Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ben Sheets

I will likely be adding a forecast for Ben Sheets in the next edition of the player forecasts.  Sheets, as many readers know, was supposed to throw for several big league teams today and ESPN reported back in November that Sheets' agent, Casey Close, said Sheets would be healthy by the start of the spring.  Of course, we have to take what a player's agent says with a grain of salt but if it's true that Sheets is ready to go, he could be an interesting gamble for a team that needs to take a chance.

Pending further information on his status, if Sheets is throwing about as expected, I'm likely to forecast a very risky projection that would have an ERA in the mid to high 3's, maybe 20 starts (which would go up in the spring once he proved that he was ready to go for Opening Day) and a rate of about 0.80 to 0.85 strikeouts per inning.

When healthy, he has been so consistently above average since 2004 that the "healthy" part seems to be the only real challenge.  On that note, while he did start 31 games in 2008, it was the first time he had topped 24 start since 2004.  It will be interesting to see if he resembles his former self.