2022 ZiPS Projections: Kansas City Royals

After having typically appeared in the hallowed pages of Baseball Think Factory, Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections have now been released at FanGraphs for a decade. The exercise continues this offseason. Below are the projections for the Kansas City Royals.

Batters

Let’s start with the good news first: Kansas City’s offense has several very interesting offensive players in the high minors. Then there’s the bad news: Kansas City’s offense has several very interesting offensive players in the high minors. That Bobby Witt Jr. projects well is not a surprise, but Nick Pratto, MJ Melendez, and Vinnie Pasquantino all crushed the feckless assortment of minor league pitchers they faced, and you have to feel much better about the long-term outlook of all three in the majors. How does this quartet of young players transition from terrorizing minor leaguers and start threatening major league ones? That’s a trickier question, given the contours of the roster.

One risk facing the Royals is that Witt plays third base, with Nicky Lopez remaining the shortstop. This would the same mistake that the Orioles made some years ago with Manny Machado and J.J. Hardy; for a handful of runs, the team would needlessly be lowering the ceiling on a franchise player. Baltimore had the excuse of being a good team in a tough division, in which absolutely maximizing wins had a great deal of value. Not giving Witt every opportunity to be a foundational talent at shortstop so that the Royals can be a .480 team instead of a .478 one doesn’t feel like it has the same upside. In five years, he could be their Carlos Correa. In five years, the Rockies will be paying Lopez $10 million a year to put up 1.1 WAR and block the latest iteration of Brendan Rodgers or Ryan McMahon.

Pratto may be able to push Carlos Santana off first reasonably quickly, though that’s probably due more to his contract expiring than the Royals embracing the whole “sunk cost” concept. But will they ever commit to moving Salvador Perez to full-time DH duty to make room for Melendez? Is Pasquantino simply a future starter for the Rays or Padres?

This question is crucial, because it’s those four that could possibly give the offense some actual upside in the next three or four years. If you manage to fit all of them in the lineup, if Perez continues to age well, and if you get some luck with Adalberto Mondesi’s health, all of a sudden, you have a pretty interesting core — one that’s actually enhanced by the Royals filling holes with whatever random inexpensive veterans are unemployed in March. As it is, it’s a particularly unambitious franchise that just kept running Michael A. Taylor and Hunter Dozier out there because they existed and nobody had any better ideas.

(One note: The Danny Tartabull comp for Witt might seem odd, but remember, these are offensive comps. If Tartabull could have played shortstop in the majors for real rather than theoretically, we’d likely have a very different discussion about his career.)

Pitchers

Maximizing the upside in the offense is vital, because the pitching staff doesn’t look to have that high a ceiling. The rotation looks surprisingly competent, with Brady Singer, Mike Minor, Brad Keller, and Kris Bubic all projecting as generally average starters. But there’s not really some pie-in-the-sky performance level out there for this quartet; among pitchers projected between 1.5–2.5 WAR in 2022 so far, ZiPS has them in the lowest quartile for the probability of having a four-win season. Where ZiPS does see potential is from Carlos Hernández, but it remains to be seen how aggressively Kansas City uses him in the rotation next season. Asa Lacy and Daniel Lynch both also have upside per ZiPS, though the projections don’t think that will be a 2022 thing. It would be a lot of fun to see this team invest in Carlos Rodón, a risky pitcher who has that serious short-term upside. Do I expect that to happen? I do not.

ZiPS remains decidedly meh on the team’s bullpen, with generally unenthusiastic projections once you get past the first handful of relievers. Domingo Tapia’s forecast has unusually wide error bars; despite a projected ERA+ of 90, ZiPS has him with the third-best chance of a 150 ERA+ of any reliever on the team, behind just Scott Barlow and Dylan Coleman. The explosive near-century fastball is exciting; the lapses in command and his inability to punch out batters in proportion to that explosiveness are not. ZiPS is more excited about Coleman, who also throws very hard, and while he also has lapses in command from time to time, batters incompetently swing through his stuff (his swinging-strike rate in the minors was nearly twice that of Tapia’s on the same team).

Based on the roster the Royals have now, put me in the mid-to-high 70s in wins, with a real chance of hitting .500 if they show some aggression with promotions and get a bit of luck. I don’t see them making the rest of the division uncomfortable, and I think the Tigers are more likely to annoy the White Sox in the long term. They can still prove me wrong, though.

Ballpark graphic courtesy Eephus League. Depth charts constructed by way of those listed here.

