Thirteen days ago, Josey Curtis asked for your projections about St. Louis Cardinals center fielder-turned-right fielder Dexter Fowler. Here is what she had to say:
Fowler signed a five-year deal with the Cardinals in the 2016-17 offseason, making last year his first season in red. Fowler was limited to 118 games by injuries (right heel spur in late June and a left wrist sprain in late July) but did have a 121 wRC+ across 491 plate appearances.
The 31-year-old Fowler hit 18 home runs last year and was tied with Dee Gordon for the fourth-most triples in the Majors last season with nine, trailing Charlie Blackmon (14), Billy Hamilton(11), and Nick Castellanos with 10.
Slashing .264/.363/.488, Fowler lowered his strikeout rate nearly two percent, from 22.5 in 2016 to 20.6 last season. Fowler batted in a career-high 64 runs, driven by his 18 long balls - also a career-best total.
So there was one issue with Fowler’s projections: his WAR projection was selected as a drop-down rather than as a “fill in your number here” option. As the guy who forgot to put RBI on these projections, I can’t judge Josey too harshly for the oversight, so the number used here (which includes an asterisk) is an approximation based on Fowler’s VEB-projected offense, his ZiPS-projected defense as projected out to his VEB-projected plate appearance level of playing time, and 2017’s run environment. So unless you’re expecting a significant change in run scoring in 2018 or for Dexter Fowler’s defense to be substantially better or worse than expectations in right field, this should be a decent approximation—VEB WAR projections have generally aligned pretty well with the ol’ sanity test.
Dexter Fowler 2018 Projections