Finally, a straightforward post about fantasy baseball strategy for a 60-game season. I gave you fantasy baseball strategy for batting average in 60 games and basically shrugged, gave you fantasy baseball strategy for wins in 60 games, which I wrote like a high schooler who had to write 1,000 words on what I did this summer, and wrote a couple hundred really’s. None of this is going to be easy, which I think is why it will be fun. But will this be like your usual fantasy baseball season? No, not at all. Starters will be like following fantasy football advice if guys you drafted were only to play once every fifth game, and 12 times all year. It’s a bit ludicrous, if I’m being honest. Fun when compared to real life? You’re crazy if you don’t think so right now, or have tunneled your ostrich head so far into the sand you can’t see daylight. So, with a 60-game season, what is a fantasy baseball strategy for strikeouts?

1. Innings – Been putting these strategies in order, so I strongly considered placing K/9 first here, and innings second, but K/9 isn’t it this year in 60 games, is it? Chad Green has a lux K/9, but if he’s projected for 26 2/3 IP and 36 Ks, as he in our Steamer projections, are you carrying that or, say, Kyle Gibson, who is projected for 60 Ks? I guess if you have an innings or games started limit, then K/9 might matter, but what kind of crazy league are you in that has an IP limit this year? This year is going to be so nuts no one is reaching their innings limit, unless it’s absurdly low. That top starter is projected for 74 IP, and that feels like it might be high. Think of it like this, most starters throw ~30 IP per month, and there’s two months. One missed start and it all goes out the window. One bad start and that pitcher goes out the window. It’s going to be your number one job this year to max your innings. Everything else is out of your control.

2. K/9 – Well, yeah, dur. Need me to explain it to you? Hopefully not. It’s strikeouts per nine. As I said in the innings blurb, and why I put that first, I don’t know how advantageous it will be to carry, say, Chad Green in a 60-game season. If you’re able to, say, drop Kyle Gibson and grab Green for four games, then pick up Gibson for his next start, then great, but your league is shallow and can I get an invite? In daily leagues, I imagine it’s going to be all about the Streamonator every day. If you can grab a high-end middle reliever to fill your lineup, then drop him for a good starter matchup, then drop that starter for another middle reliever, well, I’m basically telling you how to win the strikeouts category in an RCL, and prolly any league this year. Of course, this is daily leagues. In weekly, it’s back to innings. Two-start starters will be king, but also hard to pin down with guys getting bumped.

3. Rotation Safety – This is sorta innings, but I felt it needed a highlighting. Rotation safety means those 4th and 5th starters who are so yummy with upside and… *pulls out George Costanza wallet, flips through pictures* “Look at this pic of me and Jose Urquidy.” Talking to the picture, “No, ur-a-cutie.” Yeah, good stuff, my dude, but upside your head with upside when the 5th starter gets skipped. Not saying I don’t currently own some of these guys, but 4th and 5th starters might be waiver wire fodder in all leagues by week two, even deep ones. The teams winning their roto leagues this year will have starters who go every fifth day without fail, and for 5+ innings.

In summation: Streamonator is going to be my very special friend this year, as I stream as many guys as possible, and try to secure every two-start starter. Two-start starters this year are going to be as freeing as sweatpants with no Underoos. In a Saves+Holds league? Pretty much streaming all relievers to make room for innings. Have to lose Edwin Diaz? Bummer! No, I’m not sad; I mean I’d just grab Aaron Bummer. In a straight Saves league? Will be harder to juggle out closers, but it might come down to owning one closer, hoping you finish in the middle of the pack with 15-20 saves, while streaming all other spots. Excited about Tyler Glasnow? Me too, but if he starts getting skipped, then sayonara, my young friend. It’s going to be frantic FAABs and waiver wire moves, and nothing like how it is the first month of fantasy baseball season when I try to preach patience. It’s going to be like getting thrust into August when everyone is droppable, and you need to just find the best stats vs. the sexiest name.

 
  1. galica says:
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    Grey!!!!

    Awesome K report.

    a. Pretty obvious but many thanks for reinforcing the ideas herein. 1-2-3 starters, K/9 hope no one gets blown up, what could go wrong??!!

    b. Signed up McKay over Dustin May for K/9 and think he has a better chance for IP than Dustin May. Okay, right?

    c. MLB quote of the day for July 9, 2020

    ‘I like everything about the United States. A lot of organic food. I can go to restaurants and not be recognized.’

    Farid Yu Darvishsefat, aka Yu Darvish. Darvish leads all MLB pitchers for career K/9 (11.1). He finished 2nd in the voting for the CY in 2013 with 277 Ks (11.9 K/9) but only had a 13-9 record [Stupid Wins-Losses determining the CY winner!]. The homers have gone up a bit (last year he was at 1.7) but it’s Ks we’re talking about. His K/9 in Japan was only 8.9 but he had a lower ERA (1.99) and compiled a 93-38 (71%) W-L record in 6.5 seasons.

    Also, has pissed off his neighbors in Evanston, ILL as he wants to erect a 6′ fence around his property that would prevent people nearby from seeing the lake. We should get DT to take a poll of Evanston, ILL homeowners and ask the question that begs asking…Do you hate Yu?

