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2013 ZiPS Projections – Kansas City Royals

Posted By Carson Cistulli On January 10, 2013 @ 8:00 am In 2013 ZiPS Projections,Featured,Royals | 46 Comments

Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections, which have typically appeared in the pages of Baseball Think Factory, will be released at FanGraphs this year. Below are the projections for the Kansas City Royals. Szymborski can be found on Twitter at @DSzymborski.

Other 2013 Projections: Angels / Astros / Athletics / Blue Jays / Cubs / Giants / Nationals / Phillies / Rangers.

Batters
Jeff Francoeur remains better at baseball than almost everyone — but likely not as good as an average major-leaguer. It will probably not shock Royals fans that Francoeur — who GM Dayton Moore suggested in December will remain the team’s starting right fielder even after posting a -1.2 WAR in 2012 — is projected to be the weakest link among Kansas City’s field players.

Of some interest will be how the club handles second base this year. Despite having posted just a 64 wRC+ and -0.8 WAR in his first 376 major-league plate appearances, 25-year-old Johnny Giavotella‘s profile — according to ZiPS — remains that of league-average player. To his credit, he posted one of the best regressed offensive lines in the Pacific Coast League last year among prospect-aged batters.

Pitchers
It’s not that the additions of Wade Davis and James Shields won’t help the Royals: they will. It’s to what degree they’ll help — especially considering the cost (i.e. Wil Myers). While ZiPS projects the Toronto Blue Jays’ renovated starting rotation (featured yesterday) to produce about 10 more wins than in 2012, Kansas City’s starting rotation is forecast to post a collective mark only about one or two wins better than last year’s version (which recorded a 7.6 WAR, all told, it appears).

Meanwhile, the bullpen is not this team’s problem. Even with the departure via trade last midseason of a resurgent and effective Jonathan Broxton, the Royals still have a legitimate relief ace in Greg Holland and three other pitchers (Tim Collins, Aaron Crow, and Kelvin Herrera) well suited to high-leverage work. Nor does that even consider what gains Luke Hochevar might make on a per-inning basis if he fails to secure a rotation spot.

Bench/Prospects
Jarrod Dyson appears likely to occupy a reserve role to begin the season, although his projected line suggests that — owing largely to his defense and baserunning — that he might actually represent an improvement over Francoeur. Miguel Tejada recently signed what will ultimately become a $1.1 million deal; meanwhile, it’s very possible that he’ll play like freely available talent. Right-hander Felipe Paulino signed one-year, $1.75 million deal with the Royals this offseason to avoid arbitration. He’s expected to return from Tommy John surgery at midseason, and could be valuable either as part of the rotation or in the bullpen.

Depth Chart
Here’s a rough depth chart for the Royals, with rounded projected WAR totals for each player (click to embiggen):

Royals Depth

Ballpark graphic courtesy Eephus League. Credit to MLB Depth Charts for roster information.

Batters, Counting Stats

Player B Age PO PA R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS
Billy Butler R 27 DH 661 72 174 36 1 23 92 2 1
Alex Gordon L 29 LF 655 86 155 38 3 17 67 11 6
Salvador Perez R 23 C 473 51 128 23 1 12 56 0 0
Mike Moustakas L 24 3B 649 71 156 37 2 20 81 5 2
Alcides Escobar R 26 SS 624 70 156 24 8 5 48 28 6
Eric Hosmer L 23 1B 645 77 159 28 3 20 79 15 3
Johnny Giavotella R 25 2B 677 77 166 31 4 8 65 11 4
Lorenzo Cain R 27 CF 471 49 112 19 4 9 46 15 3
Jarrod Dyson L 28 CF 423 53 93 13 5 1 23 35 6
Jeff Francoeur R 29 RF 609 64 147 32 3 16 66 10 7
Irving Falu B 30 3B 513 55 124 17 4 3 41 14 7
Tony Abreu B 28 SS 499 47 117 24 4 6 53 6 4
Brett Hayes R 29 C 191 19 41 10 0 4 15 1 0
David Lough L 27 RF 606 66 140 22 8 9 53 16 5
Adam Moore R 29 C 235 23 52 11 0 4 16 1 0
Chris Getz L 29 2B 334 37 78 11 3 0 24 15 4
Cody Clark R 31 C 233 20 46 10 0 3 17 0 0
Luis Durango B 27 CF 542 61 123 9 4 0 32 32 14
Cheslor Cuthbert R 20 3B 519 50 110 19 0 10 54 4 3
Miguel Tejada R 39 3B 209 18 49 9 0 2 16 2 2
Anthony Seratelli B 30 3B 460 48 93 11 3 7 40 14 5
Brandon Wood R 28 3B 382 34 75 16 1 8 34 1 0
Endy Chavez L 35 RF 229 20 53 9 1 2 15 6 2
Xavier Nady R 34 LF 254 23 52 10 0 5 24 1 0
Willy Taveras R 31 CF 318 30 68 9 2 3 18 10 3
Ian Gac R 27 1B 471 45 93 24 1 12 50 1 1
Mario Lisson R 29 1B 439 41 82 21 0 8 37 12 4

