Why should you play Strat-O-Matic computer baseball and what makes it better than the competition?  These are questions that many people have asked and in this short essay we're going to try to answer these questions.


First off, let us state our position (and the position of many people who play our game):  Strat-O-Matic is the most statistically accurate and most realistic representation of baseball on the market.


Now how does one go about proving this.  Well, the first part (the most statistically accurate simulation on the market) is quite easy.  Does this mean that Strat-O-Matic's game generates the exact, or near exact batting averages for all players?  No, this is not what we mean.  Nobody we know would want to play a game where every player's batting average came out exactly correct.  If you are interested in that you really want to be using an electronic baseball encyclopedia instead of playing a baseball simulation.  What we mean by statistical accuracy is how much variance there is from a player's real life and replay totals. 


And how does one prove the second part of our statement (that Strat-O-Matic is the most realistic representation of baseball on the market)?  That will take a little looking into, and we're confident once you start looking, you're going to like what you see.



Just about every baseball simulation that hits the market is advertised with the claim that it is "the most statistically accurate game ever developed".  We at Strat-O-Matic sometimes laugh amongst ourselves when a new game comes out because the claim is so often used that it has become a cliché. 


So what is the story with statistical accuracy?  The truth is that there is an expected (and measurable) range of statistical variation that you should see when you run a baseball simulation.  Anyone who has taken an entry level course on statistics and probability would know about Standard Deviation and could easily compute what that range should be.


If a computer simulation is performing better then that range then it is "rigged" so that the replay "comes out the way that it should".   Certain events would not occur because of a random generated outcome but because the batter was "behind his pace" and needed a little "help" to catch up.  A few computer baseball games have come and gone that use this fallacious method of generating outcomes.  They are not popular because gamers instinctively know when a model is not providing enough variation.  After all, what is the point of starting a replay if you already know what every batter is going to hit?


Strat-O-Matic is as accurate or more accurate than any simulation that uses a truly random model.  That is because when you run a Strat-O-Matic replay you will see a distribution of variance that is perfectly in line with what you should receive in a truly random model.  For any given number of real-life at-bats and average you can compute the expected statistical variance you should see if you ran many replay.  Strat-O-Matic hits that mark perfectly.  However, it is important to note that not every game out there does.


When preparing this article we tested other simulations for statistical accuracy.  We ran three replays with each of the following products.  Here is a chart of the most accurate of the three 1996 replays using both of these products:



  1996 AL AVG. 1996 AL E.R.A. 1996 NL AVG. 1996 NL E.R.A.
ACTUAL .277 4.99 .262 4.21
Strat-O-Matic .278 5.05 .261 4.20
Competitor "DM" .278 4.95 .264 4.22
Competitor "AP" * .259 4.36 .244 3.77

*Note: Competitor "AP" offers add-on tools that might improve statistical accuracy.  These tools were not used for this test.


Since the Strat-O-Matic and "DM" competitor were so close we decided to perform a detailed study of these two games.  In this study we compared the replay totals of all batters who had 400 or more at-bats with their real-life batting averages and home run percentages.  There were 172 batters who fell into this category and here is the result of the comparison:


  Average batting average error Average hr % error
Strat-O-Matic .015 .007
Competitor "DM" .016 .007


So the average batter (with 400 or more at-bats) varied by sixteen points from their actual batting average using DM and fifteen points using Strat-O-Matic.  Clearly both games are excellent at reproducing statistics and are in the expected range of statistical deviation.  However there are other games available that, despite the claims, are not nearly as accurate.


At this point a very important point should be made.  And that is that you can't recreate what you can't rate.  What do we mean by this?  It's very simple.  For seasons prior to the mid 1980's there does not exist sufficient statistical data to properly rate the players for a baseball simulation.  Specifically, there exists no lefty/righty breakdown of the data.  So what does a game company do to overcome this serious problem?


Well, if you're Strat-O-Matic you roll up your sleeves, sharpen your pencils and get down to the excruciatingly difficult task of extracting out the lefty/righty statistics from each and every box score for the season we are rating.  Just how difficult is this work?  Well, it takes about one man year of labor to accomplish.


And how do our competitors handle the same dilemma?  Do they attempt to match the standard for accuracy that Strat-O-Matic has set?  Of course not - it's too much work for them!  Instead, they take the raw  statistics from that season and pass it through a program.  Voila!  Ten seconds later they have their so-called "lefty/righty statistics" (based upon some simplistic formula) and  it's time for another coffee break!  This, as you are about to learn, is just one of the many ways that Strat-O-Matic blows away the competition.


