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?

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Many people don’t know this, but one of the great scenes in modern cinema was nearly about fantasy baseball but was turned on its head due to a misunderstanding. Darren Aronofsky, being Polish and thus having things assbackwards, originally intended Jennifer Connelly in Requiem for a Dream to be doing a scene about head-to-head fantasy baseball strategy instead of what turned out to be ass-to-ass. Sometimes it takes a true auteur to recognize happy accidents and go with them. “So, I said to Darren, you want me to debate the merits of taking a pitcher early while I’m connected to this other girl by a dildo? And he just gave me a blank stare.” That’s a line from Jennifer on the DVD commentary. Head-to-Head, or H2H, doesn’t change a lot to our 2014 fantasy baseball rankings. There are 300 billion suns in the Milky Way galaxy. There are 100s of billions of galaxies in the universe. There are at least 256,000 planets exactly like Earth. Time is a flat circle, says Rust Cohle. Yet, there’s only one Miggy Cabrera. (Though Ciggy Mabrera on Planet Yurick is pretty good too. Not a first rounder though.) H2H doesn’t change that. The strategy for playing in the middle of the season in H2H leagues changes. You aren’t hoping Billy Butler hits 25 homers by October, but whether or not he’ll hit a homer on Sunday or if you should sit him to try and win steals. It’s all about the match-ups, y’all! So you want to build a team that can match up well with any other team. (FYI, I’ve gone over this stuff before, but some of you might need a pine tree refresher hung from your rear view.) Anyway, let’s look at some H2H fantasy baseball draft strategy:

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.

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Rudy’s been dropping a bunch of fantasy baseball strategy posts lately. Here’s one on how to split up your hitting and pitching. And here’s one looking at the consequences of showing up to your draft ten minutes late. As for my strategy posts, they’re timeless — so I recycle ‘em. For most of you, been here, read this shizz already, but there’s Razzball newbies (Razzbabies?) that need some coddling occasionally. If you know PEDS, skip ahead into the comments and discuss innovative uses for my mustache. I’ll start, “If you get really close to me, you can use my mustache as an umbrella.” For the Razzbabies, come here and let Uncle Grey burp you. Maybe I can get you to spit up everything you learned at ESPN. Fantasy baseball strategies are as old as the earth, if the earth were ten or so years old. There’s a LIMA Plan (Low Investment Mound Aces) by Ron Shandler. There’s been a ZIMA Plan by Matthew Berry; it involves a lot of stumbling around, groping and the hiccups. There’s been a Punt One Category draft strategy. There’s been a Punt Two Categories draft strategy, which was conceived by a leaguemate of Punt One Category who just couldn’t stand being upstaged. And there’s the Forget When Your Draft Is So Your Team Is Autodrafted strategy. I love when my leaguemates use that one. Then there’s my fantasy baseball snake draft strategy, Performance Enhancing Draft Strategy or PEDS. (You might even want to use this strategy for our Razzball leagues. Join now. Thank you.)

PEDS has five basic steps. If you follow these steps, you will place near the top in all of your leagues. No plan is foolproof because, unfortunately, they still have to play the games, but PEDS puts you in the best position possible to win coming out of your draft. Actually, this plan is foolproof and you should ignore the previous sentence that said no plan is foolproof. No sentence is foolproof, that’s more accurate. Okay, onto the steps:

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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?

Before we get this post-Festivus celebration of the back-end of this mock-u-mentiful draft going, I’d like to pass along a special thanks to our very own Grey Albright and Bryan Curley of Baseball Professor for setting up this multi-site super exposition of this crazy idea, because I apparently have nothing else to with my time during the off-season. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then you can find the Round 1-5 Recap by clicking on this linkadink. For the Round 6-10 Recap, go ahead and marvel at this linkadink. For the complete results, you can check them out here. (Dat nineties website design, bro.) So let’s go to the jump and get this present unwrapped. HOLIDAY THEMES!

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Before we get this post-Turkey celebration of When Fantasy Baseball Writers Have Nothing To Do In The Offseason up and running, I’d like to pass along a special thanks to our very own Grey Albright and Bryan Curley of Baseball Professor for setting up this multi-site super exposition of the aforementioned When Fantasy Baseball Writers Have Nothing To Do In The Offseason, or WFBWHNTDITO, if you’re into the whole brevity thing. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then you can find the Round 1-5 Recap by clicking on this conveniently placed hyperlink right… about… now. And for the full results, you can check them out here. (If nineties website design is your crème de jour, enjoy that layout bro.) Anyhow, let’s get this going after the jump so I can go make some turkey sammiches.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

That’s right folks, we already have a mock draft in the books. Why? Because ef the off-season, that’s why. I’d like to pass along a special thanks to our very own Grey Albright and Bryan Curley of Baseball Professor for setting up this multi-site super exposition of what fantasy baseball writers can do when there’s no fantasy baseball. Scary. I know. And while there are certain limitations that might arise from a draft that takes place so soon after the 2013 season, I prefer to use it as a litmus test, to see how the 2013 season affected specific player’s draft position and overall value. So there’s something to be gleaned here. And if you are into spoilers and want to see how the entire draft played out, you can check out the results here. Also, if you have an inexplicable yearning to get lost in early 90’s website design, enjoy. Anyhow, let’s get this party started with heavy amounts of gleaning after the jump.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I know how much you love draft strategy (do you? Yeah, of course you do!). Whether it’s snake draft or auction draft. You gobble this shizz up. Okay, I wasn’t speaking literally, take the corner of your computer monitor out of your mouth. Auction drafts are the best. They’re like that time you put in a twelve dollar bid on eBay for a VHS copy of Midnight Madness so your Michael J. Fox movie collection would be complete and you won it, then the Seller started emailing you that he too was a Michael J. Fox collector and he asked to friend you on Facebook and posted on your timeline, “MJ’s gonna be on The Good Wife tonight!!!” and then you had to unfriend him and change your email address. So, lots of you know my fantasy baseball auction tips already, but some of you just joining us — hey, close the door behind you! — may not. Lots of the strategy for my snake drafts also applies here. If you ask me — and you kinda did ask me by reading this shizz — auction drafts are where it’s at, yo! You get in a room with your best fantasy baseball buddies. The guys you haven’t seen since last year’s draft. The guys you don’t want to see until next year’s draft. A few guys you actively despise. One guy, and there’s always one, has to show you why the Droid is better than the iPhone. Then you have the guy who will go the extra dollar for (fill-in favorite player from his favorite team). You know that’s his favorite player because he’s wearing his jersey. There’s also the guy who wears a jersey of a player he would never draft from a team he hates just to throw you off his scent, only he points this out to show you how clever he thinks he is, but obviously is not. You have the guy who brings only Cheetos and turns everything he touches orange, and, if he touches something that was already orange, he makes it oranger. Finally, you have the guy who made plans at 5PM and begins to yell at everyone at 4PM that they’re taking too long. And, it always turns out, this day is the best day of the year. Auction draft day is better than your wedding day. As for online auction drafts, they’re just a’ight. Anyway, here’s some tried and true tips to help you through your auction fantasy baseball draft:

Please, blog, may I have some more?