Batters – Standard
Player B Age PO PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS
Bobby Witt Jr. R 22 SS 569 515 67 138 27 3 21 64 38 125 23 7
Whit Merrifield R 33 2B 692 641 91 182 38 5 11 64 39 102 32 7
Salvador Perez R 32 C 574 538 67 140 24 0 34 94 21 142 1 0
Nicky Lopez L 27 SS 576 515 69 140 23 5 4 40 45 75 16 4
Nick Pratto L 23 1B 542 474 66 118 24 4 24 67 50 151 8 3
MJ Melendez L 23 C 517 460 61 112 24 2 21 64 44 126 2 4
Adalberto Mondesi B 26 SS 380 355 49 88 18 6 12 45 18 109 36 6
Andrew Benintendi L 27 LF 577 518 72 141 32 4 16 68 47 110 10 6
Vinnie Pasquantino L 24 1B 487 440 63 120 27 2 18 56 35 76 3 0
Kyle Isbel L 25 CF 489 445 64 110 23 4 12 47 34 113 17 4
Edward Olivares R 26 CF 484 444 55 115 19 3 14 49 29 96 14 6
Clay Dungan L 26 2B 470 433 67 115 19 2 6 41 26 72 14 5
Ryan McBroom R 30 1B 506 460 62 117 22 1 20 60 36 121 2 2
Michael Massey L 24 2B 417 385 52 97 18 1 13 47 20 71 7 1
Ivan Castillo B 27 2B 458 428 55 113 21 3 5 38 21 81 9 5
Michael A. Taylor R 31 CF 461 424 50 97 20 2 11 43 29 131 13 6
Freddy Fermin R 27 C 328 306 41 76 14 0 7 32 18 61 1 1
Jimmy Govern R 25 3B 336 310 41 74 18 1 7 33 19 66 4 1
Hanser Alberto R 29 3B 420 400 44 113 22 2 5 35 9 40 4 2
Cam Gallagher R 29 C 180 164 17 41 9 0 3 13 12 30 0 0
Dairon Blanco R 29 CF 459 427 49 102 18 5 8 38 25 109 23 8
Nick Loftin R 23 SS 443 410 64 106 20 2 9 45 26 68 6 1
Carlos Santana B 36 1B 542 463 60 107 18 0 16 59 73 86 2 0
Hunter Dozier R 30 RF 547 492 60 117 26 6 20 61 47 147 4 3
Logan Porter R 26 C 280 251 35 57 11 0 9 30 23 72 0 0
Emmanuel Rivera R 26 3B 460 427 51 105 20 2 10 45 24 91 4 1
Ryan O’Hearn L 28 RF 419 378 41 86 18 2 16 51 35 109 2 0
Gabriel Cancel R 25 2B 409 378 43 85 21 1 12 44 23 119 13 3
Travis Jones R 26 3B 282 250 31 55 9 1 5 20 23 78 8 3
Tyler Gentry R 23 RF 217 192 30 42 9 0 5 21 17 59 3 0
Sebastian Rivero R 23 C 251 232 25 50 11 1 4 21 13 66 2 1
Brewer Hicklen R 26 LF 441 398 52 84 14 3 12 41 32 145 24 6
Gavin Stupienski L 28 1B 131 118 16 26 5 0 3 13 10 28 0 0
JaCoby Jones R 30 CF 396 365 45 83 20 3 10 34 24 121 5 4
Angelo Castellano R 27 2B 333 302 34 63 12 1 6 27 20 81 6 3
Anderson Miller L 28 RF 294 272 30 58 10 2 7 26 17 81 7 3
Erick Mejia B 27 RF 447 408 50 96 18 3 6 38 30 90 9 5
Seuly Matias R 23 RF 315 289 32 55 11 2 12 34 19 100 4 1
Nathan Eaton R 25 3B 435 402 47 87 19 2 6 35 27 106 13 2
Rudy Martin L 26 RF 340 306 38 61 11 2 7 28 27 111 14 5
Bubba Starling R 29 CF 354 331 37 74 13 1 8 28 19 88 4 1
Kevin Merrell L 26 2B 360 336 31 70 12 3 3 23 18 96 10 3

