Category Archives: Projections

Should Houston Astros Begin To Worry?

mccullers (2)The Houston Astros at 36-28 still lead the division by 2.5 games over the surging Texas Rangers which is still very good. There might be no reason to worry considering that more injuries could unceremoniously hit the Rangers at any moment in time, and the Angels sure aren’t on fire. The Mariners are still very much a mess and Oakland can’t seem to build any consistency with their own injured roster. However history says young teams … Continue reading→

New York Yankees Not To Be Discounted

Rays at YankeesMany people have discounted the New York Yankees this year citing various reasons such as their aging, Derek Jeter-less lineup, and well past his prime CC Sabathia. Yet in this writer’s eyes, they always seem to be competitive no matter what and produce lots of runs in their home ballpark especially via the long ball. Except maybe that hasn’t been entirely true of late… Continue reading→

No Reason Castro & Osuna Can’t Be Successful

TOR_Osuna_Castro (2)There’s something about putting two 20 year olds in the bullpen that might appear foolhardy. “They need more experience,” someone might say. “They aren’t quite developed yet,” people may retort. However, what the Blue Jays have on its hands are two young studs in Miguel Castro and Roberto Osuna that have risen more quickly than ever imagined.

Castro has spent just over two years in the minors … Continue reading→

When Will The Tigers Window Close?

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Detroit TigersThis is hardly scientific, but here’s an attempt to shed some light on when the Detroit Tigers current window of contention might close. I’ll look at a recent, strikingly similar comparable and look at the Tigers’ performance in relation to their payroll, and how they’ve currently been trying to fill out their roster.

There are a lot of parallels to be drawn between the windows of contention between…Continue reading→

Marco Estrada: Starter or Reliever?

marco estrada (2)Having dealt their fifth starter last year in J.A. Happ, the Blue Jays currently have an opening at the back of their rotation. While some people want stud prospect Aaron Sanchez to take that spot, or a free agent signee like Ryan Vogelsong or maybe even Chris Young, Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi still thinks there’s a chance Marco Estrada may end up as the fifth starter depending on what happens with Sanchez.

By using shear logic, Estrada shouldn’t be anywhere near a pitchers mound to start a game as evidenced by… Continue reading→

Reflections on the Winter Meetings

kendrick2To quote from Jayson Stark’s article on ESPN, we just experienced “the wildest 48 hours in the history of the winter meetings.” And given the flurry of deals that transpired, that feels about right.

After sitting back and digesting what’s occurred to the baseball landscape, perhaps what’s most glaring is the fact that big power-houses like the Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox don’t dare give young players the chance to prove themselves – or put another way, to fail. This I find unfathomable, and yet I recognize that this opinion may just result from being a fan of a team that operates under a budget, like the Blue Jays or Reds for example, compared to those mentioned that have little regard for spending limits. Heck, the word “budget” is probably foreign to them… Continue reading→

Who Will Be Selected First Overall in Upcoming MLB Draft

MLB 2013-draftIt may very well depend on which player has the best “mental toolbox”.

From former Basball Prospectus writer and PECOTA originator, Nate Silver, has come a book called “The Signal and the Noise” which caught my attention because not only is he a huge baseball geek, but he has put together one chapter in the book that I feel was rather illuminating. Silver astutely points out the challenge in quantifying a player’s “mental toolbox” which is so important to MLB teams trying to forecast those players who are… Continue Reading→

Looking at the Blue Jays Outfield

Image via Associated Press.

Image via Associated Press.

Continuing on from last week’s post on Anthopoulos and the top two stats he focuses on for a hitter – BB% and SO% (percentage of plate appearances that result in a walk or a strikeout), I’ve decided to look at the Blue Jays outfield for 2013 and how they’ve done in this area. Just to refresh everyone’s memory, an average MLB player will produce the following: 17.7% for SO%, 8.4% for BB% and 2.10 for SO/BB.

I’ve already covered Jose Bautista who’s stats can be seen below as a refresher:

Year Age Tm Lg SO% BB% SO/BB
2008 27 TOT MLB 21.5% 9.4% 2.28
2009 28 TOR AL 21.0% 13.9% 1.52
2010 29 TOR AL 17.0% 14.6% 1.16
2011 30 TOR AL 17.0% 20.2% 0.84
2012 31 TOR AL 15.8% 14.8% 1.07
9 Yrs 19.2% 13.5% 1.42

Colby Rasmus

Year Age Tm Lg PA SO% BB% SO/BB
2009 22 STL NL 520 18.3% 6.9% 2.64
2010 23 STL NL 534 27.7% 11.8% 2.35
2011 24 TOT MLB 526 22.1% 9.5% 2.32
2011 24 STL NL 386 20.0% 11.7% 1.71
2011 24 TOR AL 140 27.9% 3.6% 7.80
2012 25 TOR AL 625 23.8% 7.5% 3.17
4 Yrs 2205 23.0% 8.9% 2.59

In 2012, I was pretty happy to see Colby match his career high in home runs (23) and set a new career high with 75 RBI in a season. Although I have to say it was done with a torrid June and a pretty awful rest of the year as Bluebird Banter nicely addressed here.

Looking at these metrics only, one can see that Colby’s been incredibly bad as a Blue Jay compared to a Cardinal. Even before the 2011 trade to Toronto, he was having a better year than in 2010 where he posted a career best .859 OPS although that was with an exceptionally high .354 BABIP (Batting Average on Balls In-Play where league average is .290 to .310). If Colby’s BABIP even returns to his 4-year average of .287, he should have his most successful season as a Blue Jay yet. In fact, Bill James is projecting a .237/.312/.427 (BA/OBP/SLG) with a 9.4 BB% and 23.5 SO% in 2013. The batting average is still low, but the rest of it would be an improvement upon his time as a Blue Jay thus far. I’d certainly take that!

Melky Cabrera

Year Age Tm Lg PA SO% BB% SO/BB
2005 20 NYY AL 19 10.5% 0.0%
2006 21 NYY AL 524 11.3% 10.7% 1.05
2007 22 NYY AL 612 11.1% 7.0% 1.58
2008 23 NYY AL 453 12.8% 6.4% 2.00
2009 24 NYY AL 540 10.9% 8.0% 1.37
2010 25 ATL NL 509 12.6% 8.3% 1.52
2011 26 KCR AL 706 13.3% 5.0% 2.69
2012 27 SFG NL 501 12.6% 7.2% 1.75
8 Yrs 3864 12.1% 7.4% 1.64

In looking at what Melky’s done, he’s been a well-above average MLB hitter his entire career except for the fact that he’s a bit under league average in taking a walk. What’s interesting is that Melky had his highest BABIP of .379 last year, so we can’t expect him to hit .346 again, but a nice .295 as Bill James projects would be great. Besides, if he shows a selective eye, makes contact and gets on-base, I’m sure Anthopoulos and the rest of the Blue Jays would be happy with his performance…especially if he scores 88 runs next year as Bill James also forecasts.