FanPost

UPDATED: Projecting 2010 Pitching Cubs v. Cards

If you head on over to baseballprojections.com, you can find the CHONE projections for many, many players.  CHONE is nice because it's cheap and named after a guy Jim Hendry didn't overpay to get.

 

CHC-Name CHC-IP CHC-ERA CHC-RvRep StL-Name StL-IP StL-ERA StL-RvRep
Starter 1 C. Zambrano 181 4.28 29 A. Wainwright 181 3.53 35
Starter 2 T. Lilly 173 4.21 26 C. Carpenter 116 3.1 30
Starter 3 R. Dempster 179 4.12 30 K. Lohse 157 4.18 19
Starter 4 R. Wells 153 4.53 17 B. Penny 160 4.11 22
Starter 5 T. Gorzelanny 157 4.47 21 R. Hill 98 4.22 9
Starter 6 C. Silva 107 5.05 9 M. Boggs 149 4.53 9
Closer C. Marmol 70 3.34 10 R. Franklin 66 3.68 5
Setup J. Grabow 63 4.29 1 J. Motte 61 3.69 5
Setup A. Guzman 37 3.89 3 D. Reyes 41 3.73 3
Middle S. Marshall 59 3.97 4 K. McClellan 63 3.71 4
Middle J. Gray 64 4.5 1 T. Miller 42 3.64 3
Long/Swing J. Stevens 61 4.13 3 B. Hawksworth 124 4.57 8
Total 1304 4.23 154 1258 3.89 152

First off, note that the Cubs come out ahead on the Runs versus Replacement category but behind in the ERA category.  There are two reasons for that.  First, that's because CHONE is working a park effect into the ERA projection, but leaving it out of the RvRep.  It's easier to pitch at Busch than at Wrigley.  Second, RvRep is a counting stat, which means that Ryan Dempster counts for equal value as Chris Carpenter, despite Carpenter's projected ERA being much better, even accounting for park effects.  The reason is that CHONE doesn't expect Carpenter to pitch a full season.

So, what do we see here?  There's a lot of irony for me that CHONE expects pretty much the same thing for the much-hyped Found Penny and the afterthought of Tom Gorzelanny.  Then, in front of those guys, the Cubs front three (Z/Demp/Ted) exceed the Cards' three (Carp/Wwrt/Lohse), mainly on account of the inning expectations.  That leaves us comparing Randy Wells to Rich Hill, which is interesting, because CHONE seems awfully optimistic on Rich and fairly pessimistic on Randy.  Bill James and Marcel are both more optimistic for Wells.

But let's stick with CHONE, because even with the pessimism on Wells, even with the optimism on Hill, even expecting a Guzman injury, even dinging Marshall's ERA as if he were to continue as a swingman, taking all that into account, the Cubs are keeping pace with the Cards.

But you can see why the Cubs want to add a veteran RH reliever.  (On the other hand, you can also see why DCF keeps pushing his anti-Grabowism, since Gaub doesn't project far off from Grabow; so the Cubs will want to make sure they find someone better than what we have.)

UPDATE

Alright, I'm adding Bill James projections for the rotation since there's been some whining about CHONE's projection for Chris Carpenter.  I tend to take Bill James' projections less seriously than CHONE's, but the main reason to use him here is that he gives Carp 195 IP and Wainwright 225 IP.  Taking the Cubs and Cards rotations on a whole, James gives the Cubs a 1.33 WHIP and a 3.88 ERA, while giving the Cards a 1.31 WHIP and a 3.90 ERA (although I added and divided those myself, so someone may want to check my math). There are some issues here.  Penny's projection was made as a Giant, but I think SF's park effect is more pitcher-friendly than StL's.  Someone correct me if I'm wrong and a significant adjustment needs to be made.  James also doesn't project Rich Hill.

Pitcher Age Team ERA G GS IP H ER HR BB SO
Zambrano,Carlos 29 ChC 3.60 29 29 180 155 72 15 80 151
Lilly,Ted 34 ChC 3.76 25 25 170 155 71 24 56 144
Dempster,Ryan 33 ChC 3.83 30 30 195 183 83 18 81 167
Wells,Randy 27 ChC 4.16 30 30 188 194 87 20 60 147
Gorzelanny,Tom 27 ChC 4.11 29 14 81 80 37 7 32 64
Marshall,Sean 27 ChC 4.06 51 6 71 70 32 8 27 53
885 837 382 336
Penny,Brad 32 SF 4.01 29 29 182 191 81 18 57 123
Carpenter,Chris 35 StL 2.95 28 28 195 169 64 13 42 154
Wainwright,Adam 28 StL 3.64 34 34 225 222 91 18 66 178
Lohse,Kyle 31 StL 4.35 24 22 118 128 57 14 36 72
Boggs,Mitchell 26 StL 5.40 22 10 75 85 45 7 36 50
Hawksworth,Blake 27 StL 5.00 43 0 54 59 30 7 20 38
849 854 368 257

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of SB Nation or Al Yellon, managing editor (unless it's a FanPost posted by Al). FanPost opinions are valued expressions of opinion by passionate and knowledgeable baseball fans.

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