Baseball HQ's 2015 Track Record

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Need player projections? Pick up any one of a dozen spring magazines or browse over to any fantasy baseball web site. But what you're really getting are three-year averages, subjective opinions or canned, inert numbers. Real performance forecasting is a living, breathing process that looks beyond faulty statistics and focuses on the analysis of component skills and leading indicators. That's what we do at Baseball HQ; it's a process that has been the foundation of our publications since 1993.

In 2015, this process produced a set of projections that could have made the difference in your fantasy season. Here is a look at how the analysis works, and some of the results...

2015 Batters

Nolan Arenado: He is going a full round early, but the speculation here might just be justified. He hit 18 HR in 432 AB last year; if he continues that pace, he'll be worth 24 this year. But wait, there's more! His 142 PX and 134 xPX deserved a better hr/f than 11%, making a HR breakout quite possible. Speculation here could yield results. (Cederholm)
2014: 18-61-.287 in 432 AB
2015: 42-130-.287 in 616 AB

Adrian Beltre: He’s still hanging on as a 2nd or 3rd round pick, but I think a more precipitous drop may be coming sooner rather than later. His drop from 30 HRs to 19 was not an isolated event. He has been displaying declining power trends for a while (PX/xPX levels of 156/160, 136/139, 115/127, 111/122) along with a declining HctX trend (156, 135, 129, 125) and declining fly ball trend (44, 40, 40, 36). I'd be shocked if he regressed to anywhere near 25 HRs this year, and would not be surprised if 20 is beyond reach again. (Shandler)
2013: 30-92-.315 in 631 AB
2014: 19-77-.324 in 549 AB
2015: 18-83-.287 in 567 AB

Justin Bour: Minor league journeyman or late-bloomer? Small sample HctX is optimistic, and xPX likes his power upside. But while minor league splits don't scream "PCL creation!," plate skills and GB% need work. He'll have to move quickly, but he's another hitter that age, size and handedness keep watchable. (Thompson)
2014: 1-11-0-.284 in 74 AB
2015: 23-73-0-.262 in 409 AB

Michael Brantley: We knew about the elite contact and double-digit SBs. But now power joined the party and the results were a 2nd-tier MVP candidate. How? More LDs; hit everything hard, and more FBs reached the seats. Will regress some, but age and broad base of skills (hit tool, speed, power) should prevent a total collapse. (Hershey)
2014: 20-97-23-.327 in 611 AB
2015: 15-84-15-.310 in 529 AB

Matt Carpenter: Has the ingredients of an intriguing LIMA target given his excellent pitch recognition and historically above-average power and speed skills. His dip in value from '13 to '14 was due to a decline in h% from 36% to 32%, as well as a steep drop in power. However, he was able to sustain a high level of hard contact, so we can't rule out a return to double-digit HR. There's some hidden BA and HR profit here. (Nickrand)
2014: 8-59-.272 in 595 AB
2015: 28-84-.272 in 574 AB

Yoenis Cespedes: Cespedes’ batted ball profile is somewhat of a double-edged sword. The growing FB% offers up plenty of HR upside, but it comes at the expense of BA when balls don’t clear the fence. With solid power metrics in place, Cespedes has a shot to enter 30 HR territory for the first time in 2015, and there’s SB upside if he can get a green light in Detroit. He makes for a solid power option with limited risk, and there’s still room for growth. (Bloomfield)
2014: 22-100-7-.260 in 600 AB
2015: 35-105-7-.291 in 633 AB

Brandon Crawford:  Could there be more with Brandon Crawford? His rising trends in PX (55, 77, 80, 103), xPX (79, 85, 78, 126), fly balls (30, 32, 42) are interesting for a 28-year-old. He could hit 15 HRs. (Shandler)
2014: 10-69-.246 in 491 AB
2015: 21-84-.256 in 507 AB

Rajai Davis: Nice jump in BA, fueled by increased contact. But there are seeds of doubt, too: 1) A year-long drop in Spd; at 34, this could certainly be age related. 2) Decline in SBO, especially in 2H. 3) Continued struggles against RHP could end up limiting PT. Has been a good cheap steals source in the past, but caution is warranted. (Cederholm)
2014: 8-51-36-.282 in 461 AB
2015: 8-30-18-.258 in 341 AB

