We are getting closer to spring training in MLB.
That means projection systems are active, using their respective models to try and forecast players and teams’ seasons.
How can you forecast how a player will fare a year after he hit a historic 62 home runs?
It’s certainly no easy task, but most of the time, these models are automated and take several factors into account that range from recent performance to age, health record, and other factors.
FanGraphs is widely regarded as one of the most trustworthy sites to get baseball-related content, analysis, and statistics.
They also have their own projection system.
Let’s see what they think is in store for Judge.
Is another big season in store for the reigning AL MVP? pic.twitter.com/zXi7zCJsHC
— MLB (@MLB) January 19, 2023
Judge finished last season with a 1.111 OPS, and while he is still in his prime, it’s probably not realistic to expect him to repeat that number.
With their .939 OPS projection, FanGraphs is actually expecting him to underperform his career .977 mark.
Since it’s not by much, we are not going to make a big deal out of it.
The 44 home runs seem on point to what should be expected next year, barring any injuries of course.
He probably won’t hit 62 again, but did raise his floor in comparison to recent seasons so 44 seems like a reasonable expectation.
If he finishes with 6.9 WAR (Wins Above Replacement), that would actually be his third-best output after his phenomenal Rookie of the Year (2017) and MVP (2022) campaigns.
The projections look good, attainable, and reasonable.
Will Judge crush them again en route to another historic performance?