Sometimes, as fans, we tend to have biased views. Working with several Yankees fans, I hear about how New York is going to come back strong and are probably the best team in the AL East. As a non-Yankee fan, I look at their team and don't have nearly as much confidence.
Often, whether we realize it or not, we tend to think that players and teams we root for are better than they are. Or, in some cases, the pessimistic among us think they are worse than they likely are. To combat that, sometimes names are taken out of the equation. The Player A vs Player B vs Player C projections, for example.
The problem with that, is there is never enough provided information to really give a proper judgement on the worth of a player versus another. To get that, you need more full stats or a scouting report. Really, you need to see the player and know their situation. How they swing, time frame, age, etc etc etc all plays into it if you're making an accurate judgement.
That said, just for kicks, I was curious how the 2015 Brewers ZIPs projections compared to players from last season. So, I looked at the Brewers likely starting lineup and found the players from last year with the most similar batting line to the Brewers' projections. Here's what I got:
|2015 Brewer||ZIPS line (wOBA)||2014 Comp||2014 line (wOBA)|
|Jonathan Lucroy||.290/.351/.454 (.353)||Melky Cabrera||.301/.351/.458 (.354)|
|Adam Lind||.291/.356/.468 (.360)||Carlos Gomez||.284/.356/.477 (.368)|
|Scooter Gennett||.286/.318/.415 (.321)||Martin Prado||.282/.321/.412 (.324)|
|Jean Segura||.277/.318/.390 (.311)||Dioner Navarro||.274/.317/.395 (.315)|
|Aramis Ramirez||.278/.332/.440 (.340)||Hunter Pence||.277/.332/.445 (.341)|
|Khris Davis||.253/.320/.473 (.347)||Albert Pujols||.272/.324/.466 (.340)|
|Carlos Gomez||.277/.336/.482 (.358)||Adrian Gonzalez||.276/.335/.482 (.351)|
|Ryan Braun||.287/.352/.500 (.369)||Matt Kemp||.287/.346/.506 (.369)|
I intentionally left out defense and just a whole lot of other things. No homers or stolen bases, no WAR, no UZR, no whatever else. A simple batting line, because, hey, it's an interesting thing to look at. I also didn't bother matching up positions because it would have been more difficult to find the closest batting lines.
But, hey, how fun would that 2014 lineup have been? According to the lineup analysis calculator, that team could have scored about 4.6 runs per game, which would have been the fourth-most prolific lineup in the majors. PLUS, the 2015 Brewers probably will have better defense than that 2014 lineup, mostly because they actually have players to fill each position. Even first base!
Really, though, this is just a fun little table to look at that doesn't really tell us much. There's too little information, too little context. Plus, we're just looking at projections. Projections are usually wrong. Jordan is doing a whole projection series asking in which direction these projections are wrong.
This is a kind of neat way to look at things, though, to get some idea as to what the projections sort of mean for the Brewers. What they indicate the team could be. It probably helps stir a little optimism, too, on the offensive side at least. If Adam Lind hits as well as Carlos Gomez did last year, holy cow! See Khris Davis' closest comp as Albert Pujols is hilarious, in it's own way. Hunter Pence was once drafted by the Brewers, now Aramis Ramirez is projected to basically be Hunter Pence.
Kind of a neat thing to look at, at least.