Steamer Projects: Boston Red Sox Prospects

Earlier today, polite and Canadian and polite Marc Hulet published his 2014 organizational prospect list for the Boston Red Sox.

It goes without saying that, in composing such a list, Hulet has considered the overall future value those prospects might be expected to provide either to the Sox or whatever other organizations to which they might someday belong.

What this brief post concerns isn’t overall future value, at all, but rather such value as the prospects from Hulet’s list might provide were they to play, more or less, a full major-league season in 2014.

Other prospect projections: Arizona / Atlanta / Baltimore / Chicago AL / Chicago NL / Cincinnati / Cleveland / Colorado / Houston / Kansas City / Los Angeles AL / Miami / Milwaukee / Minnesota / New York AL / New York NL / Philadelphia / St. Louis / San Diego / San Francisco / Seattle / Tampa Bay / Texas / Toronto.

Steamer Projections: Boston Batting Prospects
Below are the current 2014 projections for select Boston batting prospects. All projections have been prorated to 550 plate appearances (and 450 for catchers) for sake of uniformity. Defensive figures (denoted by Def) account both for positional adjustment and UZR, and are presented relative to league average. Note that, in many cases, defensive value has been calculated entirely by positional adjustment based on the relevant player’s minor-league defensive starts in 2013. Prospects are listed in order of projected WAR. The symbol # denotes the relevant prospect’s ranking on Hulet’s list. Figures might diverge slightly (although not signficantly) from those which appear on player pages.

# Name Age POS PA BB% K% BABIP wRC+ BsR Off Def* WAR
1 Xander Bogaerts 21 SS 550 8.1% 19.5% .305 100 0 0 7 2.6
2 Jackie Bradley 24 CF 550 9.5% 19.5% .306 101 0 1 1 2.1
3 Garin Cecchini 23 3B 550 9.7% 17.3% .311 95 0 -3 2 1.8
10 Christian Vazquez 23 C 450 8.1% 15.1% .282 83 0 -9 8 1.5
14 Deven Marrero 23 SS 550 7.1% 17.5% .291 70 1 -19 6 0.6
4 Mookie Betts 21 2B 550 7.1% 12.1% .262 70 0 -19 2 0.2
5 Blake Swihart 22 C 450 5.7% 17.3% .266 55 0 -23 8 0.0
12 Manuel Margot 19 CF 550 4.8% 17.6% .231 33 0 -42 2 -2.2

Steamer Projections: Boston Pitching Prospects
Below are the 2014 projections for select Boston pitching prospects. Projections for starting pitchers have been prorated to 150 innings; for relievers, to 50 innings. Prospects are listed in order of projected WAR, which has been calculated by using kwERA — that is, an ERA estimator which utilizes only strikeouts and walks — so as to remove the vagaries of park effects, and probably also because the author has no idea what he’s doing. Listed ages are as of June 30, 2014. The symbol # denotes the relevant prospect’s ranking on Hulet’s list. Figures might diverge slightly (although not signficantly) from those which appear on player pages.

# Name Age Hand IP K% BB% kwERA kwERA- WAR
7 Matt Barnes 24 RHP 150 21.1% 10.1% 3.99 103 1.7
15 Brandon Workman 25 RHP 100 21.1% 7.8% 3.71 96 1.5
6 Henry Owens 21 LHP 150 22.0% 13.4% 4.28 111 1.1
9 Allen Webster 24 RHP 150 18.3% 11.1% 4.45 115 0.8
13 Anthony Ranaudo 24 RHP 150 16.6% 10.5% 4.58 118 0.6

• So far as major-league-ready batting talent is concerned, it would appear as though only the St. Louis Cardinals compare favorably to Boston among the clubs considered thus far in this ongoing series. Nor, in the case of the Red Sox, is this merely an idle exercise: the two prospects projected most favorably by Steamer, shortstop Xander Bogaerts and center fielder Jackie Bradley, are expected to begin the season as starters for the parent club. Which is to say, there’ll be an opportunity rather early in the season to assess how well Steamer has anticipated the two specific data points which those players represent.

• Looking broadly at the batters which the Red Sox appear to be developing, it seems as though — again, generally speaking — it seems as though there’s a tendency towards players who, despite a lack of raw power, perhaps, offer strong contact skills, an understanding of the strike zone, and the ability to man a position on the more challenging end of the defensive spectrum. Indeed, there appear to be a collection of hitters here who could produce wins at an entirely acceptable rate without every recording a 20-homer season.

• With regard to the pitchers included here, the reader will note that Brandon Workman’s line is prorated neither to 150 innings (the generic prorated total for starters) nor 50 innings (the prorated total for relievers). Because Workman split his time between those two kinds of roles last year, is why that is — and why the author has therefore just prorated him to 100 innings, so that no one can be happy, ultimately.

Carson Cistulli has published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.

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Sean C
10 years ago

Interesting that it projects Bradley Jr for a higher wRC+ than Bogaerts. Even though it’s only by one point, I would bet against that.