With most of the big name signings finished, it's time for the pre-spring training rankings and projections to start popping up.
First, David Schoenfield has some AL Central rankings by position:
You can quibble with a ranking here or there (as he notes, Tomlin's fans will dispute his last place rank among #3 starters), but it seems pretty accurate overall. Unsurprising takeaway: Can the Indians just find a league average first baseman in the next 3 weeks?
Next, Dan Szymborski has his ZIPS projections for the Indians:
A note on projections, to preempt some expected "What is this page of nothing but numbers?" objections: in my opinion, projections like this should be compared to each other, and also used for discussion fodder, rather than as a strict prediction of what is "likely" to happen. The key reason is that such projections tend to be inherently conservative, clustering around the midpoint of what a player is projected to do. If all players just hit their projections, then even MVP candidates would just be solidly above average, and almost every team would fall between 75 and 85 wins. Some guys are going to exceed, and others will get hurt or fall short. And That's Why They Play The Games.
One bit of interestingness: AsCab's career (counting, but not rate) numbers look awfully similar to Barry Larkin's, with the noted difference that Cab is playing in a higher offense environment. Sign the extension, please.