[Pssst!  Keep it down but this isn’t even an editor’s note.  I’m interrupting myself.  Or at least one of myselves.  Wanna play Fantasy Baseball with all these goons you see in the comments?  Well Go be a Commissioner. We can’t promise your safety but we can promise you’ll have fun.  We all know dangerous = fun.  That’s why all the bad boys get the hot chicks.  So go commish, you wild animal you.]

Sing it with me!  Villar, Villar…the speed of the AstrosOk, maybe we shouldn’t call it singing.  More like gravel-throated barfing on the mic.  Thank your deity of choice for delay, compression and a poop-ton of reverb or you’d never get to hear the inner-workings of great minds like Fred Durst who has done it all for the nookie and put cookies in places we never would’ve imagined.  Speaking of putting cookies in places that would surprise you…uh…Jonathan Villar is a cookie.  Yeah, that’s it!  A chocolate chip, macadamia nut infused, tasty morsel that is tucked away because he plays on an Astros team that has more nicknames about how bad it is – AAAstros, LAstros, ‘You can’t say Astros without saying ass’ Astros, etc – than it does different jersey types.  And yes, before we move on, I do look familiar.  Or maybe unfamiliar depending on who you are.  I’m one of those guys on the Fantasy Football side of the Razzball universe.  That little link takes you to a world where you get to see my grainy face more than maybe you’d ever want to but it’s there either way, gratis.  Heck everything on this site is free, of course…except the awkward hugs that last too long.  WordPress, how many words am I at?  Over 200 you say?  Right, then lets get on with it.  Here’s why I like Villar in deep league settings for the 2014 Fantasy Baseball season…

Deep leagues make it important to find value late in your draft and in order to do that, you have to look at comparables.  And here they are: 50.2 to 63.1 and .243 to .252.  Boom, son!  Analysis done!  *Looks up the definition of comparison*  Oh, right, gotta tell you what I’m talking about I guess.  The first stat is how many steals Villar would’ve ended 2013 with had he played a full 162 game season.  Nice, intriguing, and other superlatives.  The second stat was of Everth Cabrera and his 2013 had it been a full 162 game slate.  Yeah, 13 steals is a pretty decent gap I’ll admit but I’d like to point out how much of a spread there is between these two in terms of draft order.  Though I haven’t seen any ADP that’s valuable as of this typing, I’m seeing at least a 10 spot gap between Villar and Cabrera in terms of where they’re ranked at the shortstop position.  If it weren’t for EverCab’s out of nowhere average last year – which came with a dramatically trimmed strikeout rate – we’d be talking about the same player.  Which brings me to the next stat I mentioned: that was their career averages at the major league level.  Sure, one has a smaller sample size than the other – I’m sure it gets embarrassing when they’re in the locker room together – but there’s some uncanny resemblances to how both started their careers and some underlying stats.  They’re both speedy shortstops who have great walk rates and came into the league with a penchant for striking out at a 20%+ rate.  Of course, I’m not telling you Villar will miraculously match E-Cab’s reduced K rates and become a fantasy short stop stud but I am willing to tell you that these are blurred lines here and even Mr. Thicke can see it.  If Villar steals 40 to 45 bases and hits .235 along the way, I wouldn’t be surprised.  Oh and maybe you’re just rolling your eyes and farting in my general direction at this point.  But you know who else likes him?  Our very own Rudy Gamble and Mike.  So if there’s crazy up in these Razzball hills, then at least I’m not the only one.  Now pardon me while I go listen to some Papa Roach.

 

Sky Sperling is a contributor for Razzball Football and Razzball Baseball. He’s also a lover of fine beer, fine women and fine-toothed combs. You can follow him on twitter @Sky_Razzball and in your most sweetest of dreams.

 
  1. Korey says:
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    Considering him in my AL only 10 team league if I miss on Andrus. What’s a safe round to grab him, 10, 11, 12? If I am able to pick up some good AVG early his low AVG won’t kill me. Any thoughts on going this route in an AL only 10 team.

    Thanks for the feedback and I enjoyed the read!!

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Thanks for the read, Korey! He’s probably a early to mid teen pick for sure. His team, current batting position in the lineup (9th) and his BA will scare quite a few away who can’t see the value.

  2. Cram It says:
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    I read this.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      I don’t believe you.

