Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
October 12, 2004
BASEBALL: How The Yanks and Sox Got Here

Before the season, I evaluated each of the teams around the majors based on Established Win Shares Levels (see here for a discussion of EWSL and here for the team method). Over the offseason, I'll be taking a look back at how teams matched up against those established levels, both to explain where things went right or wrong and to fine-tune EWSL's usefulness (within its natural limitations) as a predictive tool. For now, in advance of their playoff showdown, let's look at how the Yankees and Red Sox stacked up to their preseason predictions. You'll note some variance from the preseason numbers I ran because I did the Yankees before the A-Rod trade.

New York Yankees

Adjusted EWSL: 323.3 (108 wins)
Unadjusted EWSL: 310.3 (103 wins)
Weighted Age: 32.721

Actual Record: 101 wins

PosPlayerEWSL2004Age
CJPosada252032
1BJGiambi32833
2BMCairo31330
SSDJeter222630
3BARodriguez343028
RFGSheffield313135
CFKLofton18737
LFHMatsui*192930
DHBWilliams211635
C2JFlaherty5336
INFEWilson2530
OFRSierra6938
13TClark5832
SP1MMussina181035
SP2JVazquez181027
SP3KBrown12939
SP4JContreras*7232
SP5JLieber41134
CLMRivera151634
R2PQuantrill10635
R3GWhite5-132
R4TGordon81536
R5FHeredia6029

Not a lot of things you didn't already know here: the Yankees actually underachieved this year, due to major fall-offs from Giambi, Mussina, Vazquez, and Kenny Lofton, while the main guys who stepped way up to pick up some of the slack were Matsui, Cairo, Gordon and Lieber. There's also the guys I hadn't listed in the preseason:

PosPlayerEWSL2004Age
SPOHernandez4938
1BJOlerud20635
PTSturtze5333

Five guys also contributed one Win Share each. You will note that Olerud's 6 Win Shares, like Contreras' total, is only for his time with the Yankees. . . and yes, I know 38 is an approximate age for El Duque, but I have to use something.

Boston Red Sox

Adjusted EWSL: 307.3 (102 wins)
Unadjusted EWSL: 307.3 (102 wins)
Weighted Age: 31.735

Actual record: 98 wins

PosPlayerEWSL2004Age
CJVaritek141832
1BKMillar161732
2BPReese7331
SSNGarciaparra22630
3BBMueller171233
RFTNixon19430
CFJDamon192630
LFMRamirez282832
DHDOrtiz122528
C2DMirabelli4733
INFMBellhorn92129
OFGKapler7528
13EBurks12039
SP1PMartinez191632
SP2CSchilling202237
SP3DLowe15631
SP4TWakefield13837
SP5BKim16025
CLKFoulke171531
R2SWilliamson7428
R3MTimlin8638
R4AEmbree5434
R5RMendoza4332

A real tribute to the Sox here for surviving the big dropoffs from the contributions of Nomar (even before he was traded), Nixon, Lowe and Kim. Ellis Burks, of course, never did get a role on the team, so his inclusion here is more a feature of February. The two guys who picked up the most slack were Ortiz (who had 15 win shares in 2003) and Bellhorn; the Sox went far this year by ignoring Bellhorn's 177 whiffs and cashing in on his cheap (less than $500,000 this year) production. But the team's additions, including one guy I totally overlooked in February (Bronson Arroyo) made a difference:

PosPlayerEWSL2004Age
SPBArroyo21027
3BKYoukilis0825
SSOCabrera19529
RPCLeskanic6336
1BDMcCarty1334

Plus, Dave Roberts and Brian Daubach with two Win Shares apiece, and six other guys with one Win Share apiece, including the disappointing Doug Mentkiewicz (19 EWSL entering the season). Cabrera, clearly, was a useful pickup, and the Greek God of Walks, with his .367 on base percentage, gave the Sox some valuable fill-in work.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 8:06 AM | Baseball 2004 | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

SABREmetric geeking is very nice from a simulation-based outlook, but this series is about who does what on the field against the opponent. For some history of that, go here.

Posted by: The Monk at October 12, 2004 1:22 PM
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