In order to be able to offer every season since 1901 Strat-O-Matic also offers these "inferior"

style disks.  They are similar to what our competitors create and they are far inferior to the

premium disks that we are describing here.  And we are forthright about what they are and price

them accordingly.  This allows our customers to play with any season since 1901 (the year the

American League came into existence) while we go about the business of doing these seasons the

proper way.




Perhaps one of the silliest arguments offered by Strat-O-Matic's competitors is that because the Strat-O-Matic computer game is tied directly to the board game it's realism is gravely limited.  Specifically they talk of the 50/50 model of the board game and that the computer game cannot "move forward" because of it's ties to the board game.  As we shall shortly see both of these arguments are designed to attack what actually is the strength of Strat-O-Matic's game.



While Strat-O-Matic uses a unique dice referral system to generate its results every other computer game on the market uses a method that for simplicity sake we'll call the "Thousand-sided die method."  Simply put these other games start with a player's batting average and adjust it based upon the pitcher he is facing and other factors.  Then they roll their "Thousand-sided die" and determine the result.  In reality it's a bit more complicated than that, but we're just talking in generalities here.


As a simple example let's say a batter who hits .250 is at the plate.  Now let's say the pitcher he is facing holds opposing batters to 10 points below the league average.  So now we're going to adjust the batter's average to .240.  There are many other factors at play (such as ballpark effects) but we'll ignore those for purposes of this example.  Now it's time to roll that Thousand-Sided die.  If it comes up 1 to 240 the batter will get a base hit but if it comes up a 241 to 1000 then that's an out.  (We're ignoring walks, hbp, etc. for simplicity sake here).  That, in a nutshell, is how every other computer game works.


But Strat-O-Matic's system is drastically different.  All adjustments are an integral part of the Strat-O-Matic player cards and are accessed by a specific method of rolling 3 dice.  The method employed uses one white die and two red dice.  If the white die is a 1,2 or 3 then you read the result from the batters' cards and if it's 4, 5 or 6 you read the results from the pitcher's card.  Because of this some people have dubbed this method the "50/50" system because half of the time the results are coming from the batter's card and half of the time from the pitcher's card.


It is on this point that some people have a complete breakdown in their ability to think logically.  They reason (with the help of a competitor of ours who, one would hope, knows better) that since half of the time the result comes on the batter's card that, when the result does come from a batter's card, it doesn't matter which pitcher is on the mound.  Think about that for a moment.  And compare it in your mind to the "Thousand-sided die" method.  If 1000 comes up on the die does it matter who was on the mound? Does it matter if 900 comes up, or 800 or 700?  (Of course not, in all these cases it's bad news for the batter no matter who is pitching).  In the same way, does it matter which pitcher is on the mound if a 1 comes up?


The simple fact is whether you are using the "Thousand-sided die" method or the "50/50" method when a particular batter faces a particular pitcher in a particular situation there is a precise and predefined chance of every possible outcome occurring.  For instance in a given batter-pitcher matchup the batter might have a 15% chance for a single, 5%chance for a double, 1%chance for triple and 3% chance for a homerun.  Which pitcher is on the mound clearly alters these percentages in either model.  Once you understand that in both models the chances for any given outcome are affected by the pitcher on the mound you will realize that it does not matter which mechanism is used to generate a random number and read the play result.



Now that the fallacy of the alleged problem with the "50/50" method has been exposed let us continue on and examine a little more deeply the differences between the two methods.  Strat-O-Matic's system is unique in both the computer game and board game industry in that it uses different patterns for each batter and pitcher.  What does having patterns buy you?  Uniqueness and realism.


You see, in Strat-O-Matic, batters and pitchers are unique due to these patterns.  When you use the "Thousand-sided die" method, players are very similar indeed.  Too similar, in fact.  For instance if you roll a 1 on your "Thousand-sided die" every batter is going to get a hit.  But in Strat-O-Matic a given roll does not generate the same result for all batters.  For one batter it might generate a strikeout, for another the exact same roll might generate a walk and for yet another it might be a homerun! 



Strat-O-Matic is the only game that uses patterns.  It is also the only game where "playing a hunch" actually can work for you!  In Strat-O-Matic, unlike every other game, sometimes using an inferior player will give you a better result.  Of course this doesn't happen all the time, otherwise the "inferior player" would become the "superior player".  It just happens enough to be realistic.  Isn't it true that sometimes the mediocre player rises to the occasion and can actually outplay the superstar?  Of course it's true -- but don't expect to find that reality in other baseball simulations.  The use of patterns in Strat-O-Matic computer baseball means that "playing a hunch" can actually work for you!


