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Byron Buxton

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2017 Twins Player Predictions: Brian Dozier

After an offseason of rumors, Brian Dozier is still with the Twins. The second baseman gives the team a reliable bat in their lineup. He put up a career high in batting average and became the only Minnesota Twins player not named Harmon Killebrew to hit over 40 home runs in a season. 2016 was an historic season for Brian Dozier. What will he do for an encore in 2017?

Brian Dozier was the Twins 8th round pick in 2009. He was drafted as a senior. Many said he was “too old for his level of competition” to be a prospect. He came up the first time at age 24 and really struggled as a shortstop. He was moved to second base, the defense was sound, and suddenly he started displaying remarkable power.

After two very slow months to start 2016. After May 22nd, Dozier was hitting just .199/.284/.318 (.602). Paul Molitor didn’t start him for two straight games, allowing him to clear his head. Over his final 115 games, Dozier hit .291/.356/.621 (.977) with a remarkable 38 home runs.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily
So what will 2017 look like for Brian Dozier? Can he come anywhere near replicating those numbers? Below you will find my predictions (or guesses, if you prefer) for Brian Dozier’s 2017 season. Consider posting your thoughts and your predictions into the comments below. It’s always fun to take a look at the end of the season and see how our predictions look.


KEY NUMBERS

15.3% - According to FanGraphs, Dozier hit the ball to the opposite field just 15.3% of the time, down from 15.6% of the time in 2016. The message to Dozier (from many) early in the season was that he needed to use the whole field. And while that’s never bad advice, Brian Dozier is an extreme pull hitter and that is where he finds the vast majority of his success.

$47.2 million - FanGraphs also provides a “Value” to each player for their season. Base on fWAR, they calculate how much that player’s season was worth. Brian Dozier’s 2016 season was worth $47.2 million. (5.9 fWAR) Over this past four seasons, Dozier has been worth a total of $127.9 million. Dozier is in Year 3 of a four year, $20 million contract that bought out his arbitration years.


PREDICTIONS

Brian Dozier: 574 at-bats, .261/.328/.458 (.786), 37 doubles, 2 triples, 24 home runs.

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Over the past three years, Brian Dozier has averaged 156 games played. I believe there is benefit to giving him a few extra days off, but I think Dozier’s going to want to play as much as possible. I have him at 152 games, so a few extra days off. I’m not going to put Dozier at 42 home runs again, in fact, not all that close. But I have his walk total increasing and I anticipate a lot more doubles.

I don’t even try to pretend to calculate Runs scored or RBI, but Dozier can pretty much be relied on to score 100 runs. If he’s leading off, he’ll likely end up in the 87-80 RBI range. If he were to his 3rd or 4th, I think he’d surpass 100 RBI.

YOUR TURN

Your turn. Share your thoughts on and predictions on Brian Dozier in 2017. We can take a look back at the end of the season and see how we did.


PREVIOUS PREDICTIONS

Jason Castro
Joe Mauer
Brian Dozier


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36 Comments

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bluechipper
Mar 28 2017 10:30 PM

24 HRs? That's it?

 

I'll go .270/.340/.500 with 35 HRs.

    • 70charger and Dozier's Glorious Hair like this
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mickeymental
Mar 29 2017 12:18 AM

nothing wrong with dozier. but i'd like to see 20 homers by the break and a trade for a young #2.

 

nothing wrong with dozier. but i'd like to see 20 homers by the break and a trade for a young #2.

 

That always sounds good... but... That'd be like the Red Sox trading Dustin Pedroia before the 2012 season in exchange for Jarrod Parker or Manny Banuelos or Mike Montgomery or Zach Wheeler or Brad Peacock.

 

Or Carlos Martinez... but the odds of getting a Carlos Martinez in a 1-for-1 trade probably about 1 in 6 or so... I just think we take the trade Dozier for a #2 type of pitcher has such a low chance of getting a return that comes anywhere close to what Dozier has done and could continue to do for another 4-5 years. 

 

Note - just used Pedroia as an example. You could pick Cano or Kinsler in his place if you prefer. 

    • Deduno Abides, tarheeltwinsfan and bighat like this

.250

28 Homeruns

90 runs

80 RBI

He'll set a career high in steals.  Let's say 22.

