2015 Blue Jays: Team Over/Unders
I’m not a betting man. I like money too much for that. And, this is not a gambling site. However, I thought it would be fun to take a look at some numbers, etc and attempt to set an expectation and take your guesses on the over/under for each. I’ll attempt to use actual facts and stats to back up my thoughts. But, mostly, this is for fun.
So, last season, the Blue Jays finished with a record of 83-79- good for 3rd spot. With the improvements made, I think this number is likely to go up. Also, we can take into account that they played the Tampa Bay Rays 19 times last season for a record of 11-8. I don’t think the Rays will pose as much of a problem next season.
They were 8-11 against the Yankees as well. I’m just not sold on the improvements the pinstripes have made. There are too many aging question marks. They were also 8-11 against the Orioles. I seem to rememberNelson Cruz
going off at Rogers Centre. He’s not there anymore. The Orioles are not the same team. I think the Blue Jays can pick up at least 3 more wins from each of these clubs. They may lose more than the mere 7 against the improved Red Sox, though. Given these factors,
I’m going to set their win total at 91.
Whether that’s enough for a playoff berth is a topic for another day.
The Blue Jays scored 723 runs last season, which was good for 5th in baseball. Now, we’ve heard for many months how Melky Cabrera was a huge factor in this production. I think that the Blue Jays may have more than made up for his departure. The addition of Russell Martin, Josh Donaldson and Michael Saunders is an improvement over the 3B, C, LF combination of 2013. Saunders and Donaldson alone should see an improvement in their production with the move to Rogers Centre. I did a quick calculation of the projected runs scored (via FanGraphs.com) for the current starting lineup (including Dioner Navarro, Justin Smoak, Ryan Goins and Maicer Izturis– not sure which one gets the start at 2B) and the total comes to less than their 2013 output. But, that does not take into account the bench bats, etc. Given the types of bats this team currently is sending up to the plate and the launching pad that is Rogers Centre, I wouldn’t be surprised if they scored the same amount or more. I’m going to set their run total at 750.
Next: Blue Jays Claim Juan Oramas
The offense is still one that relies on the big hit; the homerun. This type of offense is going to have ups and downs. It is not something that can be sustained over a full season. Last year, they were shut out 11 times. There are a few things that make me feel that next season will see more. 1) reliance on the long ball 2) offense is contagious- both hot and cold streaks 3) this lineup is very right handed hitter heavy. Those combined lead me to think there will be more times they struggle at the plate. I’m going to go out on a limb and set their shutout totals at 15.
Last season, the Blue Jays shut out their opponents an impressive 16 times. The rotation is returning relatively the same as it was last season. In fact, I actually think it is improved over 2013. The addition of Aaron Sanchez over J.A. Happ makes it that much better. He’s a relative unknown too, which may make it more difficult for the opposition. I think the strides that Marcus Stroman and Drew Hutchison have made, and will likely make next season means we could be looking at more shut outs. Though, it’ll be hard to replicate 16 shut outs. But, given the apparent improvement, I’m going to set their shut out total at 18.
There are a number of other categories I’d love to hear your thoughts on:
Extra-Innings- 2013: 5-8
One-Run Games- 2013: 15-20
Blowouts (5+ Runs)- 2013: 24-23
Inter-League Play- 2013: 13-7