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PECOTA projections puts White Sox in 3rd place

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  • #16
    This is why you play the games and not go by a predication based on a computer model that very few without an advanced degree from MIT can actually fathom. I wouldn't lose any sleep over these folks.

    And I do recall their 2005 prediction and how after the season played out and Sox fans called them out on it in droves, they responded with a snarky, condescending reply from their editor / chief stat-geek.

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    • #17
      It's projections, folks. That's it. No one is saying with any certainty that this is what is going to happen.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post
        This is why you play the games and not go by a predication based on a computer model that very few without an advanced degree from MIT can actually fathom. I wouldn't lose any sleep over these folks.

        And I do recall their 2005 prediction and how after the season played out and Sox fans called them out on it in droves, they responded with a snarky, condescending reply from their editor / chief stat-geek.
        The response was probably along the lines of the failure of the Sox to repeat will prove 2005 was a fluke.

        One of the things I was doing to follow baseball during the 2005 season involved reading the weekly baseball column by a writer (whose name I've forgotten) for a paper in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metorplex. He was watching baseball, not crunching numbers. It was never about the numbers. I missed his preseason picks, but after the first week of the season, he had the White Sox as the best team in baseball. After every week of the season, beginning to end, he had the White Sox as the best team in baseball, even through the historic collapse the Cubs fans in the office were talking about. I was skeptical having been through 1972, '83, '93, too young to remember 1967 and '64 firsthand. I don't think I believed it was going to happen until a late October night when the game was still on the radio as I was driving back into the office after a city zoning meeting. I was still writing when I heard the groaning about the Geoff Blum from the other end of the newsroom. When I was through, I stood in my editor's office and watched Mark Buehrle induce a popup for the last out. I walked out to my car on the dark foggy banks of the Gastineau Channel and felt the rush of knowing my team, although thousands of miles away, was on the verge of winning the World Series.

        That's why they play the games. Anything less isn't baseball.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by TDog View Post

          The response was probably along the lines of the failure of the Sox to repeat will prove 2005 was a fluke.

          One of the things I was doing to follow baseball during the 2005 season involved reading the weekly baseball column by a writer (whose name I've forgotten) for a paper in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metorplex. He was watching baseball, not crunching numbers. It was never about the numbers. I missed his preseason picks, but after the first week of the season, he had the White Sox as the best team in baseball. After every week of the season, beginning to end, he had the White Sox as the best team in baseball, even through the historic collapse the Cubs fans in the office were talking about. I was skeptical having been through 1972, '83, '93, too young to remember 1967 and '64 firsthand. I don't think I believed it was going to happen until a late October night when the game was still on the radio as I was driving back into the office after a city zoning meeting. I was still writing when I heard the groaning about the Geoff Blum from the other end of the newsroom. When I was through, I stood in my editor's office and watched Mark Buehrle induce a popup for the last out. I walked out to my car on the dark foggy banks of the Gastineau Channel and felt the rush of knowing my team, although thousands of miles away, was on the verge of winning the World Series.

          That's why they play the games. Anything less isn't baseball.
          Actually as I remember reading it, the comment was more along the lines of the editor refusing to admit they got the projections wrong. He gave numerous excuses why even though the Sox won 99 games they were actually right! It was an unbelievable reply and turned me off completely to their nonsense.

          Also didn't they project the Cubs to finish last in the division last year? How'd that work out?

          No question the Sox have issues, the biggest being team health since they can no longer keep their guys healthy, just look at the past three seasons...if that happens again the Sox will be toast. And health is something PECOTA can't measure.

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          • #20
            PERCOTA also picks the Braves to finish in fourth place and predicts the Cubs to win more games than the Sox.

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            • #21
              Well these responses were predictable.

              Predictions like this are most likely outcomes averaged out. It's less about what happens if everything goes right, and more about volatility. We all agree that the White Sox have a very talented ballclub. Where we don't is in how volatile the potential results are because of the extreme lack of depth, especially in the starting rotation, and the high likelihood of multiple pieces of the rotation not working out. Which is why a squad like ours will not do well with PECOTA.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by vegandork View Post
                Well these responses were predictable.

                Predictions like this are most likely outcomes averaged out. It's less about what happens if everything goes right, and more about volatility. We all agree that the White Sox have a very talented ballclub. Where we don't is in how volatile the potential results are because of the extreme lack of depth, especially in the starting rotation, and the high likelihood of multiple pieces of the rotation not working out. Which is why a squad like ours will not do well with PECOTA.
                I think this is fair. The Sox have more volatility. They have more upside, but also more downside, than either Minnesota or Cleveland.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post

                  Actually as I remember reading it, the comment was more along the lines of the editor refusing to admit they got the projections wrong. He gave numerous excuses why even though the Sox won 99 games they were actually right! It was an unbelievable reply and turned me off completely to their nonsense.

                  Also didn't they project the Cubs to finish last in the division last year? How'd that work out?

                  No question the Sox have issues, the biggest being team health since they can no longer keep their guys healthy, just look at the past three seasons...if that happens again the Sox will be toast. And health is something PECOTA can't measure.
                  It sounds like the statistical analysts are living in an alternate reality. Maybe I'm in the alternate reality where it's about winning games as opposed to a geometric-style proof that that shows the games will be, and later, have been won.

