Chris "Mad Dog" on his SiriusXM Radio show Photo credit: SiriusXM

For some people, math is a breeze. For others, it’s hard. Chris “Mad Dog” Russo may not fall into the latter group. But on Monday’s Mad Dog Unleashed he made math a lot harder than it needed to be.

Russo was trying to figure out what the New York Mets would need to do to catch the Atlanta Braves by the end of the season. After their games on Sunday, the Braves sat at 50-27 while the Mets were at 35-42. Of course, we can’t know what New York would need to do to catch Atlanta without first knowing how the Braves will finish. But Russo was trying to figure out what each team would need to do to finish at 90-72.

“If they ever did 55-30, the Braves would have to go 40-45, just for the Mets to match the Braves,” he said. At this point, Russo was spot on. If the Mets finish 55-30 and the Braves finish 40-45, both teams will have 90-72 records.

Russo then kept going. That’s when things broke down.

“So in other words, if the Braves go 40-45 over their last 85 games, that makes them 90-72. To match that, the Mets would have to go 50-35 and to actually do better than that, meaning one more win, 51-34, because of the fact, or 56-34, because of the fact that the, uh, uh uh, you know, 56 and — is that correct? Uh, wrong. 56 and, uh, let’s see, 55, what did I say the Mets are? The Mets right now. Let’s figure this out properly.”

At this point, Russo got back on track, though it wasn’t a completely straight path.

“They’re seven under .500. I think they’re 34 and, I think they’re 41. So, to get to 90 wins, they’ve got to go 56 and roughly, is it 31? So, for the Braves to do worse than that, the Braves gotta go, I know the Braves gotta go 40-45 in their 85 games to go, to get to 90, because the Braves right now have 55 wins. The Braves have 50 wins. So 40-45 gets them to 90. The Mets are 35-42. So that’s 55 to get to 90 from 35-42. They’ve got to go 55-30.”

Back on track.

Russo then concluded the point with, “So to beat the Braves out, if they went 40-45, the Mets would have to go 56-29 because the Braves right now have beaten the Braves five out of six and they’d have the tiebreaker. The Mets aren’t going 56-29.”

We can only be thankful that Russo left it at this. Because as confusing as this math session was, it would only get more head-scratching if the Miami Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies — who both sit between the Mets and Braves in the NL East standings — were brought into the discussion.

Atlanta going 40-45 for the rest of the season after starting 50-27 would be a significant drop. But if that happens, the Braves would finish at 90-72. The Mets would need to at 55-30 to go 90-72 and 56-29 to go 91-71. New York and Atlanta also have seven more games remaining against each other. The Mets could conceivably win the tiebreaker but would need to go no worse than 6-1 over those seven games to do that.

In the end, he finished where he started, with the correct numbers. We can say this, though. Mad Dog is no Scott Steiner.

Despite that, he started and finished in the right spot.


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