Since we don’t have current year data to crunch until next month, career numbers are all we have to look at. In Part 2 of this series we ranked teams based upon opening day rosters. Each career only included last three years which was sum of WAA value for seasons 2015-2017. In Part 3 we will look at opening rosters of the 2017 season and use seasons 2014-2016 for each player’s valuation. Players get categorized as relief, starter, and hitter and everything adds to give a team total.
We have to estimate historical rosters using our daily snapshots taken from retrosheet.org event data. The code was already written to estimate the changing team relief squads each day, each year for our lineup/starter/relief simulations. We take a snapshot on April 12 and assume every player has made an appearance. Then separate them in their role and team, add them up, and sort.
Since we are from the future when this table could have been made we can predict it.
Note: Unfortunately there are a lot of numbers in this table and ironically this data model is about consolidating baseball statistics. We’ll walk though it after the fold. There is no other way to present this.
The colored teamids are teams that will make the playoffs this year. Since we are from the future we know HOU wins the World Series beating LAN with CHN and NYA as DS winners. NYA and COL are middle of the pack so the top half of this chart picked 8/10 teams who made the playoffs with MIN and ARI as outliers.
This table is sorted by Total of all career value between 2014-2016 for each team. The blue bold highlight numbers are the leader in each category. The Cubs clearly dominate in all categories except hitting. Hitting will be a big problem for them all the way up to All Star Break. We know this because we are from the future and we will write about it every day.
Not going to get into what this chart might say or might not say. SFN turned out to be one of the worst teams in baseball yet they have high value. The Cubs had a very good above average run between 2014-2016 and they kept the good guys and acquired even more good guys. Does that mean they had the best team in April? Apparently not!
In this part we’ll drill down into the Cubs and check their numbers. This will be streamlined in subsequent parts as we go farther back in time. First let’s look at CHN starters and relievers.
2017 CHN Starters
The above Total number is what you see in the Starter column for CHN in the team ranking table above. The Rank is based upon 2014-2016 career value. Jake Arrieta had a good run these last three years and is ranked 4th in MLB of all 30 teams, both pitchers and batters ranked together.
2017 CHN Relievers
Wade Davis was the big acquisition in the off season that year. He turns out to be very useful this season and this relief squad kept the Cubs in contention at All Star Break.
2017 CHN Hitters
Hitting very good but it becomes a problem first half of the season. For those reading from the present, below is a post made during All Star Break from this season. All teams throughout the season move and acquire players. Career value may not make any sense in the context of April baseball games.
No matter how good a player was the last three years, the MLB Baseball Commissioner requires that he play and prove himself again. Many players do it over and over for a very long time, many don’t. In the next part we’ll quickly run through a bunch of opening day roster career value years and then we’ll bring guys like Babe Ruth and Cy Young into the mix and see how well they scored here. Until then….
Note: I had to double check Heyward’s number above. He has a very above average career. His 2016 value dragged him underwater on the three year split (2014-2016).