Kicking Rocks: Don’t Chase the Ace

For years I have preached about the immense depth at starting pitching.  You can find plenty of quality starters for cheap in your draft and, with the help of the waiver wire, can build a successful fantasy rotation without having to invest heavily in an ace or two.  With a nice complement of some quality relievers, you can go cheap on starters and, in turn, bulk up on better hitters.  In the end, your team dominates in the offensive categories, puts up a solid showing in almost all of the pitching categories, and leaves you at the top of your standings by season’s end.

But when a friend of mine  asked me to round out his 10 team 7×7 roto league, I thought that maybe this was a good time to see how the other half lives.  For years I’ve always stuck with the same plan, but now I wanted to see what it would be like to build a team with a “pitching first” mentality.  The goal was to draft 4 high quality starters within the first 12 rounds of my draft, use the other 8 picks on the best hitters available, and wait until the later rounds to build a relief corps.

Normally, I wouldn’t touch a starter until after the 5th round, but when my 3rd round pick came up, I grabbed Felix Hernandez, who was the best pitcher on the board.  Over the next nine rounds, I grabbed Justin Verlander (6th), Yovani Gallardo (10th) and Francisco Liriano (12th) and thought I was looking pretty good.  Based on pre-season projections, I was looking at great ratios, great strikeouts, and solid win potential.

Well, you all know how this is looking right now.  King Felix has been mediocre, Gallardo has been beaten up, and Liriano has been an outright disaster.  Ironically, Verlander who is king of the slow starts, has been my most reliable  and he’s still sporting a 3.41 ERA.  Not to mention, rounding out my starters was Madison Bumgarner, who has been a relative disappointment, and Ian Kennedy whose start last week really screwed over my ratios.

Throw in the fact that I went with closers late and found out the hard way why no one believed in John Axford or Jonathan Broxton.  The only pitching category I am competitive in right now is saves, and fixing myself in the others is going to take a bit of time.

But I’m not stupid, nor am I impatient.  I know that Hernandez, Gallardo and Verlander will bounce back.  Possibly even Liriano, if his last start is any indication.  Obviously they’ll hit the occasional bump in the road, but overall, they should still have strong years.  The problem, though, is a lack of offense and a very suspect bullpen.

By investing so heavily, and really, 4 out of 12 picks isn’t all that heavy to begin with, I sacrificed far more than I thought at the time.  While my pitching sits at or near the bottom in almost every category, my hitting is doing roughly the same.  When I took King Felix in the third round, other teams were grabbing the the likes of Matt Holliday, Prince Fielder, Mark Teixeira and Justin Upton.  By the time my 4th pick came about, the only real masher still on the board was Adam Dunn.  And when it was time for my Round 5 pick and my outfield was barren, the best available out there was Andrew McCutchen.  Not bad options to go with, but certainly not my ideal choices.

On it went.  With every pitcher I selected over the subsequent rounds I was left to fill in the offensive blanks with hopefuls, guys with upside, and potential breakouts.  With the exception of my first two picks overall, there was not a single offensive player on my roster with whom I was 100% comfortable and, to be honest, I absolutely hated my team.

And rightfully so.  As of today, the only offensive category in which I am competitive is RBI.  My team’s batting average and OBP blow, I’m getting nothing in stolen bases despite having McCutchen, Hanley Ramirez and Jacoby Ellsbury, and I’m barely in the middle of the pack in HR.  Offensively my team is….offensive.

Never again will I employ this strategy.  Never.  You lose far too much on offense and the pitching, for all intents and purposes, can be pretty unreliable.  Just look at some of the top names out there — Zack Greinke, Ubaldo Jimenez, Mat Latos?  Even Roy Halladay and Chris Carpenter have been smacked around for atleast one of their first four starts.  Again, sure they’ll be fine over the course of a full season, but look at what you’ve sacrificed in order to obtain their services.  Imagine the offense I could have put together had I drafted a rotation that consisted of Matt Cain, James Shields, Michael Pineda and Gio Gonzalez instead.  Not only would I be sitting at the top of the hitting categories, but my pitching would have been off to a much better start.

In real life, pitching wins championships.  In fantasy, it’s all about the offense.