Ian Desmond: This power/speed profile is highly valuable, but 2nd half h% jump masked some problems: ct% dove into the danger zone. Resulting OBP erosion cuts into SB opps, could even put 20 SB level at risk. Similarly, any further erosion of FB% could threaten HR totals. Rebound to former ct% levels is possible, but there's risk here. (Cederholm)
2014: 24-91-24-.255 in 593 AB
2015: 19-62-13-.233 in 583 AB

Edwin Encarnacion: Life lesson: When Edwin Encarnacion starts slowly, be patient. After hitting only two homers in April 2014, Encarnacion turned it on, hitting 16 in May. He was well on his way to a monster season before losing six weeks to a quad injury in the second half. He could do even better in 2015; while his power was down in the second half, he still hit plenty of fly balls. With good health, Encarnacion could top his production from the past three years. (Adler)
2014: 34-98-.268 in 477 AB
2015: 39-111-.277 in 528 AB

Logan Forsythe: Could carve out a bigger role if Franklin's struggles extend into the season. Forsythe hasn't been impactful with the bat over the last couple of seasons, but he has three HR in 35 AB so far this spring, along with a 1.041 OPS and 0.60 Eye. (Nickrand)
2014: 6-26-2-.223 in 301 AB
2015: 17-68-9-.281 in 540 AB

Maikel Franco: A rebound candidate. Franco went into spring training last year poised to compete for the starting 3B job only to fall flat, hitting .230/.285/.364 with just 6 HR. But he made an adjustment and looked much better in the second half, hitting .309/.326/.551 with 10 HR. Franco is certainly streaky and has issues with making consistent contact, but he has a quick bat and did launch 31 HR in 2013. He should see significant MLB AB between 3B and 1B in 2015. (Gordon)
2014: 0-5-.179, 0.08 Eye in 56 AB
2015: 14-50-.280, 0.50 Eye in 304 AB

Todd Frazier: Fantastic season overall, but can he repeat? PRO: Stable xPX, HctX growth and improved xBA are positive signs. CON: SBO% looks suspicious; shaky SB% and average Spd puts another 20 SB season in doubt; huge 1H followed by 2H decline. Trust the HR more than the SB. (Pyron)
2014: 29-80-20-.273 in 597 AB
2015: 35-89-13-.255 in 619 AB

Evan Gattis: Dealt with a crazy mix of health issues—bulging disk, strained wrist, strep throat, kidney stone—but in between again posted terrific power skills. Poor Eye caps BA, but that's not why you'd buy him anyway. AB upside exists, especially if he catches less. If he can avoid, oh, maybe shingles? UP: 30+ HR. (Truesdell)
2014: 22-52-.263 in 369 AB
2015: 27-88-.246 in 566 AB

Paul Goldschmidt: Was headed for another top-caliber season when felled by a broken left hand. On track to be fully ready for 2015, so we expect another superb year. Overcomes iffy ct% by simply crushing everything he does hit—and HctX actually improved again. All other skills rock-solid, and he's at peak age. UP: MVP. (Truesdell)
2014: 19-69-9-.300 in 406 AB
2015: 33-110-21-.321 in 540 AB

Carlos Gomez: Has Carlos Gomez already peaked? While last year was a near-carbon-copy of 2013, there were a few signs of skills erosion. Note his PX/xPX trend (127/122, 128/124, 153/137, 142/133) and his speed metrics (144 Spd/40% SBO/89% SB%, 128/50/86, 153/37/85, 121/31/74). At 29, this is probably the best it gets. And given that speed is a skill of the young, it would not be a complete surprise if 30 SBs becomes a stretch, perhaps as soon as this year. (Shandler)
2014: 23-73-34-.284 in 574 AB
2015: 12-56-17-.255 in 435 AB

J.J. Hardy: Will J.J. Hardy's power come back? By the looks of his xPX trend—130, 109, 99, 96—probably not. At least, not much of a rebound at age 32. (Shandler)
2013: 25-76-.263, 99 xPX in 601 AB
2014: 9-52-.268, 96 xPX in 529 AB
2015: 8-37-.219, 63 xPX in 411 AB

