# How does a baseball team get a half game back?

In baseball you often hear announcers say that so and so team is a 1/2 a game back etc. How can this be? no one playes a half game!

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To determine how far a team is behind another team you take the sum of the differances of the two teams wins and losses and divide that total by 2. If the total of dthe diferances is an odd number then there will be a half game in the distance behind. It is possible to have more wins and still be behind another team because of how many games you have played.

I agree with you about the 1/2 game; but the 1/2 game comes from a rating system set up on the number of 1. If team "A" plays team "B" and team a wins that means +1/2 point for team A and -1/2 point for team B. That is where the 1/2 game comes from. Each team plays 161 games per season so a team can lose every game and still only be 80 1/2 games back of the leader.

Personally I think a win should be 1 point and a lose should be 0 points and then look at the points when the season is winding down to see who will be in the playoffs. This would be easier for the general public to understand rather than trying to figure out the 1/2 game system.

In most sports each game is worth 2 points so if a team is 1 point behind then they are 1/2 a game back.

Baseball is a bit different since there are no ties so there are no 1 point games. In baseball to even out the standings when a team hasn't played as many games as another team it is assumed they will win exactly half the games they have remaining to make them even.

For example if Team A has played 6 games 4 wins 2 losses (8 points) and Team B has played 5 games 3 wins 2 losses (6 points) . To make a fair comparison we need to know what their records would be if they both played 6 games and since we assume Team B will win exactly 1/2 of the games they half left they will be awarded 1/2 a win so there 6 game theoretical record would be 3 and 1/2 wins 2 and 1/2 losses (7 points) so they are half a game back.

It is a weird system but I hope this helps you understand it.

I'll use to Major League teams to show you an example.

Let's say, the Red Sox have the day off and the Yankees play a game. The two teams are tied in the standings. Let's say the Yankees lose, they go behind in the standings, but can't go a full game back, because the Red Sox didn't play. So the Yankees go down a half a game. So the standings would be as follows,

Red Sox

Yankees .5 Games behind.

Hope I could help.

It has to do with not playing the same amount of games. Say a two teams have the same record and one team plays and the other doesn't and the team that plays wins their game and increases their record by 1 win better then they would have a 1/2 game lead in the standings. You can't win your division by 1/2 a game. It all gets sorted out after all games are played. It counts for rainouts as well.

A baseball team gets a half game back when they lose and the team ahead of them doesn't play. For example if New York is a game behind in standings to Boston and NY loses but Boston didn't play then NY is a game and a half back of Boston. But if NY wins and Boston doesn't play then NY is only a half game back. If NY whens and Boston loses on the same day then they would be tied ( 1/2 game for NY win and 1/2 game for Boston loss)

• rich
Lv 4

if you havent played the same amount of games as another team. so if team a is 22-11 and team b is 22-10, then team a is 1/2 game back. you take the difference between wins and losses of both teams and divide by 2