We get it. Mike Leake isn’t the most inspiring pitcher to watch on the mound. He doesn’t have incredible velocity. he doesn’t have a nasty curve. He doesn’t strike a lot of guys out. His presence isn’t exactly imposing. He does more or less get the job done, though, and that is what the Cardinals are paying him to do.
Last season, Leake had a solid 3.83 FIP which was good for a 2.5 WAR. Like most Cardinals pitchers last year, he was undone by poor defense and unlucky sequencing. Leake’s .318 BABIP against was 25 point higher than his career average. His 66% left-on-base rate was well below the league average of 73%. That caused a 4.69 ERA.
If he does the exact same thing again this year, he’ll be better. Will he? Last year, we pretty much nailed it. Find ZiPS here, Steamer here, and Baseball Prospectus ($) projections on their player pages.
If you think you might have missed any projections, go here.