The first run of our 2011 Point Shares for 10 and 12 MLB leagues are now available there and via the 2011 Fantasy Baseball Rankings menu at the top of the page. The player rate projections are a composite of Marcel projections, FanGraphs fan projections and CAIRO (created/managed by SG at the Replacement Level Yankee Weblog – can be downloaded here). The playing time estimates (AB/IP) are courtesy of Fantistics – a paid projection service that’s done very well in Tom Tango’s Forecaster Challenge (they beat me in 2010!). I’ve also changed some stats – particularly Saves – where I felt the projections were too bullish.
Once ZIPS projections are available (ETA late Feb/early March), I will incorporate them as well. By then, I should have the following league formats posted (C/1B/2B/SS/3B/5 OF/CI/MI/UTIL/9P unless otherwise noted):
10/12/14/16-team mixed league
8/10/12 team AL (2 catchers)
8/10/12 team NL (2 catchers)
For those new to Razzball and/or ‘Point Shares,’ please see last year’s post that explains it in detail. The quick definition is that a Point Share represents the value in fantasy baseball standings points of a player compared to the average drafted player at his position (with some consideration taken into account for the value of the player against the average hitter or pitcher). This is estimated for each player stat and then added up for the rankings. For example, Ichiro is estimated to be worth 1.2 points more than the average drafted OF. His Runs (+0.4), SB (+1.6), and AVG (+1.8) drive his value. But they come at a price in terms of HR (-1.4) and RBI (-1.2). The theoretical max for a player in one category would be the # of teams divided by 2 and minus 0.5. So a 12-team league’s ‘average’ team would get 6.5 in each category and, thus, I would need +5.5 to win a category (the highest Point Shares in single category right now is Jacoby Ellsbury’s +3.3 in SB).
1) This should not be used as a draft sheet. The goal of drafting is to get the most value and balance out of a draft. Yes, pitchers are generally undervalued in both snake and auction drafts. But drafting Halladay in the 1st round isn’t getting great value (it’s fair value). I’d aim to draft both pitchers (and catchers for that matter) anywhere from 1 ½ – 2 rounds after their value would suggest. So Halladay in the end of the 2nd round would be great value. Also, note that all Point Shares base a player’s worth on their value to an average team. Once you draft a Halladay, your pitching staff starts skewing above average (assuming you draft average pitchers after that). So, drafting F-Her in the next round is worth less to your team than the other teams.
To help on auction drafts, I’ve added a second dollar amount that weighs up hitter values and weighs down pitcher values to reflect a $180 hitter/$80 pitcher split. I believe that’s more in line with traditional auction draft bidding.
2) Position scarcity is taken into account with Point Shares. For multi-position players, I assign them to the scarcest position (note: I assigned Kevin Youkilis to 3B since he’ll have eligibility after 1-2 weeks). The progression is C, SS, 2B, 3B, OF, 1B, DH. Here’s a weighting of positions for 2011 12-team league based on the initial projections I’ve compiled: 1B -100, OF-95, 2B-93, 3B-92, SS-86, C-74. One thing that’s immediately clear is that the top-tier of shortstops is really shallow. H-Ram, Tulo, and Reyes are in the top 40 for Point Shares and the next SS is Jeter at #99. Assuming you don’t take H-Ram or Tulo over Pujols, I don’t think you can draft those two players too high (H-Ram is #2 and Tulo #5 in position player Point Shares). There’s a case for Votto, Miggy, and Braun ahead of Tulo but it’s close. What I don’t recommend, though, is overpaying on Reyes (late 2nd round would be the earliest) or anyone else. I’ve seen drafts where Jeter is picked in the 4th round. That’s a sucker pick. When a position is so shallow – and there is little differentiation in the later tiers – it’s your cue to punt the category and stock up on other positions. More bluntly, in a shallow position, either take a top guy at close to his value or punt. Worst case, you stream players until you find a keeper. Remember that EVERYONE will be fishing for free agent OFs, SPs, and RPs once the season starts. The competition for 2B/SS/3B FA’s isn’t as high.
3) Player position eligibility is based on 20 games in the previous year. Some online services might use 10 games as the eligibility threshold. You should check your league rules. Generally, a player’s value only increases if his additional position is further to the left of the C, SS, 2B, 3B, OF, 1B, DH progression (e.g., Sandoval adding 1B eligibility to his 3B means very little. But a player adding C eligibility besides 1B is a bonus.)