The magic number is 161

The magic number is 161 April 5, 2012

Let us dedicate ourselves to what the Greeks wrote so many years ago: to tame the savageness of man and to make gentle the life of this world.”

Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.”

“Without such changes the U.S. may well become a permanently divided society.”

“Since the Chamber has such wide sway over the composition of Congress, and the laws we must all live under, it’s worth digging into which corporations fund the Chamber.”

Businesses that conduct themselves honorably are put at a disadvantage. Competitors who engage in bait-and-switch and other unfair tactics no longer face an economic penalty for cheating.”

“Coca Cola appears to have carefully weighed the consequences of supporting any group or organization that is openly attempting to suppress the rights of 99 percent of the population against it’s need to sell products to that same 99 percent.”

Welcome to Union Shop: A Guide to What’s Union Made

“Just as I would never dream of telling my staff what to do with their bi-weekly paychecks, I have no interest in telling them how to use their insurance benefits.”

“There’s a continued, frustrating, bothersome narrative in the health care debate that women are conniving, evil, stupid, little things.”

“For allergy sufferers, this is probably not the news that you want to hear.”

“Joseph Bernadin was a towering figure of the liberal church, a good and decent man who died too young of pancreatic cancer. His memory deserves better than to be thrown by a pipsqueak know-nothing into a game of wingnut Mad Libs.”

Reagan gave amnesty to undocumented immigrants, expanded the size of the federal government, tripled the deficit and added trillions to the debt, bailed out domestic industries, and called for a world without nuclear weapons.”

“There has been a clear strategic calculation here among Republican elites. Better to leverage or at least accept the racism of much of the Republican base than try to clean it up.”

“National concern about vigilantism that stole the life of a young man should not fall along racial and partisan lines.”

“The only way to explain the possibility of overturning the law is as an expression of the panic that has consumed conservatives during the Obama era. Smith’s outburst is actually a telling example of that panic.” (Also, and also, and especially)

“Making sure policies are in place to insure wanted babies are able to be born and thrive in their first year of life just kinda screams ‘pro-life,’ right?”

“Policy Basics: Where Do Our Federal Tax Dollars Go?

God separated the dirt from the grass. He called the grass Outfield and the dirt He called Infield.”

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  • Anonymous

    The magic number is 161.

    I thought that the magic number at the beginning of the season is 163.

  • Lori

    “The only way to explain the possibility of overturning the law is as an expression of the panic that has consumed conservatives during the Obama era. Smith’s outburst is actually a telling example of that panic.” (Also, and also, and especially)

    Also here: http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/04/the-misplaced-indignation-of-the-judge-who-criticized-obama/255474/

  • Johnfremont67

    Reagan also supported passage of the Brady Bill in the 1990’s and signed into law the Mulford Act , which banned open carry of firearms in California .

  • The magic numbers are, two, eight, twenty, twenty-eight, fif–

    Oops. Wrong context. ;-)

  • Okay, why is the magic number 161? What does that mean?

  • Amaryllis

    I thought the magic number was FF FE. Or possibly, FE FF

  • Amaryllis

    Baseball.

    Today is the Opening Day for the American Baseball season.

    Happy Anniversary, Orioles Park at Camden Yards.

    (Which, although I don’t follow the sport closely, I gather is all that my city expects to be able to celebrate this year.

    Or any other year, for that matter.)

  • Anonymous

    “Reagan gave amnesty to undocumented immigrants, expanded the size of the federal government, tripled the deficit and added trillions to the debt, bailed out domestic industries, and called for a world without nuclear weapons.”

    Just Wednesday I was driving behind somebody with Reagan-worship bumper stickers.  That’s not hyperbole — one of them said “WWRD”.  Another was a picture of Ronnie’s smiling face with “AVENGE ME!”

    I’m no mindreader and it’s possible, theoretically, that this person longs for the Ronald Reagan who gave amnesty to immigrants, etc.  But I’m guessing not.  The target of reverence is not so much Ronald Reagan as “Ronald Reagan”, the fictional construct who can be made to say and support whatever the speaker likes, the real one being safely dead.  Not unlike their “Jesus” construct.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t forget “Dr. King”.

  • Tricksterson

    No, they’re 4, 8, 14, 15, 23, 42

  • Tricksterson

    AVENGE ME!?  Against what?  Did this guy come from an alternate timeline where the assassination attempt succeeded and he died on the operating table?

  • Anonymous

    The magic number is typically used at the end of the season approaches to indicate how close a first place team is to clinching a division title.  The magic number is the sum of wins by the division leader and losses by its closest pursuer needed for the team to clinch the division.  For example, if the Royals’ magic number is 6, that means the Royals will clinch their division title if they win 6 more games, or 5 wins and 1 loss by the 2nd place team, or 4 wins and 2 losses, etc.  (Alas, a “wildcard magic number” is now cited for teams vying for the runner-up playoff berths.)
     
    Let’s suppose that entering the final day of the regular season, your team’s record is 81-80.  Each win reduces your team’s magic number by 1 for a total reduction of 81.

    Let’s suppose that entering the final day of the regular season, the record of the 2nd place team in the division is 80-81.  Each loss reduces your team’s magic number by 1 for a total reduction of 81.

    Entering the final day of the season, you team’s magic number is 1: if your team wins or the 2nd place team loses, your team clinches the division.

    81 + 81 + 1 = 163.  Therefore, for each team the magic number at the beginning of the season is 163.

  • The Lodger

    With those numbers, your hypothetical division can’t contain more than two teams. In that case you probably don’t need to calculate a magic number to figure out what is going on.

  • Beleester

    TIL about the Cadaver Synod.  What the hell.

  • Anonymous

    Not at all.  The regular season includes games against teams from other divisions.  In a particularly weak division, the teams may have very poor records against the other divisions.  So it’s not only possible for the first place team in a weak five-team division to finish with an 82-80 record, it’s happened before. The 2005 San Diego Padres won the NL West with a record of 82-80. Every other team in that division finished with a losing record.

    See also an example from the NFL.  In 2009 the champion of the NFC West Division finished the regular season with a losing 7-9 record.

  •  I was thinking the magic number was 145, because that’s the number of paints in the new line of miniature paints that Games Workshop put on shelves today. My evil space elves now have the very nice purples that I have always wanted.