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Howard Bender has been covering fantasy sports for over 10 years on a variety of websites. In addition to his work here, you can also find him at his site, RotobuzzGuy.com, Fantasy Alarm, RotoWire and Mock Draft Central. Follow him on Twitter at @rotobuzzguy or for more direct questions or comments, email him at rotobuzzguy@gmail.com


50 Responses to “Kicking Rocks: Don’t Chase the Ace”

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  1. billsweet says:

    Nooooo!!! Not drafting pitchers early has been the secret sauce to my fantasy success for years.

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  2. Matt K says:

    I’m in a keeper league, and I find it hard not to keep felix and ubaldo. I do try to make up for it and not draft a starting pitcher until late…. (although, i stupidly decided to grab vazquez in a late teens.. this year).
    grabbing harang off the waivers has been a huge find for me.

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  3. Ben says:

    Unless you’re in my league which counts wins and quality starts. Talk about lame.

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    • C.F. Hunter says:

      Picking up on this post, format is huge. My league is H2H, weekly lineups; there’s 10 slots for hitters, 8 for pitchers, 4 of which are SP. We count both W and QS. In this format, good starting pitching is huge.

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  4. JRoss says:

    Getting Josh Johnson near the seventh round was a steal.

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  5. Matt says:

    I grabbed 4 starters in my first 12 as well, nailed it with Jered Weaver, Josh Johnson, Jon Lester, and Matt Garza. Of course, I’m also last in my league in a number of offensive categories and last overall.

    However, I don’t think it’s due to the quality of the players I have so much as the statistically abnormal abysmal starts of Carl Crawford, Geovany Soto, Kelly Johnson, and Brett Gardner in addition to injuries to Evan Longoria and Adam Dunn. I think I can be in the middle of the pack offensively and lead most pitching categories by the end of the season.

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  6. Red Sox Talk says:

    Howard, it’s easy to regret moves so early this season, but I’m sure there are plenty of people regretting drafting Hanley Ramirez, Evan Longoria, Carl Crawford, Chase Utley or even Josh Hamilton too early as well. It’s just too early to worry about who you got, and you must look for ways to add hot players at the end of your roster until these guys come around. I’ve added Justin Masterson, Matt Harrison, and Chris Narveson to my teams off the waiver wire to help out. Offensively, I grabbed Alex Gordon, Jed Lowrie, and J.P. Arencibia.

    You’re right in that in most drafts the demand for offense is higher, so you don’t want to totally pass up hitters in favor of drafting a killer rotation. The key is knowing where others value players, and taking them at the right time. I base my drafts around ADPs and look for value in each round.

    Part of the issue is just valuing pitchers correctly. I didn’t have Verlander or Liriano in my top 20 pitchers, so I didn’t end up with either of them. I did, however have Lincecum ranked number one, got him in most of my leagues, and haven’t regretted it. I also managed to land Jered Weaver, Shaun Marcum and Jaime Garcia in almost every league. I’m happy I got them when I did.

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  7. Jason B says:

    ” Just look at some of the top names out there — Zack Greinke, Ubaldo Jimenez, Mat Latos?”

    “Imagine the offense I could have put together had I drafted a rotation that consisted of Matt Cain, James Shields, Michael Pineda and Gio Gonzalez instead.”

    Well…yeah. Selection bias, anyone? I can go back and redraft quite an awesome team now, too, with the benefit of hindsight. You can even play the same game with hitters:

    “Just look at some of the top names out there – Hanley Ramirez, Carl Crawford, Justin Morneau, Derek Jeter, Jay Bruce?”

    “Imagine the rotation you could have put together and bolstered with some late-round fliers like Berkman, Soriano, Polanco, Johnny Damon, Russ Martin.”

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    • Joe P. says:

      Yeah, except Gonzalez, Shields and to a lesser extent, Pineda, were all pitchers touted as worth selecting in later rounds. The same things weren’t being said of the bats you mentioned, for the most part.

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  8. Jeff says:

    I’m not saying it’s a good idea to draft pitchers first. But I did something I normally never do this year in my draft. Once all the top available shortstops were gone in the first round, it was my turn to come up with a pick. So I figured instead of drafting Adrian Gonzalez or Craw Daddy, I went to Roy Halladay. Maybe it sounds foolish, but Halladay is as close to a lock as you can get in fantasy from a pitcher. He rarely gets shelled, though he got hit by Brewers. And he’ll give you innings, wins, and strikeouts.

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  9. Richie says:

    This article reeks. How can you say your strategy didn’t work or completely sucks if it’s only 3 weeks into the season? If this article were written 3 months from now, then I would take it seriously.

