Baseball Reference’s Yankees take provokes fans, logic questioned

Yankees' Juan Soto after smashing a home run at Yankees spring training 2024

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In a surprising move that has stirred significant controversy among baseball fans and analysts alike, Baseball Reference, a leading source of baseball statistics and historical data, released its 2024 season projections for the New York Yankees. The projection, which places the Yankees last in the AL East with an estimated record of 72-90, has sparked widespread backlash due to its stark contrast with the team’s actual roster strength and recent performances.

Yankees fans don’t agree with Baseball Reference’s projections

Baseball Reference’s projection for the Yankees not only places them at the bottom of the AL East but also outlines a best-case scenario where the team barely scrapes a .500 record at 82-80, and a worst-case scenario plummeting them to 61-101. This projection came as a shock to many, especially considering the Yankees’ acquisition of Juan Soto, who alongside Aaron Judge, forms one of the most formidable batting duos in the league. The team’s fans have been vocal in their frustration, flooding social media with reactions that range from incredulous to outright dismissive.

Comments like “So they get the 2nd best hitter in baseball, but the best case scenario is they stay consistent to last season. Yeah, that makes perfect sense,” highlight the disbelief among the fanbase. Further amplifying this sentiment, another fan noted, “I can’t wait to prove baseball reference wrong,” underscoring a collective determination to see the team outperform these grim projections. Echoing these sentiments, one fan pointed out the inconsistency in the projections by reminding everyone, “They won 82 games with a worse roster last year lol,” which only adds to the bafflement over Baseball Reference’s predictions.

Clarifying the Projection

In the wake of the controversy, MLB writer Mike Petriello stepped in to provide some much-needed clarity on the situation. According to Petriello, the projections that led to such an uproar are not as straightforward as they might appear. He explained that the alarming projection showing the Yankees potentially losing more than 90 games this year isn’t fully informed by the team’s current roster or recent acquisitions like Juan Soto.

Petriello highlighted a crucial detail that many may have overlooked: Baseball Reference’s playoff odds and season projections are derived from a complex simulation process. This involves running 1000 simulations based on the team’s performance over their last 100 regular-season games, incorporating a regression to the mean factor. These simulations do not take into account recent roster changes or player acquisitions, thus providing a skewed view of the team’s potential for the upcoming season.

Aaaron judge and juan soto, players of the new york yankees
AP

Moreover, a tweet cited by Petriello contained a screenshot that shed further light on the methodology, stating, “MLB playoff odds are based on 1000 simulations of the rest of the season and playoffs… This page does not update during the postseason.” This clarification suggests that the projections might not be reflecting the Yankees’ current strength, especially considering their significant roster improvements.

What do you think? Leave your comment below!

One thought on “Baseball Reference’s Yankees take provokes fans, logic questioned

  1. Sorry, but projects in Spring Training is a useless endeavor, as are the meaningless indication of Spring records. I just simply ignore these things. Yankees will win more games 9-8, than lose 3-0. the full line-up is geared to score runs. even with a depleted rotation, all it has to do is be serviceable. I mean that will get them a playoff record. BUT, the rotation is not strong enough in any type playoff series. Then again, players determine the outcome not my or any other projection(s).

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