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flyer85
03-29-2006, 01:40 PM
Has the Reds last with 78 wins in a tightly packed division. Very interesting. I wonder how much it would change if they found a 1B(Shealy) and turned 2B over to Freel.

NL Central W L RS RA BatDelta PitDelta
Cardinals 86 76 748 703 +9 +31
Cubs 85 77 725 690 -21 +60
Brewers 84 78 742 713 +2 +26
Astros 81 81 717 716 -17 +18
Pirates 79 83 731 755 -7 -11
Reds 78 84 746 778 +9 -34

Falls City Beer
03-29-2006, 01:43 PM
I don't think the division shakes out like that at all. At all. This division just isn't that strong.

Oh, the Reds may end up last, but no way do the teams cluster like that. There's not nearly that kind of roster parity in the Central.

flyer85
03-29-2006, 01:46 PM
I don't think the division shakes out like that at all. At all. This division just isn't that strong.

Oh, the Reds may end up last, but no way do the teams cluster like that. There's not nearly that kind of roster parity in the Central.PECOTA clusters the entire league between 88 and 70 wins(not so the AL which goes from 94 to 61).

Olney article today about how scouts have told them just aren't any real good teams in the NL(I tend to agree).

Falls City Beer
03-29-2006, 01:48 PM
I think the Cubs will count themselves lucky to win 75 games this season.

Sabo4Life
03-29-2006, 01:53 PM
I agree. No way the Cubs finish second. If Houston collapses the way people say they will, I'd give second to the Brewers.

Little Alex
03-29-2006, 02:01 PM
The day the Brewers finish in 2nd place... I mean, wouldn't icicles come out of volcanos, etc?

MattyHo4Life
03-29-2006, 02:08 PM
I agree. No way the Cubs finish second. If Houston collapses the way people say they will, I'd give second to the Brewers.

I would too. The Cubs and Astros just don't look that strong. Especially since you never know how many innings Prior and Wood will pitch or if Clemens will return. The Brewers and Cardinals could fight for the division crown.

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2006, 02:16 PM
Provided they are healthy, the Cards will win at least 90 games. You can't deny that pitching staff.

flyer85
03-29-2006, 02:18 PM
Provided they are healthy, the Cards will win at least 90 games. You can't deny that pitching staff.could be offset by the offense(or lack of it) from Spivey, Molina, Taguchi, Encarnacion, etc).

pedro
03-29-2006, 02:20 PM
that would make for an interesting divisional race

RedsManRick
03-29-2006, 02:39 PM
I think that looks a lot like what I expect. You have to realize of course that PECOTA is running 1000's of iterations which means all of those are average values. In reality, a good chunk of the actual results will vary quite a bit from average, so you won't likely see everybody grouped up so much.

That said, I think the division winner this year will be in the 90-92 range and that everybody will win 70 (except maybe the Pirates)

tts1stros
03-29-2006, 02:57 PM
Has the Reds last with 78 wins in a tightly packed division. Very interesting. I wonder how much it would change if they found a 1B(Shealy) and turned 2B over to Freel.

NL Central W L RS RA BatDelta PitDelta
Cubs 85 77 725 690 -21 +60

No. chance.

Joseph
03-29-2006, 03:01 PM
I think this division will be very very tight. Yes the Cards are the best, but I just think we'll have a huge cluster of teams. No team will run away and hide, and no team will fall out of it by May 1. I could absolutely see the final W-L totals ending up in that range, though maybe not those teams in particular.

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2006, 03:53 PM
could be offset by the offense(or lack of it) from Spivey, Molina, Taguchi, Encarnacion, etc).

We discussed that on another thread. They didn't have much production from RF, LF, or 2B last season, and they still blew away the rest of the league. I don't think they lost very much in terms of offense.

EdE can equal the production they got from LF last season. Spivey is a slight downgrade. Bigbie is a huge downgrade. A healthy Scott Rolen offsets those shortcomings.

CaiGuy
03-29-2006, 03:58 PM
We discussed that on another thread. They didn't have much production from RF, LF, or 2B last season, and they still blew away the rest of the league. I don't think they lost very much in terms of offense.

EdE can equal the production they got from LF last season. Spivey is a slight downgrade. Bigbie is a huge downgrade. A healthy Scott Rolen offsets those shortcomings.
They still have the big three in the middle (albert, scott, jim) and David Eckstein is scrappy enough to lead of. They'll still score some runs.

flyer85
03-29-2006, 04:01 PM
We discussed that on another thread. They didn't have much production from RF, LF, or 2B last season, and they still blew away the rest of the league. I don't think they lost very much in terms of offense.