Batters – Advanced
Player BA OBP SLG OPS+ ISO BABIP RC/27 Def WAR No. 1 Comp
Bobby Witt Jr. .268 .323 .454 108 .186 .317 5.6 4 3.0 Danny Tartabull
Whit Merrifield .284 .327 .410 98 .126 .324 5.4 6 2.8 Steve Sax
Salvador Perez .260 .300 .494 110 .234 .293 5.4 0 2.8 Lance Parrish
Nicky Lopez .272 .334 .359 89 .087 .312 4.6 9 2.4 Jason Bartlett
Nick Pratto .249 .325 .468 112 .219 .314 5.5 6 2.0 Sid Bream
MJ Melendez .243 .311 .441 101 .198 .291 4.8 1 1.9 Todd Zeile
Adalberto Mondesi .248 .285 .434 91 .186 .325 5.2 4 1.7 Dave Concepcion
Andrew Benintendi .272 .334 .442 108 .170 .319 5.4 2 1.6 Garry Smith
Vinnie Pasquantino .273 .329 .466 112 .193 .295 5.8 3 1.5 J.T. Snow
Kyle Isbel .247 .308 .398 90 .151 .306 4.6 2 1.1 Sean Henry
Edward Olivares .259 .313 .410 94 .151 .302 4.7 -1 1.0 Paul Herring
Clay Dungan .266 .314 .360 83 .095 .307 4.3 3 0.8 Rob Butler
Ryan McBroom .254 .312 .437 100 .183 .304 4.9 1 0.7 Randy Braun
Michael Massey .252 .293 .405 87 .153 .279 4.4 0 0.6 Dean Kelley
Ivan Castillo .264 .299 .362 78 .098 .316 3.9 6 0.6 Jose Vizcaino
Michael A. Taylor .229 .281 .363 73 .134 .305 3.6 8 0.6 T.J. Bohn
Freddy Fermin .248 .294 .363 77 .114 .290 3.8 3 0.6 Gary Bennett
Jimmy Govern .239 .293 .371 79 .132 .283 3.9 4 0.6 Gary Scott
Hanser Alberto .283 .303 .385 85 .103 .304 4.4 2 0.6 Garth Iorg
Cam Gallagher .250 .303 .360 79 .110 .290 3.9 3 0.5 Raul Chavez
Dairon Blanco .239 .288 .361 75 .122 .303 3.9 4 0.4 Tommy Murphy
Nick Loftin .259 .310 .383 87 .124 .291 4.4 -7 0.3 Pete Rose Jr.
Carlos Santana .231 .336 .374 93 .143 .252 4.5 -1 0.3 Rafael Palmeiro
Hunter Dozier .238 .307 .437 99 .199 .298 4.7 -5 0.2 Jason Cooper
Logan Porter .227 .301 .378 83 .151 .282 4.0 -4 0.2 Alberto Castillo
Emmanuel Rivera .246 .288 .372 78 .126 .291 3.9 0 0.1 Kevin Howard
Ryan O’Hearn .228 .296 .413 89 .185 .277 4.3 -1 0.1 Ryan Jones
Gabriel Cancel .225 .275 .381 75 .156 .296 3.8 0 0.0 Doug Gilcrease
Travis Jones .220 .305 .324 71 .104 .299 3.5 0 -0.1 Sharnol Adriana
Tyler Gentry .219 .293 .344 72 .125 .289 3.6 1 -0.2 Todd Sears
Sebastian Rivero .216 .268 .323 60 .108 .284 3.0 0 -0.3 Chris Stewart
Brewer Hicklen .211 .280 .352 70 .141 .299 3.7 3 -0.3 Steve Martin
Gavin Stupienski .220 .285 .339 69 .119 .264 3.3 0 -0.4 Jim O’Dell
JaCoby Jones .227 .285 .381 79 .153 .312 3.7 -5 -0.4 Cory Aldridge 알드리지
Angelo Castellano .209 .262 .315 56 .106 .265 2.8 4 -0.4 Luis Alvarado
Anderson Miller .213 .264 .342 63 .129 .277 3.1 3 -0.6 Jason Fitzgerald
Erick Mejia .235 .289 .338 70 .103 .288 3.4 3 -0.6 Rick Parker
Seuly Matias .190 .252 .367 65 .176 .243 3.1 1 -0.7 Brett Casper
Nathan Eaton .216 .271 .318 60 .102 .279 3.2 -2 -0.9 Chris Truby
Rudy Martin .199 .270 .317 59 .118 .287 3.0 1 -1.0 Ethan Faggett
Bubba Starling .224 .266 .341 63 .118 .281 3.2 -5 -1.0 Jeff Barry
Kevin Merrell .208 .251 .289 46 .080 .283 2.6 0 -1.3 Jose Alguacil

