Prediction puts White Sox under .500

February, 11, 2013
2/11/13
6:30
PM CT
Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
Archive
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The number crunching is complete and the Chicago White Sox are projected to finish the 2013 season a disappointing eight games under .500.

Baseball Prospectus’ PECOTA projections reveal that the White Sox will finish 77-85 in 2013. Last season, they were projected to finish 78-84 and they finished seven games better at 85-77.

PECOTA projections are best known for predicting the performance of an individual player. The acronym stands for Player Empirical Comparison and Optimization Test Algorithm and is described by Baseball Prospectus on its website as a “proprietary system that projects player performance based on comparison with historical player-seasons.”

The player projections are used to come up with team projections.

So how good have the PECOTA projections been at predicting White Sox seasons? It doesn’t take a math expert to realize that with so many unpredictable variables, dialing in an exact record can be difficult.

Since 2005, the projections have been within three games only twice. In 2007, the White Sox won one less game than projected, and in 2011, they won three less than projected. Getting that close should be commended. Twice the predictions were off by double digits.

In the eight previous projections before this season, the White Sox actually won more games than expected six times. The biggest misfire came in 2005 when the White Sox won 19 more games than projected.

So what does it all mean? Not a whole lot really, but at this time of the year it’s all we have. As they say, it’s why they play the games.

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Chris Sale
WINS ERA SO IP
12 2.17 208 174
OTHER LEADERS
BAJ. Abreu .317
HRJ. Abreu 36
RBIJ. Abreu 107
RA. Ramirez 82
OPSJ. Abreu .964
ERAC. Sale 2.17
SOC. Sale 208