2015 ZiPS Projections – Chicago Cubs

After having typically appeared in the very hallowed pages of Baseball Think Factory, Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections have been released at FanGraphs the past couple years. The exercise continues this offseason. Below are the projections for the Chicago Cubs. Szymborski can be found at ESPN and on Twitter at @DSzymborski.

Other Projections: Arizona / Atlanta / Chicago AL / Cleveland / Colorado / Detroit / Houston / Los Angeles AL / Los Angeles NL / Miami / Milwaukee / Minnesota / New York NL / Oakland / San Diego / San Francisco / St. Louis / Tampa Bay / Washington

Batters
“Why do you hate Jorge Soler?” is a reaction zero people expressed via Twitter on Thursday when the author shared the depth-chart image below by way of that same social-media platform. What certain respondents did note, however, is that they’d take the over on Soler’s 1.0 WAR projection. Which, one comment regarding that: due (presumably) to limited playing time in the past, ZiPS only forecasts Soler for 345 plate appearances in 2015. That’s 1.7 WAR per 600 plate appearances — a substantial figure, that, for a player who’s recorded just a half-season’s worth of games above High-A.

Conspicuous by his absence in that same depth-chart image below is third-base prospect Kris Bryant, who receives the club’s highest projected WAR here, according to ZiPS, and the second-highest by Steamer. Whether he’ll be part of the opening-day roster isn’t really a question ZiPS, being a computer model, is prepared to answer. There appears to be some evidence, however, that when he does appear in the majors, he (i.e. Bryant) will be among the club’s very best field players.

Pitchers
Unsurprisingly, given both his track record and also the millions of dollars with which the Cubs have agreed to remunerate him, Jon Lester receives the most promising projection among the club’s starters by some margin. He’s averaged 207 innings and 4.8 wins per year since 2008. ZiPS forecasts a nearly identical season in 2015: 208.2 IP and 4.6 WAR.

Of some interest with regard to the remaining starters is the relative optimism and then pessimism concerning Kyle Hendricks and Jake Arrieta, respectively. In the case of Hendricks, perhaps it’s precisely what one ought to expect from a projection system. Despite the fact that he sits at just 88 mph, Hendricks has nevertheless limited both walks and home runs throughout his minor-league career. The strength of his projection (165.1 IP, 2.7 WAR) assumes a continuation of this trend. Arrieta, meanwhile, distinguished himself as one of the game’s top pitchers of 2014, finishing 11th among all pitchers by WAR despite the fact that he compiled too few innings (156.2) to qualify. Probably owing to the influence of his other four major-league seasons during which he wasn’t dominant, ZiPS calls for a more regular season from Arrieta (154.1 IP, 2.3 WAR) than one might otherwise expect in light of his excellent 2014.

Bench/Prospects
While Chris Coghlan and Chris Denorfia might form a left-field platoon for the Cubs to begin the season, another possibility is that Arismendy Alcantara receives a large share/all of the playing time there, too. ZiPS gives him the fourth-best projection (645 PA, 2.4 WAR) among all Cubs batters. Outfielder Albert Almora, catcher Rafael Lopez, and shortstop Addison Russell have recorded just 14 major-league plate appearances collectively but are all projected to play at least like a competent bench player beginning in 2015. Among pitchers, neither C.J. Edwards nor Tsuyoshi Wada is expected to break spring training in the rotation, but neither would appear to be wholly unqualified for such a role, either.

Depth Chart
Below is a rough depth chart for the present incarnation of the Cubs, with rounded projected WAR totals for each player. For caveats regarding WAR values see disclaimer at bottom of post. Click to embiggen image.

Cubs Depth

Ballpark graphic courtesy Eephus League. Depth charts constructed by way of those listed here at site and author’s own haphazard reasoning.

Batters, Counting Stats

Player B Age PO PA R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS
Kris Bryant R 23 3B 557 91 126 25 4 29 96 10 4
Anthony Rizzo L 25 1B 651 91 153 33 2 30 94 6 5
Starlin Castro R 25 SS 674 75 180 35 5 15 71 12 7
Arismendy Alcantara B 23 2B 645 83 148 34 9 19 79 25 7
Miguel Montero L 31 C 529 46 110 20 1 12 64 0 2
Javier Baez R 22 SS 650 90 140 30 4 30 90 18 7
Dexter Fowler B 29 CF 526 62 118 19 6 10 39 13 6
Addison Russell R 21 SS 407 50 91 18 3 12 44 10 4
Welington Castillo R 28 C 417 38 92 19 0 12 43 1 0
Albert Almora R 21 CF 576 67 144 28 5 9 59 6 6
Tommy La Stella L 26 2B 459 45 109 22 3 4 46 5 2
Rafael Lopez L 27 C 394 41 83 16 1 5 36 1 1
Jorge Soler R 23 RF 345 51 79 23 3 12 59 3 1
Mike Olt R 26 3B 423 44 78 17 1 16 49 2 1
Kyle Schwarber L 22 LF 591 86 125 30 5 21 98 5 2
Matt Szczur R 25 CF 553 62 127 21 4 4 40 23 9
Christian Villanueva R 24 3B 543 58 116 33 1 12 57 6 7
Chris Denorfia R 34 RF 395 55 94 16 3 6 34 9 3
Ryan Sweeney L 30 CF 266 29 62 13 2 5 26 1 0
Billy McKinney L 20 CF 475 48 102 18 4 8 40 7 3
Logan Watkins L 25 2B 516 61 107 20 4 6 43 17 6
Casper Wells R 30 RF 170 20 33 7 1 4 14 1 1
Stephen Bruno R 24 2B 344 39 79 17 3 2 30 3 4
David Ross R 38 C 149 14 26 7 0 6 13 0 1
Junior Lake R 25 LF 451 51 104 20 3 10 39 15 7
Adron Chambers L 28 LF 357 37 74 12 2 5 27 8 5
Taylor Teagarden R 31 C 176 18 31 4 0 6 19 0 0
Chris Valaika R 29 2B 424 41 91 18 1 8 41 2 2
Chris Coghlan L 30 LF 430 47 95 22 4 7 37 8 4
Ryan Kalish L 27 LF 303 35 66 12 3 5 28 10 4
Jonathan Herrera B 30 2B 221 27 47 5 2 1 15 3 3
Dan Vogelbach L 22 1B 587 73 129 26 1 16 67 4 6
Jae-Hoon Ha R 24 CF 491 50 107 20 1 6 42 8 5
Edgar Gonzalez R 37 2B 66 7 15 3 0 1 2 2 0
Bijan Rademacher L 24 LF 390 44 85 16 3 7 38 4 6
John Baker L 34 C 186 12 32 5 0 1 12 0 0
Manny Ramirez R 43 LF 86 8 18 2 0 2 7 0 0
Jonathan Mota R 28 1B 293 29 64 11 2 4 26 1 1
Josh Vitters R 25 LF 398 40 86 17 1 10 39 3 2

