Will Dallas Keuchel Continue to Dominate in 2016? Let’s Examine what ZiPS Thinks. Here’s a Look at Astros Pitcher Projections
As starting pitching goes, the first four spots are set in stone. The combined zWAR for the Astros next season is projected to be at 14 wins. The first two, Dallas Keuchel and Collin McHugh, who combined for a 10 WAR last season, and projected for a bit of a decline with a 4.5 zWAR for Keuchel and a 3.1 zWAR for this next season.
For Keuchel, coming off a 2015 AL Cy Young Award, is projected to record 177 strikeouts with a 3.29 earned run average (ERA) and a 3.28 fielding independent pitching average (FIP). The ERA is projected based off of the AL having a 3.93 ERA.
Lance McCullers, occupying that third spot in the rotation, is projected to throw 155 strikeouts in 150.2 innings with a 3.64 ERA. The last two spots, with trades and free agents signings still up in the air, are currently Mike Fiers, with a projected 4.17 ERA and 4.04 FIP, and Scott Feldman with a 4.50 ERA and only a 0.8 WAR.
Now the bullpen is headlined by the one of the newest Astros, hard-throwing right-hander Ken Giles. According to these projections, only two pitchers in baseball, Wade Davis and Aroldis Chapman, have received better FIP- numbers than Giles. Giles, with a projected 2.75 ERA and 87 strikeouts, is projected to have a 1.3 zWAR. As for the rest of the bullpen, with names such as Luke Gregerson, Tony Sipp, and Will Harris, their combined zWAR is at 4 games.
Next: Astros Prospect Projections