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.

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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.

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For these pitcher pairings, I’m going to be using our 2014 fantasy baseball rankings. Notably, the top 20 starters for 2014 fantasy baseball, top 40 starters for 2014, top 60 starters for 2014 and the top 80 starters for 2014. You can also just go to our Fantasy Baseball War Room once it’s ready, which should be by Tuesday. Or the fantasy baseball tiers. Okay, now that we have our links and shizz done. What is a pitcher pairing? It’s how you plan on putting together a fantasy staff. It’s a plan of action. If you have A pitcher, which B, C, D, E and F pitcher goes with him? Which is different than ‘F this pitcher,’ that’s what you say in May. You should have six starters. The sixth starter is Wily Peralta or take whoever you want. I suggest an upside pick. Jeff Samardzija comes to mind. Or Brandon Beachy. Zack Wheeler also comes to mind. I’m going to assume you’re in a 12 team, 5×5 and some variation of 9 pitcher leagues like the Razzball Commenter Leagues. Speaking of which, the RCL league sign-ups begin on Monday. (NOTE: What you are about to read is massively confusing. If it were found scribbled in a notebook, the FBI would be watching me. If Charles Manson stood up and read this at the next prison Meet N’ Greet, no one would blink an eye.) Anyway, here’s some pairings for pitching staffs for 2014 fantasy baseball drafts:

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Hit/pitch splits are commonly associated with fantasy baseball auction drafts auction drafts – e.g., spending $180 on hitting, $80 on pitching or 70/30 hit/pitch split. The discussions around hitting vs. pitching in snake drafts tend to be less mathematical in nature – often limited to debates on which round to draft one’s first starting pitcher and relief pitcher.

This post will demonstrate how to calculate hit/pitch splits for snake drafts as well as analyze 2013 Razzball Commenter League data to see what the most optimal hit/pitch splits are.

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Maybe it’s the rush of the holiday season with two kids or the fact that some major cash is flowing in free agency, but I feel like this year’s offseason is just whizzing by. This will be the last sort of “stat review” for SAGNOF before I head into the territory of value plays for steals in 2014. This post will lay out some of the best and worst catchers in terms of their caught stealing percentages (CS%). Keep in mind that pitchers have a lot to do with holding baserunners as well, and you can find my previous post on the best and worst pitchers against the stolen base here at Razzball. A quick note on the catcher tables – I sorted them by qualified and non-qualified catchers. “Qualified” catchers played more than 1/2 of their team’s games, while “non-qualified” catchers played less than that. Catchers who split times between two teams, like Kurt Suzuki, also end up on the “non-qualified” list. The league average caught stealing percentage in 2013 was 28%, and that hasn’t really changed much over the last 3 years (27% in 2012, 28% in 2011). Last but not least, consider that playing time situations can fluctuate with free agent signings and trades, creating new opportunities for previously non-qualified catchers as the offseason transactions continue. Green columns indicate guys that are easy to run against, and red columns designate the toughest to run against:

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We are halfway through the fantasy season and it’s another week, another closepocalypse. Didn’t Smokey predict this back in March?! Andrew Bailey’s job was outsourced, Jose Valverde was sent packing, Heath Bell is absolutely stuffed and the Mariners closer by committee is as uncertain as a child’s bottom. That’s a straight up Ulysses quote my literate homies. SAGNOF! While in the real baseball world it has become quite obvious that saves are overrated, in our fake baseball world closers are one of those necessary evils. Kind of like root canals and prostate exams. Fortunately, I get both taken care of at the same place. One-stop shopping. Thanks ObamaCare! While closers can be a pain in the fanny perpendicular, I’m not one to punt a category. Even one as frustrating as the save. Who invented this dastardly stat? Apparently the dean of baseball beat writer’s, Jerome Holtzman is to blame. He invented the save in 1959. There wasn’t much to do in the late 50’s except “like Ike” and cower in the bomb shelter with a tin of beans and a deck of nudie cards. According to Razzball historian Paulie Allnuts, the very next year the term “Sagnoff” was first uttered by one Winston Greystone Albright II after drafting Moe Drabowsky with his first pick in the inaugural drunken fantasy draft at The White Horse Tavern in New York’s West Village. An ‘ol fashioned donnybrook soon ensued, but not a mustache was harmed according to reports. Thanks Paulie. This week let’s run down some candidates for saves that just could mean the difference between fantasy glory and fantasy defeat. Time to jam it or cram it. Dr. Pfister, I’m ready for my… Do you really need to wear the dive watch?

