In this post I will continue to look at the size of the expected drop off for the Reds between 2013 and 2014. In my last post I looked at position players. Now I look at the pitching.
Here is a chart of the actual results and Fan Graphs WAR for the Reds Rotation in 2013 versus their 2014 Steamer Projections also available on fangraphs.
The 2014 Reds top 5 pitchers project to lose 2 WAR in 30 less start. Given how much risk there is in pitcher health this is reasonable. This means we also need to look at our 6th and 7th starters. The good news in Reds #1 Prospect Robert Stephenson should be ready by mid-season to step in to the rotation if there is a need to replace an injured starter. There is also newly acquired David Holmberg who seems to be ready to join the back end of the rotation but I would not count on him for more than replacement level in 2014.
Stephenson gives the Reds similar depth as we had in 2014 with Cingrani as the 6th starter. If the Reds go beyond our Stephenson they we will be into replacement level pitchers. Overall I’d call it even versus 2014 with a risk that we will have to turn to replacement level starters if we get more than one injury in the rotation. This is risk shared by just about every major league team.
The Reds relievers in 2013 delivered 2 wins above replacement as a group. Chapman was good for 1.6 wins and Parch was worth -1 wins with everyone else going about .5 to -.5 wins. The bullpen looks pretty much the same taking out Broxton leaving and Marshall coming back.
Steamer has Chapman losing about a half win to be 1.2 wins in 2014. Steamer has Marshall at .3 wins which would be a good improvement over Broxton’s -.4 wins in 2014. I think everyone else can put in the same around replacement level performances to give the Reds another 2 win bull pen in 2014.
The pitching overall seems to be even against 2014. The main risk seems to be the depth of the starting rotation. Stephenson should help around mid-year but if we suffer injuries early or 2 injuries later we will have more replacement level starts than 2013.
Next post I’ll pull the position players, pitchers, and other odds and ends together to look at the total picture.