FanPost

Making Up Metrics and Comparing '14 to '09 and '13

Kevork Djansezian

Thinking about comparisons between 2009, 2013, and 2014 that we have been having in a couple different threads (like here...or here), I got to wondering, by my own juvenile understanding of baseball metrics, how the first-half lineups of the '09 and '13 teams stacked up against the first half team of '14. I decided to use WAA/WAR as a basic tool for comparison and used the starters at each position for the first 64 games of each season and their eventual totals.

Now, there are obviously some problems. The Twins platooned at some positions, changed positions often, or lost players due to injuries. To combat that as best I could for past seasons, I combined positions were one player did not start at least 60% of the games or take over the position full-time. It's an arbitrary stat, but this is an arbitrary exercise I just did for shits and giggles. Take that for what it's worth.

I took relievers on most appearances. Can you tell I got bored after a while?

Without further ado, the numbers:

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Pos. WAA WAR WAA WAR WAA WAR
SP -0.1 1.6 -1.0 -0.3 -1.5 -0.2
SP -1.7 -0.3 -1.0 -0.4 1.3 3.2
SP -2.2 -1.0 1.4 2.2 0.1 1.0
SP 0.5 1.5 0.7 1.3 -1.0 -0.1
SP -3.0* -1.5 0.1 0.5 1.4 3.3
RP -0.1 0.4 0.6 0.9 1.6 2.5
RP 0.0 0.4 -0.7 -0.5 1.5 2.3
RP 0.0 0.5 0.3 0.6 -0.1 0.3
RP -0.4 0.1 0.1 0.3 -0.2 -0.1
RP -0.4 0.3 -0.5 -0.5 0.0 0.5
RP 1.0 1.3 0.2 0.3 -0.2 0.1
RP 1.0 1.7 -0.2 0.1 0.8 1.5
RP 1.2 2.1 0.0 0.2 1.6 2.9
C 3.7 5.3 0.6 1.3 5.7 7.8
1B 1.6 3.8 -0.4 0.5 1.4 3.5
2B 1.6 3.8 1.5 2.5 -2.4 -1.5
3B 0.0 1.8 0.5 1.4 1.0** 2.3
SS 0.3 1.8 0.7 1.3 -2.3*** -0.7
LF -1.0 0.6 0.9 1.2 -2.1 -0.6
CF -0.7 0.4 1.1 1.4 -0.7 0.5
RF -0.5 0.6 0.4 0.7 0.4 2.8
DH -1.2 0.7 -0.3 0.2 1.4 3.5
1.6 26.9 5.0 31.4**** 7.7 34.8


Well, what do you think? A pretty ugly total, a middling total with some potential in the rotation but not a lot in the lineup, and a nice lineup with a feast-or-famine pitching staff. Your guesses are probably right:

Year 3: 2009 - 87 wins / 34.8 WAR = 2.5 wins per WAR (hereby referred to as an Mean Net Win, or MNW)

Year 2: 2014 - ? wins / 31.4 = ? MNW

Year 1: 2013 - 66 wins / 26.9 WAR = 2.45 MNW

Using that extremely scientific and not at all questionable logic (shut UP, you), I'm multiplying 31.4 WAR for this season (projected) by the average of the two MNWs, about 2.475, to yield...

77.715 wins.

Being an irascible homer like I am (or, y'know, just using my 3rd-grade rounding skills), I will adjust that upwards to...

78 wins.

We can stop watching the rest of the year -- I've basically figured it out. It's interesting, I guess, to note that I don't have Kendrys Morales, arguably the biggest acquisition of any of these 3 years, factored in. We'll see where that leads.

So, TT, what do you think? Feel free to critique my methods, add your own, or agree with me and declare me supreme ruler of made-up baseball metrics. This was done on a lark, and right now I'm pretty OK with what it portends for our favorite club!

*Taken as a sum of Pedro Hernandez, PJ Walters, and Liam Hendriks, who shared the role mostly equally.
**Crede was replaced second-half by a combination of Matt Tolbert (-0.3/+0.5) and Brian Buscher (-0.4/+0.2), a downgrade at that position.
***Brendan Harris had just replaced Nick Punto (-1.0/+0.6) and continued on his way with those gems of numbers. Not the best midstream change.
****To calculate these values for full-season, I multiplied out by 2.54 for a 163-game season. That's not a perfect way of doing it, but this is (1) quick, (2) dirty, and (3) pretty laughably bad math on my part.
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