***

Batters, Rates and Averages

Player PA BB% K% ISO BABIP BA OBP SLG wOBA
Billy Butler 661 9.1% 15.1% .181 .319 .295 .362 .476 .354
Alex Gordon 655 10.5% 20.3% .165 .322 .269 .352 .434 .341
Salvador Perez 473 3.8% 10.6% .136 .298 .286 .316 .422 .317
Mike Moustakas 649 6.0% 17.7% .169 .291 .261 .310 .430 .316
Alcides Escobar 624 4.6% 13.8% .095 .310 .271 .312 .366 .295
Eric Hosmer 645 8.7% 14.9% .162 .295 .273 .336 .435 .333
Johnny Giavotella 677 6.4% 13.4% .102 .299 .266 .316 .368 .300
Lorenzo Cain 471 5.9% 22.3% .124 .320 .259 .311 .383 .308
Jarrod Dyson 423 7.1% 17.5% .068 .299 .244 .301 .312 .279
Jeff Francoeur 609 5.3% 18.1% .152 .295 .261 .305 .413 .303
Irving Falu 513 5.3% 10.5% .072 .288 .261 .300 .333 .273
Tony Abreu 499 3.2% 19.6% .106 .298 .248 .276 .354 .271
Brett Hayes 191 4.7% 27.7% .123 .301 .229 .268 .352 .264
David Lough 606 4.3% 13.9% .117 .279 .252 .290 .369 .280
Adam Moore 235 5.1% 20.0% .105 .284 .239 .282 .344 .272
Chris Getz 334 6.3% 10.2% .057 .290 .259 .310 .316 .277
Cody Clark 233 5.2% 18.0% .091 .257 .219 .265 .310 .247
Luis Durango 542 7.7% 17.7% .035 .315 .254 .313 .289 .267
Cheslor Cuthbert 519 5.6% 20.4% .101 .268 .226 .270 .327 .263
Miguel Tejada 209 3.8% 11.0% .077 .272 .251 .284 .328 .256
Anthony Seratelli 460 7.8% 25.0% .091 .290 .223 .288 .314 .269
Brandon Wood 382 5.2% 28.3% .118 .277 .211 .255 .329 .252
Endy Chavez 229 3.9% 11.4% .080 .273 .249 .280 .329 .265
Xavier Nady 254 5.5% 24.4% .107 .278 .222 .276 .329 .266
Willy Taveras 318 3.5% 15.7% .074 .263 .228 .259 .302 .246
Ian Gac 471 6.2% 34.6% .142 .308 .214 .268 .356 .272
Mario Lisson 439 6.2% 27.3% .113 .269 .204 .262 .317 .257