***

Batters, Rates and Averages

Player PA BB% K% ISO BABIP AVG OBP SLG wOBA
Kris Bryant 557 9.3% 32.9% .244 .344 .256 .339 .500 .364
Anthony Rizzo 651 10.8% 20.0% .224 .299 .269 .358 .493 .367
Starlin Castro 674 5.3% 16.5% .143 .325 .286 .328 .429 .330
Arismendy Alcantara 645 6.2% 26.5% .184 .316 .249 .297 .433 .321
Miguel Montero 529 11.0% 21.2% .127 .289 .240 .333 .367 .304
Javier Baez 650 5.8% 32.6% .214 .302 .233 .283 .447 .319
Dexter Fowler 526 13.9% 22.2% .137 .338 .265 .371 .402 .345
Addison Russell 407 6.6% 24.8% .161 .302 .243 .302 .404 .315
Welington Castillo 417 7.7% 24.2% .147 .304 .246 .317 .393 .316
Albert Almora 576 3.0% 17.0% .118 .301 .261 .285 .379 .289
Tommy La Stella 459 8.7% 10.9% .098 .293 .267 .337 .365 .313
Rafael Lopez 394 8.6% 21.6% .093 .292 .234 .303 .327 .281
Jorge Soler 345 7.8% 22.3% .208 .294 .252 .310 .460 .335
Mike Olt 423 9.7% 32.6% .179 .276 .208 .288 .387 .299
Kyle Schwarber 591 8.3% 25.4% .193 .283 .234 .299 .427 .318
Matt Szczur 553 6.1% 17.9% .080 .301 .250 .301 .330 .283
Christian Villanueva 543 5.3% 26.2% .142 .297 .232 .283 .374 .285
Chris Denorfia 395 7.3% 17.0% .110 .302 .260 .315 .370 .305
Ryan Sweeney 266 7.1% 15.4% .132 .288 .255 .311 .387 .306
Billy McKinney 475 7.4% 21.3% .116 .288 .237 .299 .353 .292
Logan Watkins 516 7.8% 23.1% .099 .297 .231 .297 .330 .280
Casper Wells 170 8.8% 25.9% .138 .279 .217 .296 .355 .291
Stephen Bruno 344 4.4% 24.1% .092 .332 .251 .306 .343 .288
David Ross 149 8.7% 34.2% .188 .260 .195 .265 .383 .277
Junior Lake 451 4.9% 29.0% .132 .331 .246 .287 .378 .295
Adron Chambers 357 8.4% 22.4% .098 .296 .235 .307 .333 .281
Taylor Teagarden 176 8.0% 35.2% .138 .272 .195 .263 .333 .267
Chris Valaika 424 5.0% 20.8% .112 .278 .233 .280 .345 .275
Chris Coghlan 430 8.8% 17.9% .133 .290 .247 .318 .380 .307
Ryan Kalish 303 6.9% 23.8% .119 .302 .237 .292 .356 .287
Jonathan Herrera 221 6.8% 15.4% .060 .282 .239 .298 .299 .259
Dan Vogelbach 587 8.3% 21.8% .144 .289 .244 .308 .388 .306
Jae-Hoon Ha 491 5.3% 22.4% .088 .295 .235 .281 .323 .269
Edgar Gonzalez 66 3.0% 25.8% .094 .304 .234 .258 .328 .266
Bijan Rademacher 390 6.2% 24.4% .120 .301 .237 .290 .357 .285
John Baker 186 9.1% 26.3% .048 .265 .193 .270 .241 .230
Manny Ramirez 86 4.7% 25.6% .097 .276 .220 .256 .317 .257
Jonathan Mota 293 4.1% 24.9% .098 .299 .232 .265 .330 .259
Josh Vitters 398 5.0% 23.9% .132 .284 .231 .277 .363 .282

***

Batters, Assorted Other

Player PA RC/27 OPS+ Def zWAR No.1 Comp
Kris Bryant 557 6.2 127 0 4.3 Evan Longoria
Anthony Rizzo 651 6.4 131 6 4.1 Mo Vaughn
Starlin Castro 674 5.3 106 -4 3.4 Rennie Stennett
Arismendy Alcantara 645 4.8 98 -2 2.4 Mike Young
Miguel Montero 529 4.2 93 -1 2.4 Ed Bailey
Javier Baez 650 4.5 97 -7 2.2 Gary Gaetti
Dexter Fowler 526 5.5 113 -10 2.1 Steve Henderson
Addison Russell 407 4.4 92 2 1.9 Ian Desmond
Welington Castillo 417 4.5 94 -3 1.9 Ronny Paulino
Albert Almora 576 3.8 81 6 1.3 Tony Torcato
Tommy La Stella 459 4.6 93 -2 1.3 Jeff Treadway
Rafael Lopez 394 3.5 73 1 1.0 Alberto Castillo
Jorge Soler 345 5.2 109 -1 1.0 Raul Ibanez
Mike Olt 423 3.8 84 0 0.9 Matt Raleigh
Kyle Schwarber 591 4.5 97 -2 0.9 Paul O’Neill
Matt Szczur 553 3.7 74 2 0.8 Buck Coats
Christian Villanueva 543 3.6 79 2 0.8 Brant Ust
Chris Denorfia 395 4.3 88 3 0.7 Pete Fox
Ryan Sweeney 266 4.4 91 -1 0.7 Terrence Long
Billy McKinney 475 3.8 79 -2 0.5 Trot Nixon
Logan Watkins 516 3.6 73 -2 0.3 Doug Baker
Casper Wells 170 3.6 78 3 0.3 Jeff Guiel
Stephen Bruno 344 3.6 78 -2 0.2 Greg Picart
David Ross 149 3.3 76 -1 0.2 Jim Hegan
Junior Lake 451 3.9 81 2 0.2 Matt Cimo
Adron Chambers 357 3.5 76 4 0.1 Kevin Koslofski
Taylor Teagarden 176 2.9 63 -2 0.0 Dave Duncan
Chris Valaika 424 3.3 71 0 0.0 Keith Johns
Chris Coghlan 430 4.3 91 -5 0.0 Keith Hughes
Ryan Kalish 303 3.8 78 -1 -0.2 Jalal Leach
Jonathan Herrera 221 3.0 65 -1 -0.2 Kevin Castleberry
Dan Vogelbach 587 4.1 90 -2 -0.2 Brant Colamarino
Jae-Hoon Ha 491 3.2 66 -1 -0.3 Donald Morris
Edgar Gonzalez 66 3.3 60 -2 -0.3 Ron Washington
Bijan Rademacher 390 3.4 77 0 -0.4 Dan Ortmeier
John Baker 186 2.2 42 -2 -0.5 Kirt Manwaring
Manny Ramirez 86 2.8 57 -4 -0.7 Brian Jordan
Jonathan Mota 293 3.0 62 0 -1.1 Miguel Quintana
Josh Vitters 398 3.5 74 -8 -1.3 Dave Gibralter

