FanGraphs Baseball


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  1. Is he planning on doing career projections for certain players on each team, as he has done in the past?

    Comment by Izzy Hechkoff — December 19, 2012 @ 8:14 am

  2. I really don’t see Buster Posey hitting below .300 next year. He’s too consistent.

    Comment by rorschach — December 19, 2012 @ 8:23 am

  3. This is a terrific snapshot of a team. Really hope we get this for all 30 as the off season unfolds. Thanks

    Comment by LuckyStrikes — December 19, 2012 @ 8:34 am

  4. Adjudged solely by runs allowed per nine innings, Cain was worth 6.1 wins in 2012 — and has exceeded his WAR totals by ca. 10 runs by that measure over the course of his career.

    Should that be 10 wins? 37.6 RA9-Wins vs. 27.5 WAR.

    Comment by SeanP — December 19, 2012 @ 8:35 am

  5. he hit .284 in 2011….and seriously, you are really gonna harp on 0.01 points of batting average?

    Comment by Clifford — December 19, 2012 @ 8:42 am

  6. Any plans to list what defensive positions a player will be rated for, before the projection disk comes out?

    Comment by Boxkutter — December 19, 2012 @ 8:49 am

  7. Yes! Fixed! Thanks!

    Comment by Carson Cistulli — December 19, 2012 @ 8:51 am

  8. Maybe you should think about doing an analysis or summary on the team based purely on the predictions for us regular fans to get a better idea of what how the stats will relate to the overall team performance the next year. Just a suggestion.

    Comment by Teddy — December 19, 2012 @ 9:23 am

  9. Dan usually posts DMB positional/defensive grades. Any chance we can have those as well?

    Comment by Dan — December 19, 2012 @ 9:25 am

  10. Since it’s all sorted by WAR, would you be able to add in a WAR column for pitchers as well? Thanks!

    Comment by BobbyS — December 19, 2012 @ 9:34 am

  11. He stated earlier somewhere that the AV/100 format for DMB users would be included in the spreadsheet… but it would be great to see it here as well if possible!

    Comment by BobbyS — December 19, 2012 @ 9:35 am

  12. Would love to see Pitcher WAR

    Comment by Darren — December 19, 2012 @ 9:35 am

  13. Really a great write-up; I can’t wait to see the rest of the teams’ projections.

    By the way, do you put much stock in the predictive value of the Number 1 Comps, or is it more just a curiosity? I ask out of sympathy for Madison Bumgarner and is comparison to Eric Milton. . . .

    Comment by LegallyMinded — December 19, 2012 @ 9:42 am

  14. Um, where are the OPS+ and ERA+ numbers?

    Comment by TomW — December 19, 2012 @ 9:48 am

  15. In the 3rd block for both hitters and pitchers.

    Comment by BobbyS — December 19, 2012 @ 9:50 am

  16. Duh…it’s early lol.

    Comment by TomW — December 19, 2012 @ 9:51 am

  17. Any chance of including the Av/100 format and what positions every player is eligible at before the spreadsheet comes out? Also, what happened to the ODDIBE! Those were one of my favorite parts of the old format.

    I’m not sure if I’m in the majority or minority on this topic, but for me (as a DMB player), I sure liked the BBTF format a whole lot better.

    Also, another question for Dan: I was also curious to know if you had seen the study on how different defensive ratings at each position translate to Runs Saved ( and if that factored at all into your ratings? For example, a guy like Sam Fuld (Ex/104 @ LF with VG arm) was estimated to save something like 35 runs over a full season last year, yet his DRS number on his fangraphs ZiPS projections last year was nowhere close to that number.

    Anyway, I was just curious if you were in the know on that study, and whether if it factored into your process at all (since the RS numbers that came with the projections on fangraphs last year did not line up with the numbers that the ratings gave in the DMB game).

    Comment by C-Lo — December 19, 2012 @ 9:53 am

  18. I am cautiously optimistic that Sandoval, Belt and Crawford will outperform their projections while I am guarded about Pagan, Scutaro, Torres and Blanco reaching theirs.

    The pitching looks like it’s about where I would put it by eyeballing it.