In addition, the use of patterns adds the element of  "second guessing" into the game.  Let's say you need a clutch hit and you've got to decide which batter you want to pinch hit with.  It comes down to two players and finally you make your choice.  You hold your breath, click the mouse and that bum proceeds to strike out for you thus ending your last chance to make the playoffs!  Well, if you dare, you can look at the other player's card and see what he would have done with that pitch -- imagine if it would have been a game winning homerun!  This "second guessing" adds a great deal to the agony and ecstasy of playing the game, and it's not available in other games because they do not use patterns.



The other silly claim that is sometimes made regarding Strat-O-Matic is that since it is tied to the board game that this somehow holds back the computer game.  Besides being false this statement belies the fact that by tying the computer game to the board game we are tying it to the best board game system ever developed.  Talk about trying to turn a positive into a negative! 


Now if someone has never played our game they might believe that our computer game is held back in some way by our board game.  But anyone who has played our computer game should know better.  You see our computer game has a separate set of "maximized" rules that are not available in the board game.  Many things that simply cannot be included in the board game are covered by these maximized rules.  For instance some pitchers tend to allow more hits with runners on base (thus hurting their e.r.a.) while other pitchers seem to "clamp down" with runners on base.  This ability is reflected in the computer game only, via the maximized rules.  It is one of the many maximized rules we have added to the game in recent years.


We are continuing to develop and implement new maximized rules that will be available for your enjoyment in the future.  Strat-O-Matic's computer game is in no way held back by the board game but in fact is greatly enhanced by the research and development that it inherits from the board game.



I hope you don't mind, but I'd like to switch gears here.  Let us imagine that you are driving on the expressway and you suddenly notice that your car seems to be going very slowly.  You glance down at the speedometer but it says you're cruising along at 65 mph.  Then you look around and the scenery seems to be crawling by slowly.  Other cars are passing you at perhaps twice your speed.  But your speedometer keeps on saying you're holding steady at 65 mph.  At this point wouldn't you start questioning the speedometer based upon your observations of the physical reality?


Well, there is a great parallel here with the trouble our competitors have in the area of rating fielding abilities.  You see when it comes to rating fielding ability they develop their own "speedometers" which are simply mathematical formulae utilizing fielding statistics.  Or they use someone else's "speedometer" which might include range or zone factors.  Once they have settled on which "speedometer" they are going to use they never question it again.  Whatever that speedometer reads becomes, in their minds, the physical reality of the situation.  But, unfortunately for them, the speedometer that they use can be wrong just as often as it is right.  Imagine that -- imagine if the speedometer in your car was wrong just as often as it was right!


You see the people who work at Strat-O-Matic have been developing fielding ratings for over 35 years.  Believe us, we have tried every speedometer out there.  We have tried them individually.  We have tried them in concert.  We have tried developing our own.  And after years of trying we have come to the sad conclusion that none of them are close to giving you a true feel for a player's fielding ability.  Now why do I say "the sad conclusion"?  I'll tell you why -- because unlike every other company out there we don't accept mediocrity when it comes to rating our players.  So instead of using a faulty speedometer we opt to spend  months of research in order to give you accurate fielding ratings.  It's slow and painful research that keeps us burning the midnight oil.  And it saddens our spouses greatly!


It's research that demands we spend countless hours reading scouting reports and newspaper accounts, sifting through boxscores, interviewing experts, comparing results and, yes looking at every statistical speedometer on the market (including some of our own).  We have found that this is the only way you can consistently get good results when rating players' fielding abilities.


Now some people want to argue that Strat-O-Matic is wrong in this area, that we should just use the  range rating or zone rating since these reflect the reality of the situation.  Of course they completely ignore the fact that sometimes the range rating indicates that a player is great in the field while at the same time the zone rating indicates that he stinks!  And, getting back to our analogy, it is sort of like arguing that you shouldn't worry about your car's speedometer.  If it says you're going 65 you are going 65 mph.  Forget the physical world that the speedometer is trying to measure -- that's meaningless.  The reality is the speedometer. 