  3. Mike B says:
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    any guesses on his longterm outlook with correa’s ascension through the minors?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Admittedly iffy. I think he needs to take a step forward this year if he wants to keep his job. But for draft purposes and where he’s going, he’s worth the risk, IMHO. He could/should be an 8/40 type. Of course, we’re assuming Correa keeps his trends as well with these types of statements or doesn’t get hurt or…well, you get what I’m saying.

  4. Max says:
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    I have a question that is quite a bit off topic, but maybe you can answer it. Last year, Adam Jones’s BB% was 3.60%; his K% was 19.70. His OBP was .318, and his wOBA was .350. His LD% was 19.7%, about league average (I think). Yet by most accounts, he had a pretty good year. Why is that? What metrics prove his success?

    Thank you!

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Not really much you can say, metrics-wise, that would explain his success. He’s more of an anamoly than he is a study case. Very few guys with his underlying stats can make it work. He has just as much in common with Juan Uribe as he does with someone who’d do this on a regular basis. I’m not shy of drafting him but he wouldn’t surprise me with a 24/12 campaign with a .270 average either. Not a guy I’m huge on because I can’t quantify him but then again, hard to argue with back to back 30 HR seasons.

      • Max says:
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        @Sky: Thanks Sky. Pretty amazing – also considering that I read on this site that one of your writers has him as a top 10 keeper, I think. Can’t measure everything, I guess.

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          No problem. I’m definitely not saying they’re wrong but because I can’t measure the depth of why he’s doing it, I’ll always be too chicken to draft him. I don’t mind aggressive hitters but other metrics have to come along with it. That said, contact rates for Jones are solid. If you’re going to swing at everything, your K rate has to be down to be successfull and it is for him. It’s why I’m intrigued by Nolan Arenado. Beautiful swing, good plate coverage and a willingness to take it to all parts of the field. He may never get an OBP above .340 but his swing is money.

          • Max says:
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            @Sky: Hey Sky – I’m not sure what you mean. His K rate is a bit below average and his walk rate is terrible. I assume you are talking about his Contact %? What an interesting dude. Are there other hitters that easily come to mind that have below average supporting stats but defy them?

            Thanks for your good insight!

            • Sky

              Sky says:
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              Pudge maybe? Low walk/low k-rate but high contact high average guy for his career. It’s rare. It’s why I consider those types of players more outliers than they’re something to build around/count on.

  5. The Ghost of the Disappeared says:
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    Sky: Shame on you… Villar is not deep even on the ESPN board… I don’t mind talking about him though..

    Sorry for using your show, but before I go any further though, I’m getting splinters just sitting in the dugout of my “Beat J Wrong RB League”. Hoping, he might appear there… He’s not even on the NFL side now. I hope. he and his dogsled team, out there in the RazzBall Gulag, didn’t get caught out in hard Siberian snap when going for supplies and weren’t able to build a fire in time or worse, the cyber wolves or snow tigers got them. I’ll have to send him some Jack London and Robert Service to read while manning those barren and arctic cold like RB NFL boards. What a dreadful lonely life that must be for a young talented baseball writer. That is, if he is still alive?… I miss you, Jay.

    ESPN = Villar #203 and Escobar # 283 KC are toss a coin clones IMO.. Later MI speed options that will move up from the ranked spots . If you need them, you had better be thinking about adding them around 160 slot to be sure of nailing them. They are both viable bench players for light schedule days. Their projected SB numbers STAND OUT on the projection sheets for their position and the entire offensive FBB universe – even, I’ve noticed them.

    Villar is hard to figure. He has some compact power but swings at everything. If he hits 260 BA he will be great to have. 10 taters are not a pipe dream either But, if he hits 225 BA – you are screwed unless you have padded your SB and BA in other places. Also, heard some rumors of ??? decisions on D.. The Stros are looking at all options for the future. He could be replaced or lose starts if someone/anyone deserves a Org look.

    Both these guys are were winding up on my team in my initial 2014 draft permutations off the ESPN Draft Matrix … I have tried to move away from them though. Looking farther a field and controlling my new acquired desire (a lesson learned from 1st year ESPN ball with its 5 OFers system – Do Not to get caught short of them ever again) to draft OFers early and often in ESPN. I was over doing it. I have backed off, and now find I’m not needing these 2 SB only types as much, in my drafts..

    Both are potential BA nails as everyday players.. YIKES… I do hate SBs… Never do well in the CAT. I pretty sure, I’ve never won the SB CAT in my FBB history

    Villar is a wildcard pick IMO… And is no longer a sleeper. In fact, I would say he is overhyped at this stage… He is just a punt of a pitcher away from a pre #150 pick. I’ve seen him projected at over 40 + SBs ………. I leaning towards Escobar 30+ on the bounce back on a better team and his more deeply buried ESPN DB matrix position.

