As quickly as the baseball season was approaching it came to a screeching halt even faster. With no baseball on the docket for seemingly a few months at minimum, Grey and myself dug into our Tout Wars auction results. We talk high level strategy in each format and how we executed our pre-draft game plans. It’s not the show you deserve but it’s the show you need! Join us for the latest episode of the Razzball podcast. Oh BTW, wash your hands!

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Grey comes on the podcast to blame B_Don for everything coronavirus related. Grey and Donkey Teeth are going a little stir crazy while B_Don was partying in Vegas. I think Grey was just jealous.

The trio then move on to how they are adjusting for ongoing and future drafts during this unknown period.  Grey discusses how he’s adjusted his projections initially and the randomness that may ensue in a shortened season. We each offer up our thoughts on how a shortened season may adjust our approach at pitching.

We finally get to discuss Grey’s Tout Wars NL auction and Grey auction value shames us poor amateurs. We discuss Grey’s big purchases of Bellinger and Soto, and how that affected his auction strategy. Grey identified the types of players he needed, and we ask him about some of his buys.

Before everyone retreats to their quarantined sections of Razzball HQ (aka Grey’s basement), we discuss Grey’s pitching and how he thinks he can make his value staff work. Rather than watching The Office for the 53rd time under quarantine, you might as well listen to a little baseball talk. It’s not like I watched a 2+ minute marble race yesterday or anything.


You can check out all of the auction results here. If you’d rather read Grey’s article about his NL Tout team, you can read his article here.

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On March 6th, I took part in the Tout Wars Mixed Draft – a 15-team snake draft that is unique amongst expert leagues in that it is a 5×5 OBP league. Otherwise, pretty standard. Weekly transactions. 2 catchers. $1000 FAAB. This is the 5th year for the mixed draft (the AL/NL-only ones have been around longer) and my 4th year participating in it.

Last Year Recap (here was my post-draft recap and final standings)
FINALLY. After two straight close 2nd place finishes to Adam Ronis, I won this league (Even better, it was a Razzball Tout sweep as Grey won Tout Wars NL).

As the standings below suggest, I had a charmed season. Everything broke right for me. I think I drafted/managed a little bit better than the previous 2 years but no doubt I was probably the luckiest team in the league as well. Shout out to pal Scott White from (1st year in league) and the always tough Ray Murphy of BaseballHQ who did great jobs but, unlike me, did not sell their soul to the fantasy gods.

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On Tuesday March 7th, I took part for the 3rd straight year in the 15-team Tout Wars Mixed Draft. Fueled by good fortune (and perhaps the 5×5 OBP format), I have fielded championship-level teams in both years only to finish in 2nd place to Adam Ronis of Scout & SiriusXM. It is like I am the Patriots but, unfortunately, he is being coached by Tom Coughlin.

I picked 1st last year and had an insane Trout/Scherzer/Sale start to my draft when the room drafted an unfathomable 28 hitters in the first 29 picks. The rest of the draft turned out fairly well and my in-season pickups were strong. Looking back, not coming out of the draft with enough speed (damn you Magoo and Grey talking me into DeShields) or Saves (Boxberger/Storen was brutal, half-salvaged with a Colome handcuff) hurt me in the end.

One reward for top teams is that the previous year’s order is used for determining draft pick. With second choice, I just had to rank my two preferred spots. By reflex, I chose 1st than 2nd since I have found those are the two most valuable spots (followed by 3, 4, etc.). Once Ronis wisely chose 1st, I realized I should have spent a little more time thinking about it as there is not much consensus on a #2 pick in 5×5 OBP this year.