***

Batters, Assorted Other

Player PA RC/27 OPS+ Def WAR No.1 Comp
Billy Butler 661 6.6 129 0 3.8 Mike Sweeney
Alex Gordon 655 5.6 115 7 3.6 Rusty Greer
Salvador Perez 473 5.0 101 6 3.2 Bengie Molina
Mike Moustakas 649 4.9 101 1 3.2 Aramis Ramirez
Alcides Escobar 624 4.5 86 0 2.6 Cristian Guzman
Eric Hosmer 645 5.6 111 -5 2.0 Tino Martinez
Johnny Giavotella 677 4.3 88 -3 1.7 Todd Haney
Lorenzo Cain 471 4.6 90 -3 1.6 Reggie Williams
Jarrod Dyson 423 4.0 70 3 1.2 McKay Christensen
Jeff Francoeur 609 4.5 96 -4 1.0 Wes Chamberlain
Irving Falu 513 3.6 74 -3 0.8 Tom Runnells
Tony Abreu 499 3.5 72 -1 0.7 Garry Templeton
Brett Hayes 191 3.4 69 2 0.6 Joel Skinner
David Lough 606 4.0 80 2 0.5 Tike Redman
Adam Moore 235 3.5 72 -2 0.4 Brandon Marsters
Chris Getz 334 3.8 73 -4 0.4 Bernie Castro
Cody Clark 233 2.8 58 -1 0.1 Charlie Greene
Luis Durango 542 3.4 68 -2 -0.1 Joey Gathright
Cheslor Cuthbert 519 3.0 64 -1 -0.1 Javier Colina
Miguel Tejada 209 3.3 68 -1 -0.1 Pete Suder
Anthony Seratelli 460 3.3 66 -5 -0.1 Leonard Hannahan
Brandon Wood 382 2.9 60 -1 -0.1 Nate Manning
Endy Chavez 229 3.4 67 0 -0.2 Joe Orsulak
Xavier Nady 254 3.2 66 0 -0.3 Chad Moeller
Willy Taveras 318 2.9 54 -1 -0.4 Manny Martinez
Ian Gac 471 3.3 70 -1 -0.7 John Santor
Mario Lisson 439 2.9 59 -1 -1.0 Mike Rosamond

***

Pitchers, Counting Stats

Player T Age G GS IP SO BB HR H R ER
James Shields R 31 31 31 208.0 183 53 28 211 102 95
Jeremy Guthrie R 34 28 26 163.7 102 45 24 177 86 80
Wade Davis R 27 25 25 153.3 119 56 20 155 79 74
Greg Holland R 27 66 0 73.0 92 32 6 60 28 26
Felipe Paulino R 29 15 15 88.7 83 36 10 91 47 44
Will Smith L 23 28 28 163.7 93 56 21 185 96 90
Kelvin Herrera R 23 66 0 77.3 70 21 8 75 34 32
Aaron Crow R 26 69 0 64.0 66 25 7 59 29 27
Tim Collins L 23 72 0 69.3 89 38 8 57 31 29
Louis Coleman R 27 51 1 71.7 78 33 11 62 34 32
Ervin Santana R 30 29 29 178.3 132 62 32 189 107 100
Luke Hochevar R 29 26 26 156.7 113 51 22 169 94 88
Danny Duffy L 24 16 16 81.0 71 36 12 83 46 43
Bruce Chen L 36 27 25 141.3 98 43 23 155 85 79
Luis Mendoza R 29 28 20 134.3 70 50 16 154 80 75
Everett Teaford L 29 30 10 83.3 55 32 13 91 50 47
Francisley Bueno L 32 49 0 63.0 37 22 7 66 34 32
Guillermo Moscoso R 29 32 22 135.3 91 50 24 152 86 80
Donnie Joseph L 25 57 0 62.0 54 36 7 63 35 33
Nathan Adcock R 25 28 16 107.3 54 42 12 130 68 64
John Lamb L 22 8 8 25.0 14 11 4 30 17 16
Dan Wheeler R 35 47 0 45.7 30 17 7 49 27 25
Brian Sanches R 34 42 1 53.7 35 21 9 59 32 30
Doug Davis L 37 15 14 78.0 46 37 10 90 51 48
Yordano Ventura R 22 23 23 97.3 72 50 18 107 65 61
Juan Gutierrez R 29 29 0 30.0 22 12 6 34 20 19
Roman Colon R 33 29 0 41.3 24 21 6 46 27 25
Michael Mariot R 24 30 12 99.0 49 41 17 116 67 63
Jose Jimenez L 26 48 0 59.3 35 34 9 70 43 40
Atahualpa Severino L 28 47 0 44.0 31 35 7 52 34 32
Ryan Verdugo L 26 30 19 101.0 72 73 19 111 75 70
Jason Adam R 21 24 24 121.0 63 41 28 145 89 83
Chris Volstad R 26 30 30 165.3 89 55 27 215 119 111
Noel Arguelles L 23 23 23 99.3 38 70 17 122 80 75
Chris Dwyer L 25 25 25 120.0 70 91 26 140 100 93

