My footnote in (fake) baseball history

My footnote in (fake) baseball history

There is a game in my Steam library I have become smitten with. It’s called Out of the Park 18 and it’s a pretty extensive baseball management simulator. I’ve dabbled with the game’s various mechanics for a couple of months now but recently, as one of the ways I’ve been breaking up days of job hunting, I’ve started to take the game more seriously.

For my first serious save file, I chose to be the manager of the Minnesota Twins. The game allows you to be the GM (controlling the franchise as a whole), manager (controlling the major league team) or you can do both roles. Because I hadn’t done a serious playthrough of the game, manager seemed simplest.

So let’s introduce the Minnesota Twins prior to the 2017 season. In 2016, the Twins finished with a record of 59-103, the worst record in the MLB since 2013 (the Astros went 51-111). For me, that meant my rookie season would carry fairly low expectations.

I have no control over the roster, only the lineups and pitchers so I simulate spring training and get right into the season.

April 7th, 2017- Minnesota Twins @ Chicago White Sox

My Twins are on the road at the White Sox for the second series of the season after a 2-1 loss to the Royals at home. The game begins at 9:10pm EST with a fastball from Miguel Gonzalez and goes scoreless for three innings. Max Kepler doubled in the top of the 4th and was run in by an Eddie Rosario double two batters later. Chicago ties the game in the bottom 4th and two half innings later, I’m staring at no outs and runners on first and second for Chicago. Given how this game likes to simulate, I assumed that Chicago was about to start scoring runs until I quit the game. Adalberto Mejia pitches a weak slider to Avisail Garcia who hits a line drive towards third base. The runners are moving, looking to at least advance on a single and load the bases.

Then something happens. The little icon at third, Miguel Sano, catches the ball and starts sprinting away from third. He intercepts the icon moving between second and third before stopping at second base. One pitch, three outs. Garcia caught, Cabrera tagged and Abreu forced out. Miguel Sano, a two-year major league veteran, has just completed an unassisted triple play. Disheartened, Chicago goes on to lose 6-2.

A rare gem

There are many rare feats in baseball- the immaculate inning (9 pitches, 9 strikes), the no-hitter (9 innings, no hits) and of course, the perfect game (9 innings, no bases conceded). Even a triple play is considered to be fairly rare. But there is one play that is rarer than them all- the unassisted triple play. This is a triple play (three outs from a single pitch) performed by a single player. Before we continue, allow me to tell you how rare an unassisted triple play is- between 1876 (the official inception of professional baseball in America) and August of 2017, there have been 713 triple plays, 296 no-hitters, 84 immaculate innings, 23 perfect games. There have only been 15 unassisted triple plays.

Given the number of MLB games played from 1876-2016, an unassisted triple play (UTP) occurs once every 14,225 games (or once every 6 seasons from a purely statistical standpoint). The average MLB career lasts 5.6 years or 907 games, meaning that the purely statistical probability of playing in a game in which a UTP occurs is 0.064 (one in 15.625 careers). The purely statistical probability of fielding a UTP depends on your position. Given how a baseball field is laid out, I think it is safe to say that outfielders (LF, CF and RF) cannot field a UTP because they would never be able to reach the infield in time. The pitcher theoretically could but to be honestly, that would be the most insane thing to happen in baseball and the same applies to the catcher (the only possible way a catcher could even do it would be to catch a fair or foul tip, force or tag out a runner coming home from third and then make it to third to run or tag out the runner approaching from second). So that leaves us with the three basemen and the shortshop. The existing fifteen UTPs tell us that in a game with a UTP, the probability of the position that completes the play is as follows: First baseman- 0.13; Second baseman- 0.33; Shortstop- 0.53. There have been no MLB UTPs by a third baseman but for the sake of this piece, let’s include my Sano UTP. That gives a third baseman the probability of 0.063. So before we move on, we now know that a third baseman making a UTP is about as likely as a UTP occurring in the first place.

This means that the probability of a third baseman making an unassisted triple play in Major League Baseball is 0.004032 or once every 248 unassisted triple plays. If a UTP occurs every 14,225 games; the math says that the 248th UTP would occur during the 3468 MLB season.

But Miguel Sano, a third baseman, made the play four games into the 2017 season. For arguably the league’s worst team.


If you liked this piece, I recommend you check out my similar pieces, such as seeing if the 2016 Browns improved by going back and kidnapping football legends of the past


Should the Cleveland Browns focus on inventing time travel?

Should the Cleveland Browns focus on inventing time travel?

For those of you who don’t follow American Football, the Cleveland Browns are very bad. They haven’t had a winning season since 2007 and they haven’t reached the post-season playoffs since 2002. The Browns are so bad that telling your child “you’ll end up playing for the Browns if you don’t eat your vegetables” is probably precedent for a visit from child protective services.

They have suffered nearly decades of mismanagement- whether it was moving the team to Baltimore in the middle of the night; an inability to actually make a first round draft pick who turns out well or the string of injuries, bad trades and just generally cellar dwelling the team seems so fond of.

2016 marked the worst season for Cleveland since 1999. They finished 1-15 (which is the worst finish for any NFL team since 2008). Granted, a promising 2017 draft has given hope to a rebuilding of the team but for now, they are still the laughing-stock of the NFL.

So this got me thinking. What could actually help the Browns? And being a sci-fi nerd, the answer was clear- time travel. Could the Browns actually improve their standing if they used time travel to kidnap some of history’s best NFL players during the best seasons of their career? Well, I ran the maths and here’s what I found out.

1. Who do the Browns use time travel to bring to the team?

Using data from a number of different sources, I came to the conclusion (using an aggregated scoring system) that the three best quarterbacks of all time were Joe Montana, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning; the three best running backs were Barry Sanders, Walter Payton and Jim Brown and that the three best wide receivers were Jerry Rice, Randy Moss and Terrell Owens.

2. How do the Browns utilize these new players?

So the rule I went with is that the player gains the same stats with the Browns in 2016 as they did in their best career season (with at least 8 games played). Essentially, they played their best season but with the 2016 Browns. Each football legend replaced the best player on the Cleveland roster in their respective position and their stats added to Brown’s stats. Touchdowns scored by the new additions to the team were distributed evenly across Cleveland’s 16 regular season games and any remaining touchdowns were assigned to games by a random number generator.

3. Anything else we need to know about your method?

Any tied games at the end of regulation were left as ties as I have no way of predicting how overtime would go. If a player managed to get Cleveland into playoff contention, Cleveland would replace the appropriate seed and then play their respective playoff matches using the specific player’s postseason stats for their best season.

4. So, what did you find?

Joe Montana (Best season: 1989)


Despite winning four Super Bowls with the San Francisco 49ers and amassing 29 touchdowns during his best season, Montana was let down by the failings in the rushing and receiving cores of the Browns. Most games in 2016 were lost by more than 14 points, meaning that Montana’s two extra touchdowns per game only made the games a little closer, and flipped two losses to ties.

Result: 7-7-2, 3rd in the AFC North

Certainly better than the 1-15 actual season and they do rise above Cincinnati, who finished on 6-9-1. With Montana at the helm, the Browns would record their best season since 2007 and technically finish with a winning season (.500). However, it is nothing particularly special.

Tom Brady (Best season: 2007)


The Patriots went 18-0 in the 2007 season before losing the Super Bowl and in large part, the success of the regular season is due to the sheer cyborg-like nature of quarterback Tom Brady. He threw 50 touchdowns and was just generally a beast.

Result: 14-1-1, 1st in the AFC North, #1 seed in the AFC, loses to Houston in the division playoff

Brady gives the Browns three extra touchdowns a game, plus a fourth in four of the  games. The only loss comes from the inability to overcome the 10-35 loss to the Dallas Cowboys in week 9, which became a 31-35 game. However, Brady’s numbers plummeted during the ’07 postseason, meaning that he was only able to put two touchdowns a game and so the Browns go out to the Texans 14-16. Still, best season since 1994 for the Browns and a  #1 playoff seeding is nothing to turn your nose up at.

Peyton Manning (Best season: 2013)


And here comes Peyton Manning, giving the Browns an even four extra touchdowns per game. Say what you will about Manning, when he was good, he was good.

Result: 16-0, 1st in the AFC North, #1 seed in the AFC, loses to Houston in the division playoff

Unsurprisingly, with Manning at the helm, the Browns are unstoppable and record the second ever perfect season in the NFL. Four extra touchdowns a game is enough to wipe out any real life deficit and turns the Browns into an unstoppable force of nature. Their undoing is once again Manning’s post-season performance. He recorded less TDs in the playoffs than Brady and this time can only manage to take the Browns to 7-16 against the Texans.

Barry Sanders (Best season: 1991) and Randy Moss (Best season: 2003)

1991 NFC Divisional Playoff Game - Dallas Cowboys vs Detroit Lions - January 5, 1992        RM03

The big problem that comes with using the Browns patented time travel to collect running backs and wide receivers is that your quarterbacks are still bad, as are the rest of your running backs and wide receivers. Just because you have a legend like Randy Moss doesn’t mean you are going to do any better. The other problem is that these players can’t be solely relied on to put points on the scoreboard. Not every play can be planned to have them take the ball and soon enough, your opponents with just smother them in coverage.

Result: 7-9, 3rd in the AFC North

Both Sanders and Moss give the Browns six victories more than the 2016 but due to the low numbers across the team, even their best seasons aren’t good enough to push the Browns to lower-middle wild card standings.

Walter Payton (Best season: 1977), Jerry Rice (Best season: 1993) and Jim Brown (Best season: 1963)

WALTER PAYTON   JR93        JB63

As I said with Sanders and Moss, even a legendary player’s best season may not be good enough to help the Browns do anymore than post a half-decent season. Most of the receivers for the Browns in 2016 scored 1 or 2 touchdowns apiece and the rushing core was not much better.

Result: 6-10, 4th in the AFC North

5 wins above the actual 2016 season. Here, have a tiny firework.

Party popper

and finally…

Terrell Owens (Best season: 2000)


Owens was a good, if controversial, player. However, he is largely remembered for his career records and so in his best season, he only recorded 13 receiving touchdowns. This means that for the Browns, he only added an extra touchdown for 13 of 16 games. At this point I should also note that of the three categories, wide receivers was the hardest to aggregate as almost every site had a different list or opinion.

Result: 4-12, 4th in the AFC North

Well, that’s three more wins than they actually got and one more than they got in 2015. Still, I don’t Terrell Owens circa. 2000 is particularly high on the Browns list of time-travel transfer targets.


So in conclusion, taking on the more legendary quarterbacks is probably the best way to go for the Browns, maybe add in a running back or two. However, in all seriousness, the Browns surprised everyone at the 2017 draft with a well-rounded and well-structured draft selection so maybe 2017 will truly see the start of the Cleveland rebuilding effort.

Robbery Amongst the Clouds

Robbery Amongst the Clouds

I want to tell you the story of a daring robbery that took place in the skies above Oregon and Washington. This is the story of the only unsolved case of air piracy in US history, a case that was only suspended in July of this year. This is the story of Dan ‘D.B.’ Cooper.

It’s Thanksgiving Eve, 1971. Portland International Airport is relatively busy, filled with people trying to get home for the holiday. One of these passengers to be is a Caucasian man in his mid-fourties, around 5″11, wearing a dark suit, raincoat, loafers and a mother of pearl tie pin. He is carrying an unassuming attaché case with him. Identifying himself as Dan Cooper, he purchases a one-way ticket to Seattle on Northwest Orient flight 305, hands over $20 and heads for the departure gate.

The plane isn’t very full, maybe one-third of the seats are occupied, but Flight 305 takes off according to schedule at 2:50pm. Soon after takeoff, Dan Cooper orders a bourbon and soda, lights a cigarette and passes a folded up note to a nearby flight attendant. She largely ignores the action, thinking this to be the opening gambit of the man’s ‘game’. That is until the man leans over and says softly: “Miss, you’d better look at that note. I have a bomb.” Suddenly, this quiet midafternoon flight over the Pacific Northwest is now the backdrop to a hijacking.

After briefly showing the bomb to the flight attendant, Florence Schaffner, Cooper makes his demands known: $200,000 in “negotiable American currency”; four parachutes and finally, a refuelling truck waiting at Seattle-Tacoma airport. Schaffner conveys these demands to the cockpit. The pilot gets SeaTac on the line and soon enough, the FBI has been informed that there is a domestic hijacking in progress. The plane circled above Puget Sound for two hours as law enforcement assembled the demands. As chaos was barely contained on the ground, Cooper calmly ordered another drink, paid his tab in full and requests that meals for the flight crew be waiting on the ground in Seattle.

The plane makes landfall at 5:39pm and the local representative of the airline hands over the demands. At this point, Cooper releases all passengers as well as all but one of the cabin crew. As the plane is refueled, he gives the pilot’s very specific flight parameters and sets his destination as Mexico City. As the plane is not designed for the nearly 3,000 mile journey, Reno is chosen as a second one refuelling stop.

The plane takes off once more at 7:40pm, this time with a covert accompaniment of two F-106 fighter jets. Remaining cabin crew member Tina Mucklow is ordered into the cockpit and at 8:00pm, the flight crew begin to receive indications that the aft airstairs has been deployed. This meant that Cooper had just opened the rear entrance to the plane. Requests to assist him are refused. There is a sudden upwards movement at 8:13pm, requiring the pilots to level the plane, but then it is a smooth ride to Nevada. The plane continues onto Reno, landing with the aft airstairs still open, and is met by a bevy of law enforcement officials. However, Cooper and his $200,000 are nowhere to be found. The only things left that could be tied to Cooper were two of the parachutes and his tie plus tie clip.

And that is the story of how a man hijacked an aircraft to steal $1.2 million when his take is adjusted for inflation.

D.B. Cooper was never found. Many believe that he died soon after jumping, as the most logical jump time of 8:13pm would have had him landed in a heavy rainstorm in and around the Lewis River. However, there are those who believe that Cooper survived and lived on, maybe even to this day.

As a psychologist, I love the Cooper case. Not only is it impossible to say why he did what he did, we can’t even assemble a psychological profile of the man. The cabin crew who interacted with him described him as polite and caring; calm and compassionate. Recent work by a number of amateur sleuths have turned up a few interesting facts- pure titanium dust was found on the tie he left behind. Now in 1971, titanium was rare and almost exclusively used in the construction of aircraft, suggesting that Cooper may have been an aviation engineer. There is also a Canadian comic book about a man named Dan Cooper, who pulls off a stunt almost identical to the heist of the real-life Cooper. Apart from that, as well as the very generic composite sketch created in the wake of the incident, there is very little else we know about Cooper. He goes down as one of those great unsolved American mysteries. It is unlikely that we shall ever know what happened to Cooper but that doesn’t mean our imaginations can’t fill in the gaps.

What do you think happened to Cooper?

Donald Trump is not a Nazi

Donald Trump is not a Nazi

Campaign 2016 Clinton Sanders

With Senator Sanders endorsing Hilary Clinton in the past few days, the 2016 Presidential election will be contested by former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and businessman Donald Trump.

Now, if you are familiar with my blog, you will know that I have written a lot on the electoral process so far. However, I have been careful to avoid some of Trump’s more controversial remarks and beliefs. However, as Trump’s position has become increasingly official, I have heard one word in particular used to describe him- Nazi.

I have no love or respect for Donald Trump and I do not want for this piece to be interpreted as any kind of defence for Trump’s words or actions, but Donald Trump is not a Nazi.

White Supremacy

First, let’s breakdown the hierarchy of vocabulary associated with racial hatred and racial superiority. At the base, the most widely-appliable term is ‘white supremacy’. White supremacy is the belief that people of Caucasian heritage are the superior race on Earth and should be afforded liberties and privileges afforded with said superiority. They also believe that those who are not part of this superior race should have to willing submit to their white masters.


Then you have ‘fascism’, the political ideology that liberal democracy is an obselete concept and that a totalitarian one-party state is the only viable form of government. In practice, this gives way to fierce nationalist beliefs and often white supremacist control of the nation, especially as fascism has only largely been seen in practice in European nations.


Finally we have the most specific term- Nazi. Nazi is a colloquial term for the National Socialist German Workers’ Party and describes the governing political party of Germany between 1933 and 1945. The word can also be used to describe members of this party.The Nazis are the ‘best known’ for starting the Second World War and instigating ‘The Final Solution’ in 1942, which would led to the death of six million Jews, as well as hundreds of thousands of Romani, political prisoners, homosexuals and other groups deemed unfit to live by the Nazis.

Now, let’s start grouping things together. Groups like the KKK, the American Freedom Party, the National Party of Europe, the British National Party, Blood and Honour and individuals like Tom Metzger are what can be described as white supremacists or at the very least, white nationalists. They believe that whites should be given priority treatment as they are the superior race. At the more moderate end of the spectrum, they want to protect their historically white nations from the ‘threat’ of immigrants and ‘inferior’ races.

Then there’s fascism this is a lot less prevalent since the fall of the fascist regimes of the 1940s and later, the collapse of General Franco’s Spanish regime. ‘Neo-facism’ is often applied to groups, especially political organisations, who carry some of the core beliefs of fascism or have expressed admiration for Hitler, the Nazis, previous fascist regimes etc. This has been across the world, with movements such as military coup that took control of Bolivia in 1980; the PFI and their ideas of Indonesia Mulia, a concept similar to Hitler’s ‘Greater Germany’ vision and the previously mentioned British National Party, whose white nationalism is based on a platform of fascist ideology.

Finally, we have the specific term ‘Nazi’. Many nations around the world have legislation in place to make it a crime to identify as a Nazi, which is why we see a rise in neo-fascism rather than neo-Nazism. While some nations have groups that call themselves the -Insert country name here- Nazi Party, there is a much bigger debate to be had about whether a Nazi Party can truly exist today or whether Nazi should only refer to the party that exist in 1930s.

If I was forced to pick one term to describe Donald Trump, it would be white nationalist. While some of what he has said is racist, such as his comment that the people coming over the US border from Mexico were “bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” but overall, a lot of what Trump says and does indicates a white nationalist platform more than anything else- remove illegal immigrants the country, a majority of whom are Latin American; ban Muslims regardless of nationality from the entering the United States; ban refugees from entering the United States. Those are policies that would ‘protect’ the white majority in America.

But why is it so bad to mislabel Trump as a ‘Nazi’? Well, a while back I wrote a piece about how Nazis, among other groups of people, had been turned into a trope through overuse within popular culture. Throughout the late 90s and early 2000s, it was ‘gay’ that was used as the throwaway insult but beneath that, Nazi has also been that insult we always keep in our arsenal to describe something we think it overly oppressive or tyrannical. Continual labelling of things as being like the Nazis or being like Nazi Germany trivalises the Nazis because you would be hard-pressed to find something truly worthy of being compared to a political and military regime that systematically murder six million civilians.

Trump is a horrible human being with some truly terrible ideas about what to do to America if he wins the Presidency but he is not a Nazi. You will not find proof that he is the member of any Nazi, or neo-fascist organisation and there are better, more effective ways to show what sort of man Trump is than labelling himself as something he is not.

The US election: What to expect

The US election: What to expect

Next month, barring divine intervention, Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton will be named the Republican and Democratic Presidential nominees respectively. From August till November,  the American people will be caught in the full metal jacket of election season. Here’s what they, and the rest of curious, confused world can expect:


1. Smear campaigns: You think Trump was bad when he was running against Ted Cruz and John Kasich? That was pee-wee tag football compared to the NFL-level of professional smear that Trump will be aiming at the Clinton campaign. He will be careful of course, mentioning Whitewater would leave him vulnerable to that odd trend of Trump investing in real estate that suddenly goes bust. Meanwhile Benghazi, emails and even the Lewinsky Scandal will be all in Trump’s sights. In the Democratic camp, Hilary will try to maintain the high ground by only attacking Trump’s speeches, policies and anti-Presidential qualities (lack of experience, abrasive and undiplomatic demeanour). However, that could quickly change, especially if the polls stay  close. This could quickly devolve into a shit-slinging contest as opposed to a Presidential election.

Hilary- I could taste the victory

2. ‘The most unpopular election in history’: Trump and Clinton are not popular candidates- Trump has middle America in the palm of his hand but is facing an uphill battle within the party (latest update: the GOP is considering allowing convention delegates to declare a conscientious objection in place of a vote at the convention) while Hilary has the backing of the DNC but is struggling to raise support amongst voters, especially the die-hard core of the Sanders campaign, 15% of whom may actually go to back Trump after the convention.This will be an election of “who is lesser evil” and not “who is going to serve this country the best”. While both Hilary and Trump are unpopular, America feels that they either need to vote for Trump or Hilary or just not vote, because there isn’t a viable third option.


3. The battle for the Midwest: While most regions of America have a historical political leaning, such as the southern Republican stronghold. The same can’t be said for the Midwest, a collection of states that stretches from Ohio to the Dakotas. It has swung back and forth between Democrats and Republicans but while it has been increasingly blue since 2000, Bernie won the Midwest 7 states to 5 during the primaries, which could potentially open up for a Republican spearhead, especially as a majority of the state-level governments are already Republican controlled. Both parties know this and so the Midwest will become a fierce battleground as it could be the key to an election victory.

What do you think America can expect before November? Let me know in the comments below!

Benjy’s summer reads

Benjy’s summer reads

So summer is technically upon us and, as a bibliophile, that means that I hopefully get some time to read something that isn’t a textbook or journal article. But what do I recommend for fellow book lovers in search for a summer read? Well, I’m glad you asked:

1. Snow Falling on Cedars- David Guterson

Snow Falling on Cedars

This first recommendation is for those who enjoy a slow-burn murder mystery. The book is set on San Piedro Island, a fictional island off the coast of Washington State, in 1954 and revolves around the death of a local fisherman. An investigation gets underway and suspicions soon turn towards the island’s small Japanese-American community.

Guterson’s book is beautifully paced and detailed, with character’s slowly revealed through exposition and flashbacks. The book reflects on the relations between Americans of European descent and Japanese-Americans in the wake of the Second World War without becoming a sermon on racial tolerance and the dangers of judging a book by its cover. The descriptions are nothing short of lush and, as an American with fond memories of Washington State, it feels me with a warm sense of home as I read the descriptions of the temperature forests of San Piedro.

Snow Falling on Cedars is a modern classic that not only delivers an engaging mystery, but presents a quiet reflection of what it means to be human and how something as small as someone’s race can greatly affect our perception of them.

2. Friday Night Lights: A town, a team and a dream- HG Bissinger

Friday Night Lights 2.jpg

For those who enjoy something a little more grounded in reality, my next recommendation is right up reality avenue. In 1988,  journalist Buzz Bissinger travelled to Odessa, Texas to follow the Permian High School Panthers during their football season. His intention was to write a book in the spirit of Hoosiers– the story of how one high school football team can bring a town together. However, as the books reveals chapter by chapter, the town is little more than jaded and arrogant Texans put their hopes, dreams and expectations on the shoulders of high-schoolers.

For those of you who switched off when I mentioned sports, the book is so much more than that as it explores the lives of these young sportsmen on and off the field. In short, Friday Night Lights is a brutally honest take on America’s most hallowed sport (don’t even start baseball fans, I will end you) with a refreshingly negative take on the game from a genuine fan.

3. Lake Wobegon Days- Garrison Kellior

Lake Wobegon

In 1974, American author Garrison Kellior began a weekly two-hour radio show called A Prairie Home Companion, it was a tongue in cheek live variety show that blended satire and folk music. However, the stand-out highlight of every show was Kellior’s storytelling segment, ‘News from Lake Wobegon’, in which he would talk about the fictional Minnesotan town on Lake Wobegon, his fictional childhood home, and he would tell stories about his youth and what all the residents were up to week by week.

In 1985, Kellior published Lake Wobegon Days, a collection of stories and tales from Lake Wobegon. If you are a fan of things like the Archers, Lake Wobegon is right up your alley as you make your way through an easy-going book which is filled with stories that could very much have happened in a small rural town in the middle of Minnesota.

There is no real plot, except watching the town get older. It is very easily something you could stretch out to help fill out a whole summer. But it isn’t just fluff as you see the theme of relationships and community playing central roles in many of the stories.Another piece of casual Americana which is well worth your time.


What do you recommend? Let me know in the comments below!

Curtain Call

Curtain Call

There may still be one last Democratic primary but it’s little more than an encore after last night’s final ‘Super Tuesday’. Supporters still feeling the Bern were hoping for some sort of voting miracle in order to overturn Hilary’s comfortable cushion of superdelegates but as you’ll soon see, it was less of a miracle and more of a sermon on accepting reality.

Six states went to the polls over the course of Tuesday with the biggest prize being the 475 delegates available in California. Across the other five states (The Dakotas, Montana, New Jersey and New Mexico), Hilary was carrying predicted leads in every where apart from Montana, which projected a narrow Bernie victory, and the Dakotas, which were too close to call. Opinion was divided over with California, with the polls shifting back and forth.

However, as precincts from Trenton to Santa Barbara began to declare, it was clear that there was only going to be one winner. Despite being close in the polls, California (as of writing, 6% of precincts are yet to declare) swung for the former first lady and she carries the state with a 12.9% lead and 257 delegates to Bernie’s 188. Things were unsurprisingly worse for Bernie in New Jersey, where Hilary beat him by 26.6%. The rest of the night’s results were closer- Hilary won New Mexico by 3% while Bernie took North Dakota and Montana. South Dakota proved to be the closest battleground of the night with Hilary taking the state by 2% but the 20 delegates being split 50-50. Overall, the night was just what Hilary needed- a way to cement her already comfortable lead.

But what does this mean for the Democrat’s race? Well nothing can be confirmed until the Philadelphia convention in July but at this point, it seems like game, set and match. Bernie’s only hope lies with the superdelegates but unfortunately for the Vermont senator, they are either already backing Hilary or unlikely to back a candidate who is trailing so badly. However, Hilary must now think long and hard about to deal with her party’s sizeable split- while 55% of Bernie supporters have said they would vote for Hilary at the general election, 15% have also said that they would go across the aisle and support Trump. If Hilary doesn’t find a way to appease Bernie’s supporters, she may have lost this race.

Over on the Republican front, Trump continues to use the remainder of the primary season to try to convince the Republicans for back him. While he has made headway, with party higher-ups such as Paul Ryan now backing him, but his largest problem is how he has no coherent campaign- even now he is the presumptive nominee, it is still all vague promises, general policy ideas and superlatives.

So buckle up kids, once the conventions are over, the whole process starts again and it won’t be pretty. From Trump you can expect sexism, intern jokes, property development jokes and general jackassery. Meanwhile, Hilary is going to hammer home Trump’s lack of experience and his general jackassery, all the while fighting to keep her party unified.

I have a feeling 2016 will be an election to remember.