    Comment by DrBGiantsfan — December 19, 2012 @ 10:05 am

  19. The top comp is listed for fun, I usually list the top 3 comps, but there’s not quite as much room here.

    As we go, I’ll keep a spreadsheet posted somewhere with the 3 comps and the DMB defensive ratings, to trail the FG projections.

    Comment by Dan Szymborski — December 19, 2012 @ 10:14 am

  20. Ack. Oversight on my part. Should be there now. Thanks.

    Comment by Carson Cistulli — December 19, 2012 @ 10:22 am

  21. Nope, Posey is a true talent .368 BABIP guy, just like he showed last year.

    Interestingly, if you included post season numbers, Posey only hit .322 last year, which would make this less regression than from his league leading .336. I wonder if post season numbers are included in ZiPs?

    Comment by TKDC — December 19, 2012 @ 10:25 am

  22. When will these be added to the player’s pages?

    Comment by SwitchRodeo — December 19, 2012 @ 10:43 am

  23. Yup, I need to be even more conservative with the DMB ratings – the range bars are way too wide.

    Comment by Dan Szymborski — December 19, 2012 @ 10:43 am

  24. @Clifford: Harping? Really? I was merely expressing the opinion that Buster Posey won’t hit below .300 for a full season, and you bring up a season in which he played all of 45 games to counter that. Talk about harping.

    Comment by rorschach — December 19, 2012 @ 10:48 am

  25. Are there plans to post a downloadable spreadsheet once all 30 teams are completed?

    Comment by Dave Mowers — December 19, 2012 @ 10:50 am

  26. But it’s b-r WAR? Check Bumgarner vs Cain: Bumgarner would have the higher fWAR.

    Comment by Hizouse — December 19, 2012 @ 10:53 am

  27. Thanks Dan!

    That makes sense, but have you ever considered first coming up with the Defensive Runs Saved numbers, and then creating an Av/100 ranking for every player such that the DRS and DMB runs saved number lines up accordingly?

    Comment by C-Lo — December 19, 2012 @ 10:53 am

  28. @TKDC: Yes, Dan has said in the past that he’s been using post-season numbers for a few years now.

    Comment by jda — December 19, 2012 @ 10:58 am

  29. Those are some pretty optimistic numbers for Lincecum. I’m not sold on his bounceback, personally.

    Comment by BJ — December 19, 2012 @ 10:58 am

  30. Seconded!

    Comment by jda — December 19, 2012 @ 10:59 am

  31. Love the Eephus League graphic.

    Comment by bradsbeard — December 19, 2012 @ 10:59 am

  32. Hi,
    Does anyone know if ZIPS changes their player projections anytime from now until season start? If so, do they change playing time or actual production numbers?

    Comment by Tom — December 19, 2012 @ 11:00 am

  33. Can we use these as a projection of team record?

    Comment by Erix — December 19, 2012 @ 11:05 am

  34. Didn’t Xavier Nady sign with the Royals?

    Comment by d_i — December 19, 2012 @ 11:11 am

  35. Yup, Nady signed with the Royals. Since the FG crew needs to calculate some of the FG things I don’t calculate and get it into pretty tables (rather than my usual fixation with pre-formatted text), the lead time is a little bit longer than usual (and since this was the first one, this one even longer) Nady will also pop up in the KC post, with KC specific projections.

    Comment by Dan Szymborski — December 19, 2012 @ 11:18 am

  36. Based on the rounded numbers provided, let’s call it 95-67.

    Comment by WA52 — December 19, 2012 @ 11:21 am

  37. How about a screen capture tweet pic of the DMB defensive ratings?

    Comment by PT — December 19, 2012 @ 11:28 am

  38. Dan,
    What is the likely factor that can lead to player projection changes from now to season start?

    Comment by Tom — December 19, 2012 @ 11:30 am

  39. With this being in fWAR (not bWAR), it would be more like 86. The players listed above don’t include the other 6 players on the 25-man roster. So, this projection would be 86 + whatever WAR is contributed by those players… probably something like 90-72.

