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Thread: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

  1. #46
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by OnBaseMachine View Post
    I think Volquez's control will be better in 2009. He seemed to nibble at times. If he can cut 20 walks off his 2008 total it would help a lot, as will an improved defense. It was unreal how many times he was bitten by the defense this season... the fact that he posted a 3.21 ERA with that defense behind him was amazing. An improved defense and a few less walks should allow him to take another step forward IMO.
    I really don't think the defense played a significant role. I think it was more of a case of his numbers finally came down to earth some in the 2nd half. That and I think he started to fatigue some.
    Last edited by fearofpopvol1; 10-28-2008 at 10:14 PM.

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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by fearofpopvol1 View Post
    I really don't think the defense played a significan role. I think it was more of a case of his numbers finally came down to earth some in the 2nd half. That and I think he started to fatigue some.
    You don't think the worst defense in baseball played a role? Of course fatigue and other things played a role but so did the awful defense. Bad defense extends innings and forces pitchers to throw additional unnecessary pitches.
    I miss Adam Dunn.

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    Member SMcGavin's Avatar
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by edabbs44 View Post
    Rhetorical question...would you rather have 5 average guys or 2 above average, one average and two below average?
    Rhetorical perhaps but it's an interesting question.

    During the course of the regular season, I guess I wouldn't care. If I had a postseason team, the latter is better. As someone else pointed out the latter is also much easier to improve upon via trade or free agency.

  5. #49
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by OnBaseMachine View Post
    You don't think the worst defense in baseball played a role? Of course fatigue and other things played a role but so did the awful defense. Bad defense extends innings and forces pitchers to throw additional unnecessary pitches.
    If you'll re-read my comment, I said "significant role." His 2nd half was not nearly as impressive. He gave up more bombs, more doubles, was K'ing less etc. As good as Volquez was last year, there was a lot of luck in the the first half of the season going his way.

    With that said, I do think his control will improve next year.
    Last edited by fearofpopvol1; 10-28-2008 at 11:05 PM.

  6. #50
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by OnBaseMachine View Post
    I think Volquez's control will be better in 2009. He seemed to nibble at times. If he can cut 20 walks off his 2008 total it would help a lot, as will an improved defense. It was unreal how many times he was bitten by the defense this season... the fact that he posted a 3.21 ERA with that defense behind him was amazing. An improved defense and a few less walks should allow him to take another step forward IMO.
    I think he will have better control and pitch more efficiently especially if they can improve the defense on the left side. Though I am concerned if Hairston is resigned and Gonzalez doesn’t hold up we might be seeing Hairston at short next year and a repeat of EE. I am not so sure about Cueto though, he is still young.

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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    It's hard to believe essentially every pitcher gets worse while the defense gets exceedingly better in the outfield, SS, and most likely 3b and 1b than it was in 2008.
    Baseball is like church. Many attend, few understand

  8. #52
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    Give me a .360 OBP and I don't care how many times you strikeout - especially if you're a leadoff guy.

    Exactly the way I see it.


  9. #53
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    It wouldn't surprise me if Volquez never posted an ERA below 3.50 again.

    At issue is his true skill level (an important baseline for predicting his future).

    Here's a breakdown of his season using the "half" split.

    Code:
    Volquez 2008													
    Season	IP	FIP	ERA	K/9	BB/9	HR/9	H/9	BABIP	GB%	FB%	LD%	HR/FB	xFIP
    1st	117.2	3.19	2.30	9.68	4.30	0.38	6.91	0.290	0.53	0.29	0.18	5.7	3.70
    2nd	78.1	4.19	4.61	9.22	4.26	1.04	8.87	0.329	0.38	0.41	0.22	10.3	4.28
    First, there is no doubt that Volquez took a step forward this season as he established himself as a legitimate major league starter.

    That said, his season was a tale of two seasons. Clearly his first half was a hyperbolic one when just looking at his ERA and his second half, well, not so much. That said, looking at his peripherals, he was not a dramatically different fellow but for a couple notable exceptions. Upon closer look, his first half was driven substantially by an extremely low HR/FB rate for a starter (typically this parameter is considered out of control of a pitcher and deviations from 10-11% are expected to regress). He also demonstrated an ability to induce groundballs that was significantly higher than his career to date.

    Basically in the second half his HR/FB% and GB% regressed back to expected levels. Mix in half a K less per 9 and a mild swing in his BABIP and not surprisingly, his ERA jumped dramatically.

    So the point? I think Volquez's true skill level is probably captured by his "half split" xFIPs, i.e. it's somewhere between 3.70 and 4.30. Right now, it seems reasonable to split the difference and expect a xFIP of 4.00.

    From that standpoint, I think an ERA of 4.00 isn't a shocking projection but one of 2.75-3.20 would be highly unlikely.

    I also see no reason to expect Volquez to significantly decrease his walk rate moving forward.
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    Give me a .360 OBP and I don't care how many times you strikeout - especially if you're a leadoff guy.

    Personally, I don't care if someone like Dunn or Ryan Howard strike out 175-200 times. They are power hitters and most power hitters (Pujols being an exception) are going to swing and miss a lot. It's been that way since Babe Ruth. But I'd be concerned if my leadoff hitter is striking out that much even if he has a .360 OBP. He's making outs and not getting on base. .360 is very good but if he can turn some of those strikeouts into base hits and/or walks, we could have a monster on our hands. Of course if he turns those strikeouts into pop-ups and grounders to 2nd, then it doesn't make a whole helluva lot of difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by _Sir_Charles_ View Post
    So he thinks Hanigan will only play in 33 games? Apparently the Reds will use this for the remaining 129 games.