***

Pitchers, Counting Stats

Player T Age G GS IP K BB HR H R ER
Jon Lester L 31 31 31 208.7 187 53 17 191 77 72
Kyle Hendricks R 25 28 28 165.3 115 38 12 164 70 65
Jake Arrieta R 29 29 28 154.3 146 60 15 137 67 63
Jason Hammel R 32 25 24 141.0 117 42 16 135 65 61
Travis Wood L 28 30 30 173.3 137 67 21 170 89 83
C.J. Edwards R 23 19 19 80.3 74 44 5 71 36 34
Tsuyoshi Wada L 34 18 17 104.7 88 32 13 104 50 47
Felix Doubront L 27 27 22 128.3 113 52 14 125 64 60
Eric Jokisch L 25 27 25 150.0 110 48 18 156 78 73
Carlos Villanueva R 31 39 10 96.3 88 30 10 92 45 42
Pedro Strop R 30 64 0 58.3 65 26 4 46 21 20
Neil Ramirez R 26 61 0 54.0 65 26 5 43 20 19
Justin Grimm R 26 75 0 70.0 69 29 5 62 30 28
Hector Rondon R 27 47 0 49.0 46 16 4 44 20 19
Armando Rivero R 27 38 0 51.0 65 24 6 42 21 20
Blake Parker R 30 50 0 50.7 58 18 5 44 21 20
Dallas Beeler R 26 19 19 103.3 57 36 11 112 57 53
Jason Motte R 33 46 0 44.3 44 13 6 40 19 18
Zac Rosscup L 27 44 0 43.3 53 28 4 35 19 18
Edwin Jackson R 31 27 26 146.0 123 55 17 155 82 77
Pierce Johnson R 24 22 21 102.7 97 63 13 98 58 54
Michael Heesch L 25 26 0 48.0 51 27 5 42 22 21
Donn Roach R 25 29 18 113.0 59 51 9 124 64 60
Brian Schlitter R 29 59 0 63.7 38 21 5 67 31 29
Joe Ortiz L 24 31 0 41.0 25 10 4 43 20 19
Jacob Turner R 24 29 23 136.3 91 48 17 152 80 75
Corey Black R 23 25 24 110.3 99 74 15 108 67 63
Frank Batista R 26 53 0 59.3 43 30 7 62 34 32
Jonathan Sanchez L 32 10 9 41.7 35 30 7 45 30 28
Dae-Eun Rhee R 26 23 21 114.7 63 53 14 128 72 67
Carlos Pimentel R 25 29 15 96.7 77 56 14 100 61 57
Lendy Castillo R 26 32 3 53.3 43 40 8 56 37 35

***

Pitchers, Rates and Averages

Player IP TBF K% BB% BABIP ERA FIP ERA- FIP-
Jon Lester 208.7 870 21.5% 6.1% .287 3.11 3.28 81 86
Kyle Hendricks 165.3 698 16.5% 5.4% .290 3.54 3.52 93 92
Jake Arrieta 154.3 660 22.1% 9.1% .282 3.67 3.79 96 99
Jason Hammel 141.0 600 19.5% 7.0% .284 3.89 3.96 102 104
Travis Wood 173.3 757 18.1% 8.9% .284 4.31 4.43 113 116
C.J. Edwards 80.3 356 20.8% 12.4% .288 3.81 3.93 100 103
Tsuyoshi Wada 104.7 450 19.6% 7.1% .291 4.04 4.11 106 107
Felix Doubront 128.3 562 20.1% 9.3% .292 4.21 4.11 110 108
Eric Jokisch 150.0 654 16.8% 7.3% .294 4.38 4.38 115 115
Carlos Villanueva 96.3 411 21.4% 7.3% .293 3.92 3.60 102 94
Pedro Strop 58.3 247 26.3% 10.5% .284 3.09 3.27 81 86
Neil Ramirez 54.0 231 28.1% 11.3% .286 3.17 3.52 83 92
Justin Grimm 70.0 301 22.9% 9.6% .294 3.60 3.46 94 90
Hector Rondon 49.0 207 22.2% 7.7% .286 3.49 3.27 91 86
Armando Rivero 51.0 219 29.7% 11.0% .298 3.53 3.62 92 95
Blake Parker 50.7 214 27.1% 8.4% .297 3.55 3.29 93 86
Dallas Beeler 103.3 458 12.4% 7.9% .290 4.62 4.64 121 121
Jason Motte 44.3 186 23.7% 7.0% .279 3.65 3.89 95 102
Zac Rosscup 43.3 193 27.5% 14.5% .293 3.74 3.86 98 101
Edwin Jackson 146.0 648 19.0% 8.5% .307 4.75 4.11 124 107
Pierce Johnson 102.7 469 20.7% 13.4% .294 4.73 4.97 124 130
Michael Heesch 48.0 213 23.9% 12.7% .291 3.94 4.21 103 110
Donn Roach 113.0 514 11.5% 9.9% .297 4.78 4.73 125 124
Brian Schlitter 63.7 279 13.6% 7.5% .294 4.10 4.03 107 105
Joe Ortiz 41.0 176 14.2% 5.7% .287 4.17 3.95 109 103
Jacob Turner 136.3 609 14.9% 7.9% .301 4.95 4.53 129 119
Corey Black 110.3 513 19.3% 14.4% .293 5.14 5.35 134 140
Frank Batista 59.3 270 15.9% 11.1% .296 4.85 4.87 127 127
Jonathan Sanchez 41.7 200 17.5% 15.0% .304 6.05 6.05 158 158
Dae-Eun Rhee 114.7 525 12.0% 10.1% .294 5.26 5.18 138 135
Carlos Pimentel 96.7 446 17.3% 12.6% .293 5.31 5.35 139 140
Lendy Castillo 53.3 256 16.8% 15.6% .298 5.91 5.98 155 156

