papiout

Today, ladies and gentlemen, is officially the last day of school. And by school I mean me writing fantasy baseball posts in 2016. Over the next few months I’m sure Grey will take a gander at the numbers to determine if yours truly will be back in 2017. Hopefully my eight remaining followers have enough pull to see me through to the other side and get me invited back to Razzball Spring Training. But if not, it’s been a good run. This post is my 94th baseball-related post. I have big incentives in my contract if I make it one hundred, so I hope that doesn’t influence Grey’s decision in a negative way. There are a lot of hungry points league writers out there that just might be willing do what I do for even less. Will they be as cool as I am? Doubtful. As funny? Certainly not. And lastly, will they have the maturity level of a third grader? I certainly hope so. Here’s to hoping Grey just flips a two-headed coin.

Before I jump the gun and start saying any official goodbyes, I think we should take a look back at 2016 and what happened in points leagues…

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At this point, points leagues should be over or wrapping up today (Sunday). I hate when fantasy leagues carry on into the last weeks of the MLB season and teams are handicapped when their players, usually pitchers, are shut down. In my main points league the World Series ended with week 22. No championship should be decided because one team lost its ace because he had reached his innings limit. Although there are some that will contend that is all part of the package when you roster said player. After all the Nationals did shut down Strasburg in 2012. Regardless, it is now week 25, sh!t or get off the pot!

Now that the points leagues season is over, at least as far as I am concerned, I have decided to announce my 2016 Points League Awards. Television has the Emmys. Broadway has the Tonys. Movies have the Oscars. Music has the Grammys. And points leagues have the Malamoneys.

Just a quick explanation. The “Best” category is awarded to the best overall player at a position. The “MVP” award considers other factors such as average draft position and position eligibility into its equation.

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All season long I’ve been using points per plate appearance as my metric of choice when it comes to comparing players. It’s certainly not the only stat I look at, but it definitely holds its weight when I’m punching numbers into my calculator. After some consideration I realized that points per game deserves a mention as well, especially daily leagues. Knowing how many points a player averages per game is an extremely useful statistic when deciding which players to start each day. Even in weekly leagues PPG is a strong indicator of value.

Here’s a look at all batters for 2016 organized by position…

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bulldozier

In the last month Brian Dozier has been bulldozing opponents like it’s his job. Technically it is his job, but he gets an “A” for effort and is the run away candidate for Employee of the Month. Gary Sanchez who? After two hot weeks, he’s been more like Harry Sanchez. And in case you didn’t know who Harry Sanchez was, the Urban Dictionary defines him as “Same as Dirty Sanchez with the addition of pulling the hair from ones taint, and making a mustache from the left overs of the dirty sanchez.” While I’m pretty sure anyone can add entries to the Urban Dictionary as I’ve done so myself, I’d have to say this description is pretty accurate considering Gary has totaled zero points in the last two weeks. Just in time for points leagues playoffs. (This opening was written on Friday before Sanchez hit two home runs.)

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narcos_pic

If you’re still focused on fantasy baseball, pat yourself on the back for either making it into the playoffs or at least being in the playoff hunt. Here’s an interesting, and possibly false, stat. I started the season with thirty-one followers. I am currently down to eighteen. Seventeen of those eighteen have put themselves into a playoff position by reading my posts. The one follower that is not is my wife. She doesn’t even play fantasy baseball, she just reads my posts every week to make sure I am actually writing a post when she asks me to do something and I tell I can’t because I have to write an article. Ok, so I don’t really know how many followers I had or still have, or how many have actually benefited from my guidance, but I do know this. One hundred percent of my readers that are in the playoffs are actually in the playoffs. They’ve done studies, you know. 60% of the time, it works every time.

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Best-Of-The-Best-1989-580x400

Who is the best of the best? Or at least, who is the best at each position? I guess the term “best” is subjective, but since I am authoring this post I get to define its meaning. The three key data points I’ve used here are penis size, number of beers they can drink and 2016 salary. Ok, that’s false. The real stats are current points, points per plate appearance and average draft position. Looking at the results it seems that the only player with an ADP of the first round that actually proved to be the best at his position is Anthony Rizzo, and he was more of an early second round player. That’s not to say that any of the following players are less than studs, there just happens to be a player at their position that was better. Let’s look at the results…

Want to take on myself and other Razzball contributors and readers in a Fantasy Football League for prizes? Join here!