***

Pitchers, Rates and Averages

Player IP TBF K% BB% BABIP ERA FIP ERA- FIP-
James Shields 208.0 888 20.6% 6.0% .297 4.11 3.92 99 95
Jeremy Guthrie 163.7 713 14.3% 6.3% .287 4.40 4.73 107 114
Wade Davis 153.3 671 17.7% 8.3% .288 4.34 4.45 105 108
Greg Holland 73.0 311 29.6% 10.3% .300 3.21 2.75 78 67
Felipe Paulino 88.7 393 21.1% 9.2% .311 4.47 3.97 108 96
Will Smith 163.7 732 12.7% 7.6% .295 4.95 4.76 120 115
Kelvin Herrera 77.3 328 21.3% 6.4% .297 3.72 3.41 90 82
Aaron Crow 64.0 276 23.9% 9.1% .294 3.80 3.58 92 87
Tim Collins 69.3 303 29.4% 12.5% .295 3.76 3.50 91 85
Louis Coleman 71.7 310 25.2% 10.6% .276 4.02 4.25 97 103
Ervin Santana 178.3 786 16.8% 7.9% .285 5.05 5.11 122 124
Luke Hochevar 156.7 690 16.4% 7.4% .296 5.06 4.55 122 110
Danny Duffy 81.0 362 19.6% 9.9% .296 4.78 4.68 116 113
Bruce Chen 141.3 622 15.8% 6.9% .291 5.03 4.80 122 116
Luis Mendoza 134.3 607 11.5% 8.2% .298 5.02 4.85 122 117
Everett Teaford 83.3 373 14.7% 8.6% .290 5.08 5.06 123 123
Francisley Bueno 63.0 277 13.4% 7.9% .285 4.57 4.51 111 109
Guillermo Moscoso 135.3 608 15.0% 8.2% .293 5.32 5.28 129 128
Donnie Joseph 62.0 285 18.9% 12.6% .304 4.79 4.61 116 112
Nathan Adcock 107.3 494 10.9% 8.5% .311 5.37 4.80 130 116
John Lamb 25.0 116 12.1% 9.5% .306 5.76 5.62 139 136
Dan Wheeler 45.7 203 14.8% 8.4% .284 4.93 4.82 119 117
Brian Sanches 53.7 241 14.5% 8.7% .287 5.03 5.14 122 125
Doug Davis 78.0 361 12.7% 10.2% .304 5.54 5.20 134 126
Yordano Ventura 97.3 449 16.0% 11.1% .295 5.64 5.78 137 140
Juan Gutierrez 30.0 136 16.2% 8.8% .298 5.70 5.53 138 134
Roman Colon 41.3 191 12.6% 11.0% .292 5.44 5.42 132 131
Michael Mariot 99.0 454 10.8% 9.0% .291 5.73 5.76 139 139
Jose Jimenez 59.3 282 12.4% 12.1% .305 6.07 5.76 147 139
Atahualpa Severino 44.0 219 14.2% 16.0% .315 6.55 6.21 159 150
Ryan Verdugo 101.0 487 14.8% 15.0% .290 6.24 6.43 151 156
Jason Adam 121.0 549 11.5% 7.5% .286 6.17 6.28 149 152
Chris Volstad 165.3 766 11.6% 7.2% .319 6.04 5.16 146 125
Noel Arguelles 99.3 490 7.8% 14.3% .294 6.80 6.91 165 167
Chris Dwyer 120.0 591 11.8% 15.4% .288 6.98 7.22 169 175

