The huge baseball projection programs are already looking forward to the 2023 season. Let’s look for the gamers whose stat traces soar out.
If you undergo the Steamer projections for this 12 months on FanGraphs, for instance, you may discover noteworthy predictions for each form of participant, from high prospects to rising stars to worldwide imports to dark-horse breakout candidates to the sport’s greatest names.
Here are 12 of probably the most interesting participant projections for the 2023 season.
At 22 years previous and after only one huge league season, Rodríguez is projected to be a top-three participant in all of baseball in 2023. The solely hitters with a better projected Wins Above Replacement are Juan Soto and Aaron Judge. Then comes J-Rod, tied with Mookie Betts. Steamer loves Rodríguez’s mixture of energy, pace and protection in middle discipline.
The Steamer projections are virtually as excessive on Rutschman as they’re on Rodríguez because the 24-year-old catcher enters his sophomore season. Rutschman, the runner-up to Rodríguez for AL Rookie of the Year in 2022, is projected to be a top-five place participant at 5.6 WAR — the identical as Mike Trout. Rutschman’s plus protection at a premium place is an enormous issue, however he is additionally projected to be the second-best hitting catcher behind Alejandro Kirk.
What’s interesting about Burnes is he is projected to win the Triple Crown within the NL. The right-hander is projected to steer the league in strikeouts outright, forward of Max Scherzer. He’s tied for probably the most projected wins, 13, with a number of different aces. And he is projected to steer all certified NL starters in ERA at 3.16 (the Braves’ Spencer Strider is projected at 3.10 however beneath the minimum-innings threshold). The final pitching Triple Crown winner within the NL was Clayton Kershaw in 2011.
The Reds’ two high pitching prospects had up-and-down rookie seasons in 2022, however the projections are very excessive on the proficient duo this 12 months. The 23-year-old righty Greene and the 24-year-old lefty Lodolo are projected to be top-25 pitchers by WAR and are each projected for 200-plus strikeouts. The solely different teammates projected for 200-Okay seasons in 2023 are the Yankees’ Gerrit Cole and Carlos Rodón, the Mets’ Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander, the Mariners’ Robbie Ray and Luis Castillo and the Rays’ Shane McClanahan and Tyler Glasnow.
5. Masataka Yoshida, OF, Red Sox
Projections: 140 wRC+, .298 AVG, .388 OBP, .867 OPS
The Red Sox shelled out $90 million to carry Yoshida to the Major Leagues, and the Steamer projections are excessive on the 29-year-old left-handed-hitting outfielder as he makes the soar from Nippon Professional Baseball, even with no huge league monitor report. Steamer has Yoshida batting .298, the second-best batting common projection behind solely Luis Arraez, with a .388 projected on-base share that is second solely to Juan Soto. His projected OPS, .867, is high 10 amongst all MLB hitters. The 140 wRC+ Yoshida is projected for is similar as Bryce Harper’s and Paul Goldschmidt’s. Yoshida did simply bat .335 with a .447 on-base share and 1.008 OPS in his final season in Japan, however these are nonetheless eye-opening projections for 2023.
Steamer sees Acuña having one other season like he did in 2019, when he pushed for the 40-40 membership and was a top-five MVP finisher. Acuña completed with 41 dwelling runs and a National League-leading 37 stolen bases in ’19. The projections have him with 31 homers and a Major League-leading 35 stolen bases in ’23. He’s the one participant projected for a 30-30 season. And if he hits his projections, he’d be the primary participant with each greater than 30 homers and greater than 30 steals since … himself.
Speaking of Glasnow — he is projected to have a monster 12 months in his first full season again from Tommy John surgical procedure. The Rays right-hander solely pitched three video games in 2022 — two on the very finish of the common season and yet one more within the playoffs — however he appeared as electrical as ever, permitting only one run in 11 2/3 innings with 15 strikeouts. Glasnow has by no means pitched a full season except for the shortened 2020 marketing campaign, but when the 29-year-old stays wholesome in 2023, Steamer thinks he’ll submit his first 200-Okay season as one in every of baseball’s premier strikeout artists.
MLB’s No. 2 general prospect has one of the best projections of any rookie for 2023. The 21-year-old infielder, who posted a 126 wRC+ down the stretch final 12 months in a 34-game callup, is projected to be simply nearly as good of a hitter in 2023 — however over a full season. Henderson is projected for 4.1 WAR, the identical as gamers like Luis Robert Jr. and Sean Murphy and forward of different rising stars like Bobby Witt Jr. and Oneil Cruz.
9. Aaron Ashby, LHP, Brewers
Projection: 8-6, 3.29 ERA, 134 Okay, 10.11 Okay/9
Aaron Ashby is a younger lefty with an enormous arm — he’ll nonetheless be 24 on Opening Day and his fastball sits round 96 mph — which is why the Brewers locked him up with a five-year contract final July. But you would not count on these projections in case you simply checked out his stat sheet. Ashby is projected for a profitable report and a top-10 ERA amongst all pitchers projected to throw 100-plus innings … after he went 2-10 final season with a 4.44 ERA in 27 video games (19 begins). Steamer sees an enormous turnaround in Ashby’s numbers in 2023, most likely because of his excessive strikeout charges. Ashby has a ten.7 Okay/9 within the huge leagues, and he is projected in double digits once more this season.
10. Hunter Brown, RHP, Astros
Projection: 100 IP, 3.41 ERA, 108 Okay
The Astros’ No. 1 prospect was an on the spot pitcher to look at when he acquired known as up final September, that includes an upper-90s fastball and a supply mirroring that of his idol, Justin Verlander. Brown posted a 0.89 ERA down the stretch and made three scoreless appearances within the postseason. If the 24-year-old can carve out a task on the Astros’ pitching workers in 2023, Steamer likes what he can do, projecting Brown to achieve 100 innings pitched with a top-15 ERA for pitchers in that class.
11. Juan Soto, RF, Padres
Projection: 7.1 WAR, 172 wRC+, 137 BB, .431 OBP
It’s not shocking that Soto is projected to be one of the best hitter in baseball in 2023. But a number of the numbers Steamer is predicting for him are wild. He’s projected for 137 walks — 42 greater than the next-closest hitter, Judge, who’s projected for 95. And he is projected to steer the Majors in on-base share by 43 factors, at .431. Of course, these marks are nicely inside Soto’s vary: He averaged 133 walks per 162 video games in his profession with a .424 OBP.
12. Shohei Ohtani, SP/DH, Angels
Projection: 35 HR, 16 SB, 96 RBIs / 12 W, 3.15 ERA, 217 Okay
It took a 62-home-run season from Judge to cease Ohtani from taking dwelling back-to-back MVP Awards. If he hits these projections, it could take one other historic effort to cease him from profitable in 2023, too. Ohtani is projected for the seventh-most dwelling runs as a hitter and the fifth-best ERA and eighth-most strikeouts as a beginning pitcher. If you add up Ohtani’s projected 3.1 WAR as a hitter and 4.4 WAR as a pitcher, the two-way celebrity would rank No. 1 in whole WAR forward of Soto.