The Other Fifteen

Eighty-five percent of the f---in' world is working. The other fifteen come out here.


More on WAR

A few additional notes on the WAR depth chart I posted the other day.

If you'd like to go ahead and calculate WAR yourself, then go to Sean Smith's stat site; my WAR calculation spreadsheet is available for download there. I'd like to thank Sean for making that available.

Unlike with the version on EditGrid, it's not autopopulated with Cubs data - it is, however, set up to make it scaldingly easy to figure out the WAR for any player, NL or AL. Download the CHONE projections and look up the defense projections available there for all the data you need.

Maddog commented on the WAR chart, and I thought I should go ahead and clarify a few things.

First, like I said there, pitcher hitting is already accounted for in the replacement level - all NL teams have pitchers hitting, so unless you think the Cubs pitchers are going to hit significantly worse than other teams its a nonissue.

The other issue is the total amount of plate appearances. I projected 6145 plate appearances for the Cubs; last season the Cubs; last year the Cubs had 6268 plate appearances. So by that standard it would appear I'm not leaving enough room for the 400 or so PAs by pitchers, or for replacement level hitting.

And... I didn't. But it's not as bad as you might think, because plate appearances are a function of On-Base Percentage - you can "buy" more plate appearances for your team by making fewer outs per plate appearance. I'm expecting rougly 2,400 plate appearances out of the Cubs for next season, based on their increased OBP.

So, I still need to take 200-300 PAs off the depth chart, and I'll work on that for tomorrow.

And maddog is right - someone is going to provide stats that look below replacement level, at some point, for the Cubs next season. But that's completely irrelevant, because remember, replacement level is an average of a group of players - some are going to fall above/below the actual replacement line, both as a function of sample size and of distribution.

Put another way - the Cubs gave playing time to several players last season that could be described as "replacement level," given the definition I'm using:
  • Ryan Theriot
  • Mike Fontenot
  • Angel Pagan
  • Koyie Hill
  • Rob Bowen
  • Ronny Cedeno
  • Sam Fuld

You can add or subtract from that list as you please; doesn't really bother me any. Some of them outperformed the replacement baseline, and some of them underperformed the replacement baseline. When you average that out, you get replacement level production. You don't need to specifically account for below replacement player production.

But you do need to give below-replacement players a share of the plate appearances, which again, I didn't do well enough. So I will revise the chart tomorrow.

Also, I'm planning on doing positional breakdowns starting tomorrow, so we can start to look at some chaining issues, see how injury might affect the team, and take a look at positions where the team might have some unanswered questions.

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