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Community Projection Results: John Maine

Here are the final community projections for John Maine.

AA 33 203 175 70 189 24 16 9 3.72 3.89
Bill James 31 200 190 81 169 26 12 11 4.05 4.49
CHONE -- 177 166 68 153 21 -- -- 3.97 4.27
Marcel -- 163 146 63 141 21 12 9 3.98 4.40
ZiPS 30 178 168 66 148 23 13 10 4.15 4.33

I don't know if we're homers, eternal optimists, or something else entirely, but we keep pacing the projection systems by a pretty hefty margin. The AA prediction for Maine's ERA -- 3.72 -- is a full quarter of a run better than even the most optimistic computer projection. Maine will be 27 this year and could reasonably be expected to improve upon his performance from a year ago. I wouldn't be terribly concerned with the non-AA FIP projections. Maine has managed to maintain a consistently low hit rate and, by extension, an abnormally low BABIP (Batting Average on Balls in Play). FIP doesn't look at hits at all. It considers only walks, strikeouts and homeruns. Maine has seemingly showed an ability to limit his BABIP beyond what might normally be expected, and the result is that his ERA will often exceed (read: be lower than) his FIP.

The key for Maine will be maintaining his impressive strikeout rate from 2007 while lowering his walk rate. His walks were a bit high last year, and he definitely has some room for improvement there. His homerun rate is fine, especially considering his extreme flyball tendencies. If he can stay on the field and give the Mets somewhere around 200 innings next year he should be extremely valuable given his indentured servant-like salary.