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  10. Nilsilly says:

    You’ve had some tough luck for sure, but usually when you take this strategy you target less risky aces and make sure to load up on more proven closers early to dominate all 5 pitching categories. You really need to commit to it or it’ll backfire just like it did here. If you’d gone with a more proven stable of say, Halladay, Felix, Verlander, Oswalt, guys with more proven health and performance track records you would have been fine. Gallardo and Liriano are both extremely volatile pitchers with known warts (command/consistency, health). Broxton and Axford are also risky picks because of Broxton’s second half last season and Axford’s relative inexperience in the role. If you’d gone all-out on this base and then spent your batting picks on pure steals guys (McCutchen wasn’t a bad pick, but you’d want to follow that up with guys like Bourn, Ellsbury if he fell, Jose Tabata, etc) to dominate another cat. If you do it right you’ll bank up to 72 points (with 6 first places, assuming a 12 team league) and be at least middle of the pack in runs and avg, which would bump you up to 84 points and a likely spot on the podium. Or, if you’re playing h2h, you’ll play to win 6-4 every week and be the most frustrating champion ever. :-)

    Always nice to see someone try a new strategy but if you try again I’d research a bit deeper and really commit. Hope things turn around for you!

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    • Heather says:

      Exactly! I think a pitching-first strategy can work but you have to draft guys who aren’t such big question marks like Gallardo and Liriano. A stable of Felix, Verlander, Weaver/Haren, and Oswalt aren’t bad at all…

      The author takes a personal anecdote and extrapolates it to “why pitching first doesn’t work”.

      It can, but you have to know what you’re doing.

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  11. Nilsilly says:

    Matt – what size league do you play in where you were able to get all of those players on your team?!? A 4 teamer??

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  12. Shauntell says:

    I don’t really see the point this article is trying to make. Yes, the better strategy may be to draft pitchers in the later rounds, but 2 and a half weeks into the season is not the time to show us why drafting pitchers early is a bad idea.

    So what if Holladay was smacked around by the Brewers? Pujols had a bad stretch at the beginning of the season.

    Pitchers are known to not be as consistent as hitters, but every pitcher or hitter can have bad days, it means nothing.

    This article would have made much more sense at the end of the season, when it is apparent who lived up to his draft ranking or not.

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    • descender says:

      I disagree, waiting on pitching only gets you crap pitching.

      Especially if your league uses ERA and WHIP or other rate stats like K/BB.

      The detriment of late round pitchers to those categories is in most cases going to lose you a roto league. The only “out” of this plan is to literally run the table in offense.

      That’s a BAD plan.

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      • Nilsilly says:

        You don’t need to run the table at all. 96 points will win you most leagues easily, right? That’s 8 points per category. Say you draft offense first, lining yourself up to finish top-3 in those 5 (assuming a standard 12 team league). You only need to finish just ahead of the middle of the pack in the pitching categories to get to that 96. You can easily do that while waiting until the 8th-10th Rounds to draft your rotation. In a 12 teamer the average team only has 2.5 closers per team anyway, so if you draft 3 you’re guaranteed to finish at least in the middle of the pack. You then can take fliers on upside starters with your last 10 picks. With an innings cap you only need to hit on 5-6 guys with a 3.90 ERA or so and you’re sipping champagne. Or, if you’re Josh Hamilton, shotgunning Ginger Ale. :-)

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      • Blue says:

        Disagree, completely. There are plenty of good pitchers who drop late in the draft. In addition, stud middle relievers help out a ton.

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      • Tom B says:

        I my experience yes, by the end of the season you will most likely need to run the table on offense or pitching to win a roto league.

        Hell, just last year in a 10 team 6×6 the top 3 teams were over 90 points. That means all 3 teams averaged better than 3rd in all 12 cats. Ridiculous? I thought so, but certainly not for a lack of effort on other managers part.

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  13. Matt says:

    Nilsilly – We’re in a 10-team mixed league with keepers. I kept Longoria and Crawford. Drafted everyone else. I got Lester in the 3rd, Dunn in the 4th, JJohnson in the 6th, Weaver in the 8th, KJohnson in the 11th, Garza in the 12th, and Soto in the 13th. Keep in mind I’m in last place so I’m not that happy about it right now. :)

    The real reason I got all those guys is I think the ADPs, at least for the pitchers, were really underrated. Concerns about Josh Johnson’s back appear overblown, and people were predicting Weaver to have one of his average seasons. But I’ll admit that Johnson was a risk pick that appears to have played off, and I still think there were many other pitchers in the 50-100 ADP range that will pay big dividends by the end.

