NBA playoff preview
The NBA playoffs start tomorrow, but that has nothing to do with Craig Biggio getting hit by pitches. Or does it?
Since 1989, the first year Craig Biggio got hit by a pitch, there have been 670 Astros games on dates when there have been NBA playoff games, and Craig Biggio has been hit by a pitch 82 times in 76 of those games. 29% of Biggio plunks have come on days when the NBA playoffs were being played. On days of NBA playoff games, Craig Biggio has been plunked once per 35 plate appearances, but only once per 45.4 plate appearances on days when there are no playoff games. That is, he gets hit 29.7% more often on days when there's an NBA playoff game.
Biggio has been hit by a pitch 14 times on days when Houston's NBA team, the Rockets, have had a playoff game, but he's been hit the most times - 28 - on days of Lakers playoff games. Unfortunately, the Rockets are only 6-8 in playoff games on days when Biggio has been plunked, so while his ability to get plunked helps the Astros win, it doesn't appear to help the Rockets. The Rockets are 3-3 in the first round when Biggio gets hit by a pitch, 1-4 in the 2nd round, and 0-1 in the conference finals. But when they make it to the NBA Finals, they are 2-0 in games on days when Biggio has been hit. The Sacramento Kings have the best record in the playoffs on Biggio's plunk days, going 7-1, while Biggio seems to have jinxed the Milwaukee Bucks to an 0-7 record on dates of his HBPs.
Perhaps most amazingly, of the 30 current NBA franchises, all but 2 of them have played at least 1 playoff game on a day when Craig Biggio was plunked. The only two who haven't are the most recently added - the Charlotte Bobcats, and the Golden State Warriors who are returning to the playoffs for the first time since 1994 this year.
Here are the playoff records of every NBA team on days when Craig Biggio has been hit by a pitch: