebrated… “That’s because 1964 was 45 years ago. That’s because I was only 9 when the Browns stunned the football world with that 27-0 victory over the highly favored Baltimore Colts at old Cleveland Municipal Stadium to win the title. I remember listening to the game on the radio at my home in Parma; there was a TV blackout locally. It seemed the Browns were good every year, and some seasons they were great. That 1964 title was their eighth in 18 years, including four in the old All-America Football Conference from 1946 through 1949. Now, most Browns fans weren’t even alive when their favorite team last won a title.” [Terry Pluto/Cleveland Plain Dealer]
How about this? An third-party baseball-lover’s perspective on the state of the current Cleveland Indians front office and this article should provide plenty of fodder for Isis… “Why haven’t the 61-90 Cleveland Indians made Eric Wedge one of our nation’s myriad unemployed? Mired in a ten game losing streak, Cleveland management can’t argue it’s too late in the season. [Houston Astros manager Cecil] Cooper got his walking papers two days ago. And the current issue losing streak isn’t even the issue. They haven’t been closer than ten games out in the division since June. And they were lousy last year! But Wedge is seemingly immune to any of it.” [Kris Liakos/Walkoff Walk]
DiaTribe re-posts an article from three months ago for dramatic effect and makes a very valid statistical point… “For a moment, let’s remove ourselves from the emotional train wreck of the past week and take a longer overview of the Indians performance under Wedge as a manager by analyzing how he’s stacked against a formula that actually exists to predict how many games a team should win and should lose (please not the ‘should’ and realize that this is not a hard-and-fast formula) by taking the number of runs scored by a team and the number of runs allowed by a team. Created by Bill James (and tweaked a few times), it’s called the Pythagorean Winning Percentage and it’s used to take ‘luck’ out of the equation.” [Paul Cousineau/The DiaTribe]
More comments on the new hookup between the Russian billionaire and the New Jersey Nets… “NBA Commissioner David Stern ought to be tucking into a celebratory bowl of borscht right now at the Russian Tea Room, which is a few blocks from the NBA’s offices in Manhattan’s Olympic Tower. Not just because, with Russian oligarch Mikhail Prokhorov’s impending purchase of the Nets, a league that had to secure a line of credit for its franchises in the wake of last fall’s financial crisis can now count as one of its owners a man more liquid than the Black Sea.” [Alexander Wolff/SI.com]
I love me some stats, especially when they prove the statistical anomaly of CP3 and LBJ in today’s game… “Well, at least that was true until last year. As the following table reveals, this past year both Chris Paul and LeBron James surpassed the 3.5 mark… So if we consider how far a player statistically surpasses the average productivity at his position, both CP3 and King James this past season offered the best performance across the past decade. In fact, one has to go back to the 1990-91 season to find a player who performed at the level of Paul and James in 2008-09.” [Dave Berri/Wages of Wins](Note: The photo above is via Nick Wess/AP as I discovered it was not very difficult to find photographs of the Browns beating the Ravens. Keep an eye out later today for an analysis of Fausto Carmona/the Indians victory, a suprising NBA ranking from ESPN and a final preview/open thread of the Buckeyes. Denny will be in charge tomorrow for the Brownies.)