    Comment by WA43 — December 19, 2012 @ 11:32 am

  40. Can’t wait to see LAA so we can see who Trout’s #1 comp is.

    Comment by Michael Mitchell — December 19, 2012 @ 11:43 am

  41. Based on? You can’t just add up the WAR totals.

    Comment by Izzy Hechkoff — December 19, 2012 @ 11:47 am

  42. imagine if people regularly used .299 as an arbitrary benchmark instead of .300 – then you could have prevented the waste of time and energy on posting that utterly inane comment.

    Comment by gator32301 — December 19, 2012 @ 11:48 am

  43. I was expecting more Conor Gillaspie talk, Carson.

    Comment by soladoras — December 19, 2012 @ 11:56 am

  44. I think the combination of MadBum’s higher HR/9 and AT&T’s obscene park factor bring his fWAR lower than Cain

    Comment by Kellin — December 19, 2012 @ 12:01 pm

  45. Adding the rounded WAR estimates together for the projected starting lineup, rotation and bullepn gives an estimate of around 86 wins, which seems intuitively correct to me. Posey, Pagan, Scutaro taking a bit of a step back, Torres/Blanco being a big step back from Melky’s production, and modest improvements from Crawford and Belt not enough to make up these gaps.

    Comment by soladoras — December 19, 2012 @ 12:09 pm

  46. LOVE THIS!

    Comment by Matty Brown — December 19, 2012 @ 1:25 pm

  47. He’s a great hitting shortstop trapped in the glove of a 1B.

    Comment by Bhaakon — December 19, 2012 @ 1:43 pm

  48. It’s projecting him as a modestly better than average starter. That’s a pretty bad year for him.

    Comment by Bhaakon — December 19, 2012 @ 1:45 pm

  49. Any chance we get whip for those old school 4×4 leaguers?

    Comment by Bill — December 19, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

  50. They sure have Scoot suffering too much in SanFran, with his lowest BABip of his last 5 seasons projected and a number more inline with his way-back-when Oakland lines when he used to watch an extreme amount of pitches that he now places (well, extreme for him)

    I might be more inclined to trust the BillJames .301 BABip mark here since he has been .290-.320 the last five seasons (even over .312 both of the last two), and .283 just doesnt seem to fit Scutaro’s current incarnation much.

    Also think they are weighing last seasons career-low BB% way too heavily. Between the two, both the BA and OBP end up well short of realistic in my opinion (in fact they have him at, by far, his lowest marks since his second full season in 2005, and that just doesnt seem realistic to me based on his recent production level)

    So I would bet money Marco would be closer to the James .281/.344/.378 line then the ZiPS .269/.316/.360 mark

    Comment by blahblahblah — December 19, 2012 @ 2:14 pm

  51. @gator: Right, because expressing an opinion that a hitter will have a certain batting average is more a waste of time than belittling that person’s opinion. Imagine if you weren’t a pompous ass, then you could have prevented the waste of time and energy on posting that utterly inane comment.

    Comment by rorschach — December 19, 2012 @ 2:19 pm

  52. Exciting stuff… numbers overload. I was just wondering how the comps were constructed. Are they based solely on the player’s expected 2013 performance, or is there some sort of weighted career metrics set up? Along the same lines, does the comp point to a specific single season performance or their whole career? The range of career performance for guys like Joe Torre and Freddy Garcia obviously isn’t consistent, so does the Posey/Torre comp point to more career comp or 2012 Posey MVP vs. 1971 Torre MVP?

    Comment by Lg4ny — December 19, 2012 @ 3:15 pm

  53. the components are there for you. get to work.

    Comment by kdm628496 — December 19, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

  54. Don’t forget he’s a middle infielder that just turned 37 and was downright awful in Coors for 2/3 of a season.

    Comment by Dan Szymborski — December 19, 2012 @ 4:44 pm

  55. You should feel bad, because you hurt rorschach’s feelings. I’m sure he has a few ink blots of buster posey’s batting average for you to look at.

    Comment by nieldale — December 19, 2012 @ 6:08 pm

  56. Very cool. Always excited when ZiPS comes out and I love this presentation.

    Comment by J. Cross — December 19, 2012 @ 6:28 pm

  57. @neildale: ha

    Comment by rorschach — December 19, 2012 @ 9:11 pm

  58. Dan,

    Thanks these. Huge treat. I second Izzy Hecoff above. Please do the career extrapolations!!! They are my favorite part of your ZIPS articles each year.