    That’s my sweet spot for pitching, as that’s where the guys that get drafted in the top 40 for the next year usually come from. Latos, Oswalt, Hamels, Greinke, Liriano, and Gallardo also came from that range.

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  14. descender says:

    ***In the end, your team dominates in the offensive categories, puts up a solid showing in almost all of the pitching categories, and leaves you at the top of your standings by season’s end.***

    That’s a great plan if… not a single other manager plans on dominating offense. I bet this plan leaves you in 3rd place a lot.

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    • descender says:

      I went and read the article again after reading through the comments.

      This is just awful advice. If you wait til after the 5th round+ to draft pitching you will not win ANY competitive league. Especially a league where the managers understand that EVERY category is equally as valuable, not just the counting stats.

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      • Nilsilly says:

        I play in 2 12 team keeper leagues and haven’t drafted a pitcher before round 8 in either of them for years. I’ve finished first the last 4 years. You can always find a 3.50ERA, 1.20 WHIP guy in the 15th round to lead your staff, and compensate for other guys using MRPs. You very very rarely can get a 30HR bat that late. You could have gotten 2010 Halladay by combining Ted Lilly with Neftali Feliz, and paid so much less. Obviously that’s hindsight-aided on Feliz, but the same could have been done with Thornton, Bard, or a number of other sneaky-valuable guys. It makes sense to wait on pitching because it’s so volatile. I waited until the 9th in my roto league this season and have a rotation of Scherzer, Marcum, Morrow, EJackson, Chacin and Britton. There are different ways to win; they just need to be executed better than the author of this article did this time.

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      • descender says:

        It’s not paying less if it takes up 2 of your roster spots. You could have used that second roster spot on any other set of categories, but you had to double down because of your lack of stud pitchers.

        Your league is just not very competitive if pitchers are disregarded like that. Keeper leagues also mean you have pitchers on your staff to compensate for the fact that you didn’t draft one early.

        I do not believe pitching it is as volatile as hitting. Look at the top 10 projected hitters from last year, and the top 10 pitchers. The pitchers are still on that list this year, and most of the hitters are no where to be found.

        If you showed up to any league I’m in with Scherzer, Marcum, Morrow, EJackson, Chacin and Britton as your staff you would be roundly F’d. All upside, no consistency… feast or famine is the quickest way to lose.

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      • descender says:

        Also, if you are dealing with a roto league with rate stats, there are generally only 20-30 pitchers above the “positive value” line, where their rate stats are not so bad that they are actually a detriment to your team.

        I can find HR’s and SB’s anywhere on the FA list. Good WHIP/ERA/K-BB is something you have to draft and pay for.

        I mean your first line… I’ve finished first the last 4 years… tells me that the rest of your league is drafting very poorly. Any draft strategy can be successful if people don’t understand their own point system.

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      • Jason B says:

        “All upside, no consistency… feast or famine is the quickest way to lose.”

        Or…win. Four years in a row. Whichev.

        (I mean, I understand you’re not a proponent of waiting on pitching, but he’s done it four straight years, and won four straight years, so maybe we should concede there are different ways to skin the proverbial cat, no?

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      • Tom B says:

        Or that some leagues are easier to win than others?

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      • Nilsilly says:

        Hey no offense taken, it’s very possible that the leagues you play in are more competitive than the ones I’m in. :-) All I can say is that this strategy works in practice as well as in theory and my personal experience is a testament to its effectiveness. What settings do you generally use for your league? Matt Berry (yeah yeah, mainstream comic relief) just did an article where he advocated research and streaming over trying to stockpile pricey aces and I think it lends support to my point of view.

        Assuming that I was keeping a pitcher isn’t correct, by the way. We allow a standard 6 keepers and I haven’t carried more than one pitcher over in 5 years, and carried zero in both leagues for this season.