    See, that's why Bill James is a genius. Like me, he knows the Reds need to bring Javy back. He doesn't include him on that list because he's hoping the Reds deem him insignificant enough not to bring back and James can advise his employer to pick up Javy as a free agent.
    Last edited by Chip R; 10-29-2008 at 09:32 AM.
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by fearofpopvol1 View Post
    If you'll re-read my comment, I said "significant role." His 2nd half was not nearly as impressive. He gave up more bombs, more doubles, was K'ing less etc. As good as Volquez was last year, there was a lot of luck in the the first half of the season going his way.

    With that said, I do think his control will improve next year.
    I really see it as the league adjusted to him a bit and got a "book" on him. Also fatigue had to have played a role. Sure luck played a part, but I don't think it was a lot of luck. Just an above average first full season.

    He K's a lot of batters. He's had major league success. I see his next few years in the 3.50-4.00 era range.

    I think we'll all take that.
    Suck it up cupcake.

  12. #56
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R View Post
    Personally, I don't care if someone like Dunn or Ryan Howard strike out 175-200 times. They are power hitters and most power hitters (Pujols being an exception) are going to swing and miss a lot. It's been that way since Babe Ruth. But I'd be concerned if my leadoff hitter is striking out that much even if he has a .360 OBP. He's making outs and not getting on base. .360 is very good but if he can turn some of those strikeouts into base hits and/or walks, we could have a monster on our hands. Of course if he turns those strikeouts into pop-ups and grounders to 2nd, then it doesn't make a whole helluva lot of difference.
    If he's getting on base at a .360 clip, then he's getting on base. Period. Making outs via week grounders and pop flies instead doesn't change that. Sure, he could be a monster if he put an extra 80 balls in play while holding everything else constant. But it doesn't change the .360 he puts up in the meantime. This goes back to the classic Dunn argument. Yes, not striking out, in isolation, would be better. But it doesn't change the quality of the result he does get while striking out a lot.

    Again, aside from comfort with the stereotype of the fast, slap-hitting leadoff guy, make the argument that it is particularly bad for a leadoff guy to make the outs he makes via strikeouts instead of on balls in play -- assuming a given level of AVG/OBP/SLG.

    To me, a guy batting in the heart of the order with men on base is doing more "harm" with a strikeout (relative to a ball in play out) than a leadoff guy. The real question here, as was suggested, is whether Dickerson can sustain an OBP of .360 while striking out that much. Unless he keeps hitting for big power, it's going to be tough.
    Last edited by RedsManRick; 10-29-2008 at 10:27 AM.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

  13. #57
    Waitin til next year bucksfan2's Avatar
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    If he's getting on base at a .360 clip, then he's getting on base. Period. Making outs via week grounders and pop flies instead doesn't change that. Sure, he could be a monster if he put an extra 80 balls in play while holding everything else constant. But it doesn't change the .360 he puts up in the meantime. This goes back to the classic Dunn argument. Yes, not striking out, in isolation, would be better. But it doesn't change the quality of the result he does get while striking out a lot.

    Again, aside from comfort with the stereotype of the fast, slap-hitting leadoff guy, make the argument that it is particularly bad for a leadoff guy to make the outs he makes via strikeouts instead of on balls in play -- assuming a given level of AVG/OBP/SLG.

    To me, a guy batting in the heart of the order with men on base is doing more "harm" with a strikeout (relative to a ball in play out) than a leadoff guy. The real question here, as was suggested, is whether Dickerson can sustain an OBP of .360 while striking out that much. Unless he keeps hitting for big power, it's going to be tough.
    The .360 OBP that James projects is calculated using the high strikeout rate. If a guy like Dickerson can put the ball in play more and cut down on his strikeouts then those weak ground balls have a chance to turn into hits because of his speed. Those weak pop ups may have a chance to fall into no mans land and become hits.

    When Dickerson puts the ball in play it allows him to use one of his greatest asset, his speed. If he strikeouts he doesn't give himself the chance to beat out a throw or reach base by error.

  14. #58
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    BTW... James has nothing to do with the projections, they're compiled by infosolutions and Bill's name is just on the book.

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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    The projections are based upon his original work. He still reviews them and insures there are no outliers.

    Someone referred to park factors earlier and i think it applies in the case of these projections. Iirc, they are based on 3 year projections and over 3 years the park inflates the numbers of the offense (especially related to LH power hitters).

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    Member SMcGavin's Avatar
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    Re: 2009 Bill James Projections for the Reds

    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    From that standpoint, I think an ERA of 4.00 isn't a shocking projection but one of 2.75-3.20 would be highly unlikely.

    I also see no reason to expect Volquez to significantly decrease his walk rate moving forward.
    Yeah, if Volquez pitches next year like he did this year, his ERA will most likely be closer to 4.00 than 3.00. I think a lot of people are ignoring the luck he had in his favor in 08.

    Where I disagree is that I think he's very capable of improving going forward. The guy is only 24. Yes, EV's true skill level right now is just that of an above average SP (not that it's a bad thing). But many eventual top of the rotation starters were something less when they were 24.


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