Baseball Prospectus has their 2009 projections up and, well, they see it as a long season for us. They have us finishing a distant 4th, with a 81-81 record. They have us scoring 730 run, which is just 16 more than we scored last season, and have us allowing 692 runs, 82 more than last year. Oh I hope we do better than what.
How do we end up that way? Well for one thing they are guessing John McDonald and his -7.5 VORP gets 40% of the playing time at short. Please no. They figure Overbay for a crappy season .255/.332/.396 for a 0.6 VORP but have Bautista getting 30% of the playing time at first and being much better than Overbay with a 6.0 VORP.
They aren't exactly expecting great things from our outfield with Rios hitting .275/.332/.459, Wells .267/.323/.435, Snider .252/.326/.446 and Lind .272/.326/.458. And in case you were hopeful about Rolen and Hill, they have them about .260/.335/.420 and .260/.317/.385 respectively, though they both get 70% of the playing time at their positions.
At catcher they have have Barajas playing 50% of the time at 3.6 VORP and Barrett playing 35% but doing better 7.2 VORP. They also have Thigpen getting 15% of the playing time at catcher, whoops.
Pitching wise our top four, Doc, McGowan, Litsch and Purcey do quite well, though Purcey is to only throw 130 innings. Like us they have no clue on who will be the 5th starter and have shared the innings out between Janssen (40 innings, 3.87), Bryan Bullington (60 innings, 5.76), Cecil (90 innings, 3.54) and Clement (30 innings, 5.92).
The bullpen has the usual cast of names, the only thing I found strange is that they figure Accardo and Carlson as setup men, when I'm pretty sure it will be Downs and League in those roles.
I would like to hope we'll do better than BP does. But time will tell I guess. Overbay has got to do better than .255 though. Right?