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Thread: Early NL Central predictions

  1. #46
    Flash the leather! _Sir_Charles_'s Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by MattyHo4Life View Post
    If Hamilton isn't ready, then Choo's relacement could be Schumaker.
    Nope. I think they've made it very clear that Billy's got the job.
    2014 predictions:
    99-63 WS champs (Cards take 2nd WC, Mil 3rd, Pit 4th, Chi 5th)
    Bruce/Votto neck and neck MVP race (neither takes it)
    Bailey CYA winner
    Hamilton ROY & GG

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  3. #47
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Salukifan2 View Post
    Except the offense is now really really bad. As it stands now, the offense isn't going to have just a "down" year. It has the potential to get pretty ugly. The reds have one player that will get on base at .340 or better. If Bruce doesn't explode this year it'll be a long season for that offense.
    I don't know of any Starter, other than Phillips, whose OPS should remain the same of go down. Every one of them should have higher OPS' than last season save Phillips. (Mesoraco is now the Starter at C.)

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    _Sir_Charles_ (12-29-2013)

  5. #48
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by UPRedsFan View Post
    Not if our new hitting coach can get Frazier Cozart and Mesoraco to swing only at strikes. And Ludwick provides more production than we saw from LF last year and Phillips has a healthy year.
    Our RH hitting should improve by a lot, cumulatively, with Mesoraco, Frazier, and Cozart one year closer to their prime. Hanigan won't bat as often, while Ludwick will supply some pop. Phillips should drop a bit on his OPS, but he also won't be asked to bat cleanup this season, a little less pressure for him.

    Without Choo on base, pitchers won't be throwing from the stretch as often vs Votto, Phillips and Cozart. These three players will see more wind-up pitching during their at-bats, making their at-bats more difficult. Just trying to cover both sides of the argument here.

  6. #49
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    I don't know of any Starter, other than Phillips, whose OPS should remain the same of go down. Every one of them should have higher OPS' than last season save Phillips. (Mesoraco is now the Starter at C.)
    What is the basis for this assumption? I find it absurd quite frankly.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  7. #50
    Moderator RedlegJake's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    What is the basis for this assumption? I find it absurd quite frankly.
    Since almost every starter and most of the bench, too, had a lower than normal OPS I wouldn't call it absurd. Unlikely, yes. I expect a mix of better and worse with the overall being better. The monkey wrench is losing Choo.
    No - I am not from State Farm!

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    _Sir_Charles_ (12-29-2013)

  9. #51
    Flash the leather! _Sir_Charles_'s Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    Our RH hitting should improve by a lot, cumulatively, with Mesoraco, Frazier, and Cozart one year closer to their prime. Hanigan won't bat as often, while Ludwick will supply some pop. Phillips should drop a bit on his OPS, but he also won't be asked to bat cleanup this season, a little less pressure for him.

    Without Choo on base, pitchers won't be throwing from the stretch as often vs Votto, Phillips and Cozart. These three players will see more wind-up pitching during their at-bats, making their at-bats more difficult. Just trying to cover both sides of the argument here.
    I think the bolded part is a certainty. *grin*
    2014 predictions:
    99-63 WS champs (Cards take 2nd WC, Mil 3rd, Pit 4th, Chi 5th)
    Bruce/Votto neck and neck MVP race (neither takes it)
    Bailey CYA winner
    Hamilton ROY & GG

  10. #52
    Member MikeThierry's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by _Sir_Charles_ View Post
    I don't think it's "ripe for failure" at all. I just think if Cards fans are expecting full seasons worth of production from Wacha, Miller and Kelly at the same pace they got last season, they're going to be disappointed. Yes they've got depth to go to. But it's a bunch of kids.

    But my main claim that they won't be anywhere close to 100 wins is that they can NOT maintain the kind of success they had offensively last season. Half the lineup (actually more than half) hit ridiculously with runners in scoring position. BABIP was also pretty hefty for a big portion of that lineup. Some may maintain it...but most won't.
    Couldn't you use reverse logic on the pitching staff though? Miller should be better in his second full season with more experience. Also, don't underestimate what playoff experience will do for a "kid". Yes they're young but they certainly got a ton of experience with their playoff run.

    The bullpen should be better out of spring training 2014 than it was 2013 esp. with Motte back in the mix.

    Also, I think the real wild card for them is Oscar Taveras. If he becomes a stud hitter like most experts believe he will, the Cards offense will look potent this season. Though if he fails to meet expectation, I still like the Cardinals chances of "replacing Beltran's production" with Matt Adams playing every day. Remember, it's not exactly like the Cards lost Mike Trout. Beltran's numbers, while good, aren't exactly some monumental mark that can't be meet by anyone. Last season, Matt Adams actually had a higher OPS and OPS+ than Beltran. So I think there are multiple options for the Cardinals to replace Beltran's production.