    On ESPN MOCK Drafts in general… They need to place an announced brake on participants, who fail to go deep into the drafts say pick #200… Penalty should be a 10 day ban from using the feature. The drafts are meaningless once more than 2 team go auto draft. By the 3 rd or 4th rd usually half the 12 teams have left. They begin to falsely endorse/validate the ESPN player rankings – which are quite strange – On purpose???? Why doesn’t RazzBall have a MOCK DRAFT Tool borrowing the ESPN Matrix???

    I finally left a Mock Draft early today, I was so frustrated by the others players… I’ll still use it to familiarize me twisted and confused noodle with the nuances and the no-nos of the the draft template. I really good at doing repeated AH-OHs on it still… I hate the thing. I’m am puter challenged you know.

    I’m really enjoying Mike’s Team Previews… Not sure, he’s enjoying me there though… O’ well, the good with the bad, the reed with the staff and all that rot.

    Forgot

    Chin Chin

    • chris says:
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      @The Ghost of the Disappeared:

      I recently grabbed him at pick 311 in a 14-team standard roster Yahoo keeper, so he can certainly be had late …

      • The Ghost of the Disappeared says:
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        @chris: Where was he placed on Yahoo’s the draft lists

  6. Kobayashi Maru says:
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    Another keeper question…

    Two contract options: I can keep a player for just this season at his draft price from last year, or as long as I want at +$5 per year. I have Shelby Miller for $2 and Wheeler for $1, should I enjoy one cheap season from them, or pay $7/$6 this year for the chance one emerges as a true ace?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Kobayashi Maru: I’d take the cheap year and load up on arms in the draft. Just don’t feel a need to overspend on pitching.

  7. Wake Up says:
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    Here is the rare hybrid of little power and high Ks…known in some circles as the donknof!
    Not to be confused with Knopfler…though drafting him could leave your MI situation, in dire straits…
    *drops mic*

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Ha well if we could just get PEDs back into the game, I wouldn’t have to do this to you.

      Besides, I’m much happier getting speed at MI than OF. Or from my dealer…

      • Wake Up says:
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        @Sky: Ha…I just kinda wanted to use that line…instead of snorting it of my keys…

        • Wake Up says:
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          @Wake Up: off my key…already kicking in…

          • Sky

            Sky says:
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            @Wake Up: You’re snorting in the key of life right now, Wake Up.

            • Wake Up says:
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              @Sky: “I Wish”

              • Sky

                Sky says:
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                By Skee-Lo

  8. Spammer Jay says:
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    Billy Ham is being drafted in the top 90 where you could have way less riskier impact options at other positions. Villar is being drafted in 200-230 where you expect high risk.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Spammer Jay: If I’m reading you correctly, I agree. I’m not on board the Billy Ham train, myself. If he were an SS still, I could get behind overpricing him but as an OF with OBP problems…blech.

    • Jeff in Southern Indiana says:
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      @Spammer Jay: Billy is more like ADP 110 in ESPN leagues, a 3rd or 4th outfielder.

      At that price you can draft him and get a Gyroko, etc. at MI and not have to chase other steals guys.

  9. Count de Monetball says:
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    What next, the Darwin Barney sleeper post?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Count de Monetball: Sounds like you have something in mind…you should present it to Grey! NM, I’ll do it for you. ‘HEY GREY, COUNT WANTS TO WRITE ABOUT DARWIN BARNEY! WHAT? NO WAY IN HELL? OK, I’LL TELL HIM!’

      Sorry Count. Access denied.

      • Count de Monetball says:
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        @Sky: HA! You funny guy! In all actuality, I have been looking at Villar a lot. I know Grey liked him as a WW pickup last year. Good write-up! Since the cubbies picked Bone-face, the purple dinosaur will just be a bench guy anyway…probably…Bring on Baez to play 2nd!!!! (p.s. don’t show us the boner again)

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          Don’t act like you’re not impressed!

          Man, I’m both happy and sad about Bonifacio. Then again, his defense sucks so there’s that. Hopefully he’s roaming the OF at some point when they make a move and Baez is up.

          Villar I like as long as the hype train doesn’t build on him. He is what he is until proven otherwise – a solid late SB option with major BA risk. If he starts climbing the ADP charts then I’m no longer interested. I can’t believe how young he is, though. ‘Stros have a really fun/young team heading into 2014. They’ll still suck of course but…well…they’re the ‘stros.

