Xander Bogaerts on pace to surpass Miguel Cabrera for batting title

I’m a little frustrated with this article. I don’t think it gets me any closer to knowing how much of a shot Xander Bogaerts has at 2015 American League batting title. It just says, “it will be difficult”.

So I did some projections, to see what the numbers say. Of course, things have changed a bit since this article was published – the gap is now just 12 points instead of 18. There are 11 games left on the Tigers’ schedule, and 12 games left on the Red Sox’. I did two sets of projections. One assumes each player plays in all his team’s remaining games. The other assumes each player sits out two games.

In each case, I used the numbers of at bats and hits of each player in his last 8, 9, 10, etc. games, up to his last 20 games, as the basis for projecting his number of at bats and hits to come in his remaining games. I scaled these samples to the number of remaining games, added them to the current season totals, and calculated batting averages. So that made for 13 separate projections in each case.  The results:

Bogaerts projected 2015 AVG
# of recent games used If playing all games If sitting two games
20 0.330 0.329
19 0.329 0.329
18 0.330 0.329
17 0.329 0.328
16 0.328 0.327
15 0.327 0.327
14 0.328 0.327
13 0.328 0.328
12 0.330 0.329
11 0.332 0.331
10 0.331 0.330
9 0.329 0.328
8 0.330 0.329
Cabrera projected 2015 AVG
# of recent games used If playing all games If sitting two games
20 0.328 0.329
19 0.327 0.328
18 0.326 0.328
17 0.324 0.326
16 0.324 0.326
15 0.325 0.327
14 0.326 0.328
13 0.328 0.329
12 0.326 0.328
11 0.324 0.326
10 0.325 0.327
9 0.327 0.329
8 0.331 0.332

In both cases, because Bogaerts is hitting well right now and Cabrera is hitting poorly, the projections show that Bogaerts will probably surpass Cabrera and win the batting title. The charts pictured below show the lowest, highest, and median projections among the 13 projections produced for each case.

If playing all remaining games
Bogaerts Cabrera
Low 0.327 0.324
Median 0.329 0.326
High 0.332 0.331
If sitting out two games
Bogaerts Cabrera
Low 0.327 0.326
Median 0.329 0.328
High 0.331 0.332

If both players hit at their current paces the rest of the way, Xander Bogaerts will surpass Miguel Cabrera for the 2015 AL batting title.

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