                  Issues notwithstanding, predictions are pointless.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Frater Perdurabo View Post

                    I think this is fair. The Sox have more volatility. They have more upside, but also more downside, than either Minnesota or Cleveland.
                    Exactly. There are a lot of ways this team wins 100 games and runs away with it. But, there's also a lot of ways, mostly due to the rotation, that this club completely falls apart and finishes last. A lot more than people would suspect.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by vegandork View Post

                      Exactly. There are a lot of ways this team wins 100 games and runs away with it. But, there's also a lot of ways, mostly due to the rotation, that this club completely falls apart and finishes last. A lot more than people would suspect.
                      It's going to be very hard for this team to fall apart and finish behind Detroit and KC. A lot of things would have to go wrong for that to happen.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by TDog View Post

                        It sounds like the statistical analysts are living in an alternate reality. Maybe I'm in the alternate reality where it's about winning games as opposed to a geometric-style proof that that shows the games will be, and later, have been won.

                        Issues notwithstanding, predictions are pointless.
                        Well they probably do influence betting lines or something like that (I don't gamble, so I don't know). So there are probably millions of dollars riding on these projections in some form or another. But of course no titles have ever been awarded based on projections.

                        They do illustrate something that many of us have been saying for awhile - that in order for the Sox have more question marks than most contenders, and in order to win the division (and especially the pennant or World Series) they are going to need a lot of those question marks to break in their direction. There's as much upside as any team in the AL.

                        IMO opinion there are four "fulcrum players" - guys whose performance can really tilt the scales one way or another:
                        Cease
                        Moncada
                        Robert
                        Vaughn

                        I can see why the projection systems wouldn't think highly of any of these guys - none of them have "proven it" yet in the majors. But all four are extremely talented and a breakout seems pretty plausible. It's just that we probably shouldn't count on a breakout from all 4 at once.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by whitesox5187 View Post

                          It's going to be very hard for this team to fall apart and finish behind Detroit and KC. A lot of things would have to go wrong for that to happen.
                          We have exactly five starting pitchers and Reynaldo Lopez. Two of them are in their 30's. One is Carlos Rodon. And one is a young pitcher with zero control of his pitches to date. What happens if one of them doesn't work out? Lopez comes in. Let's say Cease is pitching bad and Rodon is normal Rodon? Now we're throwing someone from our minors that isn't ready or isn't that good. Now add to that...what if Keuchel returns to the guy that was approaching a 5 FIP before arriving here? Now we're in real trouble. And if, heaven forbid, that happens to Lynn too? We'd have one major league quality pitcher in our rotation. Maybe Kopech enters the equation, but his projection is all over the place too, and has innings limitations.

                          Now, the odds of all four not panning out together is not very unlikely. But it is a possibility. And we're not equipped to deal with it as an organization. Whereas, a team like Cleveland could weather that better than us.

                          PECOTA didn't only predict a regression in our offense, it's predicting declines in our starting pitching. It has both Lynn and Keuchel with ERA's around 4. It has Cease closer to 5. It has Rodon, Kopech, and Lopez all getting significant rotation innings with below average production.

                          Outside of Hendricks, it predicts pretty much everyone in our bullpen to be worse.
                          Last edited by vegandork; 02-09-2021, 04:15 PM.

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                          • #28
                            https://www.baseballprospectus.com/n...-2021-edition/

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post

                              Well they probably do influence betting lines or something like that (I don't gamble, so I don't know). So there are probably millions of dollars riding on these projections in some form or another. But of course no titles have ever been awarded based on projections.

                              They do illustrate something that many of us have been saying for awhile - that in order for the Sox have more question marks than most contenders, and in order to win the division (and especially the pennant or World Series) they are going to need a lot of those question marks to break in their direction. There's as much upside as any team in the AL.

                              IMO opinion there are four "fulcrum players" - guys whose performance can really tilt the scales one way or another:
                              Cease
                              Moncada
                              Robert
                              Vaughn

                              I can see why the projection systems wouldn't think highly of any of these guys - none of them have "proven it" yet in the majors. But all four are extremely talented and a breakout seems pretty plausible. It's just that we probably shouldn't count on a breakout from all 4 at once.
                              Baseball betting lines are based upon how people are betting and what odds-makers need to do to attract bets on teams people don't want to bet on. It's possible that some bettors are influenced by sabermetric predictions, however tangentially. I don't gamble, but I've spent enough time in casinos to know that most preseason bets are based more on sentimentality than analysis. I doubt many people use PECOTA as a sports book tip sheet.

                              Every team has question marks. It isn't just a matter of guessing the answers. Sometimes you don't know what the biggest questions are until the season is more than half over. Guessing where you think teams will finish based upon what you know what you expect is different from an analytic prediction that, as Lipman related, will be defended even after reality proves it wrong.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by TDog View Post

                                Baseball betting lines are based upon how people are betting and what odds-makers need to do to attract bets on teams people don't want to bet on. It's possible that some bettors are influenced by sabermetric predictions, however tangentially. I don't gamble, but I've spent enough time in casinos to know that most preseason bets are based more on sentimentality than analysis. I doubt many people use PECOTA as a sports book tip sheet.

                                Every team has question marks. It isn't just a matter of guessing the answers. Sometimes you don't know what the biggest questions are until the season is more than half over. Guessing where you think teams will finish based upon what you know what you expect is different from an analytic prediction that, as Lipman related, will be defended even after reality proves it wrong.
                                Best statistical guess based on current information is something that is done a lot. Baseball has too many variables to really accurately predict team/league wide trends from current rosters, but it's fun for discussion.
                                Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...



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