Aaron Hicks: Increased his walk rate from 8% to 16% between 2013 and 2014, the largest jump from any batter with at least 100 plate appearances. He has repeatedly shown an intriguing combination of walks, power, and speed in the minors. At age 25, he could be ready to take a significant step forward. (Nickrand)
2014: 1-18-4-.215 in 186 AB
2015: 11-33-13-.256 in 352 AB

Matt Holliday: His history of staying in the lineup has to become a question mark, given his age. After averaging 572 AB from 2006-10, a couple of injuries have reduced that average to 534 over the past four years. Our current projection of 543 AB is right on that number, but now that he is north of age 35, there is more downside than upside. In terms of dollars, not only is another $25 season unlikely, but <$10 may be more likely than >$20. (Murphy)
2014: 20-90-.272 in 574 AB, $22 $R
2015: 4-35-.279 in 229 AB, $6 $R

Eric Hosmer: He isn't exciting, but he produces and he can be had in the 11th round. His 2014 off-year was mostly just a bad first half, and while regression isn't guaranteed, it's a pretty good bet that he returns to somewhere around the 15-homer mark, with .300 BA upside. (Cederholm)
2014: 9-58-.270 in 503 AB
2015: 18-93-.297 in 599 AB

Kevin Kiermaier: Will be the TAM CF and leadoff hitter. Kiermaier spent the majority of his playing time in 2014 batting 9th, so this means up to an extra AB per game and more runs scored. Kiermaier's projected 159 Spd and 12% SBO% in 2015 bode well for him at the top of the lineup. (Dodge)
2014: 10-35-5-.263-35 runs in 331 AB
2015: 8-36-18-.261-58 runs in 482 A

Adam Lind: Injuries tamped down AB, while hr/f conspired with always-high GB% to hold back HR. Appears he may have traded a bit of power for contact, but fortunate hit rate helped, too. And just forget about LHP (2-for-33). With health, expect a power rebound, coupled with a BA regression. (Olson)
2014: 6-40-.321 in 290 AB
2015: 20-87-.277 in 502 AB

Manny Machado: (early May update) Here’s another high-upside young bat who is drawing walks at a higher clip than ever before. His current 11% bb% is nearly double the highest walk rate he has posted previously. In addition, his hard contact and power skills have never been better either: 125 HctX, 125 PX, 133 xPX. He's also getting the green light much more often on the basepaths (19% SBO%), so he has finally been able to put his above-average wheels to use. If he can stay healthy, all signs point to a big season from Machado. (Nickrand)
2014: 12-32-2-.278 in 327 AB
2015: 35-86-20-.286 in 633 AB

Russell Martin: Prime example of the difference h% can make. Its likely regression will bring BA back down, but ct% gains say not all the way to 2013 levels. A move from PIT (-28% RHB HR; 9 home HR, 17 away since 2013) could provide a boost to flat power skills, so while a $15 repeat is unlikely, he remains a fine catching option. (Bloomfield)
2013: 15-55-.226, $9 in 438 AB
2014: 11-45-.290, $15 in 379 AB
2015: 23-77-.240, $12 in 441 AB

Mitch Moreland: Injuries ravaged the Rangers’ chances in 2014; one victim was Moreland, who was lost for the season after ankle surgery in late June. Moreland might be an after-thought to many owners in 2015. While he won’t be a world-beater, he will produce decent power stats when he plays. He’ll likely come cheaply, and should produce a nice profit. (Adler)
2014: 2-23-.246 in 167 AB, $0 $R
2015: 23-85-.278 in 471 AB, $18 $R

Mike Moustakas: If the thrilling 2014 playoffs didn’t happen, Mike Moustakas probably would not garner much attention in 2015. The signs are there for a power outbreak with decent BA. If you can get Moustakas cheaply, there’s plenty of profit potential. (Adler)
2014: 15-54-.212 in 457 AB, $1 $R
2015: 22-82-.284 in 549 AB, $19 $R