    As Saluki mentioned, the Cardinals did hit well with RISP but they also had very little power last year as well. I would expect more HR's from Craig and others which will go a long way to balance out a dip in RISP production.

    EDIT: When I say "better" for Shelby Miller, I mean in terms of consistency rather than him lowering his ERA or raising the meaningless win total.
    Last edited by MikeThierry; 12-29-2013 at 11:52 AM.
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  11. #53
    Member MikeThierry's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilHamburger View Post
    Cardinals 96-66
    Pirates 87-75
    Reds 82-80
    Brewers 78-84
    Cubs 77-85
    This sort of falls in line to what I see. However, I would put the Reds as a 90 win team and I think they will be second.
    “Our next home stand follows this road trip.”

    “I just want to tell everyone Happy Easter and Happy Hanukkah.” says on the day before Easter

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    NCCardfan (12-30-2013)

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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    What is the basis for this assumption? I find it absurd quite frankly.
    The basis is the statistical evidence of the last 10,000+ who have played Major League Baseball. Everyone's production is on a bell-curve in their career, and our RH bats are still on the upswing of that bell-curve, except for Phillips, who is on the down-swing.

    It's Baseball Statistics 101.

    I welcome you to revisit this at the end of 2014 for proof. The OPS's of 2014 for each of our RH bats can be plotted on a bell-curve along with the OPS' of each other year of their careers, and the 2014 plots and career plots of their OPS' should fall right in line with the curve that has already been established by the 10,000+ Major Leaguers who came before them....steroids era not being a part of the equation.
    Last edited by Kingspoint; 12-29-2013 at 12:40 PM.

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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeThierry View Post
    Couldn't you use reverse logic on the pitching staff though? Miller should be better in his second full season with more experience. Also, don't underestimate what playoff experience will do for a "kid". Yes they're young but they certainly got a ton of experience with their playoff run.

    The bullpen should be better out of spring training 2014 than it was 2013 esp. with Motte back in the mix.

    Also, I think the real wild card for them is Oscar Taveras. If he becomes a stud hitter like most experts believe he will, the Cards offense will look potent this season. Though if he fails to meet expectation, I still like the Cardinals chances of "replacing Beltran's production" with Matt Adams playing every day. Remember, it's not exactly like the Cards lost Mike Trout. Beltran's numbers, while good, aren't exactly some monumental mark that can't be meet by anyone. Last season, Matt Adams actually had a higher OPS and OPS+ than Beltran. So I think there are multiple options for the Cardinals to replace Beltran's production.

    As Saluki mentioned, the Cardinals did hit well with RISP but they also had very little power last year as well. I would expect more HR's from Craig and others which will go a long way to balance out a dip in RISP production.

    EDIT: When I say "better" for Shelby Miller, I mean in terms of consistency rather than him lowering his ERA or raising the meaningless win total.
    The Cardinals are the Cardinals. Regardless of pre-season expectations, they're going to be challenging for a playoff spot in the end.

  15. #56
    Flash the leather! _Sir_Charles_'s Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeThierry View Post
    Couldn't you use reverse logic on the pitching staff though? Miller should be better in his second full season with more experience. Also, don't underestimate what playoff experience will do for a "kid". Yes they're young but they certainly got a ton of experience with their playoff run.

    The bullpen should be better out of spring training 2014 than it was 2013 esp. with Motte back in the mix.

    Also, I think the real wild card for them is Oscar Taveras. If he becomes a stud hitter like most experts believe he will, the Cards offense will look potent this season. Though if he fails to meet expectation, I still like the Cardinals chances of "replacing Beltran's production" with Matt Adams playing every day. Remember, it's not exactly like the Cards lost Mike Trout. Beltran's numbers, while good, aren't exactly some monumental mark that can't be meet by anyone. Last season, Matt Adams actually had a higher OPS and OPS+ than Beltran. So I think there are multiple options for the Cardinals to replace Beltran's production.

    As Saluki mentioned, the Cardinals did hit well with RISP but they also had very little power last year as well. I would expect more HR's from Craig and others which will go a long way to balance out a dip in RISP production.

    EDIT: When I say "better" for Shelby Miller, I mean in terms of consistency rather than him lowering his ERA or raising the meaningless win total.
    It's all speculation at this point, right? It's kinda pointless to try to bring my expectations down at this time of the year just so you know. I wear my "homer" badge with pride. :O)

    I agree that the kids will feel more "at home" with another year under their belts, but that comes with opposing coaching staffs with a whole year of tape to work with. As always, it's about adjustments. When a player has a breakout year, the opposition adjusts, then it's up to that player to re-adjust. I think a traditional Sophomore Slump isn't much of a reach for Wacha & Miller.

