Quick 2010 Projection: Javier Vazquez

Having been sent to the New York Yankees early this offseason, a once potential fantasy ace in Javier Vazquez has been reduced to only a decent option with upside in the strikeout department. Let’s take a look at where my current projections have him:

215.0 IP, 16 W, 4.10 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 205 K (8.58 K/9), 57 BB (2.39 BB/9)

Thoughts:

  • After posting a dazzling 2.87 ERA in the NL last season, these numbers are a huge disappointment for those looking towards him as a top of the rotation option.
  • The strikeouts are likely to regress from last season’s 9.77, being back in the AL where he no longer has the pitcher and weaker bottom of the order hitters to pick on.  From 2006-2008, while pitching for the White Sox, he posted K/9s of 8.17, 8.85 and 8.64.  Where I have him is still an excellent mark, but a long ways from his 2009 campaign.
  • He has a career HR/9 of 1.16 and goes to a ballpark that is conducive for left-handed power hitters.  As a right-handed pitcher, that’s a bad combination.  My projection has him allowing 31 home runs next season, which wouldn’t even be his career high.  He allowed 35 in 2005 while with the Diamondbacks and 33 in his first stint with the Yankees.
  • To go along with the home runs, his FB% of 34.8% is by far his lowest since 2002.  From 2003-2008 he was over 40% five out of six seasons, with a high of 43.4%.  More flyballs will just help lead to more home runs.
  • His saving grace is his control, which has always been there for him.  His career BB/9 is 2.34 and his worst number since 2000 is 2.73 back in 2004, again during his last stint with the Yankees.
  • My projection has him with a BABIP at .320, a number that he exceeded in two of his three seasons with the White Sox (.321 in 2006 and .328 in 2008).

There you have my thoughts, but what about you?  Am I being overly pessimistic on him due to his move back to the AL?  Do you seem him significantly outperforming these projections?

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Top 15 First Basemen For 2010: Take Three
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2 comments

  1. Aaron says:

    I think Vazquez takes a step back down to his usual this year. Moving to the NL in a hitter friendly ball park. He is a good pitcher but I think he will be drafted a little high for me.

    I do think that he gets to the 16 wins you project, because of the Yankees, but I am thinking more about 4.50 and under 200 innings. Still a good option but I think you’re being slightly generous.

  2. Tommy says:

    I do think you are being overly pessimistic. I think you are discounting the fact that Vasquez is a better pitcher today than during his previous stints with White Sox and Yanks. Yes, his ERA will rise a bit (3.80?), but I wouldn’t be surprised to see 18 wins. Vasquez pitching for the Yankees should be a big winner, especially in fantasy point leagues.

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