3 Cubs who will outperform their projections in 2024

Looking at projections for the 2024 Chicago Cubs and determining whose numbers look like they can be outperformed this season.

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3 players who will outperform - 2. Javier Assad

Javier Assad never gets the love he deserves. After recording a 3.05 ERA in 109.1 IP (down from the still-great 3.11 in 2022 in 37.2 frames), Assad has done nothing but play whatever role he slots into well. He's being projected for a steep drop off to a 4.33 ERA and 4.73 FIP in 2024. Last year, he was exactly 47% better than the league average, dominating as both a starter (3.02 ERA) and a reliever (3.07 ERA). He also trended in the right direction at the end of the season, recording a 2.48 ERA in 72.2 innings in the second half.

Assad has yet to pitch more than 109 innings at the big league level, but that will change. If Jordan Wicks gets the starting job this Spring, Assad likely slots into a long relief, next man up for the rotation type of role again. Assad broke out in the minors in 2022 with a 2.66 ERA and has succeeded in MLB ever since. I see little reason to believe he can't keep doing what he has been doing for the last two seasons.