    As for the lack of power and the high ba/risp...I don't disagree with that, but my biggest nit to pick with the Cards offense last year was their abnormally high BABIP among the starters. I expect that to normalize and when it does a bunch of runs fall by the wayside.

    Don't get me wrong, I think the Cards are a very solid team and they'll compete for the playoffs again...but they played over their heads last year and I fully expect a slide. Not a big one, but one down into 3rd (2nd if the Pirates collapse).
    2014 predictions:
    99-63 WS champs (Cards take 2nd WC, Mil 3rd, Pit 4th, Chi 5th)
    Bruce/Votto neck and neck MVP race (neither takes it)
    Bailey CYA winner
    Hamilton ROY & GG

  16. #57
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    The basis is the statistical evidence of the last 10,000+ who have played Major League Baseball. Everyone's production is on a bell-curve in their career, and our RH bats are still on the upswing of that bell-curve, except for Phillips, who is on the down-swing.

    It's Baseball Statistics 101.

    I welcome you to revisit this at the end of 2014 for proof. The OPS's of 2014 for each of our RH bats can be plotted on a bell-curve along with the OPS' of each other year of their careers, and the 2014 plots and career plots of their OPS' should fall right in line with the curve that has already been established by the 10,000+ Major Leaguers who came before them....steroids era not being a part of the equation.
    Guess I disagree. Lots of players have their best season in their first couple of years and then flame out as the league adjusts or they get exposed and they don't have what it takes to adjust back. I think Todd Frazier and Zach Cozart could easily end up as examples. Chris Heisey is probably an example of that and Drew Stubbs certainly was. Some other former Reds who had it happen include Corey Patterson and Willy Taveras. CF is counting on a guy who was a failure at AAA and the Catcher has an OPS below .600 against RHP. There seems to be a lot of people counting on more PT curing what ails him, but more exposure could just as easily sends his numbers plummeting as he flails away every day as it could help him take the next step.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  17. #58
    Member Norm Chortleton's Avatar
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    The basis is the statistical evidence of the last 10,000+ who have played Major League Baseball. Everyone's production is on a bell-curve in their career, and our RH bats are still on the upswing of that bell-curve, except for Phillips, who is on the down-swing.

    It's Baseball Statistics 101.

    I welcome you to revisit this at the end of 2014 for proof. The OPS's of 2014 for each of our RH bats can be plotted on a bell-curve along with the OPS' of each other year of their careers, and the 2014 plots and career plots of their OPS' should fall right in line with the curve that has already been established by the 10,000+ Major Leaguers who came before them....steroids era not being a part of the equation.
    There you go. No need to play the 2014 season. You just saved me about 500 hours of TV time I'd never be able to get back.


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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Norm Chortleton View Post
    There you go. No need to play the 2014 season. You just saved me about 500 hours of TV time I'd never be able to get back.

    But, you'll want the memories of a Championship season.

  19. #60
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    Re: Early NL Central predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    Guess I disagree. Lots of players have their best season in their first couple of years and then flame out as the league adjusts or they get exposed and they don't have what it takes to adjust back. I think Todd Frazier and Zach Cozart could easily end up as examples. Chris Heisey is probably an example of that and Drew Stubbs certainly was. Some other former Reds who had it happen include Corey Patterson and Willy Taveras. CF is counting on a guy who was a failure at AAA and the Catcher has an OPS below .600 against RHP. There seems to be a lot of people counting on more PT curing what ails him, but more exposure could just as easily sends his numbers plummeting as he flails away every day as it could help him take the next step.

    Lot's of players peak early in their careers, but they are careers that begin late. They still tend to play their best baseball at 27-29. The steroid era changes all of that.

    Frazier's poor plate discipline and desire to swing at low-and-away pitches is a major concern. That Homeruns produce fat paychecks also changes things of a player's growth. It's because of this that I think it's more likely that Cozart will rebound better than Frazier, even though Frazier has more potential and Cozart's "rebound" will be minimal.

    There's also a new Manager, who hopefully doesn't have the same feelings about Walks that Baker had. This should help the players reach their potential.

    The biggest differences between our thinking is that I believe the ages of Frazier and Cozart, though both at that "prime" age right now, have not seen their best baseball. I also feel that way about Heisey.

    Mesoraco is the biggest question mark because this is really a sophomore season for him, having not gotten that many plate appearances two seasons ago.

    Cumulatively, I think the OPS of our RH bats will be at least 40 points higher than last season. That's a huge jump in one season, but they were so bad, it's not really.


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