***

Pitchers, Assorted Other

Player IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 ERA+ WAR No. 1 Comp
James Shields 208.0 7.92 2.29 1.21 100 3.2 Javier Vazquez
Jeremy Guthrie 163.7 5.61 2.47 1.32 93 1.9 Jay Witasick
Wade Davis 153.3 6.99 3.29 1.17 95 1.9 Bob Walk
Greg Holland 73.0 11.34 3.95 0.74 128 1.2 Jim Kern
Felipe Paulino 88.7 8.42 3.65 1.01 92 0.9 Luke Hudson
Will Smith 163.7 5.11 3.08 1.15 83 0.8 Mike Jeffcoat
Kelvin Herrera 77.3 8.15 2.45 0.93 110 0.8 Chris Britton
Aaron Crow 64.0 9.28 3.52 0.98 108 0.7 Trevor Hoffman
Tim Collins 69.3 11.56 4.94 1.04 109 0.7 Mitch Williams
Louis Coleman 71.7 9.79 4.14 1.38 102 0.7 Brad Lidge
Ervin Santana 178.3 6.66 3.13 1.62 81 0.6 Richard Dotson
Luke Hochevar 156.7 6.49 2.93 1.26 81 0.6 Richard Dotson
Danny Duffy 81.0 7.89 4.00 1.33 86 0.6 Carlos Hernandez
Bruce Chen 141.3 6.24 2.74 1.46 82 0.6 Paul Splittorff
Luis Mendoza 134.3 4.69 3.35 1.07 82 0.5 Julian Tavarez
Everett Teaford 83.3 5.94 3.46 1.40 81 0.1 Dennis Powell
Francisley Bueno 63.0 5.29 3.14 1.00 90 0.1 Chad Zerbe
Guillermo Moscoso 135.3 6.05 3.33 1.60 77 0.0 Chad Durbin
Donnie Joseph 62.0 7.84 5.23 1.02 86 -0.1 Scott Wiggins
Nathan Adcock 107.3 4.53 3.52 1.01 77 -0.1 Mark Cahill
John Lamb 25.0 5.04 3.96 1.44 71 -0.1 Craig Swan
Dan Wheeler 45.7 5.91 3.35 1.38 83 -0.1 Terry Mathews
Brian Sanches 53.7 5.87 3.52 1.51 82 -0.2 Terry Mathews
Doug Davis 78.0 5.31 4.27 1.15 74 -0.2 Mark Langston
Yordano Ventura 97.3 6.66 4.62 1.66 73 -0.3 Oscar Munoz
Juan Gutierrez 30.0 6.60 3.60 1.80 72 -0.4 Julio Manon
Roman Colon 41.3 5.23 4.58 1.31 75 -0.4 Paphlagonian Liver
Michael Mariot 99.0 4.45 3.73 1.55 72 -0.6 Kevin Ryan
Jose Jimenez 59.3 5.31 5.16 1.37 68 -1.0 Jason Hill
Atahualpa Severino 44.0 6.34 7.16 1.43 63 -1.0 Danny Young
Ryan Verdugo 101.0 6.42 6.50 1.69 66 -1.1 Terry Wells
Jason Adam 121.0 4.69 3.05 2.08 67 -1.2 Aaron Laffey
Chris Volstad 165.3 4.85 2.99 1.47 68 -1.4 Brian Powell
Noel Arguelles 99.3 3.44 6.34 1.54 60 -1.7 Sebern Wright
Chris Dwyer 120.0 5.25 6.83 1.95 59 -2.4 Tom Singer

***

Disclaimer: ZiPS projections are computer-based projections of performance. Performances have not been allocated to predicted playing time in the majors — many of the players listed above are unlikely to play in the majors at all in 2012. ZiPS is projecting equivalent production — a .240 ZiPS projection may end up being .280 in AAA or .300 in AA, for example. Whether or not a player will play is one of many non-statistical factors one has to take into account when predicting the future.

Players are listed with their most recent teams unless Dan has made a mistake. This is very possible as a lot of minor-league signings are generally unreported in the offseason.

ZiPS is projecting based on the AL having a 4.09 ERA and the NL having a 3.92 ERA.

Players that are expected to be out due to injury are still projected. More information is always better than less information and a computer isn’t what should be projecting the injury status of, for example, a pitcher with Tommy John surgery.

Regarding ERA+ vs. ERA- (and FIP+ vs. FIP-) and the differences therein: as Patriot notes here, they are not simply mirror images of each other. Writes Patriot: “ERA+ does not tell you that a pitcher’s ERA was X% less or more than the league’s ERA. It tells you that the league’s ERA was X% less or more than the pitcher’s ERA.”

Both hitters and pitchers are ranked by projected WAR.


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