25 January 2010
2010 Fan Projections: As we fight our way through January and February towards the start of a new baseball season, we'll be looking at each player on the Red Sox roster and predicting how they will perform in 2010. But we want you guys to get in on the action too! Use the form at the bottom of each post to submit your projections for each player. After the 2010 season, we'll announce who did the best and award some prizes to the winners!
Click a name to make other 2010 projections:
Daniel Bard, Reliever/Set-up Man
Daniel Bard's season totals from 2009 are pretty solid. In AAA Pawtucket he posted a 1.13 ERA with 29 strikeouts and just 5 free passes in 16 innings of work and logged 6 saves in the process. As a member of the major league club, Bard finsihed with a 3.65 ERA, 63 Ks, 22 BBs and 13 holds in 49.1 innings.
Not bad for a 24-year old rookie, right?
Not at all... but if you watched the games you know Bard's 2009 season had it's ups and downs. What I found interesting was his home/road splits. You would think being called into a close game at Fenway Park would be stressful, but Bard thrived while pitching in Fenway, posting a 1.46 ERA, a 0.89 WHIP and a .207 BAA in 24.2 innings. He also fanned 30 while walking only four. Bard logged the exact same number of innings on the road, but the results were not pretty: 5.84 ERA, 1.66 WHIP, 2.47 BAA, 33 SO, 18 BB.
It's tough to pinpoint why Bard struggled on the road, but you could argue that two key games against the league's best made a huge impact:
June 14 @ Philadelphia: 0.2 IP, 4 ER, 2 H, 3 BB, 1 K - Julio Lugo made an error on a DP and Saito walked in two of the four runs after Bard was pulled.
Aug. 9th @ New York: 0.2 IP, 3 ER, 2 HR, 1 BB - The Sox were up 2-1 in the 8th and Bard got two quick outs, but Damon and Teixeira went back-to-back and Bard earned a blown save and the loss.
If you take away those two games, Bard's road ERA drops to 3.35 and his overall ERA drops from 3.65 to 2.38. Lugo and Saito get some of the heat for the Phillies game, but Bard simply coughed up two homers to good hitters in the Yankees game. That's going to happen against good teams, but if the Sox want Bard to be the set-up man, or eventually be the closer, he's going to have to prove that he can beat the best.
Bard made 49 appearances for the Sox as a rookie last season. As the projected set-up man, he could log up to 60 games this season, but the Red Sox will be cautious about over working the young flame-thrower. Bard wasn't as dominant against southpaws as he was against righties, so Francona may opt to go with lefty and former 8th inning man Hideki Okajima in certain situations this season. That said... if Papelbon is traded during the season, the situation changes completely and my predictions below will be way off.
Bottom Line Projection: 58 G, 55 IP, 22 HLD, 4 SV, 2.95 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 72 K
Make your predictions using the form below. Just plug in your email address and the stats you expect to see from Bard this season and hit the SUBMIT button. We'll give away some prizes during the offseason...
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