For years, the folks at FanGraphs and The Hardball Times have provided the baseball industry with intelligent, thought-provoking content. They have graduated writers and interns alike into the baseball industry proper, and helped bring about the recent statistical revolution.
Their most recent article was certainly thought-provoking... but in a slightly different fashion. Hardball Times writer Greg Simons did the lord’s work on Monday, determining which MLB team’s mascot would win a World Series (by combat, it seems). Naturally, the Detroit Tigers came out on top, because tigers are awesome.
Our staff had some thoughts on that.
Jay: THIS IS CRUCIAL HOT STOVE REPORTING, FOLKS!
Peter: It’s the only World Series the Tigers are winning this year.
Fielder’s Choice: Except that it’s all wrong. A human with a gun beats a tiger more times than not. Especially if they have a rifle. The Rangers are the most likely human mascot to carry a rifle. Lots of Yankees have guns. Even Indians and Braves often had guns, at least during the time period when they were called “indians” and “braves.”
Ok, so I could see any of those people losing out to a Giant, which is what the article said. But only if the giant is big enough that guns don’t do a whole lot. And then he turns around and says the giant is only 7’4 and gets killed by a pirate. Well then how the hell did he kill the Ranger?!
Jeff: Chuck Norris was a Texas Ranger (or at least he played one on TV). So if it’s Chuck Norris against anyone, I’m taking Chuck Norris.
Fielder’s Choice: The correct answer is probably the Rangers, with the exception that maybe we’re talking about a giant that’s, like, 70 feet tall. Or maybe if the Twins both have guns against one Ranger... in which case the Twins just become a yankee.
Brandon: You can’t assume guns. Otherwise I say the Pirates and their many cannons would defeat a small group of Rangers.
Fielder’s Choice: You can assume guns with the Rangers.
frisbeepilot: Pirates vs. Mariners: a battle on the high seas, yarrr.
Fielder’s Choice: And I think that the rules are one of the mascots (with the exception of the Twins, since their mascot defines two).
Brandon: OK, but if I assume guns for the Rangers, the Pirates are blowing the scurvy buggers to kingdom come. Really, a pack of 25 furious tigers would still wreck them all.
Fielder’s Choice: Only weapon you can assume on a pirate is a sword.
Brandon: Those dinky 1840s Colts ain’t stopping no tiger.
Fielder’s Choice: Oh hell yes they would. I believe the originals were .44 caliber. If you place the first shot correctly you won’t even need the rest.
Peter: I personally am just enjoying the serious deconstruction of an absurd topic. What if the tiger had a gun?
John: What if the Tiger was made of guns?
Jeff: I think we also have to distinguish which tiger. Are we talking about Tony, Tigger, or Hobbes?
frisbeepilot: So, Twins. It’s just, like, two dudes shaking hands. Not scary at all. Sox/socks are idiotic. Brewers will get you drunk, birds of all types are not scary at all. Tigers, though... it depends on the number. Two, the Rangers can take out with guns. Twenty-five (i.e. a full roster), that’s gonna maul pretty much any other team out there, even Athletic folks.
Brandon: I think so. Evenly matched teams of Rangers and Indians isn’t going well for the Rangers either.
frisbeepilot: Cubs would be too young to inflict much damage, I’d think. The Colt .45s, though... a team comprised entirely of firearms? Hmm.
Fielder’s Choice: Unfortunately, history gives us pretty definitive proof that Indians/Braves lose to well-armed white men, even when numbers are in their favor. And I’d still take 25 rangers over 25 tigers.
Brandon: Nah. When the numbers were equal, I don’t think Indians lost battles.
Fielder’s Choice: But I mean, what’s this fight look like? Do the ranger and tiger materialize out of thin air right next to each other? That’s about the only scenario where I take the tiger. Or maybe if you put them a couple miles apart in a jungle, and wait for one to kill the other. But I’m thinking like duel style or old field-battle style. Place them a certain distance apart in open space, between 20 and 200 yards apart, doesn’t really matter.
Brandon: OK in that scenario, European battlefield style, I’ll go Rangers.
Fielder’s Choice: Royal rumble cage match: I might go with the Brewer. The ranger goes all guns blazing, shoots the tiger a couple times, maybe shoots the pirate and the indian, but then gets taken down when he gets ganged up on. The brewer just kinda mulls around until all he has to do is swat the blue jay with a bottle or something. Maybe he and the padre just agree to be co-champs.
Brandon: OK, but I have to add that I think you’re overestimating the muzzle velo, spin rate and stopping power of an 1840s Colt.
Fielder’s Choice: What about the launch angle? I mean, if we’re talking about a Colt .45, “The gun that won the west,” the classic cowboy revolver in every John Wayne movie, yeah, it will take down a tiger. One shot to the chest might not prevent you from suffering a bit of a fatal mauling before the tiger died, but that’s why they made it a revolver.
Brandon: I think you may just be pissing him off. Plus you have to counterweight the enormous dump in your pants to shoot accurately. Remember, they had to call in Val Kilmer for two b**** a** lions. A Tiger is worth three lions. It’s science, you see.
Fielder’s Choice: Hmm I don’t remember any lions in Tombstone. But Val Kilmer was great. I’m also not sure why we’re just assuming old-a** revolvers. I’m sure tons of Rangers carried rifles, etc. Not to mention that they’re still around probably carrying all sorts of crazy stuff. Tigers are still stuck with claws and muscles and nasty big pointy teeth.
Rob: This is what happens when we’re left unsupervised all day.