2013 MLB Predictions: Projected Standings, Most Likely World Series, Preseason Ratings

posted in MLB

The 2013 MLB season starts in only two days, as the Rangers and Texans kick things off with a Lone Star State Showdown. With opening day fast approaching, it’s time to release our preseason ratings and projections.

The main purpose of these ratings is to provide a data-driven starting point for our MLB projected standings. Just like last season, we’ll have fully automated win-loss predictions, playoff chances, and World Series win odds, and all the info will be updated every single day of the season to reflect the latest results and the most up to date MLB power ratings.

A word of caution — while our preseason projections for other sports have proven to be useful indicators of where values may lie among the various full season futures bets, we’re not nearly as confident in our MLB preseason ratings. We’re publishing these in the interest of full disclosure, so that you know what the initial rating in our projection system was for each team. We’re most definitely not recommending that you use these ratings and forecasts to go place preseason bets.

You may look at the projections below and think that they aren’t extreme enough. In a way, you’d be right — the best team in the league will almost certainly win more than the 90 games we’ve forecast for the Yankees, and the worst will likely lose more than 95. However, picking which teams will wildly exceed expectations is rather tricky, and on average these conservative predictions should provide a less biased starting point than more aggressive ones.

However, if you’d like to see our best case and worst case scenarios for each team, check out their team projections page. Here are the New York Yankees projections as an example. Follow that link and you’ll find a chart showing the projected odds of the Yankees winning any specific number of games, as well as a list of their toughest & easiest games, and a table showing how their chances of winning the World Series change depending on what seed they get in the playoffs.

Quick Predictions For The 2013 MLB Season

Let’s go over a few of the insights these projections provide, before laying all the details out below.

  • The most likely World Series result is the New York Yankees beating the St. Louis Cardinals. Of course, that exact outcome only has about a 1 in 100 chance of occurring.
  • The NL East appears to be the most balanced division — it’s the only division where no single team has a 30% or better chance to win.
  • The Detroit Tigers in the AL Central appear to be the biggest lock for a division title. However, our projections still don’t see them as a sure thing, putting their chances of a division crown at only 40%.
  • The race for the two NL Wild Cards is wide open. Only Pittsburgh, Miami, Colorado, and Chicago have less than a 10% shot at snagging a Wild Card berth, and favored Washington has only an 18% chance.
  • The top 5 teams are all in the AL East and AL West. Yet at least one of the Yankees, Rays, Rangers, Angels, and A’s is going to be staying home for the playoffs.

Here is how the playoffs would play out, if these projections end up being spot on:

  • Wild Card Round: Rays over Angels; Braves over Phillies
  • Division Round: Yankees over Rays, Rangers over Tigers; Cardinals over Braves, Nationals over Giants
  • League Championship Series: Yankees over Rangers; Cardinals over Nationals
  • World Series: Yankees over Cardinals

Full 2013 MLB Preseason Projections

2013 MLB Preseason Projections
AL EastWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
NY Yankees9072160.2%22.8%37.4%18.0%8.9%
Tampa Bay8874256.1%23.1%33.0%14.4%7.5%
AL CentralWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
Chi Sox83791639.7%10.4%29.3%6.2%3.6%
Kansas City78842123.1%8.1%15.0%2.4%1.6%
AL WestWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
LA Angels8676446.7%19.6%27.1%10.4%5.3%
National League
NL EastWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
NY Mets78842323.1%11.7%11.4%3.4%1.7%
NL CentralWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
St. Louis8676752.5%17.1%35.4%13.5%5.9%
Chi Cubs73892910.0%5.2%4.8%0.7%0.5%
NL WestWLTR RankPlayoffsWild CardWin DivTop SeedWS Champs
SF Giants85771045.6%14.5%31.1%10.9%5.0%
LA Dodgers83791538.0%14.1%23.9%7.1%3.8%
San Diego78842223.6%10.7%12.9%3.3%1.8%
  • jp

    78 wins for the jays? LOLWUT?

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Yeah, like we said, we definitely do NOT recommend taking these at face value. We don’t have many advanced stats for baseball, so our preseason projections are made using mostly some team level stats from the last couple years, plus salary info. They probably won’t catch the most/least improved from last season very well. We’re just publishing these so we’re on the record about the starting point for the season projections. If the Jays are way better than that, their projection will start to show it after they play well for a month or so.

