2013 Red Sox community projections: Mike Napoli and the false-alarm hip

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Remember when everyone was freaking out about Mike Napoli's hip? Good times.

Mike Napoli had a rollercoaster ride of a season. It's easy to forget given where it all ended, with the first baseman acting as one of the posterboys for the beards, clubbing huge, game-changing homers in October, but just two months earlier he had been persona non grata. Every single plate appearance seemed to bring a new level of futility with strikeout after strikeout after strikeout frustrating Red Sox fans seemingly to no end.

With the arrival of September, however, Napoli found the next gear he always seems to find as the playoffs draw near. The Red Sox didn't necessarily need his huge contributions in those last days of the season, but it's hard to imagine they'd have won it all had he not done so much against the Tigers.

Lost in all that: a hip condition which seemed so significant back before the year began. One that clearly pushed some of our projections in extreme directions.

Name PA RBI HR AVG OBP SLG
Mike Napoli 578 92 23 .259 .360 .482
GerryT 500 85 37 .282 .347 .490
Rick Bentsen 525 91 28 .298 .338 .518
TullamoreTumblaaa 494 82 28 .268 .406 .587
Sologub 438 59 22 .242 .353 .464
mose 490 95 29 .273 .356 .490
111SoxFan111 470 80 25 .275 .350 .500
thrashmagazine 653 87 23 .274 .363 .512
0bsessions 515 89 22 .265 .340 .495
navarra 533 88 22 .255 .343 .489
HITECHSTUD 485 62 23 .271 .359 .501
Manny 550 80 30 .280 .370 .515
dabosoxfan 92 18 .285 .382 .508
BigNachos 320 49 16 .244 .342 .433
Bosoxfanda 622 92 31 .270 .366 .742
tanookiscutaro 452 73 22 .278 .381 .578
MaineSox 550 95 23 .265 .360 .500
Casto 498 76 26 .254 .368 .491
JAO 92 24 .292 .345
cds7c 517 101 37 .298 .435 .497
??? 450 88 23 .277 .317 .462
GoosepeckerRidge 421 72 24 .244 .341 .465
JCR0722 525 98 28 .249 .310 .427
Bloggy 440 90 32 .270 .320 .590
HeyYoCraig 399 69 28 .248 .365 .470
Josh Amaral 567 101 24 .254 .347 .510
soxer12 520 93 32 .270 .350
ritz 315 65 14 .260 .360 .470
theartolater 514 117 27 .274 .368 .478
fizrat 480 90 25 .265 .355 .495
whonichol 500 70 25 .275 .355 .500
fishindude 400 70 28 .280 .375 .545
Kike 550 87 25 .279 .350 .520
Mega Nick 500 95 28 .301 .390 .565
sawxfan23 575 92 27 .273 .341 .503
Ddeignan 635 78 23 .254 .304 .407
Jim 450 75 30 .270 .350 .480
JTrunfio 480 72 24 .257 .355 .489
Thinman61 450 90 25 .260 .350 .500
DRoot 534 101 32 .267 .358 .520
Debageldond 470 74 23 .250 .340 .509
bleedingred0407 379 56 21 .259 .356 .507
sguglie2 360 85 29 .268 .355 .471
BobZupcic 450 70 22 .260 .345 .490
daevric 520 78 28 .285 .335 .555
nas 500 90 20 .270 .330 .600
titio1300 410 82 26 .267 .354 .550
penedeburro 465 68 27 .265 .328 .417
Rickeo 487 93 32 .267 .362 .525
soxdude7 520 91 27 .267 .344 .511
Rogue Nine 495 82 27 .279 .376 .510
flasoxfan 424 84 28 .243 .313 .470
soxfanabroad 570 96 27 .279 .367 .498
TC 525 95 28 .277 .379 .524
krams706 515 81 23 .268 .355 .449
Appie Drankie 400 86 28 .243 .351 .498
Rfugitt 450 75 25 .255 .350 .400
B_Edelman 469 87 27 .288 .343 .496
The Laser Show 505 76 28 .256 .359 .491
Conor Duffy 450 80 30 .265 .350 .500
westcoastredsox 425 90 28 .295 .330 .912
nineczar 450 65 26 .280 .348 .500
bilmster 380 68 21 .266 .376 .524
Alfredo 580 95 29 .264 .355 .514
dsharp 457 77 22 .248 .331 .513
Dirigo 435 80 32 .270 .370 .490
jishane 540 94 26 .283 .335 .412
dibs 520 101 32 .288 .351 .502
Robbobmcdoc 142 87 23 .287 .400 .456
DC sox fanatic 485 83 26 .268 .338 .452
Smokey Joe Wood 526 77 27 .251 .356 .494
bdc55 490 82 26 .274 .346 .562
kevhorn 456 78 24 .279 .324 .400
RSNexile 500 70 25 .250 .360 .500
louandjan 561 91 27 .307 .402 .564
brogshan 521 76 27 .251 .351 .489
usrename 475 95 28 .282 .377 .520
Bcall711 400 75 22 .282 .344 .544
Jrclemente 405 89 31 .290 .332 .502
sdouglas 110 32 .290 .360 .340
Buccaz 409 69 21 .248 .356 .498
farrellr89 500 75 21 .262 .339







PriceJD 460 90 26 .246 .362 .510
johnadduci73 479 71 22 .249 .320 .498
CrimsonChris 512 85 31 .274 .321 .550
Dr. Rock 496 86 34 .268 .371 .610
gibbonsusmc 425 96 34 .273 .330 .525
redsox15 402 99 28 .268 .359 .503
totheights 451 88 26 .261 .381 .500
clashcityrocker 479 87 31 .259 .356 .506
justin_bobo 375 41 19 .301 .362 .499
FrenchSox 470 61 31 .271 .357 .499

Just look at some of those plate appearance numbers. As a group, we averaged a guess of 471 trips to the plate for a player expected to start in the middle of the order. One who eventually mustered better than 100 more. The RBI totals are similarly low, with the average prediction coming in at 83.

Amusingly, the home run numbers are actually high. I have to admit, some of us Red Sox fans got a little obsessed with Napoli's history of dominating Fenway Park. Maybe if it weren't for all those strikeouts he'd have matched or even exceeded expectations, but for all that Napoli was a big contributor for the Red Sox, his impact was not quite as incredible as some may have hoped.

This all leads to a bit of a tricky situation. You see, BleedingRed0407 has the best entry by virtue of hitting one guess perfectly and coming close on two others. But...he missed spectacularly in terms of the actual shape of Napoli's season with one of the lowest plate appearance projections in a field that trended quite low. Much closer to the full reality of Napoli's season were MaineSox, with two perfect guesses, and FizRat, with three near-misses. Taken as a whole rather than just looking at the highlights, their predictions are more impressive.

So it is Fizrat and MaineSox who take this one home. Their prize? The blessing of Mike Napoli's beard. May it shelter you and keep you warm during these cold winter nights.

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