The performance of Randy Wells this year will go a long way toward telling us how successful the Cubs will be. He wasn't even on the radar a year ago at this time, but wound up winning 12 games, finishing 10th in the NL in ERA (sixth in ERA+), and sixth in Rookie of the Year voting.
Many of you are worried that he'll regress. Last year, I compared Wells several times to Kevin Tapani, a pitcher with a similar style who also took several years to make the major leagues, and like Wells, had his first full major league season at age 26.
In that 1990 season, Tapani wasn't even quite as good as Wells last year, although he was 12-8. His 4.07 ERA was a run higher than Wells', and even in the higher-offense American League, his ERA+ was only 103. Like Wells, Tapani had excellent control (only 29 walks in 159.1 innings), and he finished fifth in the 1990 AL ROY balloting.
What happened the following year? Tapani won 16 games, dropped his ERA more than a full run (2.99), and finished fifth in AL Cy Young voting.
Oh, and his team, the Twins, won the World Series. We'd take that.
Post your projections for Randy Wells' 2010 season after the jump. (The form says Ryan Dempster, but the projections will go into the Randy Wells portion of the spreadsheet.)