The Blue Jays are in need of performance-anti-projection to face the season shortened


While the dispute is deeply discouraging between the MLB and the MLBPA rages on, the season 2020 shortens under our eyes. Each lost day delaying the possible start of the game and increases the likelihood that the commissioner Robert Manfred implement unilaterally a season of about 50 games.

There is no positive way to change the situation of the baseball fans and the health of the sport itself. What is happening now is nothing less than a debacle.

That said, the spectrum of the approaching season shortened has changed the competitive framework of the league. Over the past few years, a small group of teams has dominated the table of the playoffs, and the MLB has been plagued by a large cohort of reconstructive and recruits with almost no chance to shake the boat. This last group included the Toronto Blue Jays, and it seemed that this would again be in 2020, in spite of improvements in the team.

However, a calendar truncated allows more random and it is easier to consider the possibility that a team like the Blue Jays sneaking into the playoffs. It is now just think of the Blue Jays as a competitor to marginal in a way that was not before the compression of the calendar.

If we look at the Blue Jays in a different light, it is worth thinking about which is a barrier to a offer surprise in the playoffs. The common perception is that the Blue Jays have the star players – as their big three of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, and Cavan Biggio, as well as the new ace Hyun-Jin Ryu – but do not have the complementary parts to win consistently throughout the day .

Although it might be true that the stars in the long term of the team make the team in 2020, especially if you count Nate Pearson, this is still not as well as they projected. Nobody doubts the talent of Guerrero, Jr. and Bichette, but they still have a lot to prove at the highest level. The workload issues of Pearson could be discussed by a short season, but it also remains a wild card. Even the Ryu experienced a serious injury. The side players of the Blue Jays – as a duo captivating Danny Jansen and Reese McGuire, a rotation of veterans with emergency plans the competent, as well as a pen of lifters led by the elite closer Ken Giles – are safer bets to be solid that their stars should be large.

As a result, the war the most anticipated of the team, depending on the projection system ZiPS has just Bichette, who ranks 44th among the position players in MLB. Well, their pitcher is better screened (Ryu) ranks 47th. To be fair, these two players could be the breakers of the projection. Bichette is at an age where the improvements can be rapid and radical. The same could be sad for Vladdy. Ryu also has the ability to exceed the projections by simply remaining on the ground – a task made easier in a season shortened.

Even taking into account these caveats, the projection systems provide the best pre-season, and it should be noted that the top of the list of the Blue Jays seems dull to 2020 – production likely, if not in talent. It goes without saying that, since the current system of playoffs began in 2012, no team has played baseball in October without a player among the top 40 or a launcher of WAR.

So, the question becomes at what point your player and pitcher of the first plan must generally be good to reach the playoffs? I looked at the 80 teams in the playoffs that we have seen in the current format, and determine where their player and pitcher medium ranked in top rankings of the WAR. This is what it look like these figures from year to year.

Season Team ranking of the best pitchers AVG Ranking of the best batting AVG teams
2012 14,3 16,5
2013 16,8 13,1
2014 24 13,5
2015 17,7 21,6
2016 12,8 12,1
2017 12,5 9.1
2018 17,1 8,9
2019 17,1 16,3
Average 16,5 13,9

In general, the teams were required to have at least one player in the top 20, or a pitcher in the top 20 for the dance. In fact, there were only six teams who did not, and one team that had no pitcher or player position in the top 30 – former friends of the Blue Jays, the Texas Rangers 2015. These teams are instructive because they provide the plan to reach the post-season without the performance of top-level of your best guys.

There are really three ways to do this:

N ° 1: Be deep

Examples: The Red Sox of 2013 and Braves, 2013

Explanation: It is the most intuitive can flourish without star dominant on the mound or in the field. If the career semi-tragic Mike Trout has taught us anything, it is that baseball is not a game to a single. In 2013, the Red Sox and the Braves have made alignments extremely deep with no holes evident. The Red Sox, winners of the World Series, had seven great players in position after a WAR of 3.0 or more.

For reference, a WAR of 2.0 is considered to be an average season for a player of all the days. This means that 77 percent of this team was at least one and a half times as valuable as your used to the MLB average. For more details, in the course of the last four seasons combined, the Blue Jays have had six seasons of WAR more than three of their position players.

Similar to the Red Sox, the Braves had six position players WAR for more than three. When the two teams have been able to combine this quality from top to bottom with a throw of competent jurisdiction, it has been difficult to stop.

Each director-general wishes to create teams like this, but it is extremely difficult to do, especially if you have budget constraints.

N ° 2: Be Clutch

Examples: Orioles 2014, and the Yankees 2015

Explanation: In the course of a season, when you get your success and that your best runs tend to balance out to a certain extent. However, there are a few teams that are capable of mounting a run in a timely manner and to hit in a timely manner until the playoffs. Orioles 14, and the Yankees 15 were extremely good for hitting when they needed it and to put their opponents to the ground.

Team OPS in high leverage Rank MLB OPS in high leverage against Rank MLB
’14 Orioles 0,798 1 0,608 3rd
’15 Yankees 0,771 3rd 0,603 2nd

There is a lot of debate about the extent to which the clutch is a skill, and even if you think it is to 100%, it is extremely difficult to fill out a club-house of 25 guys who all have. This makes this model virtually impossible to follow.

N ° 3: Be lucky

Examples: Orioles 2012, Rangers 2015

Explanation: Sometimes, the gods of baseball are smiling just a team. Or, less poetically, sometimes a team outperforms seriously its percentage of victories pythagoriciennes and earn a lot more W than its differential of race would suggest. The Orioles of 2012 obtained a score of 93-67 despite having outclassed their opponents by just seven points. The Rangers have managed to make a mark of 88-74 despite a paltry differential of plus-18 points. Often, these performances are attributed to good arenas, but it is much more reasonable to attribute them to an excellent chance of sequencing.

If the Blue Jays are going to run a race surprise at the contention by 2020, the above methods are difficult to reproduce and operate for 7.5% of the teams in the playoffs. A much easier way to the post-season would involve one of their players exceeding their projections with a performance in small groups. Because of the young talent of the organization and the possibility that Ryu repeats his season 2019, this does not seem to be the worst bet.


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