Pitchers – Standard
Player T Age W L ERA G GS IP H ER HR BB SO FIP
Brady Singer R 25 9 8 4.26 29 29 139.3 142 66 17 53 133 4.19
Brad Keller R 26 10 10 4.44 26 26 144.0 145 71 17 61 118 4.47
Mike Minor L 34 10 9 4.53 27 27 153.0 151 77 24 42 137 4.35
Kris Bubic L 24 7 7 4.80 30 22 135.0 133 72 20 58 120 4.77
Jackson Kowar R 25 9 10 4.80 27 25 120.0 123 64 17 50 117 4.50
Angel Zerpa L 22 5 5 4.60 23 23 90.0 94 46 11 31 72 4.34
Scott Barlow R 29 4 3 3.60 67 0 70.0 58 28 8 30 93 3.38
Jon Heasley R 25 6 6 4.90 25 23 108.3 117 59 15 40 83 4.75
Jakob Junis R 29 7 7 4.92 27 22 111.7 121 61 20 34 103 4.77
Carlos Hernández R 25 5 6 4.75 29 17 102.3 99 54 14 47 94 4.68
Jonathan Bowlan R 25 3 3 4.75 17 16 89.0 94 47 13 28 70 4.58
Emilio Marquez L 24 4 4 4.42 25 7 71.3 73 35 10 21 59 4.40
Daniel Lynch L 25 7 8 5.14 25 25 119.0 130 68 19 46 99 4.93
Drew Parrish L 24 5 5 4.90 22 17 86.3 90 47 14 29 72 4.80
Marcelo Martinez L 25 7 8 5.15 25 23 110.0 122 63 18 37 84 4.93
Dylan Coleman R 25 4 3 3.81 48 0 56.7 51 24 6 24 62 3.80
Josh Staumont R 28 4 3 4.22 59 3 64.0 52 30 7 38 77 4.12
Austin Cox L 25 4 4 5.16 19 18 82.0 90 47 11 34 56 4.95
Joel Payamps R 28 5 4 4.61 39 6 70.3 74 36 10 20 59 4.33
Taylor Clarke R 29 5 5 4.98 38 11 85.0 90 47 13 31 71 4.70
Ronald Bolaños R 25 5 6 5.24 24 20 87.7 92 51 12 47 74 5.05
Andres Nunez R 26 4 4 4.41 44 1 69.3 72 34 8 24 56 4.28
Richard Lovelady L 26 2 2 4.08 36 0 39.7 38 18 5 13 38 4.04
Jake Brentz L 27 3 3 4.47 65 0 58.3 50 29 7 34 70 4.35
Jace Vines R 27 5 6 5.09 36 6 74.3 81 42 9 33 53 4.82
Alec Marsh R 24 2 2 5.00 8 8 27.0 27 15 4 11 27 4.44
Yefri Del Rosario R 22 3 3 5.35 27 11 72.3 79 43 10 34 53 5.09
Gabe Speier L 27 2 2 4.53 54 0 57.7 59 29 8 20 53 4.34
Josh Dye L 25 3 3 4.62 41 0 62.3 64 32 8 24 51 4.56
Kyle Zimmer R 30 3 3 4.77 58 2 54.7 52 29 6 32 51 4.55
Greg Holland R 36 3 3 4.66 50 0 46.3 43 24 6 24 48 4.41
Jesse Hahn R 32 1 1 4.50 9 3 8.0 7 4 1 5 10 4.18
Andres Sotillet R 25 3 3 4.98 36 2 56.0 60 31 7 27 41 4.95
Stephen Woods Jr. R 27 4 6 5.70 17 9 60.0 63 38 9 38 45 5.73
Anthony Swarzak 스와잭 R 36 2 2 4.91 32 0 29.3 31 16 5 11 26 4.85
Daniel Tillo L 26 4 6 5.76 25 16 79.7 92 51 10 47 46 5.62
Asa Lacy L 23 3 5 5.87 15 15 53.7 55 35 8 38 48 5.62
Peyton Gray R 27 3 3 4.91 23 0 40.3 40 22 6 18 38 4.72
Tyler Zuber R 27 4 4 4.92 56 0 53.0 50 29 8 29 57 4.80
Domingo Tapia R 30 3 4 5.03 53 1 59.0 60 33 8 30 48 4.94
Jake Kalish L 30 4 6 5.74 28 13 95.7 111 61 22 28 76 5.62
Mike Shawaryn R 27 3 4 5.88 21 13 75.0 83 49 14 37 60 5.65
Eddie Butler 버틀러 R 31 4 6 5.86 26 12 73.7 87 48 13 28 44 5.58
Foster Griffin L 26 4 6 6.00 20 19 87.0 103 58 16 37 60 5.61
Ruben Ramirez R 23 0 1 5.79 12 0 18.7 20 12 3 10 14 5.38
Scott Blewett R 26 4 7 5.93 26 15 91.0 107 60 17 42 64 5.75
Zach Willeman R 26 3 4 5.50 29 2 55.7 59 34 7 34 42 5.35
Ervin Santana R 39 2 3 5.82 30 7 68.0 76 44 14 24 53 5.49
Collin Snider R 26 4 5 5.40 44 1 65.0 75 39 10 22 42 5.09
Wade Davis R 36 2 2 5.57 43 0 42.0 42 26 7 22 40 5.16
Carlos Sanabria R 25 3 3 5.62 41 0 57.7 59 36 9 36 49 5.54
Chance Adams R 27 3 4 6.33 25 14 79.7 91 56 17 39 68 5.87

