Well, it seems as if the Yankees might be very good in 2021. Very cool!
Agree or disagree with how the Yankees approached their offseason, but they made a series of calculated, cost-saving maneuvers predicated on being the clear-cut best team in the American League while staying under the luxury tax.
According to projections just ahead of Spring Training, they appear to have met their goal and more.
Baseball Prospectus’ PECOTA projections for the full 162 games dropped overnight Monday, and while Yankees fans who believe the team is too reliant on analytics probably won’t want to dogmatically believe the data, there are a lot of extremely good outcomes on the table for the 2021 Yanks.
Almost as joyous? Things aren’t looking real rosy for the rest of the division.
That’s the Yankees running and hiding with a projected 97 wins, while the Rays fall all the way back to 86, followed by the Blue Jays at 85.
Why…is Toronto so bad? It’s all pitching. A Luis Castillo trade could shift the balance here a bit, but Toronto’s projected to score just 32 fewer runs than the Yankees while allowing an additional 89. It’s not what you want from Robbie Ray.
Other notable AL projections include the Astros, who won’t die, at 93 wins and the Twins at 91. Over in the other borough, PECOTA has the Mets pegged for 95 (ok, then), while the Dodgers are the only team the Yankees hypothetically wouldn’t be favored against and are slotted for a ridiculous 103 wins — but you knew that already.
Not only does this plot feature the Yankees leaving their AL East competition in the dust, but the shape of the curve means the model is exceedingly confident the ideal outcome will occur.
The Bronx Bombers have thrown plenty at the wall in the past three weeks, and are relatively confident in the pitching staff they’ve assembled — and so is PECOTA, baby. In fact, the Yankees are projected to allow only nine more runs than the Rays, the team they’ve devoted their offseason to copying.
Here’s to hoping it’s at least a successful Xerox, as the numbers claim it will be.