Bases empty, two outs, a 3-1 game, #8 hitter up. Nothing comes down to this.

Friday, February 2, 2018

FUCK BOSTON, quantified

So, you know how fuck Boston?

This Sunday, the New England Patriots will play for the Superbowl and if they win, it will be their 6th title since 2002. The Brady-Belichick era has been the most dominant in NFL history. Annoyingly, other Boston teams have also been successful in this period (heretofore referred to as the Fuck Boston Era): The Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, 2007, and 2013, the Celtics won the NBA Championship in 2008, and the Bruins won the Stanley Cup in 2011. Fuck Boston!

In the last 16 years, they've won 10 championships in all four major North American sports. And in two days, it might be 11. Fuck Boston.

Also, Boston is the worst!* Tom Brady and his pseudoscience are the worst. Patriots owner Bob Kraft is the worst. Boston fans are the worst. Boston sports radio personalities are the worst. Fuck Boston.

*this is the part where I mention that I've been to Boston twice and have had a lovely experience both times.

But it got me wondering: fuck Boston, yes, but fuck Boston just how much compared to fuck other cities, historically?

Sorry. In plain English: are there any other eras in which one city dominated the sports landscape as thoroughly as Boston has in recent memory, with both the volume and variety of championships?


The Methodology

To measure this, a new statistic is introduced:

The Functional Utility Calculation for Knowing, Based On Statistics, the Temporal dOminance Number (FUCKBOSTON), calculated as:

Since 2002, Boston has won 10 championships in 4 different sports across 16 years, giving the Fuck Boston Era a 16-Year FUCKBOSTON of (10 * 4) / 16 = 2.5. Fuck Boston!

So, has any other city dominated an era of North American sports like Boston has the current era? 5-year, 10-year, 15-year, and 20-year FUCKBOSTONs were calculated for all possible such eras, going back to 1903. Results are listed below.

80s-era LA coming in hot! Los Angeles teams between 1984 and 1988 won three NBA championships (Lakers), a World Series title (Dodgers), and a Superbowl (Raiders), for a dominant five-year stretch that nonetheless only ties them with the Fuck Boston Era Boston teams. Fuck LA! 

Sports fans can look back at past championship statistics and marvel at the dominant teams of bygone eras (hello, '60s Celtics), but it's impossible to get the visceral jealous hatred towards a city as a whole that goes with living through the era. As a millennial (yes, fuck me, I know), even though I knew the Lakers were great in the '80s, and I've seen the other LA titles listed as statistics, I never really thought of '80s LA as being a dominant sports city in the way Boston is now. But looking at the FUCKBOSTON numbers, sports fans at the time must have similarly despised LA, especially since LA fans are the worst. Fuck LA!

Expanding the definition of "era" to ten years puts Boston squarely on top. Fuck Boston!

For the 15-year FUCKBOSTON, New York in the '70s claims the top spot. The Big Apple boasts World Series titles in '69 (Mets), and '77 and '78 (Yankees), four consecutive Stanley Cups from '80-'83 (Islanders), NBA titles in '70 and '73 (in which the Phil Jackson-as-a-player Knicks defeated the Pat Riley-as-a-player Lakers? That happened?), and a Superbowl in '69 (the Joe Namath-led Jets). Fuck New York!

For 20 year stretches, New York completely dominates.  Most of the top 10 are variations on the aforementioned late 60s-early 80s NY teams, with the only exception being one version of the Fuck Bostons.

For all possible lengths of era, Boston, LA, and New York completely dominate the leaderboards. The first non-Big-Three cities for each table, ignoring some ties because I'm lazy, are:

A Major Caveat

Obviously, this statistic only captures information about championships, and does not in any way attempt to measure the qualitative ways in which fuck Boston. Were we to include some sort of multiplier to account for qualitative parameters, Boston would obviously run away with all possible mutations of FUCKBOSTON. An initial draft of such a multiplier would look something like this:

*Was 0.1 before Golden State blew a 3-1 lead

Further Analysis

Wondering where your city ranks? How the Big Three's scores have evolved over time? Looking for more reasons to hate Boston? Stay tuned to Bottom of the Fourth for follow-up analysis in the coming weeks.


  • Data was used starting from 1903 for MLB, 1927 for the NHL, 1950 for the NBA, and 1967 for the NFL, because those are the starting dates for the most recent data tables on Wikipedia; any previous data is in a separate table. I sure as shit wasn't gonna copy multiple tables for a single sport, jesus christ. What am I, made of time?
  • Yes, the Islanders play nowhere near New York City (or at least they did until recently). Shut up.
  • I don't really give a shit about teams that technically play out of the city or even in a different state, or fanbases that are split between two teams (i.e. Yankees vs. Mets). If you're spoiled enough to have so much choice in your home teams, shut up.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dan Johnson Gets So Laid: Frat Boy

TAMPA BAY (Bottom of the Fourth) - According to a frat boy, Dan Johnson got "so laid" last night after hitting a heroic ninth-inning home run to preserve the Tampa Bay Rays' playoff chances. Chad Nickelback, of Mu Mu Pi, which is not affiliated with any educational institution, says that he "almost definitely, yeah definitely, for sure, though I was kinda wasted" saw Johnson at a bar last night and he was "getting so much p****".

Johnson could not be reached for comment, though Bottom of the Fourth did speak with a man claiming to be his agent, Chazz Nickelbock. "My client wishes to inform you that, um, he did, like, get so laid, all thanks to his good buddy Chad Nickelback, who's like a really cool guy."

Cardinals Bust Out Champagne on Flight, Molina Forced to Land Plane

ST. LOUIS (Bottom of the Fourth) - After beating the Houston Astros last night, the St. Louis Cardinals' fate was in the Atlanta Braves hands, who were still playing in extra innings against the Philadelphia Phillies. But they couldn't stick around to see how it played out, as they had to hop a flight back home to St. Louis.

