Title: 15 bold preseason Raptors predictions check-in: The hits, misses and a mea culpa
Date: February 21, 2020
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about the end of the Raptors franchise-record 15-game winning streak.
I once bit on two seasons of Danny Espinosa flirting with the vaunted 20-20 fantasy barrier across two scarce positions. Forget the contact profile and forget the gap between fantasy production and actual value to a baseball team. I was in on Espinosa in 2013, boldly – and quite incorrectly – predicting he would outperform Ian Desmond for the fantasy season.
Nothing has gone quite so awry in borrowing our old Rotographs “10 bold predictions” format for the 2019-20 Toronto Raptors season.
There have been wrong answers, but Espinosa posted a wRC+ of 22 that season, the 17th-worst offensive season in baseball since the year 2000 (minimum 150 plate appearances). He was aggressively bad, and I was aggressively wrong. Desmond was also good, albeit slightly less so than in 2012. Espinosa only had one more useful fantasy season, in 2016, and hasn’t played in the majors since 2017.
This is the risk inherent with an exercise that demands boldness by its very nature. Get too many predictions correct, and you weren’t bold enough, which incentivizes reaches in the name of intrepidness.
Two-thirds of the way through the 2019-20 NBA season, it feels like we struck the right balance back in October. Some predictions have been spot on. Some are trending that way and others look like they’ll miss, having skewed just a little too bold. There is no Espinosa in the bunch, at least not one that can be explained away by injury. What follows is a check-in on our 15 bold preseason Raptors predictions.