I'm going to leave the pitching staff behind for a bit and get your feelings on how our position players will do this season. I think we'll go through it position by position, starting with the catchers. Last year we had Rod Barajas and he did get us a bunch of home runs but with a low on base and the Jays let him leave as a free agent, though I'd imagine at the moment he wishes he accepted arbitration. We looked at possible Jay catchers back here.
So the Jays looked for someone that was as similar to Rod as possible and came up with John Buck, another low average, mid range power guy who doesn't walk a lot. We got a review of Buck from Royals Review here. John missed time last season with a back injury and then lost his starting job to Miguel Olivo (something they likely won't put on his Hall of Fame plaque). Maybe even a bigger indignity he was released by the Royals to make room for Jason Kendall. He will be 29 this year. His stats from last year:
|2009 - John Buck||59||186||16||46||12||4||8||36||13||55||1||1||.247||.299||.484|
Bill James figures him for 383PA, .231/.295/.397, with 12 homers, and 50 RBI.
CHONE has him at 378 PA, .224/.294/.395, with 14 homers and 49 RBI.
Pretty much the same. I've love to hope that Cito's batting coach magic will help him out.
The tough part guessing who will be the back up catcher, since we don't have any other catchers on the 40 man.
Raul Chavez was back up last year. He'll be 37 this year, doesn't like to take a walk, doesn't hit for much average but has a good glove. Last year he hit:
|2009 - Raul Chavez||51||159||10||41||8||0||2||15||6||23||1||1||.258||.285||.346|
Bill James figures he'll have 179 PA, .235/.266/.318, 2 homers and 17 RBI.
CHONE 226 PA, .226/.262/.319 with 4 homers and 22 RBI.
Last season Michael Barrett had a few plate appearances with the team before getting hurt and missing the rest of the season. He's no longer with the team. Kyle Phillips had 18 PA and has a spring training invite. Bill James didn't have a prediction for him but Chone figures him to 345 PA with a .241/.296/.356 line, 7 homers and 34 RBI. I don't know how they came up with that. I would guess that Kyle doesn't get 345 plate appearances in his career. But you never know.
J.P. Arencibia might get some at bats this year. Bill James and CHONE seem to think so, their predictions:
Bill James 398 PA, .225/.254/.426, with 17 homers and 53 RBI.
CHONE 462 PA, .219/.258/.378 with 16 homers and 58 RBI.
So they feel he'd hit much like Barajas did last year. My feeling is that there is no way he gets that much playing time from Cito hitting like that. Cito will let veterans have a season like that but young players have to do better to earn playing time from him.
Anyway your mission, should you choose to take it, is to predict how our catchers hit this year. Each position gets somewhere between 650 and 700 or so plate appearances. So let us know how you think those plate appearances get shared out among our catchers as well as their batting, on base and slugging averages, homers, RBI and anything else you might want to guess at.