    Cheers,
    Ante

    • Rebar says:
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      Sounds Like Darvish is assimilating in the proper fashion. Already pissing his neighbors off.

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Haha, good point, Rebar

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Thanks!

      A. Yup

      B I kinda like May

      C. Haha, that’s awesome — if nly we could still go to restaurants

      • galica says:
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        Grey!!

        Ouch on dropping May for McKay. Maybe it will work out.

        Sorry about not being able to go to restaurants. They opened everything up here, so far the numbers of infected hasn’t gone up too much (though we’re almost at the highest single day during the lockdown (91)…don’t laugh! 91 in a country population 4.5 million.). That really is a small number, right?

        Cheers,
        Ante

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Maybe Croatia has some antibodies in the water? Can you send me some Croatian water please?

          • galica says:
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            Grey!!

            Ga!!! Croatia didn’t see a lot of air traffic especially in the months and days leading up to March 16. Then March 16 happened and no one could go anywhere (even I was unable to go to my bedroom I share with my wife during the corona lockdown! except when going to sleep) and anyone arriving at the Croatian border had to either a. go back where they came from (what a boost for the tourism industry) or b. remain in Croatia but go get lockdowned somewhere and not with their favorite prostitute but alone. Not good. Simba and I were good. We had our 4 walks daily, all was good.

            Not sure if they are lying to us on the stats or not but what I see as a casual observation is that the virus is less prevalent in the coastal areas where the sea breeze mixes with the salt water and hot temperatures. Could be a possible solution.

            Cheers,
            Ante

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Sounds like a…saline solution!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I’d guess DT prolly delivered catering to Yu’s house at some point

  2. Zeus says:
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    I am pushing for switching from weekly to bi curious lineup changes. I plan on having a full bench of starters and long reliever types to get those wins and k’s

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Think ya gotta

  3. Leon says:
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    So what would be the king strategy in weekly leagues.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Ton of SPs, hopefully more two-start starters than others

  4. Cram It says:
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    I’m just realizing this, but 60 games in basically 60 days. So ostensibly no off days? Or are double-headers sprinkled in so they get off days? Though that wouldn’t really seem to help.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Think it’s 60 games in 66 days, and no doubleheaders, only if needed for makeup games

    • William Hung says:
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      I thought the 60 games were over the span of 66 days? So 3 off days per month, or 6 weeks out of the 8 week season teams should get an off day, right?

      • William Hung says:
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        @Grey – jinx

        OMG – rain delays… LOL that’ll be a shitshow… get ready to play at 3am!!!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          They don’t have time for some of the flights to get to next game and they need to do testing…It’s gonna be a mess

          • Cram It says:
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            It totally will. I’d still bet money that the season either doesn’t start, or if it does, they won’t finish.

  5. RDeBehnke says:
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    NL only with Yellch Hiura Escobar Newman Grisham DeJong Senzel Calhoun O’Neill Longoria Hosmer Vogt Hedges. Every category ok (I think )
    Opportunity to add Roman Quinn. K Cron or Isan Diaz at utility

    Who should I add ? Who should I forget?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I like Cron and Isan…I’d go Diaz — Vogt’s whatever

    • NUX says:
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      You should keep a close eye on the Phildos OFs. If Roman Quinn gets any run at all, he could be a game changer in a 60 game sprint. Still would take Cron or Diaz over him right now. Obvi Roman is always hurt, but just saying that you raise a good point in asking about him.

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Anyone could get PT, but Quinn doesn’t seem close to picture

        • NUX says:
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          You sure? I thought he and Hasely were battling for CF in March. Hasely likely had the edge. And Kingery could play out there too. But just saying that if he gets any run, in a weird year… the dood will light up the basepaths. If they play him, he should have the green light. And SBs are going to be a big deal for roto I think. Same reason that Dyson should be rostered in a 12 team in my opinon.

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            Yeah, it’s fair…All guys on the table, obviously

          • Cram It says:
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            I took Quinn in NFBC…I wasn’t convinced Haseley was being handed the CF job. I think Quinn should at least see 4th OF run.

        • NUX says:
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          I think he is favored over Nick Williams at this point. Cutch coming off an injury. The DH slot (prob Bruce for the most part). He has a chance Grey! Don’t ruin this for me.

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            Haha, fair enough!

            • NUX says:
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              Should note that this is entirely a call by The Man, The Itch, The Legend. So zero credit to me if this works out at all. Itch has him way up in his OF ranks

              • Grey

                Grey says:
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                You’re indirectly passing blame to Itch too, aren’t you?

  6. Big Ticket says:
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    Thanks Grey! Love your emphasis on volume – seems 100% correct. In light of that, a couple of questions …

    A. I saw Bauer and Reds talking about him going on 4 days of rest all season. If it happens, that could obviously be a big K boost, scary on ratios. Have you heard of anyone else planning to with the 4 day rest plan?

    B. Do you see potential value in contract year guys? In such a short season, it seems like many SP’s could go closer to a max effort approach. May not be sustainable, but I wonder if there’s value here. If you agree, anyone you’d target?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Thanks!