The news that the Braves had lost, ensuring St. Louis' place in the playoffs, came mid-flight, and so the players busted out the champagne on the spot, much to the chagrin of the service staff. The chagrin was short-lived, however, as the exuberance of the team rubbed off on everyone, and even the pilots got in on the festivities.

When the dust settled, however, the pilots were smashed and the only person on the plane still sober was catcher Yadier Molina, a devout non-drinker. Consequently, Molina was forced to land the plane amid conflicting drunken instructions from the pilots and Tony La Russa. Fortunately, Molina told the press after successfully landing the plane, catching skills are "directly transferrable" to landing a plane.

Area Man Opts Out of Carl Crawford's Contract

BOSTON (Bottom of the Fourth) - A local man made news in Boston this morning when he opted out of Carl Crawford's contract. Gerald McFadden, a Boston pub owner, says that he was "optimistic" at the beginning of the year but that it's become clear that it's time for him and Crawford to "go their separate ways".

Though Red Sox lawyers deny that McFadden and Crawford had any sort of contractual agreement, Crawford's agent Todd Stevens says that the decision voids his client's entire contract. Apparently, upon signing with the Red Sox, Crawford insisted on an "area man clause", whereby any fan determined by an impartial third party to fit the description of "area man" can opt out on the team's behalf should he become disenchanted with Crawford. Stevens explained that the clause was included to "protect [his] client's fragile feelings".

Nothing Happens on Final Day of Season: Source

OAKLAND (Bottom of the Fourth) - An anonymous tipster informed Bottom of the Fourth early Thursday morning that Wednesday night, the final night of MLB's regular season, went by without any sort of significant activity. The surprising news comes contradictory to numerous reports claiming that important "stuff" and "things" may have "occurred" and/or "happened" on MLB's final day.

A phone call came into BotF's Toronto headquarters from an Oakland area code, but the caller used a voice distorter so as not to be identified. BotF's reporter chatted with the informant for close to half an hour about such topics as the weather, his/her marriage, and why Oakland doesn't get out-of-area baseball games.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Strasburg Out With Wisdom Arm Surgery, Expected to Miss 10 Months

WASHINGTON (Bottom of the Fourth) - Just weeks after Stephen Strasburg returned to the Washington Nationals' rotation following Tommy John surgery, the phenom is going under the knife again.

Nationals fans were distraught when the team announced in a press conference Tuesday that Strasburg will be undergoing more surgery. Reportedly, team doctors recently discovered a wisdom arm coming in, and it needs to be removed immediately.

Unlike wisdom teeth, which are frequently extracted for health reasons, a wisdom arm carries virtually no health risk. However, wisdom arms are against MLB's Extra Limb Policy. Rule 4.2 b) under section 7 states "no player shall be allowed to advantageously utilize any extra limb, appendage or member".

If Strasburg let his wisdom arm grow in, he'd have a huge advantage
Steve Stevenson, MLB's official Rules and Regulations Liaison, told Bottom of the Fourth that having an extra arm would give Strasburg an "unfair advantage" by allowing him to "throw two balls at once" and "trick the batter". Among the various tools up a "Three-Armer"'s sleeve are the Double-Fastball, the Curve-Change, and the Bean-Strike, in which one arm throws directly at the batter while the other throws a perfect strike, forcing the batter to cringe while strike three blows by them.

Stevenson says rule 4.2 b) was not always in place, but was implemented in 1968 when Willie Stargell showed up to spring training with an extra leg. The big slugger had stolen 47 bases through the first two months of the season before MLB realized it had a problem on its hands.

Other players to have lost limbs to the rule include Mark Fidrych, who had the same wisdom arm surgery Strasburg is about to have, and Rickey Henderson, who lost his first head (Rickey actually opted to keep the second, as he liked its tendency to speak in the third person). José Canseco, meanwhile, has never had to have his wisdom p**** removed, according to José Canseco.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Controversial Sausage Race Leads Second Deck Fans to Demand Do-Over

MILWAUKEE (Bottom of the Fourth) - The Klement's Sausage Race has been a much-loved tradition at Milwaukee's Miller Park ever since it was introduced in 1995. But on Sunday night it took a turn for the ugly.

Fans from the second deck are demanding a do-over after their sausage (the Polish, wearing #4) tripped and fell while leading the race. The Coalition of Brewers Fans Who Usually Sit in the Second Deck, Like When We Decide to Come to the Game Anyway, however, claims it was no accident.

Grzegorz Szczepanski, a spokesman for the CBFWUSSDLWWDCGA, says that the organization has video footage clearly showing the Polish sausage being "jostled" by the Italian. "Those greasy Italians will do anything to get a leg up", fumed Szczepanski at a press conference.

Agnieszka Grabowski, the Miller Park employee who ran in the Italian costume, was taken aback by the visceral reaction. "I mean, I know Grzegorz," she told Bottom of the Fourth, "he's my great uncle on my mom's side and my third grand-niece on my dad's side. We grew up together."

The CBFWUSSDLWWDCGA announced in a press release that they are "furious, steaming, even sizzling" over the issue. They plan to file a petition and have three demands:
  1. A do-over of the race, to be held at 7 AM tomorrow morning
  2. Complementary Polish sausages for all in attendance
  3. Renaming Miller Park to "Mziller Pzarkz"
The petition currently has over 300 signatures, mostly alternate spellings of "Grzegorz Szczepanski" with varying quantities and locations of zs. This is well below Wisconsin's state minimum of 1000, at which point the petition must be considered by the state legislature. However, University of Wisconsin computer science professor Dave Stevens theorizes that the number of possible spellings, accounting for the z factor, is "on the order of millions".