Pitchers – Advanced
Player K/9 BB/9 HR/9 BB% K% BABIP ERA+ ERA- WAR No. 1 Comp
Brady Singer 8.6 3.4 1.1 8.7% 21.7% .313 107 94 2.1 Jason Jennings
Brad Keller 7.4 3.8 1.1 9.6% 18.6% .297 103 97 2.0 Jamey Wright
Mike Minor 8.1 2.5 1.4 6.5% 21.2% .290 100 100 1.9 Floyd Bannister
Kris Bubic 8.0 3.9 1.3 9.8% 20.2% .291 95 105 1.2 Brian Bark
Jackson Kowar 8.8 3.8 1.3 9.4% 22.0% .311 95 105 1.2 John Maine
Angel Zerpa 7.2 3.1 1.1 7.9% 18.4% .303 99 101 1.1 Sean Burnett
Scott Barlow 12.0 3.9 1.0 10.1% 31.4% .307 126 79 1.0 Paul Shuey
Jon Heasley 6.9 3.3 1.2 8.3% 17.3% .304 93 108 1.0 Jose Guzman
Jakob Junis 8.3 2.7 1.6 7.0% 21.1% .311 93 108 0.9 Brad Brink
Carlos Hernández 8.3 4.1 1.2 10.4% 20.8% .292 96 104 0.9 Scott Scudder
Jonathan Bowlan 7.1 2.8 1.3 7.3% 18.1% .299 96 104 0.9 Mike Williams
Emilio Marquez 7.4 2.6 1.3 6.8% 19.2% .296 103 97 0.8 Mark Peterson
Daniel Lynch 7.5 3.5 1.4 8.7% 18.6% .308 89 113 0.8 Jason Stanford
Drew Parrish 7.5 3.0 1.5 7.7% 19.1% .296 93 108 0.7 Tom Urbani
Marcelo Martinez 6.9 3.0 1.5 7.6% 17.3% .304 88 113 0.7 Eddie Priest
Dylan Coleman 9.8 3.8 1.0 9.8% 25.4% .302 119 84 0.6 Bobby Jenks
Josh Staumont 10.8 5.3 1.0 13.5% 27.4% .288 108 93 0.6 Eric Plunk
Austin Cox 6.1 3.7 1.2 9.2% 15.2% .300 88 113 0.5 Nate Robertson
Joel Payamps 7.5 2.6 1.3 6.6% 19.5% .303 99 101 0.5 Joseph Haines
Taylor Clarke 7.5 3.3 1.4 8.3% 19.0% .302 91 109 0.5 Carlos Reyes
Ronald Bolaños 7.6 4.8 1.2 11.7% 18.5% .304 87 115 0.5 Denny Bautista 바티스타
Andres Nunez 7.3 3.1 1.0 7.9% 18.5% .303 103 97 0.4 David Wilhelmi
Richard Lovelady 8.6 2.9 1.1 7.7% 22.5% .297 111 90 0.3 Anthony Shumaker
Jake Brentz 10.8 5.2 1.1 13.1% 26.9% .299 102 98 0.2 Mitch Williams
Jace Vines 6.4 4.0 1.1 9.9% 15.8% .305 90 112 0.2 Andy Mitchell
Alec Marsh 9.0 3.7 1.3 9.3% 22.9% .307 91 110 0.2 Bob Sebra
Yefri Del Rosario 6.6 4.2 1.2 10.4% 16.2% .304 85 118 0.2 Ryan Sadowski 사도스키
Gabe Speier 8.3 3.1 1.2 8.0% 21.1% .305 101 99 0.2 Pedro Feliciano
Josh Dye 7.4 3.5 1.2 8.8% 18.6% .299 99 102 0.1 Bill Moloney
Kyle Zimmer 8.4 5.3 1.0 13.1% 20.8% .297 95 105 0.1 John Wyatt
Greg Holland 9.3 4.7 1.2 11.8% 23.5% .296 98 102 0.1 Toby Borland
Jesse Hahn 11.3 5.6 1.1 13.9% 27.8% .300 101 99 0.1 Juan Berenguer
Andres Sotillet 6.6 4.3 1.1 10.6% 16.1% .301 91 109 0.1 Julio DePaula 데폴라
Stephen Woods Jr. 6.8 5.7 1.4 13.6% 16.1% .293 80 125 0.0 Mike Zimmerman
Anthony Swarzak 8.0 3.4 1.5 8.5% 20.2% .302 93 108 0.0 Terry Clark
Daniel Tillo 5.2 5.3 1.1 12.5% 12.2% .306 79 127 0.0 Matt Coenen
Asa Lacy 8.0 6.4 1.3 15.0% 19.0% .301 78 129 0.0 Dan Chergey
Peyton Gray 8.5 4.0 1.3 10.1% 21.3% .298 93 108 0.0 Franklin Bravo
Tyler Zuber 9.7 4.9 1.4 12.2% 23.9% .298 92 108 0.0 Jack Meyer
Domingo Tapia 7.3 4.6 1.2 11.3% 18.1% .294 90 111 -0.1 Miguel Saladin
Jake Kalish 7.1 2.6 2.1 6.6% 17.9% .304 79 126 -0.1 Mark Hendrickson
Mike Shawaryn 7.2 4.4 1.7 10.8% 17.5% .303 77 129 -0.1 Rich Croushore
Eddie Butler 5.4 3.4 1.6 8.4% 13.2% .302 78 129 -0.2 Jason Roach
Foster Griffin 6.2 3.8 1.7 9.3% 15.1% .310 76 132 -0.2 Mark Wohlers
Ruben Ramirez 6.8 4.8 1.4 11.8% 16.5% .293 79 127 -0.2 Rick Krivda
Scott Blewett 6.3 4.2 1.7 10.0% 15.2% .308 77 130 -0.2 Jerrod Riggan
Zach Willeman 6.8 5.5 1.1 13.1% 16.2% .301 83 121 -0.2 Jason Gilfillan
Ervin Santana 7.0 3.2 1.9 7.9% 17.5% .298 78 128 -0.2 Boom-Boom Beck
Collin Snider 5.8 3.0 1.4 7.6% 14.4% .305 84 119 -0.3 Tim McNab
Wade Davis 8.6 4.7 1.5 11.6% 21.2% .297 82 122 -0.3 Mike Fetters
Carlos Sanabria 7.6 5.6 1.4 13.5% 18.4% .294 81 123 -0.4 Jason Gilfillan
Chance Adams 7.7 4.4 1.9 10.6% 18.5% .310 72 139 -0.5 Mike Butcher

