A couple of years ago Bret Sayre invited me to participate in his dynasty league – The Dynasty Guru Expert League, or TDGX. At the time I was writing for him at his site, and while I don’t anymore, I’ve been allowed to remain in the league as a representative of Razzball. I’d like to say my team has been killing it, but that hasn’t been the case in the first two years. The league is a lot of fun, and there are representatives from sites like Baseball Prospectus, Fangraphs, Baseball HQ, and CBS. It’s deep and it’s challenging. Tim McLeod and Ian Khan took the championship in each of the first two years, so major kudos to them.

The format is a 20-team, 40-man roster, 5×5 roto league where we keep 35 of 40 players from year to year. There are no salaries and we keep players as long as we want. There are ten roster slots designated for prospects, but we’re allowed to carry prospects in any of our active roster slots if that’s the route a team chooses. I’m in this situation at the moment, and didn’t even hit the inning minimums which meant a last place finish in 2015. The consolation prize is a high draft pick, but as you’ll see with some of the pieces on my roster, I don’t want to wait around forever to compete. 2016 might be a stretch, but I do feel that this squad can gel into something substantial in the next two years.

C Jorge Alfaro C | PHI P Archie Bradley P | ARI
1B Christian Walker 1B | BAL P Alex Cobb P | TB
2B Anthony Rendon 2B,3B | WAS P Randall Delgado P | ARI X
3B Nolan Arenado 3B | COL P Brandon Finnegan P | CIN
SS Starlin Castro 2B,SS | CHC P Keone Kela P | TEX X
MI Nick Franklin 1B,2B,SS | TB P Jairo Labourt P | TOR X
CI Maikel Franco 3B | PHI P Eduardo Rodriguez P | BOS
OF Mike Trout OF | LAA P Braden Shipley P | ARI X
OF Jorge Soler OF | CHC P Touki Toussaint P | ATL X
OF Oswaldo Arcia OF | MIN
OF Danny Santana OF,SS | MIN MINORS (10)
OF Aaron Altherr OF | PHI Dylan Bundy P | BAL
U Adam Duvall 1B,OF | CIN Dominic Smith 1B | NYM
U Arismendy Alcantara 2B,OF | CHC Jomar Reyes 3B | BAL
RESERVES (7) Gilbert Lara SS | MIL
J.P. Crawford SS | PHI Derek Fisher OF | HOU
Ozhaino Albies SS | ATL Alex Jackson OF | SEA
Rafael Devers 3B | BOS Eloy Jimenez OF | CHC
David Dahl OF | COL Harold Ramirez OF | PIT X
Roman Quinn OF | PHI Magneuris Sierra OF | STL
Raimel Tapia OF | COL Adrian Rondon SS | TB
Alen Hanson SS | PIT Gleyber Torres SS | CHC

A few quick hits on this team, both positive and negative…

  • It helps having a core of Trout, Arenado, and Rendon. These are good players who are likely to stay good for a few years. They are easy to build around and their age keeps the window open longer. On the flip side, three position players – no matter how talented – aren’t going to win a league. That’s where I’ll need Soler, Franco, etc. to step up.
  • First base is a major weakness, and the pitching staff is going to need to be supplemented in the five-round redraft or through free agency once it is my year to go for it.
  • The prospects on this team are strong, and without going into every roster in the league, I think this is one of the better mixes of young MLB talent and higher end prospects.
  • A few of the mistakes I’ve made so far: valuing draft picks too highly, “settling” instead of “shopping” in trades of breakout players such as J.D. Martinez and Lorenzo Cain, and overvaluing volatile pitching prospects such as Dylan Bundy.
  • Free agency has been surprisingly fruitful for a league this size. It’s how I was able to get JDMart in the first place and more recently Jorge Alfaro, Keone Kela, and Aaron Altherr
  • Trading seemed to be slower in year two, but it’s still a very active league with just a few teams turning over. I think there are plenty of other managers to talk to both in this offseason as well as next summer. Even though not all of the trades have worked out, at least the other 19 teams know I’m active and willing to negotiate.
  • I have to shave six players to get to 35 this offseason. I’ve marked my gut picks with red x’s, but those won’t be due for a while. Feel free to suggest who you’d cut in the comments.
  • This year’s poor showing should lead to a top five draft pick, and that could be a talent that speeds up the competitive clock as well.
  1. Dan says:

    Hey Mike

    Which of these would be your final keeper?
    10 team H2H Dynasty with round values
    15 keepers

    Greg Bird (27)
    Heyward (5)
    Yelich (22)
    Myers (24)
    Freeman (7)
    Rodon (7)

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      Bird if he’s going to play…otherwise one of Yelich/Myers and I’d lean Yelich at this point

  2. Yescheese says:

    Bradley, Cobb, Rendon, Arcia. That hurts

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      yup, going to have to get lucky with a bounceback or two…or three lol

