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Grey threw this knuckleball: “I have an idea for someone who wants extra credit on their Razzball exam.  Put together, next year, a team of 27-year-olds.  My guess is if you don’t research anything else and only draft 27-year-olds, you’ll have a leg up on the competition.”

Fun, yes! A ‘leg up’…on the pool of ALL other ages? Is he serious or just having fun with us? I’ll play along… cull all those ‘lucky-year’ studs. [Ed. Note- Bonus points for using 'cull'.]

Attach Grey’s Top-400 rankings, establishing first-available round for each. Then, sort by round, selecting the top-ranked player available for the next pick.

At my first look, I have Adam Jones (5) followed by first-rounders Carlos Gonzalez (8), Chris Davis (9), and Evan Longoria. All age-27, and four of top-nine players. WOW!

With a snake draft with first pick at #5 is Adam Jones. It’s a pretty nice lineup, but lacks a strong corner-infielder due to my first pick being an OF. (No players drafted ahead of assigned snake pick.) At my second look, I begin my snake at #9 with Chris Davis. Better. Much better… and I certainly can’t pass up the ‘big cheat’. I add Jay Bruce and Jason Kipnis, both birthday boys turning 27 on April 3rd. Not the magic age for their first 3 games, so to be safe, I’ll just bench ‘em until they qualify.

Yup, my here’s my best age-27 lineup:

C – Carlos Santana (94)
1B – Chris Davis (9)
2B – Jason Kipnis (33)
3B – Josh Donaldson (56)
SS – Asdrubal Cabrera (162)
MI – Zack Cozart (279)
CI – Todd Frazier (124)
OF – Jay Bruce (20)
OF – Yoenis Cespedes (83)
OF – Dexter Fowler (154)
OF – Lorenzo Cain (224)
OF – Alex Presley (319)
UT – Neil Walker (291)
SP – Homer Bailey (58)
SP – David Price (64)
SP – Kris Medlen (132)
SP – Johnny Cueto (185)
SP – Corey Kluber (194)
CL – Greg Holland (112)
CL – Steve Cishek (207)
CL – Ernesto Frieri (213)
MR – Nate Jones (244)
MR – Josh Fields (286)
BN – Louis Coleman
BN – David Carpenter

How good is this team? I entered in Grey’s last draft, stopping at 13 hitters, 5 SP, and 2 CL (draft not completed) to The War Room. It ranked 7th of 13 teams (had to balance teams, drop a pitcher for a hitter on 4 teams, to get all teams with 13 hitters, 5 SP, and 2 CL). Next is take on Grey’s challenge at another level. And that’s run it in mocks, see what she can really do. This is really a must for those TWO of you who will turn 27 on March 27—Opening Day 2014, Dodgers VS D-backs, Sydney AUS!

  1. anarchy burger says:
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    john benson used to do an “age 27 with experience” column. i believe it was any player with over 2 years experience in the majors and entering their 27 year old season. seems a little outdated now but that column used to help anticipate some big improvement from some lesser known guys. i dont even know if john benson is around anymore. btw john benson couldnt hang with the razzball writers. later

    • UncleLarryWalker says:
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      @anarchy burger: Also- jon benson. That is all.

  2. UpNort says:
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    Fred,
    Not sure when you wrote this, but very few of these guys are 27 years old as of today 2/17/14…
    Maybe you were using old info or data tables to sort?

    • Simply Fred

      simply fred says:
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      @UpNort: not sure who you are looking at. used fangraphs. checked the first few, which checked out. kinda misses the mark if that data not accurate…

      bottom line, this list more for ‘if you are looking for a guy at a particular slot and one of these fits, he MAY have that ‘magic 27′ advantage going for him.’ double-check that age first! otherwise, take it with a grain of salt and move on.

      appreciate the input…good to point out the need to not take everything at face value…

      • UpNort says:
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        @simply fred:

        I’m guessing you looked at 27 yr olds during the 2013 season. A couple may still qualify.

        Actually, if you look at the age 26 class from 2013, it gets pretty ugly fairly quickly. I like your team much better….

        Last year I did 2 experiments via age in drafts. Did one Old Farts team with all 28+ yr olds. One Young Bucks team with all 27 and under. Was wondering which would do better. Won both leagues, so inconclusive. ESPN, though, for what that’s worth. Maybe I’ll try it this year with all 27s.

  3. RandomItalicizedVoice says:
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    Grain of salt indeed. There’s nothing magic about age 27. It’s a myth.

  4. Spammer Jay says:
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    I like 28 year old years also for hitters only. And 2 years post TJS for pitchers.

    • Spammer Jay says:
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      @Spammer Jay: also combine to 3rd year player for the bonus.

  5. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
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    Where’s McCutchen?

    • Simply Fred

      simply fred says:
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      @TobiasFunkeAnalRapist: McCutchen’s birthdate 10/10/86 clearly makes him a solid 27. However, when I run the report TODAY in Fangraphs, it lists his age as 26. Looks like it is reporting age at time of 2013 stats. Didn’t catch that significant nuance…guessing you all will survive…:-)

  6. frankgrimes says:
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    the Cuban missile is prolly more likely in his thirties you know how it is…doh

  7. frankiejay says:
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    I turn 28 on March 26. So I’m just going to draft guys between 26-28 to be safe.

  8. Simply Fred

    simply fred says:
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    A lock for the hoodie!

  9. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:
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    Thanks, Fred, simply a fine article! I would take my chances with this team.

  10. Al koholic says:
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    ha,i like it,and that lineup is awesome thanks and great job Freddy baby

  11. Dale Doback says:
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    Solid write up Fred! I wrote a little piece titled ‘Seventeen’….Now I’m not allowed within 500 feet of the local High School.

  12. Clint says:
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    So is the 27yo breakout a fantasy myth like the 3rd year WR or a fantasy reality like the Madden Cover Curse? I’ve heard about it for years but haven’t ever seen a statistical analysis to see if there is truth to it at all and/or where the sweet spot for that truth may lie.

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