Clearly, the Razzball Vulcan Mind Meld is complete: just as the Mustached One put up a post addressing rookies, Dr. Easy and I had begun to wonder how the current crop is actually doing. We combed through the Razzball Season-to-Date Player Rater (STD PR) to see who’s living up to their hype. Who’s floundering in the face of big-league hitting or pitching? Who’s doing better than you think they are? Who’s doing worse? Why did basically no one draft Aaron Judge in the Razzball Commenter Leagues? We need answers! To get them, once more unto the Player Rater breach we go, my friends!
First we’re going to look at rookies who were drafted in the pre-season and see how they did. The hypothesis: is it a good idea to draft rookies? We’re going to consider people with an ADP of over 250 as having gone basically undrafted; over 250 means that some people drafted them, but most people ignored them (300 players are drafted in a 12-team league, such as the Razzball Commenter Leagues [RCLs]). Yes, that includes Aaron Judge, who had an ADP of 265…
A programming note: STD PR rankings shown are all players (hitters and pitchers combined). For this first part of our survey, we’ve sorted by $ on the STD PR.
- Yulieski Gurriel: ADP 236.35. Preseason ranking 259. Currently ranked 125th on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: 10.7.
- Yoan Moncada: ADP 248. Preseason ranking 387. Currently ranked 1120th on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: -27.1 (has not played full season).
- Dansby Swanson: 183 ADP. Preseason ranking 249. Currently ranked 689th on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: -14.2 (has not played full season).
- Andrew Benintendi: 95 ADP. Preseason ranking 130. Currently ranked 49th on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: 20.1.
- Mitch Haniger: 254 ADP. Preseason ranking 396. Currently ranked 553rd on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: -11.1 (has not played full season).
- Manuel Margot: 228 ADP. Preseason ranking 363. Currently ranked 309th on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: -1.5.
- Hunter Renfroe: 239 ADP. Preseason ranking 269. Currently ranked 291st on the STD PR. Current $ value on the STD PR: -0.5.
The conclusions are:
- No rookie pitchers were drafted (the highest was Jharel Cotton with an ADP of 255).
- Out of the 7 rookies who were drafted, only 4 have stuck around all season. Of those 4, only 2 (Gurriel and Benintendi) have provided value.
Next: Who are the undrafted rookies who have provided positive value over the whole season? I.e., these are the rookies you should have drafted, but didn’t! Again, we’ve sorted by $ on the STD PR.
- Matt Davidson: $ value of 0.1. (But he has no positional flexibility. Don’t beat yourself up for not drafting him.)
- Ben Gamel: $ value of 1.4.
- Josh Bell: $ value of 9.5.
- Trey Mancini: $ value of 10.9.
- Cody Bellinger: $ value of 30.4.
- Aaron Judge: $ value of 37.1. (These last 2, though? Go ahead and beat yourself up.)
- Jacob Faria: $ value of 1.5.
- Parker Bridwell: $ value of 1.8.
- Dinelson Lamet: $ value of 2.6.
- Antonio Senzatela: $ value of 2.9.
- Kyle Freeland: $ value of 4.1.
- German Marquez: $ value of 4.7.
- Jordan Montgomery: $ value of 5.1.
The conclusions are:
- Out of these 13 rookies, 7 were part of the opening day roster (Davidson, Bell, Mancini, Judge, Senzatela, Freeland, and Montgomery). 7 guys you could have drafted, but didn’t.
- The moral of the story: draft a lot of rookie Colorado pitchers…?! A sure recipe for success!
Finally, we’ll look at hitters who haven’t been around the full year (we decided to focus on hitters as this column is way too long as it is… We might worry about pitchers in a future column, if we find something interesting to say about them). For these rookies, there are 4 possible outcomes:
- You jumped on them (50% ownership and higher in RCLs) and they have been good.
- You didn’t jump on them (their RCL ownership is 50% and lower) and they have been good.
- You jumped on them and they have not been good.
- You didn’t jump on them and they have not been good.
Obviously, the last point is not interesting, so let’s focus on the first 3. We looked at rookies with 40 or more at-bats, and sorted by $/G (it’s better to use $/G for players who have missed time during the season, rather than $). AROOGA! AROOGA! Small Sample Size warnings in play for all numbers and observations to follow!
Category 1: You jumped on them (their RCL ownership is 50% and higher) and they have been good.
- People who are highly owned, good, you can’t get them, just put them on your Yearn List for next season: Cody Bellinger: $/G: 31.2. 100% owned. Paul DeJong: $/G: 17. 99% owned. Rafael Devers: $/G: 35.8, 95% owned.
- Amed Rosario: $/G: 9; 64% owned. He has pedigree. After finally getting the call-up from the Mets, he’s been playing up to the hype — but small sample size alert: he hasn’t had time to disappoint yet.
- Bradley Zimmer: $/G: 12.3. 66% owned. His value comes from steals — he’s on track for 28 steals prorated over the season. SAGNOF! He’s also Cleveland’s no. 2 hitter, so he could get you runs, too… provided he gets on base, because he hasn’t had a hit in August.
- Ian Happ: $/G: 13.1. 61% owned. When he plays, he’s good. The 61% ownership could be explained by the fact that he doesn’t play every day — consider him for DFS or a batty call.
Category 2: You didn’t jump on them (their RCL ownership is 50% and lower) and they have been good.
- Mitch Haniger: $/G: 1.8. 32% owned. He was put on the DL, just came back, just hit a home run, go get him before he hits another one. By the by, Jackie Bradley Junior, 86% owned? He has a $/G value of 0.4.
- Jesse Winker: $/G: 4.9; 4% owned. Worth cyclopsing.
- Chad Pinder: $/G: 6.5, 4% owned. We talked about him last week.
- Jesus Aguilar: $/G 7; 1% owned. We also talked about him last week as a possible DFS player or batty call.
- Nick Williams: $/G 7.1; 58% owned. He has a .293 average, 5 home runs in 38 games and plays every day. Worth a look!
- Nick Delmonico: $/G: 8.6; 0% owned. In 13 games, he’s only gone hitless once. Definitely worth cyclopsing.
- Brian Goodwin: $/G: 8.8. 43% owned. He’s just gone on the DL, but worth a stash. Earlier there was a bit of a roster crunch for him, but now with Harper out, there may be more breathing room — it just depends who comes back first. Knee versus groin race!
- Jose Martinez: $/G: 13.4, 9% owned. He’s a little Aguilar-like: 1B, doesn’t play every day, but good against lefties.
- Matt Olson: $/G: 15; 0% owned. Our find of the day! He has 8 home runs in 79 at-bats. That’s Aaron Judge-esque. Is he a hot schmotato? Maybe. But for now, why not?
- Pat Valaika: $/G: 23.6; 1% owned. Play him at home in Colorado when he’s in the lineup — great batty call and for DFS.
Category 3: You jumped on them (their RCL ownership is 50% and higher) and they have not been good (yet?).
- Ozzie Albies: $/G: -4.9. Again, this is a very small sample size: he hasn’t had time to do much yet, so we’re not saying dump him or pick him up, but note that he has been hitless the last 3 games — in Colorado…
- Yoan Moncada: $/G: -14.4; 88% owned. He hasn’t been good so far, but from his pedigree, he should be better. That said, there isn’t long to go in the season. Is he going to break out? We’re honestly not sure.
Category 4: You didn’t jump on them and they have not been good.