        One final point: Sure, if you look at the “projected” top 10 pitchers for each season they’ll look fairly similar, but try looking at the actual top 10 pitchers each season. They’re almost completely different. Exceptions like Timmay and Doc are worth paying for if you don’t feel like putting the research into managing a lower budget staff but you certainly don’t need to overvalue them because they might provide 3-5% more production than a guy you draft 10 rounds later. There’s no positional scarcity in SP, so there’s a huge middle ground. Are you saying that a 3.50 team ERA and 1.25 whip wouldn’t finish in the middle of the pack in your league? You either play with extremely tiny rosters or really customized settings. I’m genuinely interested in your response.

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  15. Rob says:

    Funny but this was an experiment of mine. In three leagues I went heavy on pitching first and in three leagues I went heavy on offense first. But I am finding my pitching heavy first teams are better than my hitting heavy first teams. That is because I have had better success getting good hitting on the WW (Lowrie, Espinosa, Seth Smith, Brantley, Ramos, Betemit for starters). These are leagues with 5-6 deep bench that are used just for offense. In one league I have a front three of Felix, Lee, and Kershaw. I am 2nd of 14 teams. My offense has 43.5 points while my pitching has 57.5 points. I will employ this strategy again.

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  16. Mezic says:

    I completely see the point of this article as a hindsight kind of thing.

    I openly mocked the guy in my league that, with the second pick, took Halliday. I had the fifth pick and was able to grab Tulo because of it.

    I waited until the seventh round in a 12 team points head to head league to start taking pitchers. Here is what I grabbed (number is round taken):

    7. Jered Weaver
    8. Daniel Hudson
    9. Ted Lilly
    11. Ricky Romero
    14. Gio Gonzalez
    15. Craig Kimbrel
    16. Andrew Bailey
    17. Aroldis Chapman
    19. Aaron Harang

    The man is correct. Never sacrifice your every day offense for once a week pitching. Lilly hasn’t worked out so much yet, but Harang has been dynamite. That should balance out as the season progresses. Hudson is off the squad and was replaced with Beachy. Chapman was just replaced with the new closer for St. Louis. Pitching is flexible, guy come up and down, but a good core is essential, just don’t overpay.

    For those that are curious, here are the first six picks in my draft (again, the number is the round taken):

    1. Troy Tulowitzki (Col – SS)
    2. Ryan Zimmerman (Was – 3B)
    3. Kevin Youkilis (Bos – 1B,3B)
    4. Matt Kemp (LAD – OF)
    5. Brandon Phillips (Cin – 2B)
    6. Colby Rasmus (StL – OF)

    My league went pitcher nuts this year. Mostly because of the whole “Ubaldo Jimenez getting traded for a whole team” thing that went down last year (which actually happened in my league. It was ridiculous).

    Simple rule to keep in mind. When in doubt, look for a good pitcher in the west. Their ballparks are cavernous (hence my late pick of Harang) and the bats are, more often than not, weak. Beautiful recipe.

    Take care and good luck this year.

    Mezic

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    • descender says:

      5. Brandon Phillips (Cin – 2B)
      7. Jered Weaver

      Eh… What are your point settings? Point leagues are almost always pitching heavy for a reason.

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      • Mezic says:

        Wins are 10, SO and GDP 1, no points for innings. Home runs are a total of 7 (5 HR, 1 RBI, 1 Run) plus whoever else is on base as RBIs.

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      • descender says:

        Any time custom point settings are involved you cannot assume that anyone in the league is drafting properly, so going pitching early or late won’t make a difference.

        For H2H pitchers are certainly a more volatile commodity than hitters (by your arbitrary 1 week sample sizes), but H2H is also for girly men that prefer luck over skill.

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      • Mezic says:

        I can agree with that descender. Roto would be more enjoyable. I love baseball.

        H2H is the league I play in, though. If it were a Roto, I would still be doing pretty well. I draft as if Roto, the numbers don’t lie.

        All things being equal, it is easy to balance out a squad in H2H later on with pitching. You know how it goes, you play the hand you are dealt.

        That’s the league I play in and it pays off nicely because most of the people in it do not realize that the draft lists they see on line are for Roto and not H2H.

        As I mentioned before, homework is the key.

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  17. TribeFan in NC says:

    The general point of the article is valid. It’s a lot more likely that if you build your team around pitching, you might be watching it crumble right beofre your eyes. There is just more variability in general and each starter spot is just more important than each offensive spot. You can usually make up for an early-round offensive miss, but it can be harder to do so with a starter.

