keyboard_arrow_uptop

Team Injury Projections

The Team Injury Projections are here, driven by our brand new injury forecasting system, the Comprehensive Health Index [of] Pitchers [and] Players [with] Evaluative Results—or, more succinctly, CHIPPER. Thanks to work by Colin Wyers and Dan Turkenkopf and a database loaded with injuries dating back to the 2002 season—that's nearly 4,600 players and well over 400,000 days lost to injury—we now have a system that produces injury-risk assessments to three different degrees. CHIPPER projects ratings for players based on their injury history—these ratings measure the probability of a player missing one or more games, 15 or more games, or 30 or more games. CHIPPER will have additional features added to it throughout the spring and early season that will enhance the accuracy of our injury coverage.

These ratings are also available in the Player Forecast Manager (pfm.baseballprospectus.com), where they'll be sortable by league or position—you won’t have to wait for us to finish writing this series in order to see the health ratings for all of the players.

ATLANTA BRAVES
Team Audit | Depth Chart
 

Dashboard


2010 Recap
 

2010
 

2009
 

2008
 

2007
2nd in NL East
53 entries
16 DL trips
               

804
TDL

15
DMPI
 

804
TDL
10th
 

15
DMPI
6th
 

1288
TDL
25th
 

20
DMPI
14th
 

1653
TDL
27th
 

20
DMPI
14th
 

1215
TDL
19th
 

23
DMPI
7th

Hitters in approximate Depth Charts order at time of publication

 

Days Lost to Injury

2011 Injury Risk

Player

Age

2008

2009

2010

1-day

15-days

30-days
Martin Prado

27

59

11

31

Red

Yellow

Yellow
Jason Heyward

21

0

0

25

Red

Yellow

Green
Chipper Jones

39

42

25

79

Red

Red

Red
Dan Uggla

31

11

1

4

Red

Yellow

Green
Brian McCann

27

7

16

3

Yellow

Green

Green
Nate McLouth

29

6

37

42

Red

Red

Red
Alex Gonzalez

34

191

46

1

Yellow

Yellow

Yellow
Frederick Freeman

21

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green
Eric Hinske

33

0

0

0

Yellow

Green

Green
Joe Mather

28

27

0

0

Yellow

Yellow

Green
Brooks Conrad

31

0

0

0

Yellow

Green

Green
Brandon Hicks

25

0

0

22

Yellow

Yellow

Green
David Ross

34

24

15

1

Red

Yellow

Yellow
Diory Hernandez

27

0

0

90

Red

Red

Red

Pitchers in approximate Depth Charts order at time of publication

 

Days Lost to Injury

2011 Injury Risk

Player

Age

2008

2009

2010

1-day

15-days

30-days
Tim Hudson

35

66

185

0

Red

Red

Red
Derek Lowe

38

0

0

9

Red

Yellow

Yellow
Tommy Hanson

24

0

0

1

Green

Green

Green
Jair Jurrjens

25

5

0

88

Yellow

Green

Green
Mike Minor

23

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green
Kris Medlen

25

0

0

68

Yellow

Green

Green
Brandon Beachey

24

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green
Craig Kimbrel

23

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green
Jonny Venters

26

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green
Peter Moylan

32

166

0

5

Yellow

Yellow

Yellow
Scott Linebrink

34

43

0

0

Yellow

Yellow

Green
George Sherrill

34

26

3

14

Yellow

Yellow

Green
Eric O'Flaherty

26

0

2

61

Yellow

Green

Green
Rodrigo Lopez

35

0

11

0

Red

Yellow

Yellow
Scott Proctor

34

71

192

0

Red

Red

Red
Cristhian Martinez

29

0

0

0

Green

Green

Green

Summary: Bobby Cox finally stepped away from the game after 50 years, putting an end to an era. His swan song didn't always go smoothly, since a number of his players succumbed to serious injuries: the Braves racked up 22 DL stints and 53 total injuries on the year. In many ways, this was a better season in terms of health than the two that preceded it—notice the lack of green in the years prior to 2010. However, considering the lengthy absences of Chipper Jones (left ACL), Kris Medlen (Tommy John), and Jair Jurrjens (left hamstring, right meniscus), it was difficult to escape the feeling that there was always someone missing. Atlanta managed to make the playoffs despite its problems with health, but it was a depleted Braves team that limped into October.