  • http://twitter.com/mentalxray michael messina

    Go Cubbies! er….wait till next year…again???

  • Teddy

    this is absolute garbage… There is a better chance Yankees finish in last in their division then finishing in first. GUARANTEE blue jays and rays finish above them, let alone Baltimore and even Boston…. this is pathetic

  • Kevin

    So what you’re saying is that these projections and rankings are going to constantly change and
    wont really stabilize until we’re about 20-30 games into the season?

  • ronnie serter

    this is the worst projection ever

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Well, yes and no. As with any ratings system, it will be more accurate after there is some data from this year. It’s not going to swing wildly back and forth, though. That’s the point of these preseason ratings — instead of basing the projections on 1 game of data, we combine the actual performance so far with the preseason ratings. As the season goes on, the preseason ratings will have less and less influence.

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Teddy, you’ll be happy to know that the Yankees are already behind the Rays in the latest projections, thanks to getting crushed in Game 1 by a Boston team that’s only projected to be average: http://www.teamrankings.com/mlb/projections/standings/

    Again, we tried to make it clear in the post — we’re just posting these in the interest of full disclosure, so people know what biases the projection system starts off with. We’re absolutely not suggesting these are better than other projections out there. (That said, I’d be wary of guaranteeing any baseball outcome — how many people predicted the Orioles would make the playoffs last year?)

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Thanks for the constructive feedback!

  • Jeff blake Codora

    The Yankees? Tampa bay? Baltimore? Is this a joke!! Ronnie Serter was dead on, this is easily the worst projections I have ever seen!! Will the Red Sox be at the bottom of the division this year, no they won’t, but the Yankees may very well be.
    Detroit Washington and the giants are the only projections I agree with, Im not buying into the Dodgers hype I do believe that the Giants will lock down that division. Look the Cardinals lost Lohse, and no Chris Carpenter, the cards won’t be able to keep pace on the NL central!! The trade for Choo the Reds made gives them a solid lead off guy. He was on base over 110 more times then all the guys who lead off for the reds combined while leading off. There 1-7 hitters are all solid young players, other than Ludwick who is solid but the only guy over 30. Every hitter 1-7 is a 20 plus home run guy, and even the 8 hitter Hanagan is a solid hitting catcher wjo consistently puts the ball in play! A healthy Votto, Frazier being an everyd
    ay player, and guys like Bruce and Cozart being a year older is all ingredients for an explosive line up!! A line up that is good on both sides of the game, they are one of the best and most consistent fielding teams. Then lets talk reds pitching, 2 guys who finished in the top 5 for the Cy Young last season, and there is a lot of buzz that Matt Latos could also be mentioned in that talk this year! The best closer in baseball, Cueto is solid with a lot of great pitches at his disposal. Homer Bailey is solid as is Arroyo. As I’m talking the reds have hit 4 homes runs tonight against the Nats!!

  • Jeff blake Codora

    I suppose I should if read the entire article more closely as I missed you guys mention that. I suppose I seen the projections then immediately couldn’t believe what I was reading.

  • Jeff blake Codora

    Check that, Ludwick is over 30 as is Brandon Phillips at 31, though still coming into his prime and one of the best fielding and hitting 2nd baseman in baseball

  • Sam

    You’re the first scribe to acknowledge that the Tigers most definitely are not a lock to win that division. Once again, the White Sox are underrated, and could be the surprise story of the year. Or at least, a surprise to those who underestimated them.

  • mike

    Just wanted to say, congratulations on your MLB money-line picks. 0-7 yesterday, 4-24 for the last three days. Staggering efficiency. Now, if only I was fading your picks.

  • http://www.teamrankings.com TeamRankings.com

    mike, if you’ve got something constructive to say, fire away. Otherwise, it looks like you’re bitching about a 3-day losing streak, and that really makes you look like an amateur.

  • mike

    I am an amateur. That’s why I come here for guidance…duh. These results are just extraordinarily bad.

