2019 PECOTA Projects Cleveland will Joe Mauer Its Way to Division Crown

Minnesota Twins designated hitter Joe Mauer hits an RBI-single against the Tampa Bay Rays in the first inning. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)

I like today.

The trade deadline for the NBA is about to expire and the Timberwolves will likely set their franchise back a couple more seasons by doing absolutely nothing to trade its expiring pieces to position better for the future. I’m so over that team that it’s almost comical at this point.

PECOTA Day

But that’s not even the best part of today. It’s PECOTA day. I love me some PECOTA day.

Why do I love PECOTA day so much? Because it’s a computer-generated season projection… who doesn’t like that? And they can be pretty accurate too. At least they were last season. PECOTA predicted 81 wins and 81 losses for 2018 for the Twins and they finished 78-84. I tried for a bit to go back farther but it was more difficult than it should have been, so that’s all of the history that you get.

Minnesota Twins

The projections for the Twins in 2019 don’t change when it comes to win loss. It calls for the twins to again finish 81-81 and 2nd in the AL Central. I’m ok with that. But I was surprised at the specific numbers PECOTA has both the Twins and the Indians putting up. I was a little shocked at the runaway train Cleveland will apparently become, winning the division by 15 games.

But, that still wasn’t the most shocking statistic given… Apparently, The Tribe will outscore us by 41 runs and they will do it in an unexpected manner. The Indians have one of the best pitching staffs in the MLB and still will if they trade Corey Kluber like many around the league expect them to.  However, pitching isn’t the only place they will get it done. Apparently, our division rivals will also outscore us in an interesting way…

Joe Mauer Baseball

By getting on base…………….. Joe Mauer – style? The Twins are expected to outhit Cleveland in all major hitting categories except for one… ON-BASE PERCENTAGE.

SLUGGING PERCENTAGE: TWINS

BATTING AVERAGE: TWINS

DRC+: TWINS

 DRC+ is the Deserved Runs Created for a batter, scaled to a 100-based index. It tells us how valuable a player’s offensive contribution is by assigning appropriate credit to plate appearance outcomes and applying contextual factors like park effects and opponent quality.

I get it. I’m not smart enough to know how this works. I will have all sorts of baseball nerds @ing me about how silly this is. But, I know I watched Joe Mauer play a lot of baseball and hit for REALLY high on-base percentages….. which led to a whole lot of losses and questioning of his Hall of Fame credentials…

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan