Clay Davenport's projections: 80 wins for Oakland
Clay Davenport has projections up on his site and he's posted the first iteration of some standings built from those projections. The confidence intervals around these figures are obviously quite large, but they're an interesting glance at a general idea of Davenport's system's idea of team quality.
Being an 80-win team, as the projections currently figure the A's to be, may or may not be a good idea from a 2015 perspective, but remember that less than a month ago, the perception, and I don't think it was unique to King Kaufman, was this:
The crux of Kaufman's argument (stated about a week before that tweet) was that the A's were pulling nonsense to try to argue to MLB that they couldn't compete and thus needed a new stadium. With Seth Smith, Jonny Gomes, and Bartolo Colon all in the fold instead of running with young (likely inferior) in-house options, and Manny Ramirez possibly on the way, what's the narrative now? Is it still dirty business? A delaying action? Certainly they're not on pace with the Rangers, but were they that even if they added Smith/Gomes/Colon to Cahill/Gonzalez? (Kaufman's tweets came before the Bailey trade, and in any case, that's a closer.) I'm not inclined to think they would be.
Maybe that wasn't a terribly unreasonable argument at the time (though it did, as a side issue, point up the way his fandom is different from mine -- I don't feel that I have the option to just quit being an A's fan), but with a fuller picture of the A's entire off-season, I think it at least calls it into question, even retroactively.
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