      A. I haven’t heard this of anyone else, but I did hear about Bauer, yeah

      B. Not at all

  7. jdred5 says:
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    I would love some advice on league settings from anyone willing to share! We are running our weekly roto league as a daily league this year. We are using $100 FAAB with daily adds/drops and no $0 bids. Hopefully this will allow flexibility without letting people rotate their rosters like crazy. My question is, what sort of restrictions should we put on pitching? Minimum/Maximum number of starts? Innings? Basically, we don’t want someone to be able to just stream all their pitching and win Wins and Ks, or ignore starters entirely. Please help!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I’d put minimum requirements on pitching and no max — 20 IP per week is a fair minimum — if you wanted to put a max, I’d put it around 60-80 max

    • Cram It says:
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      I would just adjust the innings. They’re playing 37% of a full season, so like 37% of the max IP you had in place for a full season maybe.

      • NUX says:
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        Was about to comment the same thing as Cram. But then realized, since its a weekly league in a typical year, it sounds like they have no min/max to multiply by .37

        In my 2 dynasty roto leagues with daily adds, the Min/Max is 1100/1900 so we are prob going 400/700 for 2020 season.

        In a roto daily redraft, commish just changes the Max to 555 IP with no Minimum

        • Cram It says:
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          Oh, I read that as he is changing it from weekly to daily.

      • NUX says:
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        Oh and for a GS limit league I’m in we settled on 75 Games started by a pitcher. Usually its 200.

  8. Have a weakness for the K9-beasts, kinda like a blonde with big ones. Montas, Paddy, Luzardo, Lamet, Urias and Pearson have all got my attention. They have something special, all poised to take the next step. Monitoring Heaney and McCullers as well.
    Thinkin as long as we don’t have a huge increase in positive tests, this 60 game sprint is happening. Thanks for all your help Grey, sure gonna need it.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I love me some K/9 beasts but 2 IP a week with a good K/9 isn’t gonna be it this year…But there will be some combination of them all

  9. waffles says:
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    are you giving a big bump to guys who have already tested positive for covid (and in theory will be ready for opening day) such as Gallo, Freeman, Blackmon? the thought being that they wouldn’t test positive again during the season, when a 14 day hiatus crushes such a large portion of the schedule?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Nah, I’m bumping guys based on positive tests — guys don’t necessarily need to be out 14 days, from what I understand — players just need to test negative twice after a positive test

      • waffles says:
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        do you think we’re past the wave of players sitting out? like why would these guys even show up to camp if they have concerns about playing this year

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I think we’ve seen the largest set of positive tests, yeah

  10. Paying attention to league settings may be more important than ever this season. RCLs will be stream stream stream. My D&H where I have great relievers will be punt Ks and look after my ratios and the Marmol strategy where there are no IP limits. This may be a shortened season and probably a little farcical, but it may also be a blast.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Yeah, agreed…I’m looking forward to it, even if it will be over in a blink

  11. primetime says:
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    Grey, so our league been trying to do some rule changes for this upcoming season. One is there won’t be a draft next season, we will play with this same roster. Rosters will lock by end of the season.

    We have two IL spots already. We said we will have 4 Covid IL spots, for Covid players.

    Should I be grabbing guys like Severino, Taillon, German now and IL them for next season? They would all require a waiver pick up next season any way or I am cheating lol?

    You think of anyone else that is hurt this season that would be good next season?

    I do own
    Nola
    Glasnow
    Bieber
    Odorizzi
    Maeda
    Urias
    Canning
    Gore M
    Heaney

    • Hope you don’t mind me commenting on your post. You are certainly not cheating. Depends on whether you want to win this year as you’re probably going to need those IL spots. Personally I would wait until I drop out of contention before making that move.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Agree with mcneill, it’s not cheating…You’re clogging up your IL spot with Severino (or someone) and anyone else can too — would I? That’s another question, prolly not — German isn’t IL, btw, he’s suspended

  12. Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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    Hey Grey – operating under the assumption that we won’t finish this 60-game sprint . . . in a keep 7 forever 12 teamer, would you trade your $50 Yelich ($53 next year) and $16 Bieber ($19 next year) for an $11 Soto ($14 next year)?

    FWIW, my other keepers would be something like (2021 values):
    Acuna (32) Story (19), Eloy (10), [Soto/Bieber based on the trade], Giolito (7), Pearson (5), and one of Chapman (10), Olson (23)or Julio Rodriguez (3)

    Thanks!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Oh, I think we will

      I’d want Soto tho

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      If your not keeping Yelich next year, anyway, certainly I would do the trade, I’d rather have Soto than Bieber.

      • Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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        Thanks, both of you! $53 for Yelich in this league is roughly what his market price would be, give or take $5 at most.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, and Soto is about $40 under

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            *Assuming based on Yelich info

  13. Tbone says:
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    Lindor/Altuve for G Torres, A. Meadows, and Paddack

    I have Tatis at SS and could move Lindor to strengthen other areas of my dynasty team. What do you think?

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