    Comment by Dr. Chaleeko — December 19, 2012 @ 10:06 pm

  59. In the 3rd block for pitchers, not all the pitchers were listed . Is the information available?


    Comment by rosborne — December 20, 2012 @ 12:57 pm

  60. Seems to have gotten cut off.

    Comment by Dan Szymborski — December 20, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

  61. My bad. Should be fixed now.

    Comment by Carson Cistulli — December 20, 2012 @ 2:55 pm

  62. looking at the bullpen, zips is projecting worse years for every one of:

    (may i use ERA?)

    casilla: 3.36 (2012-2010 was 2.84 1.74 1.95)
    affeldt: 3.44 (2012-2009 was 2.70 2.63 4.14 1.73)
    romo: 2.25 (2012-2010 was 1.79 1.50 2.18)
    lopez: 3.48 (2012-2010 was 2.50 2.72 1.42)

    and kontos to regress from 2.47 to 3.86
    and mijares (yeah very sss) 2.55 to 3.38

    a worse season for every single reliever, significantly worse
    for several? seems very pessimistic to me and unlikely to happen.

    Comment by tbd — December 21, 2012 @ 12:28 am

  63. btw i think vogelsong has a good shot at a sub 3.00 era next year.

    notice his first 21 starts of 2012:

    10-5(w-l) 2.27 ERA 143 IP 111 H 38-36 R-ER 48 BB 105 K 10 HR .215 BAA .615 OPS

    then starts #22-28 (fatigue or mechanics??):

    2-4(w-l) 10.31 ERA 29.2 IP 48 H 35-34 R-ER 11 BB 38 K 6 HR .366 BAA 1.050 OPS

    then final 3 starts of reg season plus 4 playoff starts (back on track):

    5-0 0.86 ERA 41.2 IP 28 H 6-4 R-ER 13 BB 36 K 1 HR

    Comment by tbd — December 21, 2012 @ 1:03 am

  64. Are the OPS+ numbers off? Does anyone else notice this? I have my own event-specific park factors for singles, doubles/triples, and home runs for LHB and RHB that I use, but even if I use a single, generic number for park factors I get something pretty similar to what I otherwise would. And in both cases, my OPS+ numbers are closer to 100 than Dan’s. The high OPS+ guys aren’t as high. The low OPS+ guys aren’t as low. And when I calculate WAR, the results I get are almost identical to Dan’s, so either I’m making a mistake with my OPS+ calculations or something else may be wrong. Just curious!

    Comment by jda — December 21, 2012 @ 7:15 am

  65. Second question – I’m curious about this. Dan, do you use event-specific park factors for ZiPS, or only when you input data into Diamond Mind’s event tables?

    Comment by jda — December 21, 2012 @ 7:16 am

  66. And last question (maybe more of a comment), again involving Diamond Mind’s defensive ratings.

    Let’s oversimplify and also assume average error rates for all defenders. Let’s also assume that the difference between each fielding grade (PR –> FR –> AV –> VG –> EX) is about 9 defensive runs saved over the course of a season. Dan, you’ve acknowledged this in the comments and said you’ll have to be even more conservative about awarding EX (and presumably PR) grades, but the way things are now it seems like you’ll have to be more conservative with all grades, including FR and VG. And even then you’ll essentially be penalizing players who are “pretty good” defenders but not close enough to +9 runs saved to warrant the grade bump (or penalty).

    I wish we could add more defensive rating grades, but I know Imagine Sports has no incentive to do that. But I wonder if they’d be willing to tweak their algorithm so that the jump between AV and VG and EX, for example, is more like 5 runs saved.

    Anyway, I guess the question is – have you figured out yet how you’re going to handle all of this? Talk with Imagine Sports about algorithm-tweaking? Be more conservative but just with EX grades? Be more conservative with all non-AV grades?

    I’d have posted this stuff to Twitter but I’m too long-winded!

    Comment by jda — December 21, 2012 @ 7:22 am

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