I was fortunate enough to be invited to this year in KFFL’s Fantasy Baseball Analysis Draft (which leads to a BAD acronym).  It has historically been a 12-team mixed snake draft league but has now been expanded to 15 teams.

Some drafts require a lot of prep time – this one had the prep time of a TV dinner.  It came right on the heels of LABR which follows the same format.  Then my pals at KFFL (Nick Minnix and Tim Heaney) were nice enough to ‘randomly’ assign me the same pick (#8) I had in LABR.  Sweet.

My strategy going into the draft was similar to LABR – draft 9+ SPs, be AVG-conscious, get two top 15 closers, try to nab one of the speedy/solid AVG MIs, and anticipate and/or dodge position runs.  There were a couple of post-LABR draft learnings I incorporated:

This is a post for the fantasy baseball drafters who use Excel, Google Docs, or some other war room software that automatically totals a drafted team’s stats while in the middle of a draft.  Or perhaps for those of you who do mock drafts or simulated drafts.

The below grid represents my projected 75% mark in each stat category across 10/12/14/15/16 team ESPN and Yahoo default roster format leagues.

These numbers should only be used directionally.  Please note that each projection source projects to a different league average so your team may look great if using a ‘bullish’ source and look poor if using a ‘bearish’ source.

Personally, I ignore team totals throughout a draft and go by feel in terms of my team’s balance.  While I have had regrettable drafts over the years, I do not recall one that failed because my team was not balanced enough.  If I do happen to have the time and curiosity to do an in-draft litmus test, I just add up the dollar values per category to see which categories are lowest.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

This is part of a four-part series using Rudy and Grey’s Razzball Commenter League experience as well as some modeling (the dorky kind) to quantify the effectiveness of streaming and how it should inform one’s draft strategy in shallow mixed leagues (10-12 teams).  The first three posts will focus on quantifying the value of streaming starting pitchers, relief pitchers, and hitters.  The fourth will synthesize the learnings from the three and how they impact draft strategy.  The streaming decisions made by Grey and I were HIGHLY influenced by our free, daily updated tools for streaming starting pitchers (Stream-o-nator) and hitters (Hitter-tron).

If you are reading this article (or this site for that matter), I assume you are familiar with streaming starting pitchers.  This is an essential strategy in all daily league formats whether one plays standard Roto or H2H.  While my beloved Stream-o-nator aims to make sure all our readers make the most informed decisions on which pitchers to stream over the next 7 days (and possibly more in 2014), I have yet to read any analysis that quantifies the value of the average streaming pitcher to inform draft strategy.  So this post is going to focus on quantifying the value of a streaming SP and, once I’ve completed quantifying the value of streaming relievers and hitters, I will figure out how this impacts draft strategy.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

This post is a sequel to this post on maximizing ABs.

In recent posts, I used the results of our 2013 Razzball Commenter Leagues (based on 64 12-team mixed leagues with daily roster changes and unlimited pickups) to show:

So this leaves 41% of Pitching Standings Points that could be attributed to a manager’s in-season moves.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

In recent posts, I used the results of our 2013 Razzball Commenter Leagues (based on 64 12-team mixed leagues with daily roster changes and unlimited pickups) to show:

So this leaves 30% of Hitting Standings Points that could be attributed to a manager’s in-season moves.

Inspired by one of our commenters (initials SF), I thought of a way to reduce the size of that 30% black box.  While estimating the quality of a manager’s in-season moves is very complicated, estimate the quantity of a manager’s moves is EZPZ.  That would be interesting…..but what kind of guidance would that provide?  Making roster moves just for the sake of it is a waste of time and if you, our loyal readers, are going to waste your time, we prefer you do it on our site vs. your league site.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

One of the many perks of being a fantasy baseball blog with a modicum of popularity is the chance to play in expert leagues.  For the 4th straight year, Razzball’s gunning for a LABR crown (3rd straight in the 15-team mixed league snake format) to put atop my afro’d head (Grey’s moustache is all the regality his noggin needs).

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The first piece of good or bad news for a fantasy baseball owner (at least in non-keeper, snake draft leagues) is their draft order spot.  Everyone has draft order preferences and they often vary by the year.  In some years where there was no overwhelming #1 pick, I preferred a middle pick so I did not have to wait a gazillion picks between turns.  I recall some drafts where I really liked the depth through pick 16 or so and wanted a late first round pick to grab two.  Last year, I wanted a top 2 pick because I felt Trout and Cabrera were clear #1/#2 and I did not want the agita of drafting Braunogenesis (of course I picked #3 and got Braun).

Anyway, I thought it might be an interesting exercise to estimate the value of draft order even though I understand this is typically randomized so this is less ‘strategy’ and more about ‘fate’.  This analysis is based on 12-team mixed leagues but I assume the same principles are in play for deeper league formats.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Looking for a great fantasy baseball draft kit to help you draft your fantasy baseball team in 2014? Good, because otherwise you are the worst web surfer in the world.  (Did I search for fantasy baseball rankings?  Damn, I meant chicken cordon bleu recipe.)

Just like last year, the 2014 Razzball Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit is free.   MAYBE there are better fantasy baseball draft kits out there for $ (I don’t know, I don’t pay for ‘em) but I can guarantee none of them are #DIV/0! times better.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Last year, I played in my first 15-team NFBC league – a 50-round ‘slow’ draft format where you cannot add any players via free agency or trades. You can only promote players to (and demote players from) your starting roster of 2C/1B/2B/SS/3B/5 OF/CI/MI/UTIL/9 P on Mondays with an additional Friday switch for hitters only.

After playing this format for a year, I think it is the perfect yang for the hyper-frenetic yin that is the Razzball Commenter League format (for sign-ups). I love streaming but there is also something satisfying about winning purely on out-drafting everyone. I like the format enough that we are considering sponsoring a league (or leagues) if there is enough demand from Razzball commenters.

So if you are interested, please enter your e-mail address below. (Note: It’s $150) I will definitely play in one of the leagues – can’t speak for any of the other writers just yet.

NOTE: THIS IS SEPARATE FROM THE RAZZBALL COMMENTER LEAGUE. THAT FORMAT/RULES (12 Team MLB) WILL STAY THE SAME AS LAST YEAR. THERE’S SIGNUPS FOR THAT.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

In my 2013 review of Fantasy Baseball Rankings, I noted how the majority of a team’s success (in 12-team mixed roto leagues) can be tied to the end-of-season value of their team.  Those stats are:

  • Drafted Hitter+Pitcher End of Season Value – 66.9% correlation with Team Total Standings Points (2013)
  • Drafted Hitter End of Season Value = 70.5% correlation with Team Hitter Standings Points (2013)
  • Drafted Pitcher End of Season Value = 60.0% correlation with Team Pitcher Standings Points (2013)

The below graph shows the cumulative round-by-round impact of how a team’s draft drives a fantasy team’s success (or lack thereof) in the 2013 Razzball Commenter Leagues (so the end of season value of a team’s 1st-4th round hitters explains about 53% of a team’s hitting standing points (red line), 1st-4th round pitchers explains about 9% of a team’s pitching standing points, and the sum of the two explain 40% of a team’s total standings points)

Please, blog, may I have some more?