Master Standings are here.

Congratulations to the Pesky Pole Dancers (Trippin’ Baseballs), who are once again leading the pack. The Dancers shot up 5.5 points on Sunday to reclaim first place after dropping to 3rd last week. The team made 1 move this week, picking up Charlie Blackmon on Wednesday while dropping Omar Infante. Blackmon immediately contributed, going 3 for 4 Wednesday and 4/4 Friday.

There is quite a battle at the top, with the Dancers, THE VILLE AL KOHOLIC A (ECFBL), Better Lucky Than Good (Partially Torn RCL), and That’s a shame (The Dread Pirate Rides Again) trading places daily.

Random ItalicizedVoice (RCL 5), Cooperstown SchMohawks (Slam and Legs Special), Fart Factory (Patrons of Poonhoundery), and reverse schmohawks (RCL 17) all had big weeks to move within striking distance. Pickled Mustache Rides (Puff Puff Give) moved up 119 spots in the standings to 116th place. And, a tip of the hat to AL KOHOLIC, who has been using his time productively, leading 2 teams to 1st place. Both are currently in the top 20 overall! Amazing.

The Dread Pirate Rides Again and RCL 5 are the most competitive leagues with an index of 103.

The Pesky Pole Dancers scored the most runs this week, 57, to increase their league-leading total to 553. The average for runs scored was 38. Team Bear (Razzbawl 36) led with 18 home runs, while the average was 8.4. Random ItalicizedVoice was tops in RBI with 62 (ave: 35) and Team Rusaw (Robust Herd) led the way with 18 steals (7.4).

Here are the category leaders (average) for the season:

Runs: Pesky Pole Dancers (1st) 553 (435)

HR: Rosie Jones (15th) 147 (101)

RBI: Bloomington Psychotoad (46th) 517 (416)

SB: Team Musz (269th) 122 (74)

Ave: Team Beefcake (57th) .291 (.263)

K: The Sutter Buttes Duo (258th) 775 (562)

Wins: Baltimore Domination (79th) 60 (39)

Saves: Better Lucky Than Good (5th) 98 (40)

ERA: Team ryanshea (104th) 2.80 (3.64)

WHIP: Cooperstown SchMohawks (6th) 1.09 (1.25)

The strikeout leader has used 128 starts, so has only 52 left. The wins leader has 70 starts remaining. The season is 44.5% complete, which equates to 80 of the 180 allotted starts.

The wheelers and dealers were busy with 13 trades this week. Jose Bautista, Carlos Gonzalez, Kevin Youkilis, Nelson Cruz, Hunter Pence, Brandon Phillips, Jacoby Ellsbury, and Justin Upton were among the 36 traded players. There have now been 120 trades completed involving 384 players. The list of all RCL trades is kept updated in the RCL forums.

Dee Gordon has only been in the majors a couple of weeks, but was traded twice this week. He is owned in only 15.9% of ESPN leagues, but is already taken in 35 (92.3%) of the Commenter leagues. Dustin Ackley, just called up Friday, is taken in 31.7% of ESPN leagues. He is owned in all but 1 of the RCLs. And then there is Desmond Jennings, who is still in Triple A and owned in only 2.3% of ESPN leagues. He, like Gordon, is available in just 3 of the 38 RCLs.

@Grey Hey! Nice call on Casilla! I’m surprised you didn’t mention in the daily update that he was a “Buy” on Friday then he hit his first HR in like 800 AB’s yesterday.

Love these updates Vin. I think I like stats/numbers/patterns as much as you do. Keep em coming!

Very much appreciate the work too. Keep up the good work, Vin.

@RandomItalicizedVoice: Thanks. The updates probably look better from way up there in the standings.

@Chris: Thanks!

@Grey: Barstool Sports is a Boston based “sports/smut” website ran by a guy known as “el pres”. One of the writers that covers NY content is named Manzo, and the readers constantly call for him to be fired. “Viva la stool” signs can be seen at most Boston (and nonboston) events. It’s a masshole thing

Is Mike Adams a guaranteed legit closer by July 1st? H2H 10 team mixed means he’s useless as MR. Add this week?

@Sweet D: Better ask on a Grey post to get good advice.

Hey Vin…

Always with the requests…. yeah, that’s me…

Can we add a column in the master standings to reflect the number of starts used? I’m thinking that I’m only getting 9.5 points in my league for Wins/Ks combined, but with the recent acquisitions of Verlander and Weaver, that’s sure to change since I’ll be using more starts going forward (I’ve used 62 so far).

Also feeling kinda shorted by the League Competitiveness quotient, dammit. I’m in a league where the top WHIP (Broth’s Bombers, 82 starts) was in 1st place when you did pitching stats the other day, and our K leader (Team Miller) was in 8th place having used only 90 starts (the teams beating him had used between 103 and 133). Yet my league competitiveness is only 98. Ugh.

Yeah, I get that the 4 inactive teams we have in our league mean that the rest of us have better chances of picking up the Pinedas, Asdrubals, Hosmers and other waiver-wire stat-freaks that seem to come out of nowhere every year, but we’ve got a helluva competitive league going with the remaining teams. And the difference between an index of 98 (-2.5 points in our league) and 103 (+3.5 points for some leagues) makes it near-impossible to make up the difference. I mean, Pesky has 108.5 points, pre-adjustment (which is frickin amazing!). With the adjustment for his league (CI of 102), he’s bumped up to 110. I’m currently at 104.5, but would need a raw score of 112.5 to be tied with Pesky after my -2.5 CI is applied.

Yeah, I know… nice problem to have. And with the way my offense has been going over the last coupla weeks, I don’t know if I’ll have that problem much longer. But it makes intuitive sense that when you start reaching 100 points or so, further increases are increasingly difficult to achieve.

What do you think?

I don’t think we would add the starts to the Master Standings, but I’ll see about adding them to the stats page

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0An3I_TiueBsydDAwTk4zSUQ5ZjI2Wks0c3dpcUZ6NVE&hl=en&authkey=CIms5dED#gid=0

which I now realize I forgot to update today.

As for the competitive index, it’s always going to be tough comparing leagues. This formula that Rudy adapted has worked pretty well, though. I’m not sure what else could be done.

I’m not really understanding the competitiveness formula. In my league the top team has 86.5 pts, 85 & 83.5 are 2nd and 3rd…. I’m just not sure how a team that scores 100+ is in the more “competitive” leagues. Wouldn’t it make more sense that in a league where the top 5 teams are from 73 to 86.5 points be more difficult than a league where one guy is smashing everyone? I’m just thinking a league that has more teams and lower scores over the league is more competitive than one that has an owner scoring 110?

Agree with Tony. What is the league formula? I know how it works for the Razzball leagues, but don’t remember seeing it for RCL.

@Tony: @Tourinct: The points formula is a slight modification of the formula devised by Tom Tango at InsideTheBook.com for the Forecaster Challenge and is: HR + SB + R/3 + RBI/3 + (H-.27*AB) + 2*W + 1.5 * SV + K / 5 + IP – (ER+H+BB/ 2). League points totals are divided into the average league total and multiplied by 100 to get the league index (e.g., 5,000 league points / 4,000 average league points * 100 = 125).

@Tourinct: ya im not saying its right or wrong, i dont really care what it is even LOL, not like I’ll probably understand it! But its weird a guy who scores over 100 is in a tough league? I’d think my league is more difficult where half the teams in the league are even. If one guys dominating that doesnt look like a “strong league”. It looks like one guy is whooping on a weak league.

The index is a comparison of statistics, so a league with better total stats will be rated higher.

There is a link at the bottom of the master standings to the index page.

@Grey: Trade Kinser & Stephen Drew to get Hanley? I could slide Ackley in at 2B…

@Eric H.: Better ask on a Grey post to get good advice.

@Tony: hopefully I can explain the formula in a way that makes sense.

essentially they are totaling the stats in each category for the entire league. a league that scores m,ore points is deemed “more competitive” than leagues that total fewer points.

think of it like this… a league with 5 abandoned teams will have fewer stats because the absentee owners don’t work the waiver wire, bench their DL’d players or any of the other “little things” active owners do to put the best team on the field every day. the result is that the remaining 5 teams climb up the standings more easily than if they were playing in a league where all 10 teams were actively trying to max their stats.

I understand what you are saying about a league where all the teams are bunched around 70-80 points being “more competitive” in the sense that the teams are obviously closely matched. But you could have a league where every owner drafted a bunch of benched and/or retired scrubs and they’d all congregate at about 72 points.

Alternatively, you could have a league where all the teams scrupulously managed their teams, but one team has a great (lucky) draft, isn’t hit by injuries and makes a lopsided trade or two. That team should dominate their league, but since every other team is doing their best to score as high as possible, that league would have earned a favorable competitive index.

My problem is that when you get to the top of the leaderboard, the CI is crippling to those of us stuck in “uncompetitive” leagues, and overly rewarding to those that lucked into a more active league.

One solution to the problem may be to measure a league’s competitiveness by the points scored by the top 7 or 8 teams so that the absentee owners’ impact is diminished in leagues where a few teams quit.

@MStark:

“One solution to the problem may be to measure a league’s competitiveness by the points scored by the top 7 or 8 teams so that the absentee owners’ impact is diminished in leagues where a few teams quit.”

Wouldn’t that give a big advantage to leagues with abandoned teams? As you said, the top teams would have a better shot at the hot free agents and therefore put up better stats.

That being said, I doubt that there is a system that could be totally fair to everyone.

Plus, I don’t know if it would be fair to change midseason either.

@VinWins: no way we should change mid-season.

but my thinking is that we want to be most fair to the greatest number of teams. and since most teams play in leagues where a team or two is abandoned at some point, the suggestion makes sense to me. i guess if I were running a multi-league contest though, my idea would be to poll the league GMs to ask how many teams are abandoned in their league. that, at least, would give a decent idea of the size of the problem. if we found that 9 out of 10 leagues had at least 2 abandoned teams, i’m thinking my idea would be workable.

that said, i agree w/you about there being no perfect solution. one other problem, for example, is that teams are abandoned at different points of the season. so there’s no accounting for everything.

If I comment on this post is there a chance I can get in on a Razzball league for next year?

@616Gambit: Sure. As long as you’re around next spring when the signups occur, you can be in a league.

I agree with MStark on the GS issue. I am currently in first place in my commenter league with 95 pts., but only 3 teams have fewer games started than I do and the best of them is in 8th place. In the end, it really doesn’t matter, as the year end standings hold everyone to equal criteria.

As for determining league competitiveness. I like your suggestion as to dropping the bottom two teams before calculating. Without looking into the arithmatic, maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea to drop the bottom and top two to determine league toughness.

@manfromearth: I am now including a GS column on the stat page for comparison purposes. As you said, the disparity will take care of itself by the end of the season, but seeing the games started can put into perspective your win and strikeout totals.

That’s an interesting suggestion for using the middle 8 teams to determine competitiveness. Also without the math, I could see that as a possible solution.

Maybe this has been mentioned, but another way to come up with league competitiveness would be to take the total number of moves made, possibly throwing out moves made by the top two and bottom two teams. Really enjoying the league.

One more suggestion, derived from the fact that as I look at other teams, I see they could be playing and doing well, benefiting from as many as 5 teams not being active in a league (Partially Torn RCL League, for example). My suggestion is, have a winners league (or two leagues), next year.