***

Pitchers, Assorted Other

Player IP K/9 BB/9 HR/9 ERA+ zWAR No. 1 Comp
Jon Lester 208.7 8.06 2.29 0.73 121 4.6 Andy Pettitte
Kyle Hendricks 165.3 6.26 2.07 0.65 107 2.7 Bob Tewksbury
Jake Arrieta 154.3 8.52 3.50 0.87 103 2.3 Kip Wells
Jason Hammel 141.0 7.47 2.68 1.02 97 1.7 Greg Harris
Travis Wood 173.3 7.11 3.48 1.09 87 1.1 Don Collins
C.J. Edwards 80.3 8.29 4.93 0.56 99 1.0 Roger Pavlik
Tsuyoshi Wada 104.7 7.56 2.75 1.12 93 1.0 Blaine Beatty
Felix Doubront 128.3 7.93 3.65 0.98 90 1.0 Jimmy Osting
Eric Jokisch 150.0 6.60 2.88 1.08 86 0.8 Lance Davis
Carlos Villanueva 96.3 8.22 2.80 0.93 96 0.8 Mark Leiter
Pedro Strop 58.3 10.03 4.01 0.62 122 0.7 Dwayne Henry
Neil Ramirez 54.0 10.83 4.33 0.83 119 0.6 Hipolito Pichardo
Justin Grimm 70.0 8.87 3.73 0.64 105 0.4 Sal Urso
Hector Rondon 49.0 8.45 2.94 0.73 108 0.3 Francisco Cordero
Armando Rivero 51.0 11.47 4.24 1.06 107 0.3 Dwayne Henry
Blake Parker 50.7 10.30 3.20 0.89 106 0.3 Jeff Austin
Dallas Beeler 103.3 4.97 3.14 0.96 82 0.3 Preston Larrison
Jason Motte 44.3 8.94 2.64 1.22 103 0.2 Blas Minor
Zac Rosscup 43.3 11.02 5.82 0.83 101 0.1 Ricky Pickett
Edwin Jackson 146.0 7.58 3.39 1.05 79 0.1 Cal Eldred
Pierce Johnson 102.7 8.50 5.52 1.14 80 0.1 Ben Howard
Michael Heesch 48.0 9.56 5.06 0.94 96 0.0 Thomas Hart
Donn Roach 113.0 4.70 4.06 0.72 79 -0.1 Sean White
Brian Schlitter 63.7 5.37 2.97 0.71 92 -0.1 Jim Todd
Joe Ortiz 41.0 5.49 2.20 0.88 90 -0.1 Tim Lavigne
Jacob Turner 136.3 6.01 3.17 1.12 76 -0.3 David Pauley
Corey Black 110.3 8.08 6.04 1.22 73 -0.5 Steve Chitren
Frank Batista 59.3 6.53 4.55 1.06 78 -0.7 Matt Smith
Jonathan Sanchez 41.7 7.55 6.47 1.51 62 -0.7 Charlie Puleo
Dae-Eun Rhee 114.7 4.94 4.16 1.10 72 -0.7 Mike Heathcott
Carlos Pimentel 96.7 7.17 5.21 1.30 71 -0.8 Alonso Beltran
Lendy Castillo 53.3 7.26 6.75 1.35 64 -1.1 Tracy Thorpe

***

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 2014. 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 3.93 ERA and the NL having a 3.75 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 zWAR — which is to say, WAR values as calculated by Dan Szymborski, whose surname is spelled with a z. WAR values might differ slightly from those which appear in full release of ZiPS. Finally, Szymborski will advise anyone against — and might karate chop anyone guilty of — merely adding up WAR totals on depth chart to produce projected team WAR.



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KilroyWasHere
Guest
KilroyWasHere
1 year 4 months ago

Fun list of batting comps. Keep everyone around until their peak, and you’ll be looking at Evan Longoria, Mo Vaughn, Ian Desmond, et al… with the pitchers coached by Dave Duncan!

Adam
Guest
Adam
1 year 4 months ago

Don’t forget Gary Gaetti!

Los
Guest
Los
1 year 4 months ago

Gary Gaetti is 56 years old! Now I feel old.

me
Guest
me
1 year 4 months ago

Ship the spaghetti to Gary Gaetti.

Bread N Mustard
Guest
Bread N Mustard
1 year 3 months ago

And Paul O’Neil

Phillies113
Member
Member
1 year 4 months ago

Any concerns about the Cubs defense? It seems like that could be the biggest weakness for the Cubs, based on these projections. Otherwise, this team is really solidly built. It’s gonna be a good year for the North Side.

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

The defense is bad everywhere but 1b and c. That’s true regardless of who plays third. They also figure to fight the Astros to be the team that breaks the all time strike out record.

I found the projections for Russell and Castillo to be especially interesting. Neither is likely to get 100 abs for the Cubs this year. There’s a really good chance that neither even plays for the team this year given that they’ve been trying to trade Castillo for anything for a month now and the Cubs won’t start Russell’s arbitration clock this year. Even if Russell were to get 1.9 WAR, he’d have so much playing time that it would be impossible for Castro, Bryant, Baez and Alcantara to reach their WAR projections. The same is true of Almora and McKinney.