    IMO, there is a balance. For instance, I grabbed Cliff Lee and Josh Johnson in the first seven rounds of my 11-team 5×5 mixed league, grabbed Oswalt in the middle somewhere, then picked up two fliers in the last 5 rounds.

    The point about knowing your league is very valid as well. If six other guys in your league are trying to draft pitching late, then there could be good values to be had in the pitching ranks.

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    • Mezic says:

      Yep. The point is to wait.

      Last year I was able to take Wainwright in the seventh followed up with Gallardo in the eighth. Doing your homework is huge, no matter the set up.

      I am playing the guy this week that went pitcher heavy in my league. He is not doing so well. He may be able to tease out a couple of great performances, but he is running out guys like Jake Fox for his fielders (four pickup a week max).

      I’ll take my chances.

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      • descender says:

        If he is playing jake fox… anywhere… he didn’t go pitching heavy, he just flat out drafted wrong.

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      • Mezic says:

        Yeah, he failed. You wouldn’t believe who he took with his second pick. It is embarrassing to even say.

        He makes my league look stupid.

        By the way, you never would have guessed, he took Jason Werth.

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  18. ScottyM says:

    I’d love to see a follow up article in July or August to this. Sample size and selection bias are HUGE this early.

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    • Mezic says:

      True that. I’m already trying to shop Gio Gonzalez.

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    • Jason B says:

      So true, and I think a number of commenters have made a similar point. WAAAAAYYYY too early for hand wringing about draft strategies gone bad.

      And even if *still* he ends up in, say, 10th place with this strategy doesn’t mean that it belongs on the scrap heap. You can pick the wrong guys. It happens. A sample size of one is hard to prove or negate efficacy.

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  19. jason says:

    sound more like you just had a bad draft than draft strategy. Hanley, Dunn, McCutch and 75%(Liriano is done) of that staff are playing far below where they will finish. Im with scott on a follow up Article.

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  20. Deborah says:

    I’m an offensive person myself-I agree with your stratagey of getting maybe an ace or two to anchor my pitching staff and hope that the rest of my pitchers don’t give it to me in my whip hole…..

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  21. TheGrandslamwich says:

    I’ve always been a proponent of devaluing pitching, but now that the trend has caught on, it’s much more difficult to do. This year in my 12 team H2H league all but one person was avoiding pitchers. There is a point where grabbing the best player on the board is necessary. I grabbed Greinke (the draft was before any sign of injury. Darn you all-green BP health predictor!), Oswalt, and Morrow (also pre-injury) all well after their ADP’s. I’m in second despite my first rounder being Hanley Ramirez. The ironic part is that I filled my roster with high risk-high reward hitters, but instead it’s my pitching that’s been going to injury.

    In the next couple weeks I should have one of the top staffs in the league, but when Rickie Weeks, Nelson Cruz, Alfonso Soriano, Chipper Jones or Coco Crisp go down I could have a lot more trouble filling that spot then I would an SP.

    Morale of the story, I’m not high on my chances at the moment and will likely stick to devaluing pitchers once again in the future.

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  22. AF says:

    Do you have IP limits in your leagues? I find that with an IP limit, topline starters can really make a difference. Two or three aces can make up about half your totals — couple that with some smart mid-to-late-round starters and a strong relief corp (with or without saves), which you don’t have to pay for, and you are very hard to beat in ERA, WHIP, and Ks, and likely pretty strong in Ws too. And it only takes a couple of picks in rounds 3 to 6 to achieve.

    I think your mistake was looking for 4 SPs in the first 12, rather than trying to take 2 or 3 of the top 8 starters in baseball and then fill up with mid-rounders. Once you get into the Gallardos and Lirianos of the world, there’s no guarantees.

    Of course, you don’t take this strategy in a keeper league, because SPs are so prone to injury or losing effectiveness over the long haul. But in the short run, I’ve dominated leagues by building a pitching staff this way.

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  23. Leo Martin says:

    I agree that this strategy depends on league format (as does every non-obvious strategy). I play in a 20 team keeper points league with an innings limit, and there is not a lot of useful starting pitching left after round 8 or so of the draft. Top-line pitchers are gone by round 4-5. By investing in ace SPs you’re taking a big injury risk, but you sort of have to if you want to be competitive.

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  24. Chris says:

    It’s all about drafting elite starting pitching where it presents itself at a value in the draft. If you can nab a Josh Johnson in the 7th then take him and run.

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