Here are the full results of the 2017 Tout Mixed League Draft. Below are my picks and my analysis:

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

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As many of you know, I was invited into the NL-Only Tout Wars live draft this past weekend that took place at the SiriusXM building in New York.  The draft started at 10 AM EST on Sunday.  I include EST because I roll like Rodney-O, Joe Cooley and Tupac on PST.  EST is for grandmothers named Ester who die in the middle of spelling their name.  I flew in the day before, which meant I would still be on Tupac time.  I tell you this because I knew it would be a struggle to get up and to the building by 10 AM, so I stayed at a hotel that was literally — yes, I’m literally using the word literally — a block away from Sirius.  I set my alarm clock on my iPhone — “Siri, could you wake me at 8:15 AM, I want to be a winner?”  “Googling Steak Me restaurants for 8:15 dinner.”  I told the hotel I needed a wake up call; I even set my in-room alarm clock.  I was prepared to wake up late even with all of these safeguards.  Well, I woke up on time.  Actually, early.  I did the three S’s and, at around 9:15 AM, with 45 minutes to spare, I ducked into a Starbucks right outside my hotel.  I only needed to walk about 500 feet.  I didn’t need 45 minutes for that even if I was lugging my suitcase.  After dillying and dallying for about 30 minutes in the ‘Bucks, I headed over to Sirius.  Well, that is, I got to about 100 feet away from the front door of my draft when I saw there was a half marathon running down the middle of the street that I needed to cross.  I asked the policeman, “Can I cross here?  I only need to go to that building that we are directly across from.”  “Sorry, pal, you need to go up ten blocks to the subway and cross underneath the street.”  DAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!  I threw my suitcase up in my arms and began to run ten blocks against a marathon and then ten blocks back.  Good times!  Anyway, here’s my Tout Wars recap, it’s a 12 team NL-Only, 4 OF, two catcher, one UTIL and one swingman league:

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So much of life comes down to perspective. There are super successful people that are filled with bitterness and anger while others scrape by and are happy. I constantly have to remind myself how lucky I am – great wife & kids, healthy, have money in bank, love where I live – to avoid getting sucked into the craphole of the daily grind.

It is easy for people that do not play fantasy sports to dismiss our joy or anger at our fantasy baseball teams by saying ‘it is just a game.’ You can reduce just about everything people get passionate about with ‘it is just _____’. But that isn’t productive. Reveling in your successes and dismissing your failures only means you ensure less success because you do not fully learn from your failures. And it takes a healthy perspective to isolate the ‘fault’ from the ‘bad luck’ in one’s failures.

I write all this because my first year in Tout Wars was an excrutiating test to keep perspective. Let’s see how good a job I can do….

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Everything black was white and white was black. Everything up was down and down was up. I was a Girl Scout and the only cookies I could sell were Rah-Rah Raisins and I couldn’t give away the Samoas. I was an Asian in NASCAR. I was a five-foot, six-and-a-half-inch white boy that could hoop. (Actually, that last one is true.) I zagged when I usually zigged! And it felt okay. I didn’t wake in a puddle of sweat like I was a puppet in the Land of Confusion video, wondering what I had done. I didn’t burn all my old draft manifestos like I was trying to escape Olivia Pope from finding me out. I just went at it a little different. This league is a 15-teamer, OBP league, so I used Rudy’s rankings. I still knew which players I liked and didn’t like, but I decided to lean on Rudy, which makes for an interesting draft when Rudy was using the same rankings. For unstints, when Matt Holliday sat at the top of my board for two rounds, I knew Rudy was going to draft him. When Ian Kennedy sat at the top of my board, I knew Rudy was going to Marilyn Monroe that Kennedy. Though, I also knew if I wanted a guy sitting at the top of my board, I needed to act before Rudy. Okay, you’re primed, let’s start coating your mind with knowledge. (BTW, Our Razzball leagues are signing up still. Go there and sign up now!) Anyway, here’s the 2015 Tout Wars draft and my thoughts:

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Tout Wars – one of the two most prestigious fantasy baseball expert leagues (along with LABR) – invited Razzball to participate in its inaugural 15-team mixed league online draft (they also have AL-only, NL-only, and 15-team mixed auctions). The 2013 Tout Wars mixed draft format is very similar to our mixed-league LABR expert league except for one […]

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