Miguel Montero would have to more than double his WAR production of the last two years to meet that projection.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Truly remarkable how poor ZIPS projections are in regards to Miguel Montero. He’s not getting younger, his game has deteriorated, and yet ZIPS projects him to return to his value 2 years ago when he was 28 years old.

RBest
Guest
RBest
1 year 4 months ago

You DO know that Montero’s projected OPS+ isn’t any better than last year? And that his pitch framing is at +28 runs the last 3? Well at least your name isn’t Educated Fan.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

I don’t know what any of that matters. His WAR has been 2 wins lower the past two years than he’s projected to do this year. He’s clearly regressed. His defensive value was apart of his WAR the past two years, was it not?

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

My favorite part about those who defend ZiPS as if they created it, is that Szymborski himself accepts that there will be outliers all over the place… That’s how statistics work. There are deficiencies in projecting thousands of players – in general, most players will fall within 1 SD, but there will always be players who do not. Montero is one that I would safely bet the under – and if Sportsbooks put a price on it, I’d be willing the guess the market would force his number all the way down to 1.5 or so.

Nope
Guest
Nope
1 year 4 months ago

Truly remarkable how a guy named “Rational Fan” found every projection that supposedly underrated the White Sox objectionable on the White Sox post, and every projection that overrates a Cub objectionable on this post, then pretends he is using cold hard logic to arrive at his conclusions.

thefro
Guest
thefro
1 year 4 months ago

I disagree on the defense being bad outside of 1B/C. 2B and RF should both clearly be above-average defensively. Soler’s got a cannon for an arm and Alcantara/Baez are shortshops playing 2nd base.

Castro makes too many errors at SS but he’s got all the tools to be good there, just makes too many mental mistakes. Maddon will help on that front.

I don’t think we can project Bryant as being bad until we actually see him at 3B in the majors and if he ends up in LF, he’ll be above-average there. Scouts actually think Fowler is above-average in CF.

Dovif
Guest
1 year 4 months ago

Alcantara and Baez was horrible defensively last year

Castro have not improved for 5 years and he had gotten slower. I do not even think he will stay at ss the next 2 years

Jason P
Guest
Jason P
1 year 4 months ago

Alcantara was very good 2b. He was bad in CF no doubt. Even combined with 5 errors in CF he produced a positive dWar. Solid range at 2b as well. Baez is atrocious at every aspect of defense. Castro has improved his defense every year as evidence by his increase in fielding % every year. He throws balls away too often still, but he is an an average SS with the glove and his range. Not slower either, just never fast. Should have never attempted 30 steals.

Kyle
Guest
Kyle
1 year 4 months ago

I think you need to take a rather extreme definition of “bad” to justify that statement. I would argue the only positions where they project to be bad defensively are LF and CF. Maybe 3b if you take the pessimistic side of the uncertainty on the guy voted the best defensive 3b in the PCL.

They should be perfectly adequate defensively at SS, 2b, and RF at the very least.

highrent
Guest
highrent
1 year 4 months ago

Its not exactly ZIPS fault and I’m sure Dan has tried to account for it but our era has really thrown things for a loop. its hard for the projection systems ignore the several years of excellent pop from Montero and then his total loss of it. Call it a combination of age as well as the new era, it really has hit Montero like a ton of bricks. I can see from a career standpoint why it thinks his slugging and iso will bounce back but at this point with similar players across the board experiencing similar power outage I have to say that this is just something that is hard to adjust for. I agree I doubt Montero on fWAR goes past 2. Lower in actual value if Cameron is right that the catcher adjustment is too high. But then again montero makes up for some of that with his pitch framing ability so I’m sure he’ll come out with a true value closer to his ZIPS projection.

nilbog44
Member
nilbog44
1 year 4 months ago

No. I’m never worried about defense. It’s overblown. If you can hit and pitch you will be fine. If you can’t, then you won’t.

Phillies113
Member
Member
1 year 4 months ago

I disagree with the idea that defense is overblown. Consider the Royals vs the Indians last year and where they ranked in the AL in some key areas.

Overall pitching, based on FIP: CLE 3.42 (1st in AL), KC 3.69 (8th)
Starting pitching: CLE 3.33 (1st), KC 3.89 (9th)
Relief picthing: CLE 3.58 (8th), KC 3.29 (2nd)

Batting, wOBA: CLE 0.313 (6th), KC 0.306 (10th)
Batting, wRC+: CLE 102 (5th), KC 94 (11th)

Defense, UZR/150: CLE -9.7 (14th), KC 9.0 (2nd)

The only areas you can truly say the Royals had an advantage over the Indians was in relief pitching and defense. The Indians were clearly the better team with regards to pitching and hitting. Yet Kansas City went to the World Series. Had Cleveland’s defense been marginally better, they might have gone instead.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

It’s overblown except for all the players who succeed with it and all the teams that have won games with it.

joepoe
Guest
joepoe
1 year 4 months ago

Montero is supposed to be the best catcher in the league at “framing pitches.”
Hopefully he has figured out how to frame a passed ball.

channelclemente
Guest
channelclemente
1 year 4 months ago

“When you wish upon star, makes no difference who you are”. What the goat said.

louie
Guest
louie
1 year 3 months ago

your write of they can improve their outfield defense, which is among the worst in the MLB they are in position to make a run at the playoffs.

Patrick G
Guest
Patrick G
1 year 4 months ago

How heavily does Zips weight pitcher’s changed in repertoire usage?

Because Lester has had some dramatic swings over the past 4 seasons with regards to his cutter usage.

If he continues to throw his cutter over 20% of the time (and avoids injury) I think there’s a reasonable shot he exceeds this projection.

DatDudeJD
Guest
DatDudeJD
1 year 4 months ago

Wait, you want to bet on a pitcher to exceed a nearly 5 WAR projection? I take the under on that with everyone but Kershaw.

Most of Us Reading..
Guest
Most of Us Reading..
1 year 4 months ago

A 5WAR projection – I’d take the under on that for Kershaw, too. Especially for straight money.

Darth Stout
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Darth Stout
1 year 4 months ago

Man that Arrieta comp…. I think he’s going to make ZIPS and Steamer look really bad this season.

