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We've made a lot of changes to Baseball Prospectus 2016, and I want to tell you about a few of them here. But as to not bury the lede, our publisher is making the Philadelphia Phillies chapter of Baseball Prospectus 2016 freely available as a PDF! Go get your copy now by clicking here.

Now that Baseball Prospectus 2016 is making its way to readers across the nation, we wanted to cover some of the changes we'd made to this year's edition.

Book Updates

This year's book is enormous. We heard from several readers who wanted the thicker, whiter stock that we use in our other publications in their annual, and we've always liked the better paper as well. So at the risk of making the book even less portable, we worked with our publisher to source high-quality 60# white paper for Baseball Prospectus 2016.


Top: Baseball Prospectus 2015.
Bottom: Baseball Prospectus 2016.

Baseball Prospectus 2016 weighs over twice as much as Baseball Prospectus 2015, and the better paper is the main reason for the increase. Part of that size increase is the page count. Baseball Prospectus 2015 was 476 pages, and Baseball Prospectus 2016 is 594 pages. Baseball Prospectus 2015's word count was actually very similar to other volumes in the series–both the 2015 and 2016 books are in the overall series margin for error–but we used a smaller font in layout last year and we heard from a lot of readers that it was hard to read. We bumped up the base font size and the leading a bit for Baseball Prospectus 2016.


Top: 180000 pixels of Baseball Prospectus 2015.
Bottom: 180000 pixels of Baseball Prospectus 2016.

We also moved the page numbers back to the corners so you can more easily flip through by page number, and applied a color bar on the outside edge of each team chapter front page so it is easy for you to see where each team chapter begins.

Team Chapter Features

We've added a few features to the team chapters this year.

We were very happy to arrange with the talented Lou Spirito of THIRTY81PROJECT to bring you his updated ballpark outlines, dimensions, and outfield wall profiles for every ballpark in the majors. A ballpark is so much more than just a set of dimensions, and we've wanted something like this in the series since jump street. You'll find these in each team chapter.


Fenway Park from Baseball Prospectus 2016.

You'll find a series of graphs on the second page of every team chapter. We wanted to bring you a graphical depiction of some important information to help put the team's performance in context and add some shape to the numbers. The 2015 Hit List Ranking shows you how the team's Prospectus Hit List ranking changed as the season progressed. Jay Jaffe designed the process in 2005 and it has been running our version of the power rankings ever since. A fast start and a playoff push will scan very differently in these graphs.


Astros Hit List Ranking graph from Baseball Prospectus 2016.

The Committed Payroll graph gives you an idea of how this team's ability to pay players compares to their environment and their recent history. A change in organizational philosophy on roster compensation really stands out on these graphs. You'll see some of the intense effects things like the Dodgers payroll have on average compensation across the division, and get a pretty reasonable basis for estimating the team's general behaviors going forward.


Astros Committed Payroll graph from Baseball Prospectus 2016.

Baseball Prospectus has had full minor league coverage ever since we brought Kevin Goldstein on in 2006, and that lets us define some context for a team's minor league organizational strength over time. This is another graph where a shift in direction for an organization produces some dramatic changes in the graph. For the Farm System Ranking graph, we plot a team's ranking from our first organizational rankings in 2007 through to 2015.


Astros Farm System Ranking graph from Baseball Prospectus 2016.

Between the player writeups and Lineouts, we cover most of the players you'll want to know about for a team, and we've got coverage for each Manager in the book as well. We wanted to use the Personnel section to list some of the names you'll read or hear about when you're following the team in the media throughout the year. We've listed Presidents, General Managers, AGMs, Managers, and occasional others. The Baseball Prospectus Alumni section is my favorite part of the book.


Astros Personnel listing from Baseball Prospectus 2016.

Errata [updated 6/3/2016]

We hate it when errors make it into the book, and we're continually working on the process to improve our ability to find them before it is too late. But with the size and schedule of the project, we haven't found a way to squash them all yet. What we can do is track the errors in the book and point you in the direction of any corrections or fixes, so we'd like to try to do that here this year. If you see anything we don't have, please leave it in the comments, and we will update this list as things are reported.

In all instances where we included incorrect player information or omitted a player comment, you can click on the player name to get to his PECOTA player card. Ordinarily you must be a Baseball Prospectus Premium subscriber to see the expanded PECOTA projections output but we have made all of these cards free for all readers. We have also included their player comment from Baseball Prospectus 2016 in the player comments section, so you can see the player's complete stats, projections, and comments on their card. Full PECOTA projections for all of these players will be available next week.

An online Index of Player Names from Baseball Prospectus 2016 is available at https://legacy.baseballprospectus.com/sortable/extras/book_index_playerlist.php.

Thank you for reading

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kmbart
2/05
One *very* simple request for next year's Annual: put the actual W-L percentage next to the record at the top of each team's header block. Millions of us are doing simple math to compare W/162 with the PYTHAG value on the line below. (OK, maybe *thousands* and it's not *gory math*, but still.)
ORWahoo
2/06
I thought the Cubs' Hit List ranking didn't seem right!
NeweyUC
2/06
The Cubs' Farm System Ranking had me scratching my head for awhile too -- I was beginning to think that 30th meant "best".
BeltwayTraffic
2/06
pg. 506 - Mitch Moreland's 2016/2017 Pecota lines are repeated for Rougned Odor
dpease
2/12
Thanks, added to the list.
thepete39
2/06
I love the format updates. Haven't read too deeply yet but on a surface level (including the team logos for the first time ever), this is the best the book has ever looked.
dpease
2/12
thank you!
jnossal
2/07
Please don't let Doug Thorburn write any more player notes. It is frightening easy to tell which ones he had a hand in, the giveaway being the endless chain of mechanics jargon.

That might be OK for web articles that deal exclusively with pitching mechanics and have visuals to accompany the commentary, but really aren't suitable for player comments. The capsules deserve more than a description of pitcher deliveries without visuals or context, telling us little or nothing about the pitcher as a whole.
gilpdawg
2/07
Several player ages are wrong in the Reds chapter. Yorman Rodriguez was born in 1992, not 1985. Jumbo Diaz was born in 1984, not 1990, and Michael Lorenzen was born in 1992, not 1984.
mattofaction
2/08
I think the thing with Diaz, at the very least, is that his vital info (DOB, height, weight, etc.) is exactly the same as Anthony DeSclafani's.
dpease
2/12
I have these, thanks to both of you for commenting.
gilpdawg
2/07
BTW, don't want it to sound like I'm complaining. I love the book. It's the best one I've bought, but I didn't start buying them until 2012 or so.
dpease
2/12
thank you!
bleaklewis
2/08
I LOVED the new updated format of the annual. Much clearer and nicer to read. I really enjoyed the ballpark, staff, and team info in the beginning of the team articles as well.
dpease
2/12
thank you for the kind words.
agdainoff
2/08
Jose Bautista's Pecota WARP for 2016 is 0.4 with minor downgrades to his counting stats and minor upgrades to his slash line with almost identical plate appearances. His DRA went from 2015 0.3 to 2016 -1.4 but that seems hardly sufficient to justify a 4.5 to 0.4 drop in WARP.
BeltwayTraffic
2/08
I am guessing its an error as they are identical WARP numbers to Anthony Alford who is player listed above him...
dpease
2/12
thanks, I've added this to the list.
myshkin
2/08
The "WARP, Relievers" leaderboard is missing lots and lots of good relievers. Also, the "Runs Above Average" leaderboard has a misleading title; I assume it lists total catcher defense.

I especially love the outfield wall graphics.
gilpdawg
2/09
I think the WARP relievers is actually listing rookie relievers.
adrock
2/12
Got the Annual in the mail last night. It looks great!

I also noted the odd WAR projections for Jose, whether they're Alford's, or transposed with Ryan Goins, who's projected for Bautista-like numbers.

Another question: Is Byron Buxton really projected for 5.1 WAR this year? That seems awfully high for a rookie with an uneven track record of health and performance, notwithstanding the obvious upside.

Cheers!

kmbart
2/12
Taylor Featherston was just dealt to the Phillies and I saw that his piece in the Annual lists him as 6'11" and 185 pounds. Seems about a foot taller than he was last year and that would make him the tallest position player ever, correct?
dpease
2/12
you are right, he's six foot one. Added to the list, thanks!
quackman
2/13
Stats and projections are missing for Jason Motte and Mike Nikorak on page 166.

I'm also skeptical about the comps for Luke Hochevar on page 217, though it would be awesome if he turned into a left handed starter who would perennially lead the league in strikeouts.
dpease
2/18
Thanks--added Motte and Nikorak, will check on Hochevar's comps.
thepete39
2/15
Page 399 Aramis Ramirez is showing the comps, percentages for Harold Ramirez (right below him).

dpease
2/18
thanks--added to the list.
ufoboy90
2/16
Page 52 - Miguel Gonzalez has incorrect biographical information. Book is great!
dpease
2/18
thanks--added to the list.
jbusch
2/16
I'm having trouble understanding the park factors. Shouldn't the runs/rh and runs/lf average out to the Runs in the 3-year park factors?

For example, White Sox lists runs at 102, Runs/RH at 115 and Runs/LH at 105. I would think the overall Runs factor would be in the area of 110 (maybe 109 or so if there were more RH batters).
BeltwayTraffic
2/17
Wilmer Flores has incorrect age listed at top of player profile (listed as 21yo)
dpease
2/18
thanks--added to the list.
quackman
2/18
Carter Capps has Kyle Barraclough's stats. Neither Capps nor Barraclough have MPH listed.

Carl Crawford is missing a 2016 projection.
dpease
6/03
thanks. Barraclough didn't have MPH because of level pitched; Capps didn't have it because we have Barraclough's stats in there instead. Added to the list.
Kgraveman
2/22
Kolby Allard has no stats/protections or comps pg29
dpease
6/03
Thanks--we didn't have any stats we could use to build a projection for him.