The Curse of Jerry Hairston, Jr./Eric Hinske:

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

What Might the 2013 Yankees Look Like If They Do Nothing This Offseason?

I’m done with my first batch of 2013 CAIRO projections although I still have to check for errors so they’re probably not ready for public consumption.  But that doesn’t mean I can’t use them to take a stab at projecting the Yankees for 2013 given the roster they have right now.

I’ll warn you now, it ain’t pretty.  Here’s the lineup and bench.

Lineup Player Pos PA avg/obp/slg wOBA Outs BR BRAR Def WAR
1 Brett Gardner LF 525 .265/.353/.376 .320 340 65 13 15 2.8
2 Derek Jeter SS 600 .291/.343/.390 .317 394 69 23 -7 1.6
3 Robinson Cano 2B 650 .300/.359/.512 .358 417 100 45 0 4.5
4 Mark Teixeira 1B 600 .253/.344/.472 .338 394 84 20 4 2.4
5 Alex Rodriguez 3B 500 .267/.353/.442 .337 324 67 25 0 2.6
6 Curtis Granderson CF 600 .243/.331/.489 .335 401 85 35 0 3.4
7 Chris Dickerson RF 400 .250/.341/.386 .315 264 48 9 0 0.9
8 Ronnier Mustelier DH 450 .268/.321/.420 .312 305 53 3 0 0.3
9 Francisco Cervelli C 410 .244/.315/.336 .287 281 38 10 -7 0.3
Starters 4735 .267/.341/.431 .327 3119 610 183 5 18.8
Bench Player Pos PA avg/obp/slg wOBA Outs BR BRAR Def WAR
David Adams IF 275 .250/.318/.378 .299 187 29 6 0 0.6
Eduardo Nunez IF 250 .253/.302/.351 .283 174 24 3 0 0.3
Chris Stewart C 200 .230/.300/.328 .275 140 18 4 0 0.4
Jayson Nix IF 150 .224/.287/.384 .281 107 15 3 0 0.3
Melky Mesa OF 125 .215/.276/.370 .272 91 11 0 0 0.0
Austin Romine C 100 .237/.293/.356 .280 71 9 2 0 0.2
Corban Joseph 2B 100 .238/.317/.364 .296 68 10 2 0 0.2
Zoilo Almonte IF 100 .228/.280/.383 .278 72 9 1 0 0.1
Melky Mesa OF 100 .215/.276/.370 .272 72 9 0 0 0.0
Bench 1400 .236/.298/.363 .283 983 134 20 0 2.0
Team Total 6135 .259/.331/.415 .317 4101 744 203 5 20.8

wOBA: Weighted on-base average
BR: Linear weights batting runs
BRAR: BR above replacement level (adjusted for position)

I haven’t done defensive projections for 2013 so those are based on 2012 and probably shouldn’t be focused on much. 

And the pitching staff.

SP1 CC Sabathia 220 206 93 21 56 194 3.82 3.35 3.35 5.2
SP2 Phil Hughes 200 203 107 32 57 157 4.81 4.44 4.46 2.5
SP3 Ivan Nova 175 187 98 23 66 124 4.99 4.62 4.59 1.8
SP4 David Phelps 175 192 90 23 59 125 4.74 4.31 4.40 2.3
SP5 Adam Warren 150 179 88 16 57 92 5.03 4.68 4.46 1.5
SP6 Brett Marshall 50 66 37 7 25 30 6.29 5.64 5.27 -0.2
SP7 Cory Arbiso 25 37 22 4 10 12 7.14 6.25 5.67 -0.3
SP8 Shaeffer Hall 25 35 18 4 8 13 6.25 5.37 5.08 -0.1
SP9 Vidal Nuno 20 27 13 4 6 14 5.84 5.05 4.94 0.0
SP10 Nik Turley 20 27 14 3 11 14 6.19 5.48 5.34 -0.1
Starters 1060 1161 580 137 356 775 4.93 4.41 4.35 12.8
CL David Robertson 70 56 22 5 29 86 2.90 2.68 2.75 1.9
SU Boone Logan 70 65 31 7 31 72 3.97 3.71 3.72 1.1
SU Joba Chamberlain 60 62 31 8 21 53 4.67 4.12 4.15 0.5
MR Mark Montgomery 50 46 19 3 29 56 3.36 3.25 3.27 1.1
MR David Aardsma 40 35 22 6 21 36 5.02 4.76 4.76 0.2
MR Clay Rapada 40 37 19 3 17 33 4.16 3.75 3.67 0.5
MR Cody Eppley 40 42 21 4 18 31 4.57 4.12 4.07 0.4
MR Cesar Cabral 10 13 6 1 5 7 5.16 4.72 4.23 0.0
LR Chase Whitley 10 11 6 1 4 7 5.36 4.80 4.94 0.0
Relievers 390 366 176 37 175 381 4.07 3.74 3.73 5.6
Total 1450 1526 757 174 531 1156 4.70 4.23 4.18 18.4

FIP: Fielding-independent pitching
WAR: Wins above replacement (using RA, adjusted for role)

Yeesh, that rotation is the stuff of nightmares…

CAIRO LOVES Mark Montgomery, but I think it needs to chill a bit on him.  He’s been outstanding so far in the minors, but so have lots of relievers in the past that didn’t turn out all that well.  I’m optimistic on him, but not for early 2013.  It continues to dig David Robertson too, as I think it should.  It’s not particularly fond of most of the rest of the pen, although as Chamberlain and Aardsma get healthier they are probably good bets to beat those projections.

A team that scores 744 runs and allows 757 would project as around a .495 winning percentage or 80 win team.  It’s worse than that because CAIRO was specifically created to make the Yankees look better than they are, which means they’re more like a 40 win team.  I swapped Stewart and Cervelli’s playing time to see if it the defensive difference between made things better but it didn’t really matter.

Obviously it’s still early, they have a lot of moves to make, etc, Getting Hiroki Kuroda re-signed and replacing the SP7-10 innings with Adam Warren probably adds close to five wins.  Getting a right-handed bat whose name doesn’t begin with Andruw and end with Jones to platoon with Chris Dickerson probably helps too.  Better health from Brett Gardner and Alex Rodriguez (yeah, right) would also help I guess.  Bringing back Russell Martin (.232/.327/.385 and 2.1 WAR projection) would add a couple of wins too.

But they’ve got their work cut out for them.

--Posted at 8:13 pm by SG / 35 Comments | - (0)


Page 1 of 1 pages:

SG, how would Dickerson project in a platoon role? Mustelier?

Basically, if the Yankees sit tight, their offense will be OK but their pitching will be absolutely terrible. Resigning Pettitte/Kuroda is absolutely necessary, unless they go a bit bigger/long term for Greinke or Jackson. Even then I’d prefer to see Phelps as the 6th starter on a team with Hughes and Nova in the rotation.

Re-signing Martin seems like a no-brainer too, 1/7 or 2/13 would probably get it done.

Apparently Haren is on the block.

[2] Consider me wary, especially coming of a year marred by back issues.

Isn’t Grienke a well-documented…whatever kind of phobiac is afraid of people and attention ? Don’t make me look it up.

I’d personally like to see Kuroda again, with run support this time.

[4] He had issues a while ago (5 years) but aside from people bringing it up whenever a trade is suggested, I haven’t heard about it impacting him for a while. A better concern might be why he consistently under-performs his peripherals.

Gardner’s projected WAR seems to make WAR rather suspicious to me. Or should they give him an extension of 4/50?  wink

I don’t think Mustelier, Cervelli, or Dickerson will be starters. I know: bold prediction. I wouldn’t mind Ichiro back on a one year deal. I think he’ll be closer to Yankee Ichiro than Mariner Ichiro next year. I like how when he runs after fly balls, he frequently catches them.