David Ortiz: The big decline ain't coming. Only two bats have 30+ HR last two years: Ortiz and Encarnacion. Other than age, nothing to suggest a decline is imminent; plate control and power are steady and elite. BA dip was result of fluky decline in h%, so it'll head north again, but xBA says .300 days are over. (Nickrand)
2014: 35-104-.263 in 518 AB
2015: 37-108-.273 in 528 AB

Marcell Ozuna: Mini-breakout for multi-tooled OF. Or was it? Credit hr/f for power spike; all those GBs make it unlikely he'll top 20 HR again without uppercut in swing. What he loses in HR could be made up by SB...if he can get any semblance of a green light. Big holes in swing will keep him a volatile work-in-progress. (Nickrand)
2014: 23-85-.269 in 565 AB
2015: 10-44-.259 in 459 AB

Steve Pearce: Produced a career year in 2014, but he’s looking at regression in 2015. The big boost in hr/f might not be sustainable, and xPX says he’s unlikely to repeat his 2014 PX. While he’d like to continue the growth heading into free agency, it’s more likely there will be some regression. Don’t get carried away bidding on Pearce. (Adler)
2014: 21-49-.293, 188 PX, 130 xPX in 338 AB
2015: 15-40-.218, 130 PX, 132 xPX in 294 AB

Joc Pederson: First 30-30 campaign in PCL history showcased elite power/speed combo. A true three-outcomes hitter: had a K, BB, or HR in more than 50% of his plate appearances. No L/H splits in minors, so ignore tiny MLB OPS sample vL. He'll hurt your BA, but these are skills to roster. (Nickrand)
2015: 26-54-4-.210 in 480 AB

A. J. Pollock: Has not posted gaudy surface stats so far this season (1 HR, 1 SB). But his .920 OPS confirms that he has been very productive, and he has done so without hacking (10% bb%, 87% ct%, 0.83 Eye). He was on his way to a breakout season in '14 before a broken hand stopped that. If his improved plate control sticks and if he can loft the ball a little more, Pollock could deliver on his 15-HR, 30-SB upside. (Nickrand)
2014: 7-24-14-.302 in 265 AB
2015: 20-76-39-.315 in 609 AB

Justin Turner: 2014 banner year and likely in-season infield versatility will pique our interest in 2015. Sure, it’s a h%-fueled unrepeatable BA, and the patience is outlier-ish. But LD/HctX history looks strong, and xPX is supportive of the power surge. Role is an issue, but suddenly he's a defensible end-game flyer. (Thompson)
2014: 7-43-6-.340 in 288 AB
2015: 16-60-5-.294 in 385 AB

Justin Upton: Upton's average HR and FB distance was 300 feet in 2014 (14th in MLB). That type of power plays anywhere. Absent upgraded ct%, his BA will likely migrate closer to .250. His speed isn't what it once was, but if given the opportunity, could again deliver 10+ SB. If others in your league are afraid of PETCO, there could be some room for profit. (Pyron)
2014: 29-102-8-.270 in 566 AB
2015: 26-81-19-.251 in 542 AB

Luis Valbuena: His recent power growth is intriguing, and he should get a modest boost moving from Wrigley Field (-13% LHB HR) to Minute Maid Park (+8%). The h% spike suggests Valbuena may not be able to repeat the BA, and his struggles against lefties will eat into his playing time. But with an ADP outside the top 350 and a shot at 20+ HR, Valbuena makes for a fine late power choice with multi-position eligibility. (Bloomfield)
2014: 16-51-.249 in 478 AB
2015: 25-56-.224 in 434 AB

Neil Walker: He put up about the softest 23-HR season you can imagine. His PX trend—which measures results—looks great (96, 101, 106, 126) until you look at xPX's support skills (120, 115, 115, 106). I'll be surprised if he can reach the 20-HR plateau again. (Shandler)
2014: 23-76-.271, 126 PX, 106 xPX in 512 AB
2015: 16-71-.269, 105 PX, 115 xPX in 543 AB