An example will be necessary to explain this more clearly.  Omar Vizquel has outstanding range and ability at short stop.  Only those who have never seen the man play shortstop could possibly argue that he does not have great range and fielding ability.  Yet the speedometers that our competitors use rates Omar Vizquel as an AVERAGE FIELDER!!!  Now isn't this a ridiculous thing?  Aren't they sitting in their car staring at the speedometer and insisting that they are traveling at 65 mph, when in fact they are barely moving at all?  Do you really want to play a game that starts with the premise that Omar Vizquel is a mediocre fielder?


Think of this in terms of a player's true worth.  Let's say you have a light hitting but great fielding shortstop.  Now this man has value -- he is an outstanding shortstop.  But let's say a game rates this guy as a poor fielding shortstop (and this often happens with our competitors' games).  Now, based upon this faulty rating, what value does this shortstop have?  Little if any.  So, you see, this is a very important area we are concerned with here.  This mistake has taken a player who could be considered a commodity in real life baseball, and turned him into a minor league reject.  That is one reason why accurate fielding ratings are so important.  And Strat-O-Matic is the only company dedicated enough to spend the time to give you the accuracy that you demand and deserve. 


Now, let us take a detailed look at this problem.  We'll try to draft a team of great defensive players from 2002 using the Strat-O-Matic game and one of our competitors who we'll call "DM".


POSITION        PLAYER               2002 SOM RATING     2002 "DM" RATING

Catcher         Bengie Molina        Outstanding         Fair

First Baseman   J.T. Snow            Outstanding         Average

Second Baseman  Brett Boone          Outstanding         Average

Short Stop      Omar Vizquel         Outstanding         Average

Third Baseman   Eric Chavez          Outstanding         Very Good

Left Fielder    Darren Lewis         Outstanding         Average

Center Fielder  Jim Edmonds          Outstanding         Average

Right Fielder   Larry Walker         Outstanding         Very Good


Looking at this list one can quickly determine that if you put together this team in real-life they might be the greatest defensive team off all time.  Imagine having a gold-glover at every position!  Similarly, the Strat-O-Matic version of this defensive unit is going to be just as outstanding.  However, using competitor DM this team would be a mediocre defensive team - and anyone who knows baseball can easily see just how ridiculous this is. 


Even Atlanta's Andruw Jones and Minnesota's Torii Hunter don't get the top rating in the DM game!  Is Andruw Jones really only slightly better than Chipper Jones in the outfield?!  And is Doug Glanville really a below average fielder?  Come on!!!


Having such an unrealistic rating system detracts so badly from this competitors product that it can make playing their game a pointless exercise.  In this case it's sort of like starting up an F-14 flight simulator that you discover handles more like a Sopwith Camel once you get it off the ground!


A similar list can be developed with any of our competitors products because no other company spends the time and effort to give you accurate fielding ratings the way that Strat-O-Matic does.  It would probably be better off if they didn't bother trying to rate players defensively than to offer a fatally flawed system like the one you see exposed above.


Perhaps Peter Gammons said it best when in the April 27th, 1997 issue of Baseball America he said "Maybe the computer people should watch Roberto Alomar instead of running programs.  Alomar is the best defensive second baseman of the modern era.  He makes the most brilliant, far-ranging and creative plays to his right of any second baseman.  Yet some computer printout says he doesn't get to enough balls to his right.  Who does?  Wil Cordero?  There never has been a valid way to evaluate range statistically."



It's a good question.  Just how does the game you're currently playing rate their players?  You see Strat-O-Matic issues realistic ratings for many more things besides fielding range.  Amongst the many categories that we individually research and rate are:


* Bunting ability - Jay Bell in one of the best bunters in baseball.  If you desperately needed a sacrifice bunt to be laid down it's hard to think of another player you'd want up at bat instead of Bell.  But his role changed in recent years and he hasn't been asked to bunt as much.  As a result other games rated Bell as an Average or Poor bunter!  That's because they rely solely on statistics when doing their ratings, and they do not account for the fact that Bell is still a great bunter when he's called upon to do the job.  Strat-O-Matic gives Bell it's top rating because his ability to bunt hasn't diminished, only the number of times he's asked to bunt has.  If you, as manager, want to bunt with Bell more frequently than his real life manager did you can, and you'll get very realistic results from doing so with our game.

* Hit and run ability - Many games don't bother rating players for this ability but it is an important ability that should be rated in all games.  Hitting for a high average does not necessarily make you good at executing a hit and run, so exactly how do these other games decide who is good at the hit and run and who's lousy?  Strat-O-Matic's rating is based upon detailed research (not just mathematical formula) so that you'll see a realistic portrayal of this skill when playing our game.

* Baserunning ability - Just having blazing speed doesn't make you a good baserunner.  Instinct, baseball smarts and major league experience all go a long way towards the making of a good baserunner.  Other games rate players based upon traditional speed categories such as stolen bases and triples.  That's good for generalities, but systems like that break down when you get into specific cases.  For instance, one of the best baserunners in the game is Paul Molitor.  He was chosen as such in the August 1996 issue of Baseball America, and only the most casual fan wouldn't realize that Molitor is a great base runner.  Yet our competitors like to rate Molitor as an average baserunner just because he doesn't hit a ton of triples or steal 50 bases.  Another case where Strat-O-Matic will issue a superior rating that more accurately defines a player's abilities.

* Throwing arm - Sometimes players with terrible throwing arms can lead the league in outfield assists.  That's because "everybody and their mother" is running on them, so sooner or later they're bound to get some assists.  Of course their high assist total belies the fact that they hurt their team countless times by not being able to prevent a runner from scoring or advancing the extra base.  Strat-O-Matic takes these factors into account when developing our throwing ratings.

* Lefty/righty adjustments - Louis Polonia hit .526 vs. left-handed pitching in 19 at-bats during 1996.  Some of our competitors don't even bother rating players for lefty/righty ability so in their games Polonia will be given some kind of a "platoon rating" which has no basis in reality and actually makes him a better hitter against right-handed pitching!  Not very realistic.  Other competitors go awry just as far in the opposite direction and simply rate Polonia to hit .526 against lefties!  Now isn't that realistic - to have a player on your bench who you know is going to hit .526 if your opponent dares bring in a lefty?  Of course it's not - no major league manager ever has that kind of advantage (if they did you'd never see a left-handed pitcher come in against that team).  So what to do with this situation?  Clearly some common sense is in order. What Strat-O-Matic does in cases like this is research the batter's past three seasons and make an adjustment to his lefty/righty balance based upon the man's actual ability.  Of course this, like all of the other ratings that we do, takes time and effort.  And that's why the only place you'll find a realistic lefty/righty ratings is in the Strat-O-Matic game.  Note: certain players do not have enough history or current season at-bats

for this adjustment to be properly done.  These players appear in a seperate file on the

Strat-O-Matic disk and can be merged into the main group of players with a simple click of the

mouse.  It is your decision if you wish to play with these players or not.  If you do use them

we recommend that you comply as closely as possible to their actual usage vs. lefties and

righties.  All of these players have insignificant numbers of at-bats or innings pitched, typically below 30 at-bats and 25 innings pitched.



* Pull/opposite field hitting.  We rate our players on many other factors such as groundball/flyball ratio and pull/opposite field hitting.  Surprisingly some batters differ in their tendency to pull the ball on the ground vs. their tendency to pull the ball in the air.  Strat-O-Matic rates these players properly so if they have a tendency to pull the ball on the ground but drive it in the air the other way they will be properly represented in our game.



What exactly is the model that the game you are playing is based upon?  Let's say I told you I designed the greatest baseball board game in the world, but for some reason I didn't want to show it to you.  You say, "but how can I play it if you don't show it to me".  So I propose a way to do this.  You're the Yankees and I'm the Braves.  Now you sit in the living room and I'll sit at the kitchen table.  Whenever a batter comes up I'll tell you who's at the plate and then I'll yell out to you what he did.  Perhaps I'll call out "strikeout" or "Double!".  Whatever the case may be, for your team or mine, don't worry about it, I'll tell you what happened. 


Now you're sitting in the living room and it's the bottom of the ninth.  I've got the tying run on first with two outs.  Up steps Ryan Klesko and suddenly, from the other room, you hear me scream out "There's a long fly ball, it's way back there, Williams goes back to the wall, he leaps, he's got it!   No... it pops out of his glove ... and OVER THE FENCE and the BRAVES WIN, THE BRAVES WIN!!!" 


Now maybe you're the most trusting soul on earth.  And maybe you believe that the board game I developed generated that exact outcome, and you just sit there on the living room couch and shrug your shoulders and say "okay, let's play again."  But that's not likely to happen.  More likely, you're going to bolt into the kitchen and demand that I show you just exactly where and how, using my board game, that result could occur.  And when you do that, suppose I quickly fold up all my charts and cards and say to you "no, I'm the only one allowed to look at these things."  What would you think then?