Otter
Guest
Otter
1 year 4 months ago

He’s a major regression candidate though even if you assume he’s over his control issues (which I do). HR/FB of 4.5%, 0.29 HR/9 and a .274 BABIP last year. Think he’ll still be pretty good/solid, but last year looks like a career year right now.

Theman
Guest
Theman
1 year 4 months ago

So Hendricks has one decent half year and he gets a good projection..yet Arrieta dominated and he gets a lousy one? not sure why any credibility is put in these projections at all

Ryan Brock
Member
Member
1 year 4 months ago

MLB performance is a lot more predictive and Arrieta gas had a history of bad MLB pitching… it’s pretty simple.

Dr Hocker
Member
Dr Hocker
1 year 4 months ago

ZIPS is dedcidedly not Scottish and therefore is KROP!

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

ZIPS can’t quantify things the adjustments Arrieta made, and it’s overreacted to a 1/2 of season of success for Kyle Hendricks.

Steven
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Steven
1 year 4 months ago

The general principle is that if anything is off on anything, you should ignore that thing. Therefore, I should ignore you.

Pirates Hurdles
Guest
Pirates Hurdles
1 year 4 months ago

Oh man, the hitter K rates. If Bryant hits .256 while K’ing 33% of the time I’ll be stunned. This could easily be a situation where the sum of the parts does not equal the whole, in a bad way.

Rhubarb
Guest
Rhubarb
1 year 4 months ago

His BABIP is projected to be .344. That is how he arrives at that batting average via that strikeout rate, I assume.

Otter
Guest
Otter
1 year 4 months ago

Oh mean, Cub fans are gonna freak when they realize they’ve got the third base Tyler Flowers on their hands.

Kidding. I’m kidding. (Sort of).

Pirates Hurdles
Guest
Pirates Hurdles
1 year 4 months ago

Well, last year only 2 players who K’d at a 30% rate (300pa) hit above .250 and both played at Coors (Stubbs, Barnes). I guess I should have said that the babip seems generous. Baez at .230+ also seems like a stretch with his K rate.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

Another way to boost one’s batting average aside from BABIP is to hit a lot of dingers.

TKDC
Guest
TKDC
1 year 4 months ago

The .344 BABIP, to put it nicely, is an effing bonkers projection. The current BABIP king, Mike Trout, who’s had a .370 BABIP 2012-2014, is projected at .341.

I’d be interested in knowing exactly how that got spit out of the computer.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

Probably because he’s consistently had BABIPs over .400 in the minors. Obviously minors BABIP isn’t the most significant stat out there, but, I mean, who does that?

TKDC
Guest
TKDC
1 year 4 months ago

Well, Mike Trout did, for one.

a eskpert
Guest
a eskpert
1 year 4 months ago

Holy Shit.

matt w
Guest
matt w
1 year 4 months ago

Starling Marte did it for longer than Bryant (.400 at A-ball in 2009, .424 at A+ in 2010, and then .390 at AA in 2011; Bryant was 404/400 at A-/A+ in 2013 and 440!/367 at AA/AAA in 2014). And then he has a .363 BABIP in the majors, but everyone’s always projecting him to regress.

channelclemente
Guest
channelclemente
1 year 4 months ago

Being a Fox contributor for 40.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Mike Trout and Sterling Marge are fast… speed increases babip. Amazing that no one has brought that up.

Otter
Guest
Otter
1 year 4 months ago

Yeah, I think I’m the only person not sold on Bryant. Those minor league K rates have to be more of a concern.

The Baez projections are really optimistic imo. Still can’t find a comp that strikes out so much with power and so few walks, probably because that guy never lasted in the majors.

Jamie
Guest
Jamie
1 year 4 months ago

The counter to this argument has always been, and remains, the same: there is no good comp for Javier Baez, because Javier Baez is a batspeed freak. He’s like Russell Branyan and Gary Sheffield had a baby. That baby inherited Daddy’s bat speed but Other Daddy’s strike zone discipline (and was presumably raised not to believe in dinosaurs).

Smarter Jamie
Guest
Smarter Jamie
1 year 4 months ago

Upon further review, Russ Branyan actually put up some pretty decent walk rates. Cory Snyder is the real father!

Otter
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Otter
1 year 4 months ago

But so far he’s been White Sox Era Adam Dunn without the walks but with Gary Sheffield’s bat speed.

DeepThoughts
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DeepThoughts
1 year 4 months ago

Fast bat speed is only good when you actually make contact with the ball.

Treaty of Zoilo Versalles
Guest
Treaty of Zoilo Versalles
1 year 4 months ago

I wouldn’t base my argument around Javy’s bat speed, as much as I’d base it on how his K rates partly reflect a phase shift in strikeouts industry-wide.

If we say “no one has fanned like this, then later succeeded,” I might argue that a current 30% strikeout rate is no worse than a 26% of a decade ago, or perhaps 22% a decade before that.

Just a thought.

matt w
Guest
matt w
1 year 4 months ago

For strikes, no walks, and power in the current high-K age (since 2012 really) maybe Oswaldo Arcia? Baez is projected for a 5.8% BB, 32.6% K, and .214 ISO. Arcia has a 6.9% BB, 31% K, and .201 ISO. But Arcia didn’t strike out nearly as much as Baez in the minors.

Alcantara and Junior Lake put up some pretty notable high-K low-walk seasons last year, though with not that much power.

TomW
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TomW
1 year 4 months ago

I can’t wait til Arrieta curbstomps this insult of a projection.

Gerald
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Gerald
1 year 4 months ago

To be sure, a projection doesn’t have the requisite intent to insult or, conversely, praise. Arrieta had one good year — a year including successful changes along with some good fortune — after four not particularly good ones. Evaluating pitchers who have made fundamental changes is a difficult task for a machine like this, but it is good, I think, to be reminded that there’s almost always more than last year’s stats to consider.

But as a fellow Cubs fan, I too look forward to Arrieta continuing his success from last season! Or even doing better, by exceeding 160 IP.

Old Man Roto
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Old Man Roto
1 year 4 months ago

Wow, I love the Alcantara projection. I so hope it happens.

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

I really think he’s been underrated in this whole prospect-palooza. I’d rather see him starting every day at second than Baez.

Dave
Guest
Dave
1 year 4 months ago

Tewksbury – very interesting comp for Hendricks, but I bet Hendricks will end up even better.