Players are listed with their most recent teams wherever possible. This includes players who are unsigned, players who will miss 2022 due to injury, and players who were released in 2021. So yes, if you see Joe Schmoe, who quit baseball back in August to form a big band orchestra that only plays nu-metal versions of baroque cantatas, he’s still listed here intentionally. ZiPS is assuming a league with an ERA of 4.36, similar to the post-June substance-enforcement environment.

Both hitters and pitchers are ranked by projected zWAR, which is to say, WAR values as calculated by me, Dan Szymborski, whose surname is spelled with a z. WAR values might differ slightly from those that appear in the full release of ZiPS. Finally, I will advise anyone against — and might karate chop anyone guilty of — merely adding up WAR totals on a depth chart to produce projected team WAR. ZiPS is assuming that the designated hitter will continue in force in 2022.

ZiPS is agnostic about future playing time by design. For more information about ZiPS, please refer to this article, or get angry at Dan on Twitter.





Dan Szymborski is a senior writer for FanGraphs and the developer of the ZiPS projection system. He was a writer for ESPN.com from 2010-2018, a regular guest on a number of radio shows and podcasts, and a voting BBWAA member. He also maintains a terrible Twitter account at @DSzymborski.

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Cave Dameron
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Cave Dameron

Thank you Dan, very cool!