Saturday, February 14, 2009
Though I don't think that either Brett Anderson nor Trevor Cahill is going to see a significant amount of time at the big league level in 2009, I thought it would be interesting to see what we could expect from them if they got the call. This is a very difficult projection since they are both so young, but I'll try and come up with something reasonable (for comparisons sake, be sure to check out Mike Podhorzer's take on Cahill and Anderson at FantasyPros911.com).
CHONE has Cahill and Anderson both posting an ERA in the 5.00 range, with WHIPs of about 1.50. On paper, it looks pretty bad, but Clayton Kershaw put up similar numbers last year, and it's a respectable stat line for any 21 year old in the majors. However, I think they might actually have a shot at doing a bit better than what CHONE has them down for, but before we get into it, let's find some minor league comps.
Those are pretty nice comps, but none of them really match up perfectly with Anderson and Cahill. If I had to narrow down the list, I'd probably pair Cahill with Gallardo, and Anderson with Hughes and Liriano. However, since this projection will be a rough estimate at best, I'm really just looking for some general similarities here, so we'll make the most of what we've got. Below are the MLB stats for each pitcher at the age of 21 (Gonzalez and Cueto have been dropped since they didn't pitch in the majors until the age of 22).
Judging by these numbers, it's hard to come up with anything conclusive. Liriano put up some great stats, but his home run rate shot up, while Gallardo's numbers were very solid all around. Hughes wasn't bad, but he didn't really dominate, and Billingsley was quite mediocre. If we average out all the numbers, we get something along these lines:
Personally, I think the K/9 is a bit generous, the walk rate is about right for Cahill but high for Anderson, the GB% is low for both, but the home run rate, WHIP, and ERA are reasonable projections. With that said, I think that just by using the comparable pitchers above, we can see that there is a good chance that either Cahill or Anderson could come up and post some outstanding numbers, and there's also a chance that they could come up and post an ERA well over 5.50. I don't really feel comfortable making a projection other than going with the average above, nor do I really feel like there's much reason to try and come up with anything beyond that for either pitcher. But, to personalize the projection a bit for each pitcher, I'll make a few adjustments to the average, and leave it at that.
TPC 2009 Projection for Trevor Cahill and Brett Anderson:
Cahill - 9.0 K/9, 4.5 BB/9, 53% GB%, 1.45 WHIP, 0.65 HR/9, 4.50 ERA
Anderson - 7.7 K/9, 3.3 BB/9, 50% GB%, 1.48 WHIP, 0.95 HR/9, 4.80 ERA