2015 Pitchers

Brett Anderson: Every piece of information we have available right now says that this guy can't stay healthy. But if that is the case, why did the Dodgers sign him, and why are they trying to prep him as a SP this spring? There is some chance that the Dodgers have some idea how to keep them healthy. Or, there is some chance that Anderson finally stumbles into a few consecutive months of health. All evidence suggests that Anderson still has intriguing skills when and if he sets foot on the mound. (Murphy)
2014: 1 Win, 2.91 ERA in 43 IP
2015: 10 Wins, 3.69 ERA in 180 IP

Brad Boxberger: Quick: which reliever with 20+ IP had the third-highest BPV in 2014? That would be Brad Boxberger, who will get the 9th inning role until incumbent closer Jake McGee has recovered from off-season elbow surgery. He has the skills to excel, and there's always the chance McGee, the lefty, goes back to a setup role if Boxberger is humming. (Cederholm)
2014: 2 saves, 2.37 ERA in 65 IP
2015: 41 saves, 3.71 ERA in 63 IP

Clay Buchholz: Exhibit A on how swings in luck can wreak havoc on surface stats. ERA tripled from 2013 despite just a minor Dom fade, while other skills held steady. Knee injury in May likely played a role in 1st half struggles, and though that reminds us of health risk, 2nd half xERA, BPV hint at a return to success. (Bloomfield)
2014: 8 wins, 5.34 ERA in 170 IP
2015: 7 wins, 3.26 ERA in 113 IP

Carlos Carrasco: He’s being drafted like a potential ace as a result of how strong he finished 2014. He was one of the game's best pitchers in the second half: 1.61 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, 9.7 Dom, 1.5 Ctl, 53% GB%, 164 BPV. He paired an elite 15% SwK% and top-tier 95 mph four-seam fastball in the 2H. He's a premium full-season breakout target. (Nickrand)
2014: 8 wins, 2.55 ERA, 140 Ks in 134 IP
2015: 14 wins, 3.63 ERA, 216 Ks in 184 IP

Andrew Cashner: xERA coupled with hr/f, S% luck cast doubt that he can repeat that elite ERA. Pinpoint control and GB% set a high floor, but SwK trend suggests mediocre Dom will limit upside potential, even if he’s healthy. (Bloomfield)
2014: 5 wins, 2.55 ERA, 3.60 xERA in 123 IP
2015: 6 wins, 4.34 ERA, 3.95 xERA in 185 IP

Gerrit Cole: Shoulder, lat injuries cost him two months, but he looked elite after August return. Dom/GB% combo hints at considerable upside, especially given improving Ctl trend. Health a concern, but 2nd half strides, growth age hint that, with full season of IP there’s hope for... UP: 3.00 ERA, 200 K. (Bloomfield)
2014: 11 wins, 3.65 ERA, 138 K in 138 IP
2015: 19 wins, 2.60 ERA, 202 K in 208 IP

Jarred Cosart: Hot August after trade to MIA (1.64 ERA) attracted some interest, but really, he was same guy with same lackluster Cmd. Mid-90s fastball, GB% are nice building blocks, but rest of package not quite there. Until FpK, SwK improve enough to boost growth in Ctl and Dom, you'll want to temper enthusiasm. (Olson)
2014: 13 wins, 3.69 ERA, 1.6 Cmd, 58% FpK in 180 IP
2015: 2 wins, 4.62 ERA, 1.4 Cmd, 54% FpK in 70 IP

Jacob DeGrom: Major surprise, but with strong skill support, particularly in torrid 2nd half. Didn't show such lofty Dom in minors, but SwK says it could be legit. Closed year with 12 straight dominating starts, despite brief shoulder tendinitis bout. If 2nd half is real... UP: 15 wins, 200 Ks. (Olson)
2014: 9 wins, 2.69 ERA, 144 K in 140 IP
2015: 14 wins, 2.54 ERA, 205 K in 191 IP

Anthony DeSclafani: Had a horrific ERA with MIA in his MLB debut in 2014. However, his base skills were very intriguing: 7.1 Dom, 1.4 Ctl, 36% GB%, 105 BPV. His pinpoint control had solid support from his 66% FpK%. A 35% H% and 54% S% conspired to torpedo his surface stats. (Nickrand)
2014: 2 wins, 6.27 ERA, 1.36 WHIP in 33 IP
2015: 9 wins, 4.05 ERA, 1.35 WHIP in 185 IP