[5] It’s known that Greinke is aware of statistics like FIP. One of the annoying things about statistics is that changing your behavior based on statistics can potentially invalidate those statistics.

Not that that is a better explanation than coincidence.

SG, how would Dickerson project in a platoon role? Mustelier?

Dickerson projects to have a wOBA of .339 vs. RHP, Mustelier .345 vs. LHP.  624 PA with the same split of PA as Nick Swisher in 2012 would give a platoon of the two an average of wOBA of .341, which would be about 11 runs worse than Swisher was this season.  Dickerson’s probably a better defender and baserunner than Swisher so the gap shrinks a bit there but from what I’ve read Mustelier is not much of either. 

Gardner’s projected WAR seems to make WAR rather suspicious to me.

It’s the defense.  Deduct however much of that +15 divided by 10 you want to deduct from his WAR accordingly.

[7] I don’t think Mustelier, Cervelli, or Dickerson will be starters.

Well, the title of the post is “What Might the 2013 Yankees Look Like If They Do Nothing This Offseason?”

This is who is on the team today.

Mustelier looks like he deserves a shot. Hell, he deserved a shot last year. I know he’s come on late and they may not think he’s real, but that’s a pretty solid projection. I think he’s played some 3B as well also? Mike K.?

Seems like you could do a lot with Gardner, Granderson, Hunter, Dickerson and Mustelier between the 3 OF spots, DH and a late inning defensive substitution.

I think he’ll be closer to Yankee Ichiro than Mariner Ichiro next year.

CAIRO says .304/.339/.404 which is only about 3 BRAR in RF.  You wonder how much Safeco might have suppressed his numbers.  I try to account for that but it’s possible the park hurt him more than the adjustments say it did.

You can also add some more value for defense and base running and probably get him up to about 1.0, maybe 1.5 WAR.  He doesn’t project to have a huge platoon split (wOBA of .323 vs. LHP and .329 vs. RHP) but he’d probably benefit from a platoon partner if only to rest him some.

I’ve beaten the Scott Hairston drum before but he makes a lot of sense.  He can play all three OF positions, he’s hit .277/.327/.484 vs. LHP over the last four years (.286/.317/.550   last season) and he should be relatively inexpensive. CAIRO projects him at .257/.315/.472 with a .337 wOBA as a Yankee, .355 wOBA vs. LHP.  He’s generally been an average to slightly better than average defender too.

I think he’s played some 3B as well also?

Mustelier’s played 2B, 3B, LF and CF so far in the minors.  From what I’ve read, he’s not a particularly good defender at any of the positions, but the versatility plus the bat makes me think he could be pretty useful in a Randy Velarde-ish role.

[11] Yeah, what SG said.  Everyone seems impressed by his hitting ability, but we also have to remember that he was 27 years old in the minors last year.  And he put up an .815 OPS in AAA, and he’s 5’10” and weights 210 lbs.  The pictures I’ve seen of him indicate he’s a bit…round.

Basically, he’s a good but not great hitter, who adds little besides some versatility in the field.  But I think that’s his limit, as a utility player.  Not a bad place for the Yankees to save some money for a few years.  But I don’t think they want to plan around him as a starter.  At least not until he’s shown something at the major-league level.

[12] IDK, I could see Hairston getting paid.  1.5 bWAR last year in only 400PA.  Even if he’s only a 1 WAR player, that’s probably $5M on a 1 year deal.  Should Yankees pay for that?  1 year, yeah.  But if he goes for something like 2/10?  Eh.

[0] 80 win team but with a lot of upside to it.  That is, a lot of the minor-league players could certainly exceed their value.  “Minor league” players are 3.3 WAR above.  If they made Romine the starter, he’s got a shot to exceed that by himself.  He could also play well below that, of course.  Also, some of the major leaguers could very well exceed their values.  Specifically, Gardner (mostly by playing more), Teix, ARod, Cano (4.5 WAR seems low, even with 0 for defensive value).  And you aren’t even including Pineda, which is reasonable.  But he could easily start on June 1st and throw 120 innings as an elite starter worth 3 wins.  As you say, error bars are huge at this point.

