On the eve of the final season, I wanted to give a quick update to the forecast previously put together which combined ZiPS projections and fan predicted playing time.â†µ
Baseball wizard Tom Tango posted on his blog some time ago that fans are better at projecting playing time than projection systems. Which makes sense, fans understand how the team is going to operate, while a projection system just looks at how many games a player can play, and at best works its depth charts by giving as much time as possible to the perceived better player. With that in mind, I altered the playing time a bit using the input from the Lone Star Ball Community Projections. Hat tip to "matchst1ck" for putting it all together. This actually resulted in having to fill a lot of PAs with guys like Andres Blanco and Craig Gentry, as the LSB folks were more down on total playing time than I or ZiPS were. It also resulted in more games for Mike Napoli, mostly at catcher.â†µ
Also factored in, of course, are the loss of Matt Treanor, fewer starts for Tommy Hunter, and some starts for Alexi Ogando. Also, Dave Bush, who I orginaly just assumed wouldn't cut it. My bad. Also, base running is now in my wOBA calculations.â†µ
The final result is 92-70 (more specifically, 91.73 wins), which seems to be about where most expectations are, perhaps a smidgen high. So when someone asks you "HOW CAN THE RANGERS COMPETE WITHOUT CLIFF LEE?!?!" you can respond with the retort that they might just be better than 2010 (ignore the post season until that actually comes).â†µ
In any case 2011 Rangers Projection can be found in that link, and you can play with it as you see fit. Certainly there are probably playing time issues you can disagree with, and you can mess with it and tell us your results.