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(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 1:21 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Braden showed up for his first day at work, and in less than twenty minutes, became the worst person ever to do his job, by an infinite margin.

Early $poilers please be subtle.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 2:03 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Braden = George W Bush?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 2:07 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Braden = George W Bush? No, can't blame you for the guess though.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 2:11 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Braden = adult? human? male?
Relevant what occupation he had undertaken?
Country relevant?
Work = employment? within a company?
Did he do something bad? illegal? at work?
Did he say something he shouldn't?
Did he fail to do something?
Did he cause any deaths?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 2:44 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Braden = adult? human? male? Yes to all
Relevant what occupation he had undertaken? Yes
Country relevant? Somewhat.
Work = employment? within a company? Yes, and yesish.
Did he do something bad? Yesish, depending on how you mean "bad"
illegal? No
at work? Yes
Did he say something he shouldn't? No
Did he fail to do something? Yes, you could say that.
Did he cause any deaths? No
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 2:58 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Relevant how he got the job?
Did his occupation involve:
Medicine?
Entertainment?
Driving?
Teaching?
Politics?
Sport?
An office?
Police?
Firefighter?
Did he work in a shop?
Did he cause an accident? did he forget to do something? did he do something morally wrong?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:17 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Relevant how he got the job? No
Did his occupation involve:
Medicine?
Entertainment?
Driving?
Teaching?
Politics?
Sport? THIS
An office?
Police?
Firefighter?
Did he work in a shop?
Did he cause an accident? did he forget to do something? did he do something morally wrong? None of these.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:31 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Was he an athlete? Did he attempt the 100m sprint in a pair of wellies?
In a sports team?
Did he actively partake in a sport?
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:35 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Is he a baseball player?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:42 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Was he an athlete? Yes
Did he attempt the 100m sprint in a pair of wellies? Not that I know of
In a sports team? Yes
Did he actively partake in a sport? Yes

By David Burn (Woubit):

Is he a baseball player? Indeed.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:53 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Is 'Infinite' or 'margin' or both, a term used in baseball?
Was he batting? bowling? a backstop? running? on one of the stops? out fielding?
(My knowledge of baseball is rather limited and these are all terms I learned in rounders at school which is a similar idea - just in case you have no idea what i'm talking about!
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 3:58 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Is 'Infinite' or 'margin' or both, a term used in baseball? Not with any specialized meaning, you can take the words literally.

Was he batting? bowling? a backstop? running? on one of the stops? out fielding? This is closest, but not all the way there.

(My knowledge of baseball is rather limited and these are all terms I learned in rounders at school which is a similar idea - just in case you have no idea what i'm talking about!) -- No worries, anything you need to know about baseball can be solved through the puzzle.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 4:12 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Did he aim to catch a ball? but missed? dropped it?
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 4:13 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Except, perhaps, not to call it rounders :) It is rounders, but...
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 4:19 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Did he aim to catch a ball? but missed? dropped it? Nope
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 4:27 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Does he have an average of zero in some respect?
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 4:33 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Iis a ball relevant to this puzzle? was he playing in a game of baseball at the time? Is his baseball outfit relevant?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:11 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By David Burn (Woubit):

Does he have an average of zero in some respect? On the right track, but infinitely worse.

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Iis a ball relevant to this puzzle? Yes, it's used extensively. But there's nothing unique about the ball itself.
was he playing in a game of baseball at the time? Yes he was.
Is his baseball outfit relevant? No
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:13 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Did he manage an average of a figure lower than zero?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:15 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Did he manage an average of a figure lower than zero? Quite the opposite...
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:17 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

above Zero?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:24 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

above Zero? Very much so.
Sam Greene (Pandora)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:30 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Exact figure relevant? Did he manage to achieve some sort of record within the 20 minutes? that no other player has mangaed?
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 5:38 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am not sure which of the vast array of baseball statistics may be relevant. But in the only proper sport in the world, a bowler has an average of infinity once he concedes a run until he takes a wicket, which is what bowlers are supposed to do. Is it something like this?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 7:10 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

By Sam Greene (Pandora):

Exact figure relevant? Yes
Did he manage to achieve some sort of record within the 20 minutes? Yes, for now at least...
that no other player has mangaed? Others have done it -- nearly every year a handful of players might -- but none has maintained it.

