2012 Orioles Projections: Reimold, Jones, Markakis, Teagarden, Antonelli, Chavez

The infield was put together last week, leaving the outfield and the bench to be projected from the position players.

Nolan Reimold (LF):

500 PA, .253/.340/.431, -4 fielding, 1.4 Wins Above Replacement

It’ll be interesting to see what Reimold can do if he gets a full healthy season to play. At 28 years old already, there isn’t a lot of time left in what should be his prime years to establish himself as a starter in the big leagues. I’m assuming he’ll be the team’s primary left-fielder, though Chavez will steal some starts.

Adam Jones (CF):

600 PA, .275/.325/.456, -4 fielding, 2.5 WAR

Good but not great player, though – as before every season – he could certainly break out if he makes a step forward with the plate discipline. I’d just as soon see Jones traded this year if the O’s can get a decent return, since the idea of paying him for what he could be (which I think is what he’ll want) as opposed to what he is doesn’t sound appealing.

Nick Markakis (RF):

650 PA, .289/.366/.422, -3 fielding, 2.7 WAR

Good but not great player, and I’m not holding out hope any longer that Nick can be much more than that. The ability to hit for average and get on base probably keeps him as the team’s best hitter, even without the power, but that isn’t very impressive from a corner outfielder.

Taylor Teagarden (C):

175 PA, .216/.280/.351 +1 fielding, 0.3 WAR

Above replacement level, but nothing to write home about. Good glove and some pop, but it’ll take something beyond that to keep the drop-off from Wieters from being too big.

Matt Antonelli (IF):

425 PA, .243/.327/.352, -4 fielding, 0.6 WAR

I might like him more than most, but when OBP is all you bring to the table you need to be really good about it to be valuable. There are worse back-ups, of course.

Endy Chavez (OF):

350 PA, .272/.306/.365, +6 fielding, 0.7 WAR

It’s certainly nice to have a good fielding 4th outfielder, but I hope that doesn’t mean he’ll be starting too often.

The outfield plus bench totals to 8.3 WAR – three outfielders met or exceeded that mark in fWAR last season (Jacoby Ellsbury, Jose Bautista, Matt Kemp). The starters should be pretty solid, but the O’s need more than that from their “stars to be competitive. With a rough go at the position players “done”, here’s where they stand:

That’s a total of 17.6 WAR, but it’s likely that some players not listed (who will tend to be more replacement level) will get playing time (knocking the total down, maybe closer to ~16). The offense should be middle of the pack again, and hopefully the defense isn’t quite as bad (though it will still probably be below average – and I may have been a little too kind in that regard). That the position players are definitely the strength of this teams is, well, kinda sad.