EdE can equal the production they got from LF last season. Spivey is a slight downgrade. Bigbie is a huge downgrade. A healthy Scott Rolen offsets those shortcomings.Sanders(23.1 VORP) and Grudz(16.5) were pretty good. PECOTA does not paint a pretty picture for their replacements Spivey(4.3) and Taguchi(-2.7) and Encarnacion(7.2) plus PECOTA predicts for Ecktein to dip from 32.4 to 6.7

BTW, Eckstein had a 5.5 in 2003 and 6.9 in 2004

Falls City Beer
03-29-2006, 04:05 PM
I think Edmonds is going to have a down year. The aches and pains are beginning to accumulate.

And Rolen, per usual, will miss time.

I think the division shakes out like this:

Houston 95 W
Milwaukee 87 W
St Louis 84 W
Cincy 81 W
Pirates 75 W
Chicago 68 W

Reds Nd2
03-29-2006, 04:44 PM
PECOTA
NL Central W L RS RA
Reds 78 84 746 778


2005 W L RS RA
Reds 73 89 820 889

Maybe it's just me, but the offense hasn't fallen that far, even with Womack/Hatteberg and the pitching hasn't improved that dramatically. I don't think Arroyo, Hammonds, Williams, and the new, improved Milton are going to shave a 100 plus runs from the defense this season.

RedsManRick
03-29-2006, 04:58 PM
PECOTA
NL Central W L RS RA
Reds 78 84 746 778


2005 W L RS RA
Reds 73 89 820 889

Maybe it's just me, but the offense hasn't fallen that far, even with Womack/Hatteberg and the pitching hasn't improved that dramatically. I don't think Arroyo, Hammonds, Williams, and the new, improved Milton are going to shave a 100 plus runs from the defense this season.

I think people overlook how good Randa was for us last year -- he was an .850 OPS. I'm sure it doesn't have Encarnacion replicating that (though it's possible). I'm pretty sure PECOTA sees a regression for Lopez and fewer AB for Griffey. Put all that together and the offense regresses.

Milton alone could shave 20-25 runs off our allowed total with a half-decent season. Also, take a look at how abysmal the bullpen was last year. We got something like 300 IP with a 7.00 ERA out of our long/middle/swing relievers.

Raisor
03-29-2006, 05:10 PM
I think people overlook how good Randa was for us last year -- he was an .850 OPS. I'm sure it doesn't have Encarnacion replicating that (though it's possible). .


Thirdbase for the Reds, overall last year, was .354 .476 .830

Reds Nd2
03-29-2006, 05:56 PM
I think people overlook how good Randa was for us last year -- he was an .850 OPS. I'm sure it doesn't have Encarnacion replicating that (though it's possible). I'm pretty sure PECOTA sees a regression for Lopez and fewer AB for Griffey. Put all that together and the offense regresses.

Milton alone could shave 20-25 runs off our allowed total with a half-decent season. Also, take a look at how abysmal the bullpen was last year. We got something like 300 IP with a 7.00 ERA out of our long/middle/swing relievers.

I don't doubt the offense will regress. I'm just not sure it's going to fall to the levels that PECOTA is projecting. I liked the production the Reds got from Randa last season, but I think there's a very good chance Encarnacion will surpass that production this season. Lopez might see a slight regression or he could improve on last season. PECOTA is probably weighing heavily on another injury given Griff's age and history the last few seasons. I agree, but he did put up some nice offense last season and could do it again. Hard to argue against his WBC performance.

I think Milton will improve from last season. It certainly can't get any worse. On the other hand, I think Arroyo is going to get his milk money stolen and his lunch eaten pitching half his games in GABP. For no other reasons than he won't find his new home as comforting as his previous one, and while M2 has posted a great reason (fatigue) for the drop off in Arroyo's peripherals last season, and I can't offer a single explanation for it, the drop-off was none the less discouraging.

Rick, I'm not trying to argumentative but do you think the bullpens improved from last season and why? Myself, I don't think it has. Veteran leadership and a 65 MPH changeup will not get you very far. Although, I think Hammonds touched 82 the other night.

I don't want anyone to get the wrong impression here, but I like PECOTA. I just don't think their RS - RA is accurate for the Reds. Of course, they are using complex formulas that have been tested and I'm relying on gut feeling and FBP (Frost Brewing Process). I should be a Rockies fan. I believe the Reds will have to beat pythag to win the 78 games PECOTA predicts in '06. If they do, it will be on offense and not a reduction of 111 RA by the defense.

