As we get closer to the regular season, how good is the Washington Nationals offense? A look at top computer models gives a peek. Hint: They are good.
The Washington Nationals expect to have a lethal offense.
After last year’s record-setting 4.71 runs-per-game, 95-wins and a National League East title, how do they follow up?
As we did last week with the starting pitchers, District on Deck shows you what the computers predict the offense will do over the next six months. Using the three methods listed at FanGraphs, we will see if the Nats can keep the pace up or of they come down from last year’s highs.
The Steamer numbers are based on a system invented by two baseball and number-crunching high school students from Brooklyn. All three projections are plausible guesses, but the math behind them are solid enough to be taken seriously.
As a team, the website does not think they will fare as well with run scoring. Still, with a projection of 4.67 runs-per-game, those numbers are good. In the NL, only the Chicago Cubs and Colorado Rockies project higher.
Predicted to win 91, the big difference in the team models come with pitching. Without an established closer—and a different read on Tanner Roark, the Nats are expected to allow 4.11 a game and have a positive run differential of 95. A drop from 151 in 2016.
Again, the Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers have a higher projected difference while the New York Mets have a modeled difference of 40.
With those caveats in mind, here is how the stating offense figures to do this year, presented in the order of where they are likely to hit.
Come October, we will laugh at these or cry.