Monday, May 24, 2010

Rox Talk - Week 7

The Week That Was
A 3-4 week against the Cubs, Astros, and Royals. The Rox currently stand at 22-22. Four games back from division leading San Diego in fourth place. Currently 11-7 at home and 11-15 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 206-185 (expected wins is 24 versus historical wins at 20). On pace for 81 wins with 758 runs scored and 681 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.11 (>1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Well this was the week I thought the Rox might make a run. Playing three sub .500 teams I thought a 5 - 2 week should be expected. Unfortunately the offense decided to take the week off for the most part. As much as I want to berate this team I just can't do it. I mean the team is playing .500 baseball...they are only 4 games out...nothing has clicked and yet they find themselves still within striking distance with 118 games still to be played. Sure you hate to see the big offensive players struggling, the defense committing 25 errors, and pitching staff that has been saved by U-Ball but even with all this you have Beimel having thrown 14 2/3 scoreless innings, Corpas having regained his closer roll, Francis looking like 2007, CarGo for the most part continuing his playoff pace, Helton still getting on base, Hawpe still hitting, and Olivo hitting dingers. Day to day it stinks watching the Rox struggle but I think the bigger picture is that this team has a tremendous upswing when all parts start working together. Plus throw in Street, Buchholz, and de la Rosa. Warn the NL now because come September I think this team will be unstoppable (or maybe Vegas knew something we didn't...remember Rox over/under was 83 games...; (

First Quarter of the Season
Back in March I provided an overview of 2010 projections comparing Bill James, Marcels, and CHONE. I added ZiPS later. Each of these projections provided at bats, plate appearances, run scored and wOBA for each hitter and innings pitched, runs allowed, and FIP for each pitcher. Taking each of these data points and averaging them I put together a projection for a Rox projected lineup. Since we passed the 40 game mark, we are approximately a quarter of the way through the season so how do the projections stack up to the real data (i.e. CarGo has scored 24 runs this year so far so he is projected to score 83).

The solid bar represents the average of the four projections and the red line is the 1st quarter pace. So above represents that CarGo is on pace for about 15 more runs then what the average projection had him before the start of the season. Obviously Hawpe's injury limited his time so his numbers are low and with Ianetta stuck in AAA he isn't scoring a lot of runs in the big leagues. The projections don't do the bench players much justice because they assume they will get a lot more starts and thus more runs. Based on this analysis the team is on pace to score 753 runs. Interesting to note that we have been whining about Tulo's power but he has gotten on base and scored a ton of runs in the first quarter. He is on pace to score 108 runs. Helton is trending lower but is currently on pace for -16 from his projection. My bet is as the season warms so will Todd.

In addition to the hitters the above graph shows the runs allowed for the pitchers. With the pitching flux this year it is hard to get a real feel for what this staff is capable of. Frances and U-Ball have been amazing. I mean if Jimenez keeps this pace he will only allow 28 runs. That is crazy! Relief pitching is such a crap shoot...look at Betancourt...light's out last year, this year struggling. Team is on pace to only allow 631 runs which would be a new team record. We shall see...

Based on projections the team is headed for about 87 wins. Little low to ensure a Wild Card or Division Title but still in the hunt!

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