Now, my fingers are thirsty. I'm going to get another cold adult beverage. :)

MattyHo4Life
03-29-2006, 06:04 PM
I think Edmonds is going to have a down year. The aches and pains are beginning to accumulate.

And Rolen, per usual, will miss time.

I think the division shakes out like this:

Houston 95 W
Milwaukee 87 W
St Louis 84 W
Cincy 81 W
Pirates 75 W
Chicago 68 W

I think you are right on with the Brewers prediction, but why do you think the Astros can win 95 games?

RedsManRick
03-29-2006, 06:10 PM
Thirdbase for the Reds, overall last year, was .354 .476 .830

I just checked the and the 50% projection for Encarnacion is .273/.341/.479 -- so pretty much equivilent (.830 OPS). Looks like it's pretty bullish on him. However, it's got Felipe at a major regression: .261/.331/.416. It also sees very bad things for Womack and Hatteberg, and a regression for the catching platoon.

Last year's offense was one the benefited from not really having any major holes. If the '05 Casey, Aurilia, Lopez, Valentin, and LaRue turn in to the '06 PECOTA projections of Hatteberg, Womack, Aurilia, Lopez, Valentin, and LaRue, then there's no doubt we score many fewer runs this year than we did last year.

MattyHo4Life
03-29-2006, 06:21 PM
Sanders(23.1 VORP) and Grudz(16.5) were pretty good. PECOTA does not paint a pretty picture for their replacements Spivey(4.3) and Taguchi(-2.7) and Encarnacion(7.2) plus PECOTA predicts for Ecktein to dip from 32.4 to 6.7

BTW, Eckstein had a 5.5 in 2003 and 6.9 in 2004

A lot of players do better as Cardinals than they do when they aren't. A few examples are Eckstein, Grudz, Womack. What was Grudz vorp in 2004 as a Cub?

Most people predict the Cards will crumble every season, but it hasn't happened yet. Here are some dreadful predictions from last season. The Eckstein and Grudz' signings weren't very highly thought of.

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=30918&highlight=2005+predictions+cardinals

Izzardius
03-29-2006, 06:29 PM
Interesting-every other projection I've seen had the Cards down for 90-95 wins. The Brewers finishing 2nd is entirely plausible, simply becuase I don't think there's any other teams that can challange other than the Cards and Brewers right now. The Astros staff couldn't pitch them to 95 wins last year and without Roger Clemens I don't see it happening this year either. With all the good pitching the Pirates have coming up I think they'll be marginally improved, but not enough the compete with the Cards or Brewers. The career of Kerry Wood has been all but ruined by being overused by his managers, and unless Dusty Baker gets the axe soon Mark Prior will share his fate. Without them the Cubs won't be able to compete either. I'm sure everyone here know the Reds troubles so no need for me to go into detail there:)

Izzardius
03-29-2006, 06:32 PM
A lot of players do better as Cardinals than they do when they aren't. A few examples are Eckstein, Grudz, Womack. What was Grudz vorp in 2004 as a Cub?

Most people predict the Cards will crumble every season, but it hasn't happened yet. Here are some dreadful predictions from last season. The Eckstein and Grudz' signings weren't very highly thought of.

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=30918&highlight=2005+predictions+cardinals

Very true. As long as the rest of the team doesn't flat-out stink and the Pujols/Edmonds/Rolen tandem stays intact I don't think there will be much to worry about.

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2006, 06:36 PM
Sanders(23.1 VORP) and Grudz(16.5) were pretty good. PECOTA does not paint a pretty picture for their replacements Spivey(4.3) and Taguchi(-2.7) and Encarnacion(7.2) plus PECOTA predicts for Ecktein to dip from 32.4 to 6.7

BTW, Eckstein had a 5.5 in 2003 and 6.9 in 2004

The Cards got some nice output from LF (.834) thanks mostly to Sanders and his .886 OPS, but the RF spot (Taguchi, Walker, Mabry) was mediocre (.795). Juan E. usuallly puts up an OPS around .795, so that's a push.

The Cards' second basemen only managed a .703 OPS last season, even with Grudz. It wouldn't be a big stretch to see Spivey come close to that.

Their third basemen were only a hair better at .707. Rolen will bump that up well over .800. I think that will offset the loss of production in LF.


A lot of players do better as Cardinals than they do when they aren't. A few examples are Eckstein, Grudz, Womack. What was Grudz vorp in 2004 as a Cub?

2003 and 2004 were among Grudz's best seasons (.782 and .779 OPS).

