How Accurate Will Crowd-Sourced Free Agent Predictions Be?

The very first post I wrote for Cubs Insider compared free agent contracts against crowd-sourced predictions of those contracts for both 2018 and the three prior seasons. The data showed that the top 20 free agents in 2018 did substantially worse than predicted in free agency. Now it is time for the 2019 version.

I have compiled a spreadsheet with FanGraphs’ 2019 crowd-sourced predictions of the average annual value (AAV) and total dollar amount for the top 50 free agents this offseason. As the offseason progresses, I will enter the actual values for each player’s contract to see how the 2019 free agent crop performs against the predictions.

We already have one data point in the table, as CC Sabathia re-signed with the Yankees on a one-year contract worth $8 million. That is $2 million below his crowd-sourced prediction, so we’ve already started off a little low. Keep checking in over the offseason and we can circle back around as the hot stove dies down closer to spring.

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