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Milwaukee Brewers non-roster invitee Josh Hader, points to help his catcher field a wild pitch, Wednesday, February 24, 2016, in Phoenix. Arizona.(Photo/Roy Dabner) ORG XMIT: RD037

Don’t be a hader. Don’t hade the player, hade the game. Hader. Hader. Hader alligator. Alright, well maybe that last one was a bit of a stretch, but far be it from me to give it the old college try. What have I got to lose, two of my remaining eight readers? Based on the metrics available to me it seems I lost about thirty percent of my followers after I posted that article comparing Julio Urias’s eye to Sloth’s from The Goonies. If you serve it up on a silver platter you better believe I’m going to gobble it up like a bag of Doritos after a session with Tim Lincecum. Besides, that one was like hitting the ball off of a tee. Since that post I’ve been trying to figure out how I can lose another thirty percent while still providing some valuable fantasy baseball advice. Enter Josh Hader, the minor league pitcher for Milwaukee. There’s no pussy footing around it, this guy is not handsome. Talk about getting beat by the ugly stick. This guy fell out of the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down. He’s so ugly he makes Willie MgGee look good. He’s so ugly his manager insists that he wear a catchers mask at all times. He looks like Randy Johnson had a baby with Jorge Cantu and that baby had a baby with Pascual Perez. You don’t have to tell me that it’s wrong to poke fun at something another cannot control, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to. Besides, it’s not like I’m making this sh!t up.

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have been riding the clutch for the last six years and it seems the damage has been done. Now the clutch is slipping and there might be damage to the flywheel. Some people just don’t realize that it’s much cheaper to replace brake pads than it is to replace your clutch. Especially when your clutch was a first round draft pick.

Since 2011 Andrew McCutchen has been a top ten outfielder in points leagues. From 2012-2015 he was in the top five, scoring 499, 490, 471 and 465 points respectively. The wear and tear on the clutch can be seen in his decline in point production. This season he is on pace for a meager 298 points. Wait, that must be a typo right? Wrong! With 195 points so far McCutchen finds himself right between Yasmany Tomas (197) and Brad Miller (189), both of whom have had about 50 less plate appearances. This means they have both technically been more valuable with better points per plate appearance ratios. Essentially Andrew McCutchen has been useless in 2016. Perhaps even detrimental to your team considering the wasted early round pick. He has had just two weeks in which he scored more than 20 points and is averaging just 11 points per week. Jose Altuve scores 11 points per game! Okay, so that’s not an accurate statement, but has done so several times this season. So have many other hitters. Heck, a grand slam is 9 points with one swting! At this point there’s not really anything you can with McCutchen except put him on your bench. Given his history I would buy low on him, but it would have to be a legit buy low offer.

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Gerrit Cole was the first round pick in the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft. Here are just a few players he was chosen ahead of that season. Anthony Rendon, Francisco Lindor, Javier Baez, George Springer, Jackie Bradley, Trevor Story and Jose Fernandez. As much as I love Cole, I’m sure the Pirates wish they had drafted Fernandez. And that’s not taking anything away from Gerrit, Fernandez is just awesome. Cole is pitching well this season. If I had to complain about something it would have to be the fact that his strikeout rate is down. In 2014 his K/9 was 9.0 and in 2015 it was 8.7. This year he has 73 in 87.3, which is just 7.5 per nine. Cole is only 25 and is knocking on the elite pitching door. Some might say he is banging, but he’s not quite there. He’s only averaging 13 points per start, but he’s only going to improve. I think this might be an excellent opportunity to buy low on him in keeper leagues.

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On Wednesday I gave you my second half projections for hitters. At the request of a commenter I have decided to see what I can come up with for starting pitchers. While projections are a slippery slope, I going to give it the old college try anyway. I’ve come to realize that you really can’t be wrong when making projections. It’s impossible to be right, so by process of elimination, how can I be wrong. Anyone follow that absolutely twisted logic? Me neither.

As I did with my hitter projections, I have merged my weighted preseason projections with weighted year-to-date stats to generate rest of season projections. Hocus-pocus. Abracadabra. I present my second half visions.

Given standard points systems do you have any guesses who might be projected to score the most points in the second half. Despite currently being on the disabled list, Clayton Kershaw still manages to come out on top. Kershaw is in line for another 334 points. Obviously this is all predicated on him making a quick return to action. The longer he’s out, the less points he will score. But then again, that’s basic math. Or is it just common sense?

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