Archive for Keeper Strategy

The Change: Identifying Potential Young Surgers

Earlier today, we published my conversation with Joey Votto about aging, and within the post is a graph that didn’t necessarily fit the narrative but should contain an interesting tidbit for we fantasy players.

Take a look at this graph again, except instead of looking towards the end of the graph where the old guys are hanging out, look at the beginning of the graph. Under 25, it looks like hitters with pull percentages under 45% have a little more growth left in them than their pull-heavy counterparts.

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Getting Aggressive (or not) in the H2H Post-Season

Flags fly forever, or so they say. And yet…not really. I mean, they kind of do, but how many Giants fans out there are like, “Eh, we had our run, good on the Dodgers!” Right.

So in fantasy, particularly keeper or dynasty leagues, you have to make a tough call when that title is in reach – how do you maximize your chances at that eternal flag without ensuring a collapse the next year? I am struggling with a situation right now that puts that balance to the test.

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My Home League: Keeper Questions

As mentioned before in these digital pages, my home league is a mixed league keeper format with 12 teams. The 29-man rosters + 10 prospect list each makes transforms what would normally be a pretty shallow league into one where it’s nearly as deep as Ottoneu. With a 5 keeper maximum, the ability to trade draft picks and built-in keeper inflation, there are a lot of wrinkles to consider when building, or for me, more accurately rebuilding. As a refresher, it’s a 6×6 league with total bases and holds as the extra categories, and on-base percentage replacing batting average. For reference, my prospect list can be found here.

A quick run down of my season goes as following:

Step 1. Blow the draft (Passing on Josh Donaldson for Stephen Strasburg hasn’t exactly worked out)
Step 2. Burn a lot of picks next year attempting to build a roster
Step 3. Probably finish no higher than fourth
Step 4. Try not cry
Step 5. Cry a lot
Step 6. Look to see what I can do in 2016 Read the rest of this entry »

The Change: Time to Punt? Time to Sell?

Dynasty leagues are great. In a time of year where standard leagues are losing interested members by the bushel, dynasty leagues have one last big question that keeps everyone at the table. Is it time to sell? Do I look to the future right now, or do I buy? What should the buying look like?

These things are hard to prove with numbers, but maybe some recent experience, and some help from our readers, can flush these out better for those of staring at that very decision. It’s really a look at two essential questions that face us when we’re not in the top three slots in our league, in the end.

For those of you not in dynasty leagues, the first part will still be useful — we’ll look at what sort of numbers you’ll need to show in your rate categories if you want to undo the terrible that you have done so far. If you can’t push that boulder, maybe you should re-focus on other parts of your standings.

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Leftover Auction Cash: Maybe Not a Bad Thing

I participated in two drafts this past weekend. Both were 10-team auctions, one a season-long rotisserie keeper league (“LOWV,” henceforth), the other a head-to-head points redraft league (“Sandlot”). They are just home leagues, not renowned leagues such as Tout Wars or LABR or anything like that, but hey! Breaking down any draft can make for good insight, and if it helps just one person clarify his or her strategy, perhaps it did some good.

“So, Alex, how did you in your drafts?” Great, thanks for asking! I love both my teams. Love them. Except I made the same mistake in each draft: I left some money on the table. Like, $20 in one instance. It became a running gag: “Don’t question Alex — it’s all part of his master plan!” But here’s the catch: I arguably have the best team, per the projections, even after managing my budget so poorly.

So where did my strategy go wrong? Honestly, I’m not sure it did. (Or maybe I’m just trying to make myself feel better.)
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Dealing With the Unexpected in Drafts or Auctions

Last Sunday, the FanGraphs Ottoneu League #2 did our auction. Chad Young, Brad Johnson and Scott Spratt have each given their thoughts on it. It was a unique auction (most are in some way) and by making a few early adjustments I was able to come away from it better than I expected.

To begin with, I hate to start any fantasy season in complete rebuild mode. I want to have a chance to win if everything goes right. Before last season was half way over I had about zero chance of winning so then I started a rebuild. I had the most free agent dollars, I picked up some $1 players (Harrison, Petit, Boxburger, House) and waited for a team to drop a high dollar player to free up some cash. The plan worked great by getting Joey Votto and Brian McCann. Also, I like prospects, even if they have limited upside, near the majors and picked up players like Matt Wisler, Carlos Rodon and Ty Kelly.

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Could the Strike Zone Change?

We’re living through an era where pitching is king. Nobody disputes it. A number of reasons have been cited. Velocities are increasing due to better training. Teams and players better understand the relationship between strikeouts, walks, and success.
One cause may stand above them all, the strike zone has grown in recent seasons. The zone has increased by 40 square inches in the last five years, according to Jon Roegele. The growth is in one direction, down. As this becomes common knowledge, the league may discover a simple solution to inject more offense into the game – shrink the strike zone. Read the rest of this entry »

Variance in Keeper Strategies in ottoneu

With the cut deadline behind us, now is the time to start prepping for your auctions. One thing to do is identify your targets, but another is to suss out the competition. Who has cash to spend? How much? Who is building a new roster and who is filling just a couple holes?

I started by taking a broad look at my three leagues to see how much cash was kept and I was intrigued to see how different the three auctions are set to play out.

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Fantasy Keeper Decisions: Part Two

I originally planned to write about something different today, but 125 comments have compelled me to revisit yesterday’s topic. I intentionally left out a lot of details, league history, and my own thoughts so you could work on attacking the problem with as little framing as possible.

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Handling Fantasy Baseball Keeper Decisions

It’s time to start talking about keepers. We’ve reached the point in the offseason when fantasy owners have to consider who they plan to keep and cut. While much of the fantasy baseball industry can be fit into neat bundles – for example, the majority of leagues cater to 5×5 roto or H2H – keeper rules are non-standardized. Each league has its own custom assortment of rules, costs, and considerations. With that in mind, it’s easier to teach how to handle keeper decisions than it is to pen a one-size-fits-all guide.

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