 

.260/ .330/ .480 35 2bs 28 hr 100 runs 75 rbi

That always sounds good... but... That'd be like the Red Sox trading Dustin Pedroia before the 2012 season in exchange for Jarrod Parker or Manny Banuelos or Mike Montgomery or Zach Wheeler or Brad Peacock.

Or Carlos Martinez... but the odds of getting a Carlos Martinez in a 1-for-1 trade probably about 1 in 6 or so... I just think we take the trade Dozier for a #2 type of pitcher has such a low chance of getting a return that comes anywhere close to what Dozier has done and could continue to do for another 4-5 years.

Note - just used Pedroia as an example. You could pick Cano or Kinsler in his place if you prefer.

The odds of getting a good pitcher back is one in six? For a 5+ WAR 2nd baseman with two years left on a small contract?

Not sure I agree with your police work there norm....
    • Vanimal46 and Original Whizzinator like this

Brian Dozier is at about peak age for ball players.  This year and the next are when I expect the most so unlike most I am not predicting regression.  I think 42 is a lot of HRs so I will back up to 35, but I think he gets on more with a 280 average and 35 doubles. His RBIs depend on where he is in the lineup, but I think the lineup is getting stronger from top to bottom except Catcher so I see him holding his RBIs in the 100 range. 

    • Oldgoat_MN, 70charger, bluechipper and 1 other like this
.920 ops
52 HR
6.8 WAR
    • sploorp and Original Whizzinator like this
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stringer bell
Mar 29 2017 06:42 AM
I don't care about BA, but I'd sure like to see Dozier's OBP stay at last year's level or maybe go a little higher. This spring, he's seemed to concentrate on base stealing and I wouldn't be surprised to see him have a career high there.

As far as homers, I'm going to go with 30, a big number but still 12 less than last year (42 homers for a middle infielder is insane!) and I, too, would expect a few more doubles with fewer balls going over the fence.
    • Oldgoat_MN likes this
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EddieMatthews
Mar 29 2017 06:53 AM

I'd like to see Dozier move down the line-up and get into more RBI situations.  That would require a better option for lead-off.  I hope Dozier feels comfortable in the 3-hole or 4-hole with someone on base and someone behind him that forces the opposition to pitch to him.  

 

In my dreams I see a .285 / .360 / .490 slash with 40 dingers and 105 RBI.  In reality, I see him returning to his career average before 2016 of .240 as pitchers avoid the high fastball and defensive shifts take away hits.

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tarheeltwinsfan
Mar 29 2017 07:17 AM

Having read all these predictions and assuming we are all Twins' fans, I am going to vote/hope that DaveW's dreams come true and Dozier hits 52 home runs...because ... "When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are. Anything your heart desires will come to you." Go Dozier and go Twins.

    • sploorp likes this

 

The odds of getting a good pitcher back is one in six? For a 5+ WAR 2nd baseman with two years left on a small contract?

Not sure I agree with your police work there norm....

 

#2 pitcher prospect, probably fits somewhere in the 25-50 range, so I went back 5 years, looks at starting pitcher prospects in that range and named a bunch. I don't know if it's 1-in-6, but based on Dozier coming off of a monster 2016 season and only being offered Jose De Leon (a 25-50 range prospect), it seems like a fair range. 

    • 70charger and BuxtonBandwagon like this
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Deduno Abides
Mar 29 2017 07:20 AM
I'll never understand why the Dodgers wouldn't throw in one more highly rated asset to get Dozier. Prediction: more WAR this year than De Leon accumulates over the next two years.

Mr. Dozier will become a 30/30/.300 player. 30 steals, 30 home runs while hitting .300.*

 

 

 

 

 

 

*A fan can dream, can't he?

    • Ryan Atkins and woolywoolhouse like this

24 HRs at the All-Star Break, then he's traded for a ransom of good pitching prospects. 

    • Blake, sploorp and Dozier's Glorious Hair like this

#2 pitcher prospect, probably fits somewhere in the 25-50 range, so I went back 5 years, looks at starting pitcher prospects in that range and named a bunch. I don't know if it's 1-in-6, but based on Dozier coming off of a monster 2016 season and only being offered Jose De Leon (a 25-50 range prospect), it seems like a fair range.