Danny Duffy: If some want to think "breakout," say: "Be my guest." ERA fueled by random swings of H%, S% and hr/f. In time, skills might catch up with results, as more distance from TJS could add to Dom, and FpK trend validates improved Ctl. But for now, smart play is to let bids head up into double digits without you. (Olson)
2014: 9 wins, 2.53 ERA, 4.24 xERA in 149 IP, $14 $R
2015: 7 wins, 4.08 ERA, 4.56 xERA in 137 IP, $-3 $R

Jeurys Familia: Don’t be surprised to see Familia challenge for the closer job this spring as he rather quietly put together a fine 2014 season. If the 25-year-old can further fine-tune his control and make some strides against left-handed batters, he could really take off. (Pyron)
2014: 5 saves, 2.21 ERA, 3.7 Ctl, .821 OPS vL in 77 IP
2015: 43 saves, 1.85 ERA, 2.2 Ctl, .616 OPS vL in 78 IP

Mike Fiers: A fortunate H% and S% artificially lowered his ERA and Ctl wasn’t supported by FpK% (58%), so he can be expected to give back those gains. Given Fiers’ skill set, an ERA in the neighborhood of 3.50 is a much more reasonable expectation. This is a pitcher who, despite last year’s surface stats, figures to be much closer to league average than elite. (Pyron)
2014: 6 wins, 2.13 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, 2.1 Ctl in 72 IP
2015: 7 wins, 3.69 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 3.2 Ctl in 180 IP

Doug Fister: Fister’s ERA and WHIP from 2014 is very misleading as he was aided by a slightly fortunate H% and amazingly lucky S%. Also worrisome is the erosion in Dom, SwK%, and velocity. Ominous signs abound. (Pyron)
2014: 16 wins, 2.41 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 5.4 Dom, 6% SwK% in 164 IP
2015: 5 wins, 4.19 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 5.5 Dom, 6% SwK% in 103 IP

Jaime Garcia: His injury history is impressive in his own right. Recurring arm problems have erased his value for the past two years, but early returns this spring suggest that his arm may finally be sound again. If so, that arm hung up triple-digit BPVs in 2011-12, and is fully capable of returning to that level this year at age 28. (Murphy)
2014: 3 Wins, 4.12 ERA in 44 IP
2015: 10 Wins, 2.43 ERA in 130 IP

Matt Harvey: Spent 2014 recovering from Tommy John surgery, which he'll be almost 18 months past on Opening Day. Hitting 95 mph in September bullpen sessions says he's ahead of schedule. Even with an innings limit, that elite rookie season is worth chasing. He might not be vintage until 2016, but he's still keeper league gold. (Thompson)
2014: Injured
2015: 13 wins, 2.71 ERA in 189 IP

Craig Kimbrel: Kimbrel’s outstanding ability to miss bats helped him work around subpar Ctl and a 6% decline in GB%. The 27-year-old may not post another sub-2.00 ERA (see 2013-14 xERA), but he should rack up a boatload of strikeouts and is likely to reach the 40-save plateau yet again. (Pyron)
2013: 50 saves, 1.21 ERA, 2.7 Ctl, 13.2 Dom in 67 IP
2014: 47 saves, 1.61 ERA, 3.8 Ctl, 13.9 Dom in 62 IP
2015: 39 saves, 2.58 ERA, 3.3 Ctl, 13.2 Dom in 59 IP

Carlos Martinez: The 23-year-old has most of the ingredients necessary to be an impact starting pitcher. Elite SwK% and GB% stand out. Ideally, he would upgrade his Ctl and show some improvement vs. LHB. But even if his control sticks where it is, if he can figure out LHB, he should be well on his way to a breakout season. (Pyron)
2014: 2 wins, 4.03 ERA, .849 OPS vL in 89 IP
2015: 14 wins, 3.01 ERA, .756 OPS vL in 180 IP

