Every spring at 213 we gather a whole bunch of projections for players and average them together to see what a conglomerate of baseball sources think a given player will perform over the year. It’s wholly unscientific – averaging averages and not weighting them for previous accuracy or amount of playing time they feel a player will see.
Heading into the last season, Robinson Canó (and Edwin Diaz) were two of the most important acquisitions on the Mets. BVW gave up a lot for them in trade, both in future players and future financial flexibility. The prevailing feeling around Canó was that the Mets would have 2-3 seasons before his contract becomes an albatross. Last year, I felt good about his projections, lets see how that feeling panned out:
2019 Stats: 423 PA, 390 AB, 13 HR, .256/.307/.428, .736 OPS, 0.3 WAR, 89 DRC+
Last year was rough for Canó. He was lost at the plate for about half a year and when he finally started to heat up and turn the ship around, he got injured and lost an entire month of the season. It’s part of the reason why we see such a huge dip in his DRC+ In 2018 he was better than 25% of the average hitter, he was projected to be better than 19% of the average hitter. He ended up being 11% worse than the average hitter. He hasn’t performed like that since 2008.
The projections were also all pretty much in lock step with what Canó would produce so it comes really as a massive surprise all around that he performed the way that he did. Really only cynical Mets fans can claim that they projected he was going to under perform by that much.
So heading into 2020 – Canó can only improve, I expect the computers to project a bit down from what they did last year but by not a crazy amount, and I expect the bulk (or the loudest) Mets fans at the stadium to be unfairly tough on Canó at the start of the season.