Ah ok got it.

I mean typically though these deals involve multiple prospects to sort of even out the chances of at least one or two panning out.

Anyways, hopefully Dozier can mash and we can get a haul eventually!
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Brock Beauchamp
Mar 29 2017 08:10 AM

I think we see a reasonable drop but Dozier remains a very good player:

 

.260/.340/.480

32 HR

 

I think the OBP remains steady as pitchers stay away from Dozier and pitch around him a bit more often. All the other numbers drop a bit.

    • 70charger, bluechipper and Vanimal46 like this

 

That always sounds good... but... That'd be like the Red Sox trading Dustin Pedroia before the 2012 season in exchange for Jarrod Parker or Manny Banuelos or Mike Montgomery or Zach Wheeler or Brad Peacock.

 

Or Carlos Martinez... but the odds of getting a Carlos Martinez in a 1-for-1 trade probably about 1 in 6 or so... I just think we take the trade Dozier for a #2 type of pitcher has such a low chance of getting a return that comes anywhere close to what Dozier has done and could continue to do for another 4-5 years. 

 

Note - just used Pedroia as an example. You could pick Cano or Kinsler in his place if you prefer. 

But we don't have Dozier for the next 4-5 years -- only 2.  And in this hypothetical midseason trade, only 1.5 years, and only 1 with any chance of contention (assuming we'd already be out of contention to trade him midseason this year).

 

Also, judging by your .786 OPS prediction for 2017 Dozier, it would appear that circa 2012 Pedroia, Cano, and Kinsler would be a different class of player, no?  A .786 OPS in 2017 would easily be the second-best of Dozier's career to date. A .786 OPS in 2012 would have represented a career low for Pedroia or Kinsler. Cano at that point had 5 seasons clearly better too, including the previous 3 in a row.

 

I agree that any trade return wouldn't be a sure thing, but it wouldn't be quite so hard as you suggest to match Dozier's expected value under his remaining contract.  Heck, one of the examples of a bad return you cited (Jarrod Parker) actually put up 5.7 bWAR in 2 seasons for league minimum salary -- obviously not ideal but not a disastrous return on 1-2 years of Dozier either.  Zach Wheeler might still return some cheap production too.  Montgomery as well, although it will be harder if he is relegated to a bullpen role.  Again, that's not the outcome you target with a Dozier trade, but that kind of outcome can still help balance the ledger.

    • Vanimal46 likes this

 

But we don't have Dozier for the next 4-5 years -- only 2.  And in this hypothetical midseason trade, only 1.5 years, and only 1 with any chance of contention (assuming we'd already be out of contention to trade him midseason this year).

 

He's signed for two more years, but if he continues to produce, there's no reason that the Twins wouldn't extend him. I'm not saying they will, but it is certainly possible.

    • sploorp likes this

28 home runs, about a 337 OBP.

 

Not traded, because having a 2B at the end of his contract is somehow more important to a bad team than taking a chance on prospects. Heck, I predict he's signed to an extension, and they never trade him, just like Perkins. 

    • TheLeviathan likes this

I'm guessing we see an increase in OBP a decrease in HR but BA slightly above his career average.  

 

I'll go with:  .260/.350/.490 (.840) 31 HR

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mickeymental
Mar 29 2017 10:16 AM

 

That always sounds good... 

well, that's why i said it! not what i expect but what i'd like. (plus, stranger thanks have happened ...)

Dozier started last season asleep. He was maybe the best player in the league after that. If he spent less time building houses this off-season, he should be able to tear it up this season. I Think he'll flirt with mvp for most of the season before hitting the wall. .277/.389/.515 39hr 110 scored 90 driven in. Hits 3rd for the all star team with a .315 avg and 24 hr at the break.
    • Ryan Atkins, 70charger and bluechipper like this

I'm much more pessimistic. I expect significant regression & huge disappointment across Twins Territory that he wasn't traded. I expect a batting average of about .250 and less than 30 HRs. I hope it's not the case, but MN sports fans aren't allowed to have anything nice so I don't want to get my hopes up... :(

    • TheLeviathan likes this
This is probably realistic, though disappointing.
I am curious why you think his walk rate will drop to the lowest rate since his rookie year.

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