Mark Melancon: He will save 50 games after finally being given the opportunity to start the year as closer. He has allowed just 3 HR over the last two seasons and saw an uptick in SwK (from 12% to 14%) while maintaining impeccable Ctl (1.1). The Pirates' durable rotation and talented offense will keep them ahead in close games, providing Melancon with more save opportunities than any other team in baseball. (Sedler)
2014: 33 saves, 1.90 ERA in 71 IP
2015: 51 saves, 2.23 ERA in 77 IP

Andrew Miller: Miller's signing raises many interesting possibilities for the NYY pitching staff. He has certainly demonstrated closer-worthy skills (14.9 Dom, 6.1 Cmd, 0.4 HR/9, 1.79 xERA in 2014), and could thrive as a first time left handed closer. (Dodge)
2014: 22 holds, 2.02 ERA in 62 IP
2015: 36 saves, 1.90 ERA in 62 IP

Shelby Miller: The struggles from 2nd half of 2013 carried over to 2014. Dom plunge and 1st half Ctl were only slightly mitigated by favorable H%. SwK isn't hopeful. But reasons for optimism include age, stable velocity, 2nd half Ctl gains, and fine September fueled by 7.7 Dom rebound. Call it growing pains and expect a bounce. (Thompson)
2014: 3.74 ERA, 6.2 Dom, 3.6 Ctl in 183 IP
2015: 3.02 ERA, 7.5 Dom, 3.2 Ctl in 205 IP

Wily Peralta: Peralta is far from a finished product. Absent an adjustment against left-handed hitters and enhanced Cmd, the next step forward figures to elude him. A repeat of last year’s numbers is probably the best case scenario for 2015, but it’s more likely that his ERA and WHIP will rise. (Pyron)
2014: 17 wins, 3.53 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 2.5 Cmd, in 199 IP
2015: 5 wins, 4.72 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 1.6 Cmd, in 109 IP

David Price: Not his best surface stats, but these were among his best skills. Slightly elevated 1st half H% and hr/f, or he'd have been in the Cy Young talk again. Now at peak age, only a career-high workload, 2013 triceps strain loom as cautions. UP: 2012 again. That's still in play. (Truesdell)
2012: 20 wins, 2.56 ERA in 211 IP
2014: 15 wins, 3.26 ERA in 248 IP
2015: 18 wins, 2.45 ERA in 220 IP

Jose Quintana: Another fine growth season. The issue in maintaining the growth is his SwK. It's currently capped at an average level, so Dom is likely maxed. Without refining a bat-missing pitch, further upside appears limited. That's not meant to diminish his current solid level—just frame it. (Truesdell)
2014: 9 wins, 3.32 ERA, 9% SwK, 8.0 Dom in 200 IP
2015: 9 wins, 3.36 ERA, 9% SwK, 7.7 Dom in 206 IP

Erasmo Ramirez: On the surface, another step back, and let's face it, he wasn't good. But the seeds for better are STILL here - notably sterling Ctl, fine SwK. Gopheritis is the problem, and FB rate went the wrong way. Regression to pre-2014 FB% could mean sub-4.00 ERA. (Truesdell)
2014: 1 win, 5.26 ERA, 43% FB rate in 75 IP
2015: 11 wins, 3.75 ERA, 32% FB rate in 163 IP

Tanner Roark: Why his ERA will go up: Troubling fly ball trend, H%/S% likely to normalize. 2014 xERA showed he wasn't a true sub-3.00 ERA starting pitcher. Last year's bargain will be overvalued this time around. (Truesdell)
2014: 15 wins, 2.85 ERA, 3.80 xERA in 199 IP
2015: 4 wins, 4.38 ERA, 4.17 xERA in 111 IP

Danny Salazar: Much of Salazar’s success can be attributed to a nasty changeup that generated a 28% SwK in 2014. The excellent skills he flashed after his mid-season promotion (4.1 Cmd, 3.42 xERA, 121 BPV) are another sign of a potential breakout. With an ADP north of 200 and a projected triple-digit BPV, Salazar should be a bargain. (Bloomfield)
2014: 6 wins, 4.25 ERA in 110 IP,$-5 $R
2015: 14 wins, 3.45 ERA in 174 IP, $15 $R

