Since we'll all probably want to know a little bit more about how the race for the rightfielder's spot goes this spring before predicting numbers for Luke, and since I felt that projecting offensive stats for Brad Ausmus might degenerate into a grisly exercise in negativity, why don't we start on the pitching staff?
How about our number one and our number two?
Since 2004, only Livan Hernandez has thrown more innings than Roy Oswalt, and no-one, according to Lee Sinins, has more neutral wins. Not even Johan Santana. In looser terms, you can say that Oswalt is the best and most durable pitcher in baseball over the last three years. And everyone expects that dominance and durability to continue. Phil Garner, if you caught the Footer interview, jokingly suggested 25 or 30 wins.
And back on Planet Earth, ZIPS suggests 34 starts, 18 wins and a 3.17 ERA. And while PECOTA actually has the balls to predict a 14 - 10 and a 3.69 ERA record for Roy*, it still calls him a horse at 213 innings.
I'll tell you right here: I don't know about the innings pitched, anything can happen, but I'd put a paycheck down that Oswalt doesn't have a 3.69 ERA in 2007. After six years in the majors, his highest ERA came in 2004, when he posted a 3.49. His career ERA is 3.05, and his career component ERA is 3.18. So take the under, folks.
PECOTA predicts Jennings at 11 - 11 with a 4.23. I'd imagine he'll win more than 11 even if his ERA doesn't end up 5% better than league average as PECOTA predicts. PECOTA also says that there's only a 5% chance that Jennings has a breakout season, but then again, maybe that's because last year was the breakout. It does go on to say* that there is a 33% chance of improvement for Jennings in 2007.
Which sounds as fair as can be.
So time to give it up, folks. For our staff ace, for the man with the scowl, for the pitcher who walks off the mound with more disdain for the hitter than anyone in baseball, for the soon-to-be eighth pitcher in team history to win 100 games in his career, please predict:
And for the new guy, give your best guess at
Home Runs Allowed
Here are some stats.
|6-Yr Avg||16||8||31||30||200 1/3||192||74||68||16||44||169||7||3.05||1.18|
|6-Yr Avg||10||9||26||26||156 2/3||172||88||83||17||71||104||5||4.74||1.55|
You can still place your bets for the Captain and the Kid, the Killer E's, and the Boppers at the clickable links just placed. Those who participate in all segments will of course have the best chance at the baseball cards.
*I never get tired of that lame little joke they make where they pretend that PECOTA is a human being instead of an algorithm.