Of course, we’d rather not count on potential, of either untested, non-elite prospects.  Or older players returning from injury.  But I don’t think this is a lost team.  I’d imagine if the only thing they do - besides filling in some bench roles - is bring back Pettitte (or Kuroda), Mo, and Martin, would probably get this team up around 87-88 wins.  I’d be okay - not ecstatic but okay - with that going into the year.  Then use the first half to see if some of the older players rebound, or younger players excel, or minor league players force themselves into the 2nd half conversation.  And try to improve at the deadline.

Via RAB, Angels will not offer Torii Hunter a qualifying offer, and Yankees are interested.  What if we fit him in as the every-day RF, and push Dickerson to 4th OF?

Also, I just noticed.  You’ve got Zoilo Almonte listed as an IF, when he’s an OF (potentially above average defense in CF).  You’ve also got Melky Mesa listed twice as a backup OF, once with 125PA and once with 100PA.  Not sure if you meant to use Almonte as an OF and someone else as an IF or…?

I started moving guys around and missed the positions on some of them.  For now I’m assuming all minor leaguers are average defensively so it doesn’t change anything.

Let’s see, Torii Hunter.  CAIRO says .294/.370/.468, 17 BRAR in 600 PA.  Adding him and replacing Mesa and Almonte with Dickerson adds about four wins.

[16] Yeah I didn’t think it would matter so much for his defensive value, just if you intended to use a different player as a UIF.  Though IDK who you would use besides the guys you already have there.  You still have Mesa twice however.  IDK if you meant to use a different player in his stead; only two other OF I can think of, Abe Almonte and Segedin.  IDK if either are/will be on 40-man next year (I think Abe will be), and probably doesn’t make any difference.

Hmm, 4 wins is impressive.  Hunter, Pettitte/Kuroda, Mo, Martin.  Sounds like a 90-92 win team to me.  See, that wasn’t hard!

I’m feeling too lazy to work out the context myself. 
Could you include the replacement level wins that go with those 39.2 WAR and the payroll that is associated with the players in that projection so that we can more directly see how big a hole the team in in and home much money is available to dig out of it?

Are you really too lazy to subtract 39.2 from 80?  And if you want contract stuff just go to Cot’s.

Actually, now that I look at the WAR they are too high (replacement level is set too low).  So there’s fix #1.

[14] Also a lot of downside, just due to age there are some pretty serious durability issues on the team. ARod, Jeter, Kuroda/Pettitte. Nova hasn’t exactly been healthy his entire career.

[19]  Sorry—missed the 80 smile

[21] Oh yeah, definitely.  And actually, I think that speaks for more why they shouldn’t go overboard to try and “fix” the team.  Simply, unless they can get superstars for the open positions (C, RF, starting pitcher), they’re only going to make incremental improvements.  So if a bunch of the veterans get hurt or decline further, even “stocking up” for a 94-win team, the downside could still leave them at 82 wins but worse off for the future.

So, I think that’s more an argument for make some cheap, short term investments, and let the kids play.  If you hit the upside by mid-season, trade for what you need.  If you hit the downside, you can look to trade anyone with value and more aggressively promote from the minors.  And start building for 2014.

According to Cot’s, their 2013 obligations are $131.6 million (, although that doesn’t include any arbitration money.  If we assume that they are going to spend only a little more than $189m in 2013 and that they will owe at least $15m to arbitration eligible players, that leaves something around $45m to plug holes, or about 9 wins worth at $5m/WAR.

This doesn’t look good.

[24] If they can sign Martin and Hunter for a combined 20-25 MM per year that’s a 6+ win shift right there. That leaves them with 20-25MM or about 4-5 wins.

[16]  So Torii Hunter seems like a good target to replace Swisher.  Interested to see what he’d cost.  Wonder if he’d take a one-year deal?

I’d also like to see Ichiro back on a one-year deal.

