AVG PROJECTION: .304-.317 OBP PROJECTION: .345-.362 SLG PROJECTION: .479-.482 WAR ESTIMATE: 2.5-2.8
In unison, the projections look at Daniel Murphy’s 2016 and laugh.
Sure, expecting Murphy to get a hit in all 19 games against the Mets again is not realistic. But, to drop his overall batting average between 30 and 43 points is a stretch.
Remember, all models spit out their numbers with certain weights given to years prior. With Citi Field as Murphy’s home for his career until last year, that hurt him. The Mets offense—when healthy—was built differently than Washington. The computers find it difficult to smooth career years.
Last year was that for Murphy and then some.
Although the projections come closer with doubles—Steamer says 37, while Depth Charts is the high at 41—all three have him around 15 home runs. If true, that is a double-digit drop. The computers look at his 2015 with the Mets and say those are his targets.
Provided his hamstring stays healthy those drops are too much. His limited at-bats for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic are not helping him, but suggesting his slugging percentage falls 100 points from last year is too much.
Murphy does not get the attention of Harper and Turner. Again, he should fly under the radar and be a key cog in the lineup.