For the first time since 1994, the Yale baseball team will play in the NCAA tournament. The Bulldogs travel out to Corvallis, Oregon this weekend to play in a four-team NCAA regional hosted by Oregon State. Nebraska and Holy Cross will join the Bulldogs and Beavers in the regional.
The regional is double-elimination format, meaning a team needs to be beaten twice in order to be sent packing. With this interesting format, we built an NCAA baseball prediction model and ran some simulations to see how the Elis might fair this upcoming weekend.
Yale plays Nebraska in its first game on Friday and stands a decent shot to win, taking the W 34.5 percent of the time in our simulations. From there, the Bulldogs would play either Oregon St. or Holy Cross, against whom they would have 15.8 percent and 73.8 percent win probabilities, respectively. Overall, Yale has a 79.7 percent chance to win at least one game in Oregon, no small feat for an Ivy League school.
Obviously, host Oregon St., the top-ranked team in the country, has the best chance of advancing to the NCAA Super Regional, but Yale stands a fighting chance. My simulations give the Elis 4-percent odds to survive beyond this weekend. Regardless of what happens, 2017 has been a memorable season for Yale baseball.