Sometimes the bold predictions are the most fun. Even if they're the least likely to come true, and often based more on emotion than reason, when they do come to fruition, the vindication is unmatched. In this edition, the DRaysBay staff shares our "bold" predictions for the season.
Preet: Although I'm tempted to make my bold prediction be that Longoria actually manages to avoid the DL for a season, I'm going to have to go with a tremendous offensive upsurge from Desmond Jennings. In particular, an on-base percentage above .350.
Steve S.: My bold prediction is that Alex Cobb will step into the gap left by James Shields and become the Rays next underrated change-up stud. I'm hoping for an Earned Run Average below four from him, and four Wins Above Replacement. He's going into his age 25 season, so in other words, I'm looking for him to approximate Shields' age-25 season.
Michael: My bold prediction is that Matt Moore and David Price will combine for over ten Wins Above Replacement, with both strong candidates (but neither a winner) for the Cy Young award. David Price will maintain an edge in Innings Pitched, but Moore will surpass him in quality, posting a lower Earned Run Average/Fielding Independent Pitching measures. Rays fans will be left wondering how amazing a Price and Moore duo at the front of the rotation for a couple of more years could have looked after Price is shipped out next off-season for prospects.
Stephanie: My bold prediction is a record of 91-71. I think that this is the last year that we will see David Price in a Rays uniform and he will have another 20 win season and get the Cy Young again. I also see this as being a breakout year for Alex Cobb with him earning 15 wins.
Steve K.: Desmond Jennings will steal over 50 bases in 2013 and score over 100 runs.
Ian: No starters will get traded this year, and all of our "sixth" starters (Niemann, Fausto, Archer, Odorizzi) will get playing time (4+ starts).
Jonathan: My bold prediction is that Matt Moore not only develops into a legitimate top-of-the-rotation starter, but that he is worth at least six Wins Above Replacement, and wins the American League Cy Young Award.
Heath: Cole Figueroa will play himself into the majors and not look back.
Daniel: Jeremy Hellickson will continue to defy the baseball gods with an outrageously low Earned Run Average, despite a 4.40 Fielding Independent Pitching Average. He will quickly step into the role left behind by James Shields as the Rays workhorse.