Last week, FanGraphs CEO and founder David Appelman announced that the ballots for the 2014 FAN Projections are now available for the tender ministrations of this site’s readership. With a view to ensuring that all notable players are addressed sufficiently — and also to producing content while managing editor Dave Cameron is away this week on a pleasure vacation — the present author is highlighting certain players who are lacking in ballots.
Before casting a ballot, don’t forget this note from Appelman’s announcement post:
Please note that everything this year is a rate stat. You’re projecting 2B+3B, HR, SB, and Fielding as a measure of 150 games (basically a full season). The player’s previous stats are shown per 150 games in the projection ballot too. This will make changing playing time projections much easier as you’ll only have to change the games played portion.
Now, here are some very compelling starters for the reader’s consideration:
Player: Alex Cobb, 26, RHP
2013 Line: 143.1 IP, 8.41 K/9, 2.83 BB/9, 0.82 HR/9, 3.36 FIP at MLB
Notes: Despite having been generally less celebrated than teammate Matt Moore as a prospect — and certainly featuring less in the way of armspeed — nevertheless finished 2013 with the second-highest WAR (behind David Price) among Rays pitchers. Has increased strikeout rate each of last two seasons while also recording ground-ball rates of 54% or greater. Named after a famous salad, definitely.
Player: Corey Kluber, 28, RHP
2013 Line: 147.1 IP, 8.31 K/9, 2.02 BB/9, 0.92 HR/9, 3.30 FIP at MLB
Notes: Entered the 2013 season as a 27-year-old having recorded just 67.1 innings in the majors; ended it as fixture in very strong rotation. Discussed changes to repertoire with FanGraphs. Bathed in warm, golden light, according to reports.
Player: Scott Kazmir, 30, LHP
2013 Line: 158.0 IP, 9.23 K/9, 2.68 BB/9, 1.08 HR/9, 3.51 FIP at MLB
Notes: After rise and subsequent fall, rose (rised?) again in 2013 to record 78 xFIP- and 2.7 WAR with Cleveland. Fastball averaged 92.1 mph, according to PITCHf/x. Signed two-year, $22 million deal with Oakland this offseason.
Player: Tyson Ross, 27, RHP
2013 Line: 125.0 IP, 8.57 K/9, 3.17 BB/9, 0.58 HR/9, 3.20 FIP at MLB
Notes: Former Oakland prospect who recorded career-best 91 xFIP- and 1.6 WAR (both park-adjusted numbers, one notes) with San Diego last season. Joined rotation in July to good effect. Was National League’s most unhittable starter — until September 19th, at least, when Jeff Sullivan considered Ross in these pages.
Player: Danny Salazar, 24, RHP
2013 Line: 52.0 IP, 11.25 K/9, 2.60 BB/9, 1.21 HR/9, 3.16 FIP at MLB
Notes: Entered 2013 season absent from most/all notable top-100 preseason prospect lists; ended it by starting Cleveland’s wild-card play-in game. Throws a split-change known to provoke mystical experiences. Is likely to be fixture in Cleveland’s 2014 rotation.
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