Well, that is exactly what happens with every other computer baseball game on the market.  They have developed some hidden statistical model.  You don't really know what's going on behind the scenes.  Perhaps some batter is ahead of the pace of homeruns that he's "supposed to hit."  Maybe that statistical model turns off all possibilities of him hitting a homerun.  Yet you, not knowing this, go to the bench and use him when you desperately need a homerun.  Is that realistic, that some player who hit 20 homeruns last year can't slam one out in a given at-bat because he's ahead of his pace?  Of course it's not, but how do you know that kind of silliness is not going on unless you can see the model the game is based upon?  In a computer game that means seeing the source code, something that I'd venture to guess you're not going to see anytime soon.  So with all other computer games you're not sitting at the kitchen table -- you're in the other room.  And from where you're sitting you can't see whether or not I'm telling you the truth.  Whether or not I'm "adjusting" the results so that "things work out." 


Now at Strat-O-Matic we don't banish you to another room.  We invite to come join us at the kitchen table and play the game with us.  Our computer game is a faithful reproduction of the board game (in fact, you can even use the dice with our computer game, if you'd like)!  Come see how your choice of a pinch hitter really did make a difference.  Come experience the pain when your ace reliever blows the game that, had you only had a little more confidence in your starter, you could have won.  Find out which fielders really are great and which ones have less range than a dog on a leash!  We lay it all out on the table for you so that you can see it for yourself.



"I think the beauty of this game is watching the good pitcher going against the good hitter."  Davey Johnson, manager Baltimore Orioles.  (Sporting News Internet site, August 15th, 1997)


Baseball is all about having fun, about good times and great memories; it's all about teams and managers and players and coaches and umpires and fans. But these things are the framework built around that which is the game of baseball.  What baseball is really about, at it's very core, is the battle that plays out every time a batter steps into the box to face the opposing pitcher.  One of these two men is going to get the better of the other.  More than anything else that's what the game of baseball comes down to.  And, as you would expect, that's exactly what Strat-O-Matic comes down to.  Every time the Strat-O-Matic dice are rolled one man is going to impose his will on the other man - it's just that simple and direct.


When you play a Strat-O-Matic game you are simulating the most exciting head-to-head battle in sports. 

And, importantly, you are simulating all the nuances of it with accurate and detailed ratings.  Not some watered down version featuring poor or missing ratings.  Not some silly contrivance based solely upon numbers.  Not a simplistic model that doesn't even recognize true lefty/righty ability.  Not some "rigged" model that has already figured out what "should happen next".  But a detailed and highly researched simulation that brings into play all of the major factors one thinks of when watching the real thing. 


In Strat-O-Matic the batters and pitchers are mirror images of their real-life counterparts.  They hit just like the real thing.  They pitch just like the real thing.  And they field just like the real thing.  At every point where the decision has to be made, do we take the short cut or do we do the additional work for the sake of realism, Strat-O-Matic does the right thing.  What other game can make that claim?



We have seen that Strat-O-Matic computer baseball is the most statistically accurate and most realistic representation of baseball on the market.  And in the process we have shown how we are the only computer game that allows you access to the underlying simulation, so that you can examine it for yourself.  We are the only company that takes realism seriously enough to spend the proper amount of time needed to deliver you a realistic rating system.  And on top of this we offer a state-of-the-art interface running native on 32-bit processors on both the IBM and Macintosh platforms.  We invite you to try our product and see for yourself why for 37 years people have been proud to call themselves "Strat-O-Matic Fanatics."


In summary, let us submit to you that the true measure of a baseball simulation might best be summed up with the following test:  Does every player in the simulation perform statistically like he does in real life and does he have approximately the same value in the simulation that he has in real life?  If so then that truly is a good simulation of baseball, one that generates results that might possibly occur in a real life season.  It's a tough standard to stack yourself up against.  You've got to properly rate every player in numerous categories including hitting, fielding, baserunning, bunting, hit and run, stealing, throwing, clutch ability, etc.  You've got to rate every pitcher in many categories including what he gives up (singles, doubles, triples, home runs, walks, strikeouts, double play grounders, etc.)  You've got to rate the stadiums properly for ballpark and weather effects.  And you can't take any short cuts - each rating must properly describe the real-life ability or you fall short of the standard.  Well, as you probably realize now, there is only one baseball simulation that even dare claim it can measure up to that tough a standard.  And, we're proud to say, that game is called "Strat-O-Matic Baseball" - truly the most statistically accurate and most realistic representation of baseball on the market.