Archive for Stolen Bases

The Change: 2016’s Top 20 Fantasy Players

We’ve done a good thing for those of you that still care about fantasy baseball right now. The Auction Calculator now has 2016 stats as an option so that you can look backwards at what has just happened. That’s going to be part of our effort, on the way to the end of the year, to look at last year to learn more for next year.

This is an important part of fantasy that usually gets ignored. Not only does the league itself change year to year, so retrospection is important in that way, but we can learn things about fantasy itself that will improve our ability to value players going forward.

The fourth-best player in the game last year, by this list, has already inspired a possible change to the auction calculator going forward. Let’s see what else it jars loose.

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The Change: A Guide to Peaceful, Easy Streaming

We did a little work on streaming last week, in an effort to find you some stolen bases. But stolen bases are just one of the few things we’re all trying to cobble together here in the final month. You might be in a head-to-head league, looking to add one counting stat or another in your playoffs, or in a roto league where you’re furiously fighting for a category. Either way, you need power, speed, relief stats or spot starts, and either way, the context is key.

This is the guide for those that find themselves in that situation but don’t have the time to get granular. All you have to do is look at the team your potential player is facing, and you’ll know enough to make a decent move. Hopefully it won’t let you down — you’re already standing on the ground.

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The Change: Scrounging for Steals (Updated)

[Sorry! I read the tables wrong! I’ve updated this piece to be more… correct. I read the tables wrong the first time. Thanks for your patience.]

When it comes to the stolen base, it’s not immediately obvious who’s to blame for one.

Is it the pitcher, with his slow time to home base? That would make sense for Noah Syndergaard, who may be as bad at holding on runners as he is at pitching well.

Is it the catcher, who has had his pop times and throwing arm measured throughout his time in the game? We make a big deal about big arms like the one Gary Sanchez used to throw 88 miles per hour and nab Julio Borbon this week.

Could it be all on the baserunner? Billy Hamilton has stolen bases against the best batteries, and was recorded running 22 miles per hour this week.

And should we ignore the fielder? Some middle infielders are adept at the swipe tag, others whiff on the runner or let the ball bounce by.

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Streaming for Stolen Bases by Catcher

This week I am doing Part 2 of my ground-breaking, innovative, revolutionary, completely original piece from two weeks ago that no one has ever thought of before, but before I do I want to mention that it was pointed out to me that our very own Alex Chamberlain did some fantastic articles covering the exact same premise for DFS last season: Read the rest of this entry »


Streaming for Stolen Bases by Pitcher

Have you ever had an idea that seemed crazy? Or maybe tried something with no real clue how it would pan out? Well, this is one of those times. Read the rest of this entry »


Thomas Jefferson Jankowski, The Sequel

Our quest for stolen bases now takes us to San Diego, where there may be some reason to tarry. New manager Andy Green seems a bit more willing to steal bases than his several predecessors last season were. This year, the Padres are attempting to steal 7.32% of the time they have a Stolen Base Opportunity. That’s 5th in MLB; the average is about 5.5%. In 2015, their SBA/SBO percentage was a below-average 5.3%.

Of course, just because you try to steal a base doesn’t mean you steal it. Last year, the Padres stole 74% of the bases they tried to steal. This year, it’s only 66%. But they try so much more often that their ratio of Stolen Bases to Stolen Base Opportunities is higher this season (4.80 vs. 3.92). Read the rest of this entry »


Thomas Jefferson Jankowski

It’s a strange season for stolen bases so far, is it not? It seemed to us, just impressionistically, that there have been a lot more caught-stealings this year than last, and so it proves statistically. You don’t have to be Bill James to notice that last year’s success rate for stolen bases was 70% and this year’s is 68%–the lowest, if it persists for a full season, since 1999.

Other numbers paint the picture even more clearly. Teams are attempting to steal bases a tiny (and thus insignificant) bit more than last year—5.6 attempts per Stolen Base Opportunity in 2016, 5.43 in 2015. And the total number of stolen bases this season is exactly what you’d have expected, given last year’s numbers. But there have been way more caught-stealings—roughly one per day more, across all of MLB, which seems like a lot. Read the rest of this entry »


25 NL Stolen Base Sleepers

Yesterday was busy with baseball news including a rush to the wire for Matt Harv…I mean Cody Anderson. Speaking of players who look like other players, remember when Charlie Morton started aping Roy Halladay? That sure was fun.

I’ve been telling people all spring that the entire point of acquiring Drew Storen is so that Roberto Osuna doesn’t get used to closing. He reportedly already likes life in relief more than starting. The Jays have named Osuna as the closer which may permanently shut the door on starting. See Jonathan Papelbon, Aroldis Chapman, etc.

Other things happened too – Jose Reyes is no longer riding a runaway train to deportation. Fear not Trevor Story owners. I hear the Rockies will trade or cut Reyes. The Roto Riteup has more details on everything. It’s time for me to switch gears back to stolen bases. Yesterday was for the AL sleepers so guess what’s up today (oh, you read the headline).

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18 AL Stolen Base Sleepers

Sleeper week continues. Monday and Tuesday were dedicated to deep sleepers. Today and tomorrow we’ll look into stolen base threats. Most of these guys are waiver wire fodder in standard leagues. You should be able to stream them. Certain notably steals threats like Jose Altuve and Billy Burns were excluded because they aren’t sleepers in any sense of the word.

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So, Kevin Pillar is Probably Leading Off for the Blue Jays

As part of my warm-up for my long run each weekend, I make sure to get a fire tweet off before hitting the road. It’s a good way to have the brain let the body know that it’s time to get that money.

To wit:

That, in response to this:

OK, so it wasn’t a fire tweet. We all have off days. But the unofficial-official determination that Kevin Pillar will bat lead off for the Toronto Blue Jays is a little bit disappointing, and it stands to have an impact not just on his own value but the value of those around him in the lineup.
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