To the average baseball fan, if you told them a team – let's call them the St. Louis Cardinals – had the best record in baseball at 49-24 they'd probably think they were flat out beating everyone everywhere they played them.
And I suppose with this team they'd be sort of right. The Redbirds are over the .500 mark on the road this season. 22-17 away from St. Louis isn't so bad.
But how in the world could a team be merely a little bit over .500 on the road and still be on pace for 109 wins? Yep. They're that ridiculous at home.
Per Elias, the Cardinals' 27-7 record at Busch Stadium marks the best stretch through 34 games since the Boston Red Sox in 2008. The only team in the last 35 years to have more home wins through 34 home games is the New York Yankees back in 1998.
It's that kind of dominance that can take a team all the way to a World Series title. If you win almost all of your games at home like the Cardinals are in 2015 it's practically a sure bet you'll get home field advantage throughout the postseason.
Once in October, as long as you have that edge, if you win all your home games then by definition you win the series. Win the series, advance, repeat. Eventually you'll see a big fat ring on your finger.
Clearly the All-Star Game determines home field advantage in the World Series and puts a little bit of a wrinkle in that plan, but you get the idea here. Winning at home like the Cardinals are is a fast way to go deep into a postseason tournament like baseball.
And doesn't it make sense that teams win far more often at home than they do on the road? You like being at home. You sleep in your own bed. You're not in a hotel. You see your family. It's a normal routine as opposed to something completely different.
When your body is thrown off that can absolutely affect your play on the field. Just look at why so many players get off to slow starts when they change teams. Jhonny Peralta wasn't very good early on last year for the Cardinals before taking off. Jason Heyward's doing the same thing this season.
Comfort matters in sports. Maybe in baseball more than anything because it's such a long and grueling road to 162 games. The Cardinals are obviously kings of that comfort more than anyone else in baseball.