...can't figure out what's going on with their home run statistics. In 2018, the team hit more dingers per game when at home than when away; in 2019, their totals waned dramatically but followed that same pattern. Yet combine the two years, to my surprise, and I saw the pattern mar genuinely - the kids seemed to have four-bagged narrowly more often per game when away than when at home! Standing in the team tunnels on the stadium's side, I thought to myself, the kids set a high bar to clear when it comes to going deep - as they say, "to fail to hit the ball over the rail is a tragedy" - but I could not totally explain this head-scratcher. I figured maybe a calculation mishap ultimately was to blame...

I ask you not to explain what happened. I ask you to tell me how many individuals are on my son's team.

Note: just FYI, hitting "dingers" and "four-baggers", as well as "going deep", are equivalent baseball nicknames for hitting home runs.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This appears to include rot13(Fvzcfba'f cnenqbk), but I'm not sure how to get an absolute number $\endgroup$
    – Rob
    Feb 21, 2020 at 2:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Rob That's the exact correct phenomenon. From there, it's no longer the stats, but rather the name. $\endgroup$
    – anodyne
    Feb 21, 2020 at 2:51
  • $\begingroup$ The number rot13(pbzrf bhg gb or avar), btw, for anyone looking for a final answer, a perfect number for the baseball diamond! $\endgroup$
    – anodyne
    Feb 21, 2020 at 6:58

1 Answer 1


Your son's team has

members HOMER[un], [wa]NED, MARGE[nuinely], BART[oclear], [rai]LISA[tragedy], [bagg]EDNA[rrowly], [n]OTTO[tally], [mish]APU[ltimately], and maybe others. I can't spot a MAGGIE, which surprises me because these are


characters from The SIMP[lyputmy]SONS.

And, as Rob points out in comments, the mathematical phenomenon being described is


  • $\begingroup$ My intent exactly! You are missing only rot13(Aryfba), but of course stated perfectly the problem's essence. Updating the team produces an entirely sensible headcount in context, given that my son, I've just decided, stays on the bench. $\endgroup$
    – anodyne
    Feb 21, 2020 at 2:58

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