Pirates Hurdles
Guest
Pirates Hurdles
1 year 4 months ago

You’re on, I’ll take the under on 31.1 career WAR.

Most of Us Reading..
Guest
Most of Us Reading..
1 year 4 months ago

Seconded.

stonepie
Member
stonepie
1 year 4 months ago

these hitter projections seem incredibly optimistic

Big Daddy V
Member
Big Daddy V
1 year 4 months ago

What about Travis Wood’s hitting projection? That’s the most exciting part of the Cubs each year.

Howard
Guest
Howard
1 year 4 months ago

I’m so terribly excited that I won’t have to look forward to Wood’s spot in the lineup. There’s actually gonna be offense on the North Side again! Praise Ron Santo’s ghost!

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

Do these projections account for playing time at all? I’m guessing they don’t. There are 1200 PAs for some positions.

The total would allow the Cubs to have 16114 PAs this year and their staff would have 2,921 innings. That’s 18 innings a game and 99 plate appearances a game.

Anon
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Anon
1 year 4 months ago

“Disclaimer: ZiPS projections are computer-based projections of performance. Performances have not been allocated to predicted playing time in the majors “

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

Thank you. I missed that.

Steven
Guest
Steven
1 year 4 months ago

They do not. However, the depth chart pages incorporate playing time projections and ZIPs and Steamer WAR projections to give FG’s estimate of a projected WAR. I think these have been updated with Steamer projections, but not ZIPs (as ZIPs is not out for every team yet).

Manny Ramirez
Guest
Manny Ramirez
1 year 4 months ago

Really excited to make it back for 86 plate appearances.

Alec Eiffel
Guest
Alec Eiffel
1 year 4 months ago

Such a big difference between the ZiPS and Steamer projections for Alcantara. Maybe it boils down to playing time, but its very surprising to see him project so differently.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

Whoa, 4.3 WAR for a guy who’s never played in the big leagues. I guess that what happens when you completely destroy AAA. Has there ever been a higher projection for a player yet to make his debut?

Ryan Brock
Member
Member
1 year 4 months ago

The Hendricks projection excites my pants area. Also it laughs in the face of DIPS.

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

The thing is… more than likely it will make you laugh at ZIPS at the end of the year.

I get that Hendriks has done well so far, but he has worse stuff than my Grandma. He’s purely a command and control pitcher and those guys do not typically put up numbers like that.

Jason B
Guest
Jason B
1 year 4 months ago

Tell your knees and calves to settle down, no one wants to see all that…

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Kris Bryant’s projection is an embarrassment, and further evidence of proof that ZIPS is a poor evaluator of young players with no MLB playing time. Someone who swings and misses as frequently as he does will not take over the lead as a rookie. This is kind of like last year when ZIPS forecast Baez to have a 2.2 WAR last year – I wonder how that one turned out….

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

yeah remember that one time the projection system was wrong? what a piece of trash.

Fergie's boys
Guest
Fergie's boys
1 year 4 months ago

You have to admit Bip, the projections for the up and comers are all really generous. ZIPS is working solely off minor league success and age for those guys so it disproportionately favors those players regardless of whether they have the tools to succeed in the majors.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

Age and minor league success are both good predictors of major league success though. Of course we should be more cautious about projections for minor league players than for major leaguers, but I doubt there’s a big bias here. The question is not whether it’s possible for a person to do better than the projection – obviously someone with scouting information could potentially do better than the projection. The question is whether the projection does the best it can with the information it has.

If a player is young for his level and also tearing up said level, that bodes very well for said player, especially when said level is AAA. The projections reflect this.

RBest
Guest
RBest
1 year 4 months ago

Totally agree Fergie. ZIPS is crazy projecting big things for a guy like Bryant who scouts hate! Syzmborski was posting on Twitter last week some comments for people who were mad that ZIPS projected Mike Trout at an unlikely 3 wins his rookie season.

I see Steamer projected even more points of OPS for Bryant. Part of the conspiracy overrate prospects, no doubt.

Dovif
Guest
1 year 4 months ago

Sheffield was never a good comparison with Baez. Sheffield had elite bat speed and elite control of the bat. He had 1 Baez has similar bat speed but no idea where the bat is going. He had historic bad contact rate (worst than 33% of Pitchers) historic bad k rate ( first to 90k in a season by more than 10 games)!! And he hit 2hr in the last 150 at bat showing the lack of ability to make adjustments or hit breaking pitch. I would be surprise if he hit .200 in a ml season

Tinker2Evers2Chance
Member
Tinker2Evers2Chance
1 year 4 months ago

If ZiPS were systematically biased in favor of any easily identifiable group (rookies, top prospects, etc.) it would be extremely easy to eliminate that bias. ZiPS could still be biased towards individual players for whatever reason, as the source of that bias is much harder to pick up.

Irrational Fan
Guest
Irrational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Baez likely opted to save these “WAR” for this year and will likely register 4.4 WAR this year, and Bryant will hit enough balls to the moon that his K-rate won’t matter. Or the world could come to an end, oh man, I hope it’s the former.

Spencer Jones
Member
Member
Spencer Jones
1 year 4 months ago

Nice name.

RBest
Guest
RBest
1 year 4 months ago

Agree. I remember the time that ZIPS projected some dude named Evan Longoria to have a huge rookie year after 100 strikeouts at AA. Whatever happened to that scrub? HAHA HIS NAME IS LIKE EVA LONGORIA!

All the guys angry that ZIPS is too negative on rookies and all the guys angry that ZIPS is too positive on rookies should have a really weird party.

Dovif
Guest
1 year 4 months ago

Are you talking about Evan, ie who had a k rate of 21% in aaa and a walk rate of 16.5%? Can we please check things before posting rubbish. I am very down on Baez and Bryant because a k rate of 30% today is very bad for aaa. Elite pitching prospect rarely spend much time in aaa these day. The majority of sp in aaa are a teams 8th or 9th best sp which went unclaimed through waivers and organisational fillers. A 30% k rate agInst those are actually a high indication of bust protential

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Thank you. One of the most correlated bust factors is MiLB K-Rate – as you indicated, a K rate over 30% is alarming.