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I recently came across the book (remember those) Sixty Feet, Six Inches by Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson at a yard sale and found my 75 cents well spent. I also picked up Judas Priest’s British Steel on vinyl for a buck. Breakin’ the law, breakin the law. It was a great day all around, but I don’t know what I’m going to do with this. Anywho, back to the book. In the rectangular thing that has words written on paper, the two Hall of Famers discuss a number of topics including gaining an edge. Here’s Reggie and Gibby discussing it on what may or may not have been an appearance on Between Two Ferns. Baseball players are all about getting an edge. Some ways are subtle: peeking back at the catcher, stealing signs, watching for tipped pitches. Some, not so subtle: an arm slathered in Coppertone, a bat full of superballs, some ground up deer antler injected directly into the brain stem. A way to gain an edge in our world of fake baseball (time to toot the Razzball horn) is using the Hitter-Tron, the Stream-o-Nator, and paying attention to lefty/righty splits with Platoony Tunes. Now someone buy Rudy a drink! I spend more time with these tools than I do with my own. Sorry ball-peen hammer. Sorry Dremel. Sorry oscillating bandsaw, but last time I used you it didn’t go so well.

This week let’s look at some jammer crammer platoony types. Streaming the overlooked bat that crushes lefties or righties is a cheap source of power. Personally, I like to have an open roster spot or two and rotate hot hitters depending on matchups. If you’re in a “set it and forget it” weekly league or have a short bench, you probably don’t have the room to carry a guy just to face lefties once or twice a week. However, if your roster’s big enough and managed wisely, going a bit Platoony Tunes is an easy way to pad the stats and gain an edge. Time to jam it or cram it.

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One challenge to streaming hitters vs. streaming pitchers – or playing daily fantasy games – is that teams do not publish ‘Probable Hitters’ a few days in advance. The closest thing is Jim Leyland who publishes the positions a couple days in advance and then fills in the name the day of the game (Miguel Cabrera is getting an off day, Don Kelly you’re hitting 3rd).

So you might find the perfect hitter to stream only to find out on game day that he isn’t in the lineup (aka the dreaded ‘!’ in ESPN or ‘x’ in Yahoo. )

BTW, isn’t it odd that the site with the exclamation point in its name uses an ‘x’ and the site that promotes the X-Games uses an exclamation point? And what’s the deal with…..nope, I got nothing else here.

There is a related challenge with weekly leagues – particularly deeper leagues – when you have to choose between hitters on your team and need to account for their projected playing time in the coming week.

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Fantasy baseball rest of season rankings are the herbal tea to the double espressos that are Hittertron and Stream-o-Nator.  Most of the post-draft fantasy baseball decisions we make – particularly in non-FAAB leagues – are of the short-term variety.  Looking for the hot schmotato to fill in while your 3rd baseman is injured.  

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We like baseball. We might even love baseball. But we love fantasy baseball more.

If you read this site at all, this should not be news to you. We do not pretend to be a general baseball site. We do not pretend to write like general baseball writers or general baseball fans. Our focus and point of view has been irrevocably bastardized through the tainted prism of fantasy baseball fanaticism (and the fact that we are smart asses).

Much like you, the vast majority of our baseball-related surfing is focused on day-to-day management of our fantasy baseball teams. Over the years, I shutter to think how much time that Grey and I pored through player news, game logs, player stats, etc. trying to find information that could help our teams.

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