Matt Shoemaker: Rookie stunner, with his minor league numbers explaining why. His new splitter was huge, but 5-pitch command and 2nd half H%/S% were critical to success. GB%, history and sub-par velocity say HR will be an issue. Expect some regression... DOWN: 4.00+ ERA. (Thompson)
2014: 16 wins, 3.04 ERA, 0.9 HR/9 in 136 IP
2015: 7 wins, 4.46 ERA, 1.6 HR/9 in 135 IP

Carson Smith: Another terrific SEA bullpen prospect. Hard sinking stuff led to 11.2 Dom and huge GB totals in the minors, as well as closer roles at three different levels. Obviously we need more than a small MLB sample, but he's a late-inning candidate to watch. (Thompson)
2014: 0 saves, 0.00 ERA in 8 IP
2015: 13 saves, 2.31 ERA in 70 IP

Noah Syndergaard: A top SP prospect whose time in the NYM rotation is coming. In spite of the rough 4.60 ERA and 1.48 WHIP he posted in the hitter-friendly PCL in 2014, his strikeouts and walks were really good (145/43 K/BB in 133 IP). He looked good in a tiny sample this spring (9/3 K/BB in 7 IP). He's another young pitcher who will be a mid-season MLB rotation option. (Nickrand)
2015: 9 wins, 3.24 ERA, 1.05 WHIP in 150 IP

Julio Teheran: Teheran has quickly developed into a reliable pitcher at a young age, and the underlying skills suggest he’ll continue to be a solid producer with room to grow. However, his average Dom and high fly ball rate stop us short of placing Teheran among the NL’s elite for 2015. While most may see Teheran’s sub-3.00 ERA at this age and bid on a repeat, doing so carries a considerable amount of risk. (Bloomfield)
2014: 14 wins, 2.89 ERA, 3.73 xERA in 221 IP
2015: 11 wins, 4.04 ERA, 4.15 xERA in 201 IP

Chris Tillman: On skills front, season turned on a dime. Futzed around with low BPV for three months, then wham! No PQS-DISasters after July 7, second straight closing flourish. H%, S% helped, so don't buy 2nd half ERA. Stagnant SwK, low FpK suggest no quantum leap ahead. This skills set is more likely to see an ERA of 4.00 than 3.00. (Olson)
2014: 13 wins, 3.34 ERA in 207 IP
2015: 11 wins, 4.99 ERA in 173 IP

Jered Weaver: If you just went by his 18-9 record in 2014, you’d think Jered Weaver would warrant strong consideration in 2015. But there are reasons to be wary about bidding top dollar. Declining velocity means his Dom is unlikely to go back up; rising xERA confirms that his skills have been steadily eroding. Weaver isn’t a top starter anymore; when bidding gets into the double-digits, it’s time to bow out. (Adler)
2014: 18-9, 3.59 ERA, 4.25 xERA, 7.1 Dom in 213 IP, $9 $R
2015: 7-12, 4.64 ERA, 4.83 xERA, 5.1 Dom in 159 IP, $-3 $R

Justin Wilson: Wilson instantly becomes the favorite for the top left handed reliever in the NYY pen. A strong 52% groundball rate and 0.6 HR/9 in 2013-14 should help him keep the ball inside Yankee Stadium, and if he can regain his control, he should be a strong source of holds in 2015. (Dodge)
2014: 3 wins, 16 holds, 4.5 Ctl, 4.20 ERA in 60 IP
2015: 5 wins, 29 holds, 3.0 Ctl, 3.10 ERA in 61 IP

Brad Ziegler: Ziegler posted a career-high 7.3 Dom in 2014, but his biggest asset is an elite ground ball rate. His GB% the last three seasons (76%, 70%, 64%) has helped keep his ERA in check. Ziegler doesn’t have much upside at this point in his career, but his profile is good enough to grab some saves should an opportunity present itself. (Bloomfield)
2014: 1 save, 3.49 ERA, 64% GB% in 67 IP
2015: 30 saves, 1.85 ERA, 73% GB% in 68 IP