The 2016 MLB season just ended, but it's never too early to start looking ahead to next season. Over the past week Jeff Sullivan of FanGraphs has done just that. Last Monday he published an article entitled "Come Look at 2017 Projections Already." So what exactly did this early look at next year have to say about our Cincinnati Reds?
Before answering that question, it would probably be helpful to clear up a few things. Some of you are likely asking, "How can someone project the 2017 season when we don't even know what the rosters are going to look like?" That's a fair question. Here are a few of the qualifications that Sullivan put in place for this article:
- Free agents were moved off of rosters and on to a "free-agent" squad.
- Win totals are based on projected fWAR + a constant.
- These aren't FanGraphs actual projections for the 2017 season.
- He argues that this is best thought of as a "baseline." "These are the rosters the clubs will be adding to and subtracting from over the following months."
If the Reds did win 73 games in 2017 it would be a five-win improvement over last season. While no one will be too excited about a projection like that, it at least projects a team heading in a positive direction. Do you expect Cincinnati to win more or fewer games than this projection? Let us know why in the comments section.