I have thought for quite some time that Bryant was not the best Cubs prospect – personally, I think Soler is their most valuable piece. The last big time prospect with a very high K-Rate and subpar contact rate was Wil Myers – I was not a fan of Myers because of it. Myers came into the league and succeeded, but he has struggled mightily once pitchers adjusted.

As you also pointed out, subpar K-Rates in AAA are more detrimental than poor k-rates in AA. When Bryant hits the ball – he hits it hard… but you need to be able to make contact more than 70% of the time – his K-Rate could be closer to 35% than 30% in the MLB too.

Blake
Guest
Blake
1 year 4 months ago

Thank you. One of the most correlated bust factors is MiLB K-Rate – as you indicated, a K rate over 30% is alarming.

I look forward to your cite for the study you are aware of that has high strikeout players underperforming their Zips projections. Which you obviously must have to make this statement, else you’d be a liar.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago
Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

Bip I have said since day 1 that Zips lacks reliability with young players. The jump from triple to MLB is much bigger than any of the prior minor league promotions. Also, to the mike trout buffoon – trout was terrible his first 40 games in the league. I also love people who point to trout and say seeeee, young guys can dominate. Trout has had the greatest start to an MLB career in the history of the game. He would appear to be an outlier to all rational people.

I wonder if ZIPS had Brandon Wood projected for a whopping 4 WAR before his first season in the league…

Blake
Guest
Blake
1 year 4 months ago

Someone who can’t tell the difference between Kris Bryant and Brandon Wood shouldn’t be calling others a buffoon.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

LOL What? Brandon Wood was the 3rd best prospect in baseball in 2006. They are/were both power hitting 3rd baseman with inflated K rates – Bryant has a better walk rate, which helps, but his pitch selection has not been much better.

Kris Bryant entered the year as the 3rd best prospect in baseball… hmm, seems like more similarities than you want to accept. Maybe that’s because it doesn’t bode well if he’s similar to Brandon Wood? Wood’s numbers in 2006, power wise, were lesser than Bryants by a little but that can be attributed to the fact that Bryant played in the PCL this year, and Wood did not during his 2006 season.

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

People would be much more receptive to whatever it is you’re saying if you were saying as an effort to improve ZiPS and not to discredit it.

Saying ZiPS lack reliability for young players is telling us what exactly? That prospects are hard to project? Or that YOU have identified the way to project young players and ZiPS is oblivious to your discovered results?

If you have identified a way to improve ZiPS, do the study and post it on community research. If you have identified that ZiPS overrates high-K prospects, then do the study and help us all improve the system we all want to be as accurate as possible. Just don’t tell us what we already know – projection systems aren’t that reliable on prospects.

Rational Fan
Guest
Rational Fan
1 year 4 months ago

If I get the time BIP, I will, but as of now I am using my own numbers to build projections for players this upcoming season. I am a high stakes fantasy baseball player, and the season is about to jump up and bite me before I’m ready for it. As you could imagine, I am spending quite a bit of time cramming as much information as I can onto my sheets. For the record, ZiPS are a part of my projections, and I am not discrediting them entirely at all – I stated above that ZiPS work for the majority of players, but there are clearly some deficiencies. For one small example, minor league K-Rate should be weighted more than it is. I am not trying to come off as a know it all – I have a lot of respect for Szymborski, enough so that I use him as part of my projections for fantasy; which I invest over 50k into every year.

Treaty of Zoilo Versalles
Guest
Treaty of Zoilo Versalles
1 year 4 months ago

I’d feel comfortable taking the under on Kris Bryant for 4.3 WAR, but I would take the over on, say, 3.0.

He’ll fan a lot, but that BABIP of his really was unholy throughout his minor league career — and as someone mentioned, he also sometimes buttresses his batting average by knocking the horsehide all the way over the wall.

Idle question, as a non-Cubfan. Didn’t Alcantara look fine last year in centerfield? When I watched him, I thought he was quite solid, and I was frankly taken aback by the Fowler swap.

Brett W
Guest
Brett W
1 year 4 months ago

Not really. I saw most of his games and he did not look comfortable out there. It’s easy to understand since he did not have much OF experience prior to his call-up. And he did make a few nice highlight-style plays. But overall, his routes were sub-par, and he clanged a few off his glove. He did not seem to be comfortable with the “outfield captain” thing either and miscommunicated some plays with Soler, Coghlan, etc.

I would call it inexperience rather than inability. He just needs more innings in the OF, which he will get. When Castro got hurt with a few weeks left, there was a suggestion to move Baez to SS and Mendy to 2B since they had dp=combo experience together in the minors, but luckily mgmt decided not to do it. He needed all the OF reps he could get. However he did in 2014, I expect he will be improved defensively in 2015 as long as he has comfortable with his new manager’s premonition to use him like a Swiss army knife.

Evan Fangoria
Guest
Evan Fangoria
1 year 4 months ago

Really surprised there’s been no mention of the rather stunning C.J. Edwards forecast.

At 2.2 WAR per 180 IP, he ranks smack in between Noah Syndergaard’s 2.4 and Carlos Rodon’s 2.0 projection. (So far, the only ZiPS-projected prospects above Thor are Lucas Giolito, Marco Gonzales, and Jon Gray.)

Despite the durability concerns, should we be calling Edwards a top 10-15 pitching prospect?

Bip
Member
Member
Bip
1 year 4 months ago

If he has durability concerns, then that would be a reason why he is not a top 10-15 pitching prospect. His current projection also does not account for upside, of which the other prospects you mentioned may have more.

The Voice of Reason
Guest
The Voice of Reason
1 year 4 months ago

Javier Baez will have more hits than Kris Bryant….
Is you crazy???

JamesDaBear
Guest
1 year 4 months ago

Well played.

Josh Vitters
Guest
Josh Vitters
1 year 4 months ago

Thanks for believing in me Dan!!!

Ray
Guest
1 year 4 months ago

I appreciate the time and effort Dan puts into these ZiPS projections, but the time and effort the readers of said projections put in is useless. They are projections. That is all. I don’t see the sense in arguing the validity of a projection system.

Bob
Guest
Bob
1 year 4 months ago

This team still needs a #2 starter.

Nope
Guest
Nope
1 year 4 months ago

The team has holes, but not at the #2 starter position. Arrieta is just fine as a #2. Even accounting for him giving up some of last year’s gains.

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