By David Burn (Woubit):

I am not sure which of the vast array of baseball statistics may be relevant. But in the only proper sport in the world, a bowler has an average of infinity once he concedes a run until he takes a wicket, which is what bowlers are supposed to do. Is it something like this? Precisely (I think). Where I'm from it's an 'out,' a wicket is a cub-like Star Wars character.
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 7:16 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Has he therefore not managed to get any batters out yet?
(Stuccosalt)
Posted on Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - 7:21 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

* * * **** SPOILER **** * * *

Braden showed up for his first day at work, and in less than twenty minutes, became the worst person ever to do his job, by an infinite margin.

Braden is Braden Looper, closing pitcher for the New York Mets. This happened yesterday in the opening day of Major League Baseball in the US.

Pitchers in the MLB are rated by Earned Run Average (ERA), which represents the number of runs the pitcher allows per 9 innings pitched (a game lasts 9 innings, each inning consists of 3 outs). So, if a pitcher lasts 6 innings and gives up 1 run, his ERA is 1.50. If he gives up one run, but only stays in the game to get one guy out, his ERA is 27.00. Since a pitcher does not wish to allow runs, the lower his ERA, the better.

Last night, Looper came in to finish the game with the Mets up 10-8 in the 9th inning. In less than 20 minutes, he allowed 4 runs without getting anyone out, and lost the game. Mathematically, that makes his ERA infinite.

It's a quirk that happens to a few guys every season, and as soon as Looper makes another appearance, he'll most likely record an out and lower his ERA. For now, though, he has the worst ERA in the history of baseball by an infinite margin.
Heather Hughes (Goddesshch)
Posted on Thursday, April 07, 2005 - 9:25 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Actually, his ERA for the season is undefined, not infinite. That's because dividing a number by 0 yields an undefined result according to the rules of mathematics.

As you noted, the formula for calculating ERA is...

(Earned Runs x 9) / (Innings Pitched)

...where Innings Pitched is calculated as...

(Outs Recorded) / 3


The reason that division by 0 does not yield infinity can be explained by the applying rules of multiplication. Let's say that Braden went on to pitch a complete inning, retiring the next three batters after giving up four runs. His ERA calculation would look like this:

(4 x 9) / (3 / 3)

=

36 / 1

=

36


Seems rather obvious, but how do we know that 36 is the correct result? Because it jives with the rules of multiplication: 36 divided by 1 equals 36 BECAUSE 1 times 36 also equals 36.

As Braden failed to recorded a single out before they yanked him, his ERA calcuation would look like this:

(4 x 9) / (0 / 3)

=

36 / 0

=

?


Trying to divide 36 by 0 is equivalent to asking "What number times 0 equals 36?" Since 0 times any number is still zero, there is no number that can satisfy the equation. Therefore, Braden's ERA simply cannot be calculated -- it is undefined, rather than infinitely high. As soon as he records an out, then we can begin talking about his ERA for this season.

That being said...go Mets!
Tony (E20)
Posted on Friday, April 08, 2005 - 1:08 am:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I think 36/0 does equal infinty (... as much as anything ever can!)

Consider the following sequence:
36/10 = 3.6
36/1 = 36
36/0.1 = 360
36/0.01 = 3600
36/0.001 = 36000
...
As the divisor becomes smaller, the answer gets bigger. So the closer the divisor gets to zero, the closer the answer gets to infinity!

Now, if he had given up 0 runs without getting anyone out, then we'd be looking at 0/0 - and that's when the fun really starts!
David Burn (Woubit)
Posted on Friday, April 08, 2005 - 1:18 am:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, the baseball game would still be going on in that case. And since Americans do not understand the only proper sport, which in its purest form lasts for five days without anyone winning, I think they would have long since ceased to consider it fun.

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