We've finished looking back at our projections for 2013, now it's time to look ahead to the 2014 season that's less than two months away.
The experience, I have to imagine, will be fairly different this time around. This time last year, expectations ran the gamut from cautiously optimistic to "why are we wasting money to ruin our draft position?" The players we looked at were free agent signings with a decent chance to bust and veterans coming off injury-riddled seasons. We were beaten down by 2011 and 2012, and were it not for that huge August trade we probably wouldn't have had as many halfway hopeful projections as we ended up with.
Now? Now we're riding high on 2013. The veterans are coming off of strong seasons, and the new faces are less free agent acquisitions, more the prospects we've been watching and waiting for. First and foremost in the latter group is Xander Bogaerts, and where better to start? We've finally gotten a taste of what he can do in the majors. Now, with another year behind him and a full season ahead, the Xander Bogaerts era can begin in earnest.
What will that mean in terms of numbers? It's hard to say. Bogaerts' regular season numbers were fine, if uninspired, but it's easy to imagine his big postseason contributions (.296/.412/.481 in 34 plate appearances) causing some of us to forego tempered expectation for a 21-year-old rookie shortstop. Will we remain level-headed? Or are we throwing caution to the wind and looking forward to his first All-Star appearance already? Let's find out.
Just a quick note: please, for the love of all that is good, submit your responses with proper formatting. All that means is AVG, OBP, and SLG should be .### (note the decimal point), not just ###. You'd be surprised at how much grief that can save.
Other than that, have at it!
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