  10. Mike

    Mike says:
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    Love the JFOH / Tehol smack on the tail end of that Twitter thread…

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Those two in the same league are like oil and water together…which is another way of saying they are both forms of lube. It’s gonna be a good year.

  11. Cram It says:
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    I was told to harass you about joining JFOH’s league. C’mon, we need one more. It’s free! We’ll even let you draft Tyson Ross and Villar.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Can I draft Tyson Ross and put him on your team permanently for the year?

    • Prez says:
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      @Cram It: i tried… after his sob story i backed off. we dont want him killing himself when hes swamped with shizz and BigMacLoveTheCackDaddyFag comes and clowns him for messing up Jon Jay’s OB%..

      @sky, Cram and i respectively reserving a spot in a league with you in football next year. So you best to rememeber this Feb 17th day!

      • Sky

        Sky says:
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        I respectfully accept. Football is so different/easier to play in terms of time spent.

        I’m still considering, I’ll see what I can do. But really, RCLs are frenetically paced and I’m already in 2 of them. If someone takes it, I’ll be happy for you guys because you get a more involved manager most likely.

        • Prez says:
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          @Sky: understandable! If you cant make it, no offense taken my man..

          and by “easier to play” im assuming you mean “might not even set a roster all year and win”… haha

          • Sky

            Sky says:
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            Ha, I just mean there’s just two or three days a week you really need to check your roster. After waivers, Thursday if you have any players and Sunday morning. Could manage 10 teams that way…and I would kill whoever won their league like that. Football already requires luck, that’s like winning the fantasy lottery doing that!

            • Cram It says:
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              @Sky: @Sky: 2 leagues? That’s it? You don’t even have any kids. (I’m just saying that, I don’t really know).

              Tyson Ross is so mediocre, he switched jobs with Blaine Gabbert and no one noticed.

              • Sky

                Sky says:
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                I’ll remember this conversation when trade winds start blowing and you’re begging for a little Ross in your life.

                I don’t but working to sell my home, which means projects and constant house cleanage. Gotta remember I’m also still writing and I’ll actually be heading up the daily fantasy crew that’ll be rolling out Mon-Sun this year. I have things…oh and we’re talking kids. So life is happening.

              • Sky

                Sky says:
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                And 2 RCLs. Three leagues total, one a long-standing keeper that’s fairly deep and takes some time as well.

  12. Andrew A says:
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    Hey Sky, I’m wondering if defensive shifts will be a new “edge” in fantasy baseball: finding pull hitters who are hurt by the shift, finding the teams that employ a shift the most frequently, and maybe which pitchers benefit from the shift.

    I’m thinking kind of similar to the red light green light piece

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Interesting take. I wouldn’t call it ‘new’ per se. Shifts have been used by successful teams for a while now. Rays always put themselves in great spots to succeed on defense for their pitchers. That said, I do wonder across the MLB how much the shift does affect certain hitters. I think I’d want to see more teams deploy it before saying it needs huge amounts of research. But you should hit Rudy up on one of his posts with the idea. Might get legs. Would love to find out if Matt Adams is destined to hit .255 because he can’t beat a never-ending shift.

  13. ryan says:
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    I am in the middle of a prospect draft in my dynasty league. Please help me pick 2?

    maikel franco
    joc pederson
    jon gray
    mark appel
    andrew heaney
    rougned odor
    austin meadows
    miguel aldredo gonzalez
    clint frazier
    raul mondesi jr

    • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
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      @ryan: its still yr turn? 21 hours on a pick is pretty long. did you ask scott yet? frazier first.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Sorry for the delay, was at pickup basketball. Agree with goodfold but you should definitely hit up our prospect writer Scott on one of his posts

      • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
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        @Sky: hehe.

  14. I’ll have to keep an eye out for Villar in late rounds. I also understand that Brad Miller is a good late round SS to target. Wonder if this pair is good enough that I could avoid SS until very late rounds? Hmm?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      You might be holding out longer than you need to. SS is fairly deep this year with some good early targets. Away from a computer but a guy like Ian Desmond comes to mind.

  15. L'ville Jim says:
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    I can see those that actually read Razzball in my dynasty league. Just saw a manager pick Villar today and have seen others highlighted last season that were scooped up the same day or next after being written up. Bastards.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      A thousand pardons! You need to join a league of illiterates. Only way to be safe…

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