    I have failed many a time handicapping baseball but I have never suffered a streak such as this. I have always admired your transparency, that’s why I trusted your models, but you are 20 units down this season so far and it isn’t reasonable to think people will keep shedding thousands of $’s in the hope that it will turn around…eventually.

    If you can offer some explanation for the failing results and whether you think there will be an uptick that’s great, otherwise you just come across as a swindling boiler-room salesman that is bitching about clients complaining when they realize they have been swindled.

  • http://www.teamrankings.com TeamRankings.com

    No explanation, Mike, besides variance. These models have returned +130 units on 2- and 3-star money line picks from 2008-2012, with profitable results every single year in that star range. Along the way there have been, and will continue to be, plenty of ups and downs.

  • Akash Mishra

    But this must be a very down year…there’s no way that the Yankees can come in first, without Teixera, Swisher, Granderson…etc.
    There’s only Cano left, and he can’t power the Yankees for long. I believe that the Yankees will be around .500 until the all-star break.
    Also, the Orioles will not be at .500… They had too many walk-offs last season. I believe that the Blue Jays, then the Rays, then the Red Sox, then the Yankees, then the Orioles, with the Red Sox and Yankees being tied at .500

  • Akash Mishra

    There’s no way that the Yankees have a 8.9% chance of winning the W.S. it’s probably around 4.25%

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    4.25% definitely jives more with the futures market. Like we acknowledge in the post, our MLB preseason ratings are not as reliable as those from our other sports. We’re just publishing this as full disclosure, so people know what the starting point for our season projections are. http://www.teamrankings.com/mlb/projections/standings/

    That said … until the Jays and Rays actually start playing well, they’re going to remain low in the forecast.

  • http://twitter.com/UrKllinMeSmalls Squints Palledorous

    How you looking so far lol?

  • http://twitter.com/UrKllinMeSmalls Squints Palledorous

    How ’bout them Jays. Rofl.

  • http://twitter.com/UrKllinMeSmalls Squints Palledorous

    I know right. Way too generous.

  • larry mac

    I am and will always be a devout Yankees fan .but there is no way this team will win 90 games this year.yes some utility players stepped up and played well above and beyond,but in a 162 game schedule that can only go so far.this team is just a train wreck that is happening

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    FYI, we currently have the projected for 86 wins, which equates to 48-43 over the rest of the season (an 85 win pace over a full 162 games): http://www.teamrankings.com/mlb/projections/standings/

    Also, I’d give the same warning about baseball’s unpredictability that I gave to the commentor that guaranteed the Jays and Rays would finish ahead of the Yanks — “I’d be wary of guaranteeing any baseball outcome — how many people predicted the Orioles would make the playoffs last year?”

  • Jack McGuire

    It’s getting closer to October and from this late in the year, this predictions was highly inaccurate. For an example, Pirates, Red Sox, and the Dodgers.

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Really, you’re going to ding us for missing the Pirates? I don’t think ANYBODY pegged them improving like that this year. … And yet not point out that we’re the only place I know of that had the Blue Jays under .500?

    You need to judge us against the competition, not against perfection.

  • Daniel Heller

    It’s plain that preseason picks are all longshots. Your only pick that looks bizarre, compared to what other pundits were saying, is the Yankees. Everyone thought the Yankees were too old, too many questions, unproven pitching staff…what data led you to pick them as the best team in baseball? It wouldn’t have anything to do with what they did 15 years ago would it?

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    Huh? No, it has nothing to with what they did 15 years ago. It has to do with what they’ve done the last couple years, as well as some info on free agent signings.

  • devon

    highlyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy inaccurate
    THIS GUY MUST BE FROM NEW YORK cuz they are the only team with more then 20 wins above .500

  • Treadonthis

    Haha, yup, those underrated white sox ROLL TRIBE!!

  • Ryan Craig

    HAHAHAHA what a joke

  • http://www.teamrankings.com/ David Hess

    See paragraph 3

    “A word of caution — while our preseason projections for other sports have proven to be useful indicators of where values may lie among the various full season futures bets, we’re not nearly as confident in our MLB preseason ratings. We’re publishing these in the interest of full disclosure, so that you know what the initial rating in our projection system was for each team. We’re most definitely not recommending that you use these ratings and forecasts to go place preseason bets.”

  • ben

    white sox ROFL