RedsManRick
03-29-2006, 07:02 PM
Rick, I'm not trying to argumentative but do you think the bullpens improved from last season and why? Myself, I don't think it has. Veteran leadership and a 65 MPH changeup will not get you very far. Although, I think Hammonds touched 82 the other night.

I suppose I have more faith in Chris Hammond, Mike Burns, Rick White and the '06 versions of Wagner, Coffey, and Belisle than this bunch:

Ryan Wagner: 45.2 IP, 6.11 ERA
Randy Kiesler: 56 IP, 6.27 ERA
Ricky Stone: 30.2 IP, 6.75 ERA
Danny Graves: 18.1 IP, 7.36 ERA
Ben Weber: 12.1 IP, 8.03 ERA
Joe Valentine: 14.1 IP, 8.16 ERA
Total: 177.1 IP, 6.70 ERA

Let's say you replace these 177.1 IP with 5.00 ERA of relief from the aforementioned crew. That's 99 runs instead of 132 (33 runs saved)

Let's also consider the following starters:
Luke Hudson: 6 GS 84.2 IP, 6.38 ERA
Paul Wilson: 9 GS, 46.1 IP, 7.77 ERA
Elizardo Ramirez: 4 GS, 22.1 IP, 8.46 ERA
Total: 19 GS, 153.1 IP, 6.10 ERA

Let's say you replace this with 153.1 IP by Bronson Arroyo with a 4.70 ERA. That's 80 runs instead of 121 (41 runs saved)

Let's also say Eric Milton goes from a 6.47 ERA to a 5.20 ERA over the same IP. That's 108 runs instead of 134 (26 runs saved)

Then let's say that Harang, Claussen, and Weathers repeat their performances, Dave Williams approximates Ramon Oritz, and the defense is the same (0 runs saved).

Guess what? You just allowed 100 fewer runs in 2006 than you did in 2005. Voila! I'm not saying that it IS going to happen. However, I think you can pretty easily see how the staff shaves 100 runs off it's total, collectively, without anybody performing drastically over expectations. All we need is for them not to suck quite as hard.

If you read the full PECOTA predictions article over at BP, it basically makes the same point about our pitching luck. If we become pitching "lucky" rather than pitching "unlucky" we could easily swing 10 or 12 games.

vermonter
03-29-2006, 07:09 PM
PECOTA tends to underpredict runs by as much as 10%, so I wouldn't put too much weight on the run prediction numbers, although the pythagorean predictions are probably about as accurate as those things get.

I'm not a big fan of team run projections because there is a lot of variation in team run scoring. The following chart illustrates this variation.


2005 National League Team Runs

Team R BRS SRS Diff HR
CIN 820 796.18 5.04 18.78 222
PHI 807 777.09 10.04 19.86 167
SLN 805 754.89 3.99 46.12 170
ATL 769 759.34 5.94 3.73 184
COL 740 733.37 2.40 4.23 150
MIL 726 737.14 3.85 -14.99 175
NYN 722 726.00 12.41 -16.41 175
FLO 717 731.22 5.31 -19.53 128
CHN 703 756.24 1.06 -54.29 194
ARI 696 760.68 3.81 -68.49 191
HOU 693 709.83 6.66 -23.48 161
LAN 685 702.65 0.90 -18.55 149
SDN 684 719.92 4.56 -40.48 130
PIT 680 712.39 3.83 -36.22 139
SFN 649 688.19 2.61 -41.80 128
WAS 639 679.34 -2.72 -37.62 117
---------------------------------------
11535 11744.47 69.67 -279.15 2580
BRS is the linear value of the projected runs a team should have scored, based on the hits.
SRS is the linear value of team stolen bases.
Diff is the amount a team overachieved or underachieved their projected runs.

The assumption in this linear model is that BRS will equal R if the hits are spaced evenly over time. Run clustering creates run spikes that cause teams to either over-achieve or underachievethis expected BRS. There are several factors that cause run clustering, but in fact the N.L. average differential was actually -49.70, while the American League average was +15.35, which points to one huge cause of run deviation - lineup dynamics.

