Tuesday, October 15, 2013
How Bad are the 2014 Yankees on October 15, 2013
One of the hardest things about doing my CAIRO projections is finagling the numbers to make the Yankees look better than they are. And that was hard when the Yankees were actually good. Now that they are not so good, it makes it even harder.
Anyway, I finally figured it was time to put some empirical evidence together to see what the Yankees look like right now. So I ran my first set of 2014 CAIRO projections, which I’m sure have bugs and will change as we move further into the offseason.
I’ll warn you now, it’s not pretty at all.
The assumptions here are that Alex Rodriguez remains suspended for the entire 2014 season and the Yankees don’t sign anyone or trade for anyone. Basically, this is what the Yankees have under contract right now for 2014. First up, the position players.
I haven’t done the defensive projections for 2014 yet so these are 2013 projections. Adjust them down a bit since there’s no one young enough on the Yankees to be improving defensively.
If you think that’s bad, get a load of the pitching staff.
WAR: Wins above replacement level (using RA)
FIP: Fielding-independent pitching
Now obviously the error bars around some of these projections are huge. Maybe CC Sabathia makes the adjustments to get closer to his past numbers and maybe converting Michael Pineda’s rehab numbers to an MLE and using it as part of his projections for 2014 ignores that rehab games are approached differently than competitive games and that he’ll be stronger as he moves further away from his injury. Maybe Ivan Nova scrapping his slider will let him pitch more like he did over the second half of 2013 than his projection.
That’s an awful lot of maybes.
The bottom line is this. If these projections and playing time assumptions are reasonably close, and they may not be, this is what the overall picture looks like.
The Yankees need to add 27 wins to get to 90. I can’t see them doing it without going past their self-imposed payroll limit of $189M, and I’m not sure the market is there to do it even if they decide to.
Maybe they can lobby Bud Selig to add five more wild cards. Then they can pretend they’re still contenders.
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