  3. Goldirocks says:

    What are your thoughts/beliefs on the near future of arismendy alcantara? I’m in a similar position as you in a rebuild keeper league with good parts believed to tale a step forward and Im considering adding SPs this year to maximize my innings this year to compete. I have been losing faith in holding arismendy much longer. I have alot of speed in my OF group already and good pop with my young grads – Sano, Correa, Gallo…
    Ive been running with middling 2B C Owings and S Gennett; who will be available as FAs again, and have B Drury on my miib roster.
    If you had to choose 2 of the following for your last 2 keepers between 2B Alcantara , SP Paxton, SP/RP R Montero and the mentioned 2B B Drury; who would you choose? (Similar conditions as your keeper/dynasty league)

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      I still have hope for him to become at least a utility player in the majors and useful in deeper formats, but at this point I would take Drury over him

  4. Ra'zbahl Al Ghul says:

    Mike, here is my three cents: You have some really great “A” pieces, but need more dependable “B” pieces. I’m not too sure on Rendon’s 3B position plans/eligibility in the future, but for now your stockpile of studs and redundancy at 3B could be something to look at. You would have nice leverage for netting a first baseman and one or two other nice pieces (OFr and SP) by moving one of those 3Bmen in a trade. It’s nice to have all three of those guys, but it might also hurt you too, big picture, having a feast and famine type lineup… Just a thought. My gut says move an “A” piece or two and get a bunch of contributors and fill up them stat sheets in 2016!

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      thanks Raz! Good points. We’ve got almost a stars and scrubs thing going on here. I’m def going to have to explore trades to plug some holes. I hear ya on Kela. I’m torn on him and like him a lot. Who would you cut instead?

  5. Ra'zbahl Al Ghul says:

    And if the X next to Kela means you may cut him, mmmm, I don’t know. Good ratios, some wins and saves, could be a good glue guy in a league this deep. I think he could be very good moving forward

  6. Ra'zbahl Al Ghul says:

    Well, all of this with a grain of salt – maybe one of the younger/more raw OFr’s or SS that you are stockpiling? Seems you are trying to keep as many bats as possible and I know you have said several times this year that you don’t see closers and RP as long term pieces, which is probably wise. But Kela already has the trust of TX for higher leverage situations as a rookie, he could be a non-sexy but glue/brick “B” guy for your pitching core right away and for years to come. Smokey loved him coming into 2015

    • Ra'zbahl Al Ghul says:

      @Ra’zbahl Al Ghul: Not to say he is one of a kind by any means, you could also probably get him back in draft or FA. And depends on how this league values 7th and 8th inning guys like Kelvin, Darren O’Day et al

      • Mike

        Mike says:

        makes sense. If there is buzz around him closing, I’m sure he’ll be tougher to get back. Tolleson and Dyson in the picture there, so he might be a wait and see type as we get closer.

  7. Nitro says:

    Thank you for sharing your thought process about all of this. Very interesting.

    I can keep 7 in a head to head 10 team league. I have locked in:

    I need three of the following group:
    S Marte

    Thank you!!

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      thanks! glad it was helpful

      I’d go with Marte, Miggy, and Schwarber

  8. Mike in KC says:

    Hi Mike,

    Love all your posts. They are expecially useful, b/c I inherited an aging H2H Dynasty 14 team, 12keeper league. OBP vs. BA. SLG% + Holds as additional cateogories.
    7 bench spots + 1 minor league (not active slot), so have to shorten my bench to stash minor leaguers.

    Would appreciate your keeper thoughts towards next year. I’m willing to be patient.

    Current planned Keepers:

    Arenado, C.Seager, Nelly Cruz, Moncada, Stroman, Severino, Boxberger, Gregerson

    Need 5 more out of:
    Hitters: Papi, d’Araund, Kinsler, K.Davis,DeShields,D.Peralta, Conforto,Souza, JH Kang
    Pitchers: Joe Ross, Corbin,Tolleson, Doolite, Jaime Garcia,J.Quintana,Ed.Rodriguez, Glasnow, Capps


    • Mike

      Mike says:

      thanks Mike!

      I’d go with Davis, Conforto, Ortiz, and Souza for hitters. Quintana or ERod as another arm

  9. Cdouglas18 says:

    I’m want to start a dynasty league. Any recommendations on which site to use, or any other tips? I haven’t done any research on it yet.

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      for dynasties I’d go with CBS or Fantrax. CBS is more stable but is missing some of the deeper prospects. Fantrax has anybody you could want in the player pool, and is very customizable, but also more buggy.

      As far as general stuff, I would take the time to write out a basic constitution on how your league is going to handle players kept, who’s eligible to be drafted/picked up etc. That way everybody is on same page from the get go.

      • Cdouglas18 says:

        @Mike: anything stand out positively or negatively as far as site or app usability? Or is it all pretty similar?

        • Mike

          Mike says:

          CBS is better for app and site performance.

  10. Baezaworldseries says:

    Mike. Chih-Wei Hu jumped from A+ to AAA for one game. Do you think he starts out at AAA in 2016? Looks like some good control so far. Are you a fan?

    • Mike

      Mike says:

      Hu? jk

      Yeah, I mean I think he would probably go AA/AAA actually, but his numbers look good. I haven’t read anything on him recently, but I don’t remember him having any plus pitches outside of maybe his fastball.

Comments are closed.