The Futility Infielder

A Baseball Journal by Jay Jaffe I'm a baseball fan living in New York City. In between long tirades about the New York Yankees and the national pastime in general, I'm a graphic designer.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


Prediction Pain, 2008 Edition

The Baseball Prospectus staff predictions went up over the past weekend, though most of them (including mine) were in the can by Opening Day. Here are the American League ones, and here the National League ones, with the oddball questions as well. My slice of the pie:
American League

AL East AL Central AL West

Yankees Indians Angels
Red Sox Tigers* A's
Rays White Sox Mariners
Blue Jays Royals Rangers
Orioles Twins
1. Miguel Cabrera
2. Alex Rodriguez
3. Grady Sizemore

AL Cy Young
1. James Shields
2. Joba Chamberlain
3. Josh Beckett

1. Evan Longoria
2. Joba Chamberlain
3. Alexei Ramirez

National League

NL East NL Central NL West

Mets Brewers Dodgers
Braves Cubs* Rockies
Phillies Reds Diamondbacks
Nationals Cardinals Padres
Marlins Astros Giants
1. David Wright
2. Ryan Braun
3. Mark Teixeira

NL Cy Young
1. Johan Santana
2. Jake Peavy
3. Chad Billingsley

1. Jay Bruce
2. Kosuke Fukudome
3. Johnny Cueto

Brian Kingman Award (pitcher most likely to lose 20): Matt Cain

Cristian Guzman Award (for the position player most likely to put up the lowest VORP in regular playing time): Jose Lopez

Jose Hernandez Award (most strikeouts, batter): Adam Dunn

The 2008 DiSar Award Winner (most AB before first walk): Corey Patterson

Best Player traded at the July deadline: Rich Harden

Barry Bonds Signs With: Orioles, July 1st

Players named in the Mitchell Report who will be suspended (of 89): Paul Lo Duca

The team that first decides to blast down to the foundations will be the: Blue Jays, July 31st

The team with the smallest spread between its upside and downside potential: Red Sox, 85-95 wins

The team with the widest spread between its upside and downside potential: Reds, 70-90 wins
Obviously, the Tigers' 0-6 start doesn't make my AL Wild Card pick look too good, though it's not like I wasn't forewarned about that team, particularly with regards to their bullpen. The spring showing of Clay Buchholz in the wake of the loss of Curt Schilling did lead me to temper my predictions for the Red Sox a bit, though as I said in the Hit List, it's not hard to imagine them working their way into the picture. I may be accused of letting my heart influence my head throughout this exercise, as I've picked the Yankees, Dodgers, and Brewers to come out on top of their respective divisions, but the Yanks and Dodgers legitimately topped their divisions on the basis of BP's PECOTA forecasting system and the related preseason Hit List power rankings. Besides, my track record in this deparment isn't too bad either.

On a staff-wide basis, the Red Sox were more heavily favored than the Yankees in the AL East, and the Tigers barely edge the Indians in the AL Central. The only other division where my picks differ from the consensus of my colleagues is in the NL Central, where the Cubs get the upper hand over the Brewers, though at least I did have them as the Wild Card. As with the Indians and Tigers, the Cubs and Brewers each averaged a rank of 1.5, with the frontrunner decided on a tiebreaker of first place votes, 9-8.

Anyway, I'm glad we didn't have to put World Series winners into this one. I had the Padres last year, and that didn't turn out so well.


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