A commenter brought up a common refrain on a discussion of the first base ranks yesterday. That commenter asked if I would trade my Mark Teixeira straight up for Adrian Gonzalez, since I had ranked Mark Teixeira one spot ahead of Adrian Gonzalez. It was a simple question, but it brought into focus many of my feelings about these rankings.
First, there’s no such league that I’ve ever been in where I have offered or received an offer of one player at one position for another player at the same position. That doesn’t mean that it never happens, or shouldn’t happen, it just means that the hypothetical doesn’t really match up with reality in a useful way. Then again, if you felt strongly about those two players, perhaps you would make that trade.
But I tend to think of players in tiers, and think of my needs at this point in the season.
So my answer was: sure, if I needed batting average more than I needed power. Because as much as I think Adrian Gonzalez can turn it around, I have to admit that Mark Teixeira‘s power is more stable at this point. You have to think about your needs, especially now that you have a fully formed roster and only half a season left.
Do I think the two players are in the same tier? Absolutely. So if I could finagle a trade in which I give up my Mark Teixeira and a pitcher, for example, and get your Adrian Gonzalez and a better pitcher, and that fit my needs, well then I would do that trade. In a heartbeat. Would I look around at the response that Gonzalez ranking got and consider him a buy-low? Yes I would.
And, honestly, I believe most of you are using these rankings that way. We have four ranks at your disposal, and these four ranks represent four different well-informed opinions. By looking across the line, you can see how different people in your league might value a player. And you can get an idea of which players are in a class with each other and which aren’t — Jimmy Rollins might be right behind Elvis Andrus, but a quick look at the variance in his rankings suggests that he’s not nearly on as sure of footing and probably belongs in the next tier. We also provide tiered rankings from our positional correspondents so you can see what the tiers might look like.
If you like Trevor Plouffe or Emilio Bonifacio more than some, you know to try and buy low. If you have Jimmy Rollins on your team and you kind of want to get rid of him, you can see that some people still value him highly, and you might get a decent return. There’s a lot of information here.
Would I take your Jose Reyes for my Starlin Castro? For sure, if I needed stolen bases ahead of anything else. But Jeff Zimmerman and Zach Sanders might not. Now you know that a bigger deal, where you give up Starlin Castro for Jose Reyes, and perhaps improve a starting pitcher, is a reasonable deal.
And that has value.
|FanGraphs Consensus Rankings:
|New||Last||Player Name||Eno Sarris||Mike Podhorzer||Jeff Zimmerman||Zach Sanders|
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