We can see that the Reds led the N.L. in R, BRS and HRs and were one of the five run overachievers. But how much did the HRs contribute to that? Here is a chart that shows the percentage of batting runs created by home runs:


Team BRCHR% BRC-HR BRCHR
ARI .239 578.57 182.11
ATL .231 583.90 175.43
CHN .245 571.27 184.97
CIN .266 584.52 211.66
COL .195 590.36 143.02
FLO .167 609.18 122.04
HOU .216 556.32 153.50
LAN .202 560.59 142.06
MIL .226 570.28 166.85
NYN .230 559.15 166.85
PHI .205 617.87 159.23
PIT .186 579.86 132.53
SDN .172 595.98 123.95
SFN .177 566.15 122.04
SLN .215 592.80 162.09
WAS .164 567.79 111.55
N.L. .209 9284.59 2459.89
BRCHR% = Pct of BRC created by HRs.
BRC-HR = BRC created by non-HR batting
BRCHR = BRC created by HRs

From this chart we can see that The Reds created 26.6% of their batting runs through HRs, which was highest in the league. However, it should also be noted that the 584.82 runs scored through non-HR batting was fifth highest in the N.L., so clearly they did score a lot of runs without the long ball.

So to recap the 2005 season, the Reds scored more runs than any other N.L. team, were first in runs scored through HRs, fifth in runs scored from other batting, and third in run efficiency.

How that will translate into 2006 numbers is very tough to predict, but good for discussion.

Home runs will almost certainly fall off, but its difficult to say by how much. Unlike the other HR-hitting clubs in the N.L., the Reds had a very diverse offense in terms of HR hitting, with 10 players in double figures. Pena, Randa and Casey are gone, but replaced to some extent by Encarnacion and Hatteberg. Adding Womack and McCracken will not help in the power department. The key to HR success will rest a little more heavily on the health of Dunn, Griffey and Kearns, but if they all stay healthy, this team can easily exceed 200 HRs again this season.

Manufactured runs may also be reduced, primarily through the loss of Casey who, love him or hate him, had excellent on-base and line drive skills. Randa was so-so in that department, and Pena was essentially a black hole in the run manufacturing process. Adding Womack to that mix won't help, so the more AB's Freel and Aurilia get at 2B the better. A lot will also depend on Lopez following up his breakout 2005 season with something similar to last season, and Encarnacion is going to have to show improved on-base skills and consistency to be a major run producer. A healthy Kearns, if he can forget long ball and concentrate on line drives which should be his forte, could be a big producer here. Hatteberg walks a lot, and will hit some doubles, so won't hurt.

Run efficiency should continue to be good, except for adding Womack to the lineup. If they score in the vicinity of 750 batting runs again this season, their balanced lineup should therefore add 20-30 runs to their overall run total.

All things considered, I don't see much to be alarmed about despite the weak Pecota predictions. This is still a very potent offense, and 800 runs is again well within their reach.

P.S. I'm not going to touch the Reds' pitching with the proverbial 10-foot pole, other than to say it should be better (or can't be worse) than last season. There are just too many young guys in the mix to get accurate predictions from.

Cyclone792
03-29-2006, 08:27 PM
^^^^^ That's just simply an outstanding post, vermonter, and it does an excellent job of analyzing PECOTA and its projections for the Reds offense this upcoming season.

If I'm to be pinned down with my overall projection, I'm guessing somewhere along the lines of 760 batting runs with 20 extra runs via stolen bases and lineup run efficiency. The magic, grand total for runs scored would then be about 780 runs, down from last season but still a potent offense.

Reds Nd2
03-31-2006, 10:55 PM
Guess what? You just allowed 100 fewer runs in 2006 than you did in 2005. Voila! I'm not saying that it IS going to happen. However, I think you can pretty easily see how the staff shaves 100 runs off it's total, collectively, without anybody performing drastically over expectations. All we need is for them not to suck quite as hard.

Not quiet, because you've also shaved off about 300 IP that the Reds will need to finish out the season. Your example only covers about 127 games and your run totals add up to 615 runs scored. That gives us a difference of 174 runs. The Reds will have to give those extra 300 innings to pitchers with a 5.20 ERA or better to reduce their runs allowed by 111. I don't have your faith that the Reds can do it.

For starters, Milton will have to reduce his RA by about three runs per game or pitch 244 innings to get the 5.20 ERA your using. Arroyo will probably have 200 IP instead of the 153 your using. That alone bumps his RA from 80 to 104. Don't forget, Paul Wilson and Grant Balfour are lingering somewhere in the shadows awaiting their opportunity to add to the runs allowed totals.


If you read the full PECOTA predictions article over at BP, it basically makes the same point about our pitching luck. If we become pitching "lucky" rather than pitching "unlucky" we could easily swing 10 or 12 games.

I did read the article and Nate Silver sounded less than optimistic in my opinion. I'd like to be more enthusiastic about the upcoming season but I fully expect the pitching to suck just as hard as it has the past couple of seasons.