Trading Omar Infante and Mike Dunn for Dan Uggla over the winter was a move meant to provide stability at second base. Uggla’s risk level isn’t too far past moderate, but his main risk factors are age and the position he plays. Another player whose age plays a role in his risk level is Jason Heyward (though eight different injury entries in our database last year also help). Heyward has a lot of tools, but one tool that often gets overlooked is the ability to stay healthy; he'll have to display that ability consistently throughout the season to lower his risk. Similarly, Nate McLouth has to prove that he won’t show up in the CHIPPER database as he has nine times over the last two years. Muscle strains and a concussion have limited him, but he hopes to turn over a new leaf. Considering we named our injury system after Chipper Jones, it’s no surprise that the third baseman qualifies as a high risk. He’s coming off ACL surgery on his left knee, but we all know that he’s good for at least 8-10 entries each year.

The pitching staff returns most of its starters from 2010. Kris Medlen is rated a low risk because we haven’t figured out a good way to factor in Tommy John surgeries from later on in-season (but we’re working on a solution). He will be out for most of 2011. Tim Hudson seemed to be over his Tommy John from 2008; however, he is turning 36 in July, and the odds are stacked against his staying out of the database. After nine straight seasons of 180-plus innings pitched, Derek Lowe is a candidate to break down at some point. He’s not quite in the high-risk category, but he is closer to high than low. On the other end of the spectrum, Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens get clean bills of health from CHIPPER, and both are exiting the injury nexus for young pitchers.

The bullpen boasts the usual injury highs and lows. It seems like Scott Proctor has been around forever, and his risk profile is not getting lower with time. On top of that, George Sherrill, Peter Moylan, and Scott Linebrink are all moderate risks to miss a moderate amount of time. The sky isn’t falling, though, as closer Craig Kimbrel is considered a low risk for the 2011 season. That doesn’t mean that he’ll stay unscathed indefinitely, but for right now he appears to be safe.

The Big Risk: Hanson has been mostly healthy, but on a staff made up of a mix of older pitchers who are considered risky and younger pitchers who may not be able to carry a full load, his loss would be the most devastating. The ensuing domino effect would overwork the bullpen or cause Lowe and Hudson to stay in their own starts longer, leading to an even higher risk of injury.

Comeback: Jones has a history of smaller injuries—he has 74 entries in our database since 2004, but just two of them have kept him out longer than 20 games. Coming back from any major surgery is difficult, since the body has to relearn all sorts of things, including regaining its balance. Jones’ surgically repaired ACL is unlikely to tear again, but something else may: he could have trouble staying healthy, even the kind of healthy we’re used to for Chipper. The odds are stacked against him, but if he sticks on the diamond he just might help the Braves make another playoff appearance.

Best Health: Luckily for the Braves, their “Big Risk” Hanson is also their healthiest player.

Worst Health: Like we said, our injury projection system is called “CHIPPER”. Jones has a 99.95 percent chance of missing more than 15 days in 2011. Are you taking the under? Didn’t think so.

You need to be logged in to comment. Login or Subscribe
ddufourlogger
3/14
OK, anyone have any insight or info on WHY the Braves have apparently settled on Uggla as a 2B for 5 years, despite his obvious limitations afield? I understand as long as Chipper is there, 3B is spoken for, but Uggla does at least anecdotally have the arm for 3B, and of course his lack of range would be minimized there. It seemed to me that they never even considered moving HIM to LF, leaving the defensively-superior Prado at 2B? If this is truly a team with postseason aspirations, to me leaving Prado at the keystone will help this ground-balling staff immensely. If I'm an NL GM and sign Uggla for 5 years, there's no WAY I do that without telling him we plan to have him switch positions at some point, hopefully sooner than later.
Nowhereman
3/14
I was thinking the same thing. And more generally, I'd think it would be easier to trade for a left-fielder with Uggla's offensive numbers than a second baseman. But I assume the plan is to move Prado to 3B when Chipper goes down or retires.
biglou115
3/15
I think part of the thought process is that Uggla would shift to left if the Braves can't replace Prado's production in the outfield. If they can then it's easy to forget that it would take massive regression (more than age alone) for Uggla to be below average as a second baseman by overall production, that's just how well his bat plays at 2b. He might not be worth his contract, but with their cost controlled options the Braves can probably eat a loss and pick up a slightly above average OFer (assuming that only one of McLouth/Schafer makes enough of a rebound to be on the team when Chipper retires, otherwise they'd have both and still be better than the rest of the East figures to be in 2013).