Saturday, March 3, 2012

2012 projections: Mat Latos

Cincinnati has a lot invested in the 24-year old hurler

It's safe to say that there is a lot of pressure riding on Latos to perform well this season. The Reds gave up a bounty of players (SP Edinson Volquez, 1B Yonder Alonso, RP Brad Boxberger, C Yasmani Grandal) to get him from San Diego, and what they hope to receive in return is a perennial ace-caliber pitcher. The 24-year old showed flashes of dominance during the 2010 campaign (14-10, 2.92 ERA, 189 Ks, 1.083 WHIP) where he finished 8th in the NL Cy Young Award voting, but took a small step back in 2011 (9-14, 3.47 ERA, 194 IP, 1.184 WHIP). However, a change of scenery and an increase in run support from his new club may propel the right-hander to a better year in 2012.

So, to help give a better idea of what this upcoming season may hold for him I've dug up projections from four different sources. They are as follows:

BG: baseballguru.com
RC: rotochamp.com
ZiPS: baseballthinkfactory.org
ESPN: espn.com

And here are their respective projections for Latos:

BG: 12 wins, 3.48 ERA, 184.1 IP, 177 Ks, 1.027 WHIP
RC: 15-9, 3.65 ERA, 200 IP, 194 Ks, 1.211 WHIP
ZiPS: 15-9, 3.38 ERA, 191.2 IP, 189 Ks, 1.167 WHIP
ESPN: 15 wins, 3.39 ERA, 199 IP, 190 Ks, 1.17 WHIP
Career avg (3 yrs): 12-13, 3.37 ERA, 180 Ks, 1.154 WHIP

The move from pitcher-friendly PETCO park to hitter-friendly GABP will probably result in a higher ERA than usual from Latos. But considering that he's primarily a groundball/strikeout pitcher, I wouldn't expect his numbers to fluctuate too much. The one thing I would expect is a few more wins to his credit due to being on a better ballclub.

How many wins do you forsee from him in 2012? Do you think he'll earn his first trip to the All-Star game this year?

You can view past player projections by clicking on the following links:
Jay Bruce
Joey Votto
Brandon Phillips
Johnny Cueto
Ryan Madson

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