One of the great things about points leagues is that they are very straightforward. You don’t have to balance out a guy with a poor average who hits bombs or steals bases. All we need are the guys at each position that score the most points. “Wow, that’s so smart, why didn’t I think of that earlier?” Yes, I can hear the groans now. Obviously, you know that the team with more points wins. What I’m getting at is that at the end of the day we have a nice clean number to quantify fantasy performance. So what’s my point you ask? Well, it also highlights the differences between points leagues and categories. So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at how the player rater compares to the current points standings.
David Peralta sees a major jump in points as he’s in the top 20 compared to just cracking the top 100 in categories. So what makes him so much better in points leagues? Let’s take a look at the numbers and see what they tell us. On the season he’s batting .267 with 3 bombs, 18 runs, 27 RBIs, and 1 stolen base. Those are solid numbers but not league winning and he’s not winning you any one category. In fact, he is only putting up top 10 numbers in RBIs. That makes him a good player to have on your roster but not a star. That is reflected in his top 100 rating. However, in points leagues, he’s been one of the best outfield options. The reason for this is that he provides beyond the standard five categories. Of his 35 hits, 15 have gone for extra bases. Obviously, the 3 bombs play in any format but he also has 7 doubles and 5 triples. Combine that with his ability to take a walk, and that accounts for the extra points. He’s not the flashiest guy to have on your roster but you won’t regret it. That also makes him a potential trade target if the manager who has in your league doesn’t believe in his abilities.
Right off the bat, we have a difference with Gerrit Cole as the number one points scorer on the season. Points leagues favor pitchers like Cole who get deep into games and rack up strikeouts. He checks in at five on the player rater but his value is significantly behind that of Ronald Acuna who is the top hitter in points but finds himself looking up at ten pitchers.
Shohei Ohtani is number two due to his pitching and hitting abilities. He’s basically a cheat code in leagues that keep him as one player, essentially giving you an extra roster spot.
J.D. Martinez is more or less in the same spot both on the player rater and in points leagues if you take out the top 10 pitchers.
Bo Bichette is number 3 on the player rater but he isn’t even the top shortstop in points. That honor belongs to Xander Bogaerts (number 6 on the player rater). Bichette has still been a good points hitter but not amazing. I expect him to improve as the season progresses.
Byron Buxton is falling from number 3 to the 30s in points. He would likely be higher in the standings had his season been derailed yet again by injury. I hope he can get healthy and back on the field because he’s so fun to watch.
Jose Ramirez is right behind Buxton on the rater but far ahead in points. Ok it’s not that far and Buxton has been on the shelf but Ramirez has still been great in all formats.
Whit Merrifield is pretty good at baseball no matter what league you’re in.
Nick Castellanos is the Greek God of Hard Contact and that plays anywhere.
John Means is a bit of a surprise at number three (26 on the player rater). The no-hitter certainly boosts his value but he’s been dealing all season. He is a great example of why I like to look for pitching value later in drafts.
Yuli Gurriel is fourth among hitters in the points standing but finds himself all the way down at 18 on the rater.
Kyle Tucker moves up several spots in points to the top 40. He’s been heating up and surging up the rankings.
Carlos Santana shoots up from 85 to the top 30. This is likely due to his ability to work the count and take a walk, with 29 on the season. That’s good for second in the league.
Miguel Rojas has become a points league hero and he’s still available in roughly half of leagues. Go get him now to bolster your middle infield. He has the speed and power to rack up double and that’s sweet music for points.
So what does any of this actually mean or did I just ramble on for a while about nothing? What it tells us is that pitchers score more points than hitters, but we already knew that. It also tells us that a player rater is a useful tool for evaluating players but it doesn’t tell the whole story for points leagues. After all a five-category hitter is still scoring points. However, points leagues value total bases so walks, doubles, and triples can really boost a guy’s value. Total bases are how you win and it doesn’t matter how you get there.
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