Study: Indians Fans Should Root for Diamondbacks, Cardinals in Playoffs

By Lewie Pollis

For the fourth year in a row, the Cleveland Indians have missed the playoffs. It’s something we Tribe fans are used to by now, but it’s also something we never quite get over—great as the virtually non-stop month of postseason baseball is every year, it’s always bittersweet when the Indians aren’t involved.

So who should Cleveland fans be rooting for this October instead? According to one formula, Tribe fans should be pulling for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

This week at Beyond the Box Score, I unveiled ROOT (Rootability Of Other Teams), a tchotchke statistic that ranks each playoff team’s likability by taking underdog status, late-season comebacks, and funness (yes, I know that’s not a word) to watch into account, then adjusts the numbers for each fanbase based on rivalries and former players’ presences on their rosters.

Here’s how the numbers shake out for Cleveland fans:

  1. Diamondbacks: 22.5
  2. Cardinals: 20.0
  3. Rays: 16.5
  4. Brewers: 15.0
  5. Tigers: 14.5
  6. Phillies: 9.0
  7. Rangers: 9.0
  8. Yankees: -7.0

According to this, Indians faithful should be pulling for the Diamondbacks to win it all based on their preseason underdog status and mediocre finish in the 2010 season. If the D-Backs get eliminated, Clevelanders’ backup teams should be the Cardinals (to support Jake Westbrook) and the Rays (based on their late-season comeback).

Looking at the first round, Tribe fans should be rooting for the Diamondbacks over the Brewers; the Cardinals over the Phillies; the Rays over the Rangers; and the Tigers over the Yankees.

To see the full methodology, check out the original post.

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