Yesterday, Fenway Pastoral ran though the probabilities for OPS+ for the five AL East teams’ lineups, based on the recently released ZiPS projections made available on Google Docs.
For pitchers, ZiPS provides similar probabilities for ERA+, which like OPS+, adjusts for park and league factors to summarize a pitcher’s chances of being above or below the 100 baseline. (A 110 ERA+ means the pitcher’s ERA results are 10% better than league average.)
Unsurprisingly, Jon Lester projects to be the team’s ace, but ZiPS isn’t overly optimistic he’ll be a standout league-wide. The system generally does not see any Red Sox starter as being particularly likely to be a shutdown ace in 2013. However, the system also does not foresee any of the team’s projected top 5 being a pinata either. The Sox should see their fair share of quality starts and, if nothing else, have good consistency from top to bottom.
(Players are listed at right based on projected WAR and their actual ZiPS projection for 2013 ERA+ is provided in parenthesis).
In contrast, the Red Sox could have one of the best bullpens in the majors if things pan out favorably for guys like Koji Uehara and Joel Hanrahan. As a setup man, Uehara’s impact will be minimized by his low innings total, but when he is on the mound, chances are he will be fantastic. Andrew Bailey, meanwhile, acquired at considerable cost last offseason to be Boston’s closer, could very well just be another very good setup guy in a bullpen seemingly stacked with good setup guys.