[24] I don’t think they have any problem going well north of $189M in 2013, and will probably approach where they’ve been the last several years (~$210M).  And even if you only assume they can buy 9 wins, that still puts them at about an 89 win team.  It’s hard to do much better going into the season, though it’s nice when you can project a 95 win team.  89 wins if it goes according to plan puts them in position to upgrade the roster sufficiently in July.  If it doesn’t go according to plan…well, they were projected to win 95-96 games before 2008 as well and were a lot younger. 

[25] I’m thinking it shouldn’t cost more than $18M for those two.  So under Telnar’s scenario that leaves $27M which should buy 5-6 wins, and now they’re a 92 win team.

Really, getting a 90+ win team for next year isn’t all that difficult.  The hard part is getting a 90+ win team for next year, AND doing so in a way that allows them to be competitive from 2014-2016 while staying under $189M.

I’d also like to see Ichiro back on a one-year deal.

I think getting one precludes the other.  Unless of course they do something drastic like move Gardner to CF, sign Ichiro for LF, and put Hunter in RF, trading Grandereson.

Unless of course they do something drastic like move Gardner to CF, sign Ichiro for LF, and put Hunter in RF, trading Grandereson.

This leaves them, with an Outfield that will produce like 35 HRs between the 3 starters, I’m not sure that’s really OK.

The team is too reliant on HRs and needs to learn to play small ball anyway, doesn’t it?  That’s how Detroit got to the World Series, right?

[27]  They still have an open DH slot.  Seems there’d be plenty of AB’s for Gardner, Granderson, Hunter, plus Ichiro and maybe even another right-handed bat like Hairston.

[28] Wasn’t advocating for it, just saying that would be the only way they’d have both Ichiro and Hunter on the team.  Though I suppose instead they could trade Gardner…

[30] From the Yankee perspective this may be true.  But Ichiro and Hunter would likely consider themselves 150+ game players right now, and would definitely understand that ARod and Jeter will likely be getting 60+ games at DH between them, maybe more.  I don’t think they would be willing to both sign.

Here’s a couple of relevent items from the KLaw chat:

On the podcast you stated that you thought ARods issue had to be the hip. Was that your opinion as an analyst or wishful thinking as a fan not wanting to see one of the greatest players of all time reduced to a shadow of his former self?

Klaw (1:08 PM)

I guess you could argue both. He’s not rotating his hips like he used to and the power that used to come from his lower half is gone. The wishful thinking part is that I think or hope an offseason of rest will help.

So hopefully with some rest and video review he can get back to what he was doing.  If the hip issue wasn’t a real problem and was more that he was still tentative, there’s hope.  Of course, until he proves he can, we’re right to doubt it…

Is there any hope for BJ Upton to become the player that people thought he would be when he was a prospect? It seems like whichever team signs him could get some surplus value if he ever figures it out.

Klaw (1:23 PM)

I do think so, given his age and history of plate discipline before this year.

So there’s a respected authority who kind of agrees with what I’ve been saying; there’s an chance you could get a lot more than you’re paying for with Upton.  He could really be a steal in this FA class…but I’m no longer willing to guarantee him (much) more than $10M a year.

Mike Redmond to manage the Marlins. These managers get younger and younger every year!

But Ichiro and Hunter would likely consider themselves 150+ game players right now…

Maybe Hunter does, but Ichiro?  Unless he wants to get 3000 US hits, I could see him being happy as part of an outfield/DH rotation on a contender.

ARod and Jeter will likely be getting 60+ games at DH between them, maybe more.

Although now that the “bench ARod” seal has been broken, maybe that number will go down as ARod is given more full days off, especially against right-handers.

For me, when I talk about signing Ichiro, I’m operating on the assumption that he was especially happy on the Yankees with the team’s competitiveness, fellow veterans, and short right field porch, and that he’d sign here on a one-year deal for appropriate playing time.

[14]  he could easily start on June 1st and throw 120 innings as an elite starter worth 3 wins.

Wow! Cockeyed optimism here and on sale. Get it while you can.

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