You probably aren’t surprised to find that the guy who’s charged with writing the Mining the Minors and Prospect Chatter columns at RotoGraphs has been tabbed to write about strategies for keeper leagues, where every owner is trying to land the next big thing before he becomes The Next Big Thing. What might be surprising, though, is that I’m recommending you alter that approach.
Let’s be clear here: I’m not against selecting nearly-ready prospects during your keeper league draft or auction. It’s just that I’d like to call attention to a slightly different — and lesser-utilized — strategy to obtaining youthful talent with loads of potential. A strategy that can be just as effective.
Sure, gambling on the few players who are gobbling up all the preseason Rookie of the Year hype in 2012, like Jesus Montero or Matt Moore, can pay off handsomely. But that also requires using up a mid-round draft pick or valuable auction dollars on players that remain, to a large extent, unknown or unproven quantities. The opportunity cost, then, is rather steep. And if you swing and miss? Well, then you’re just doubling up on your displeasure.
But rather than going all-in on that hot ROY candidate that everybody has to have, there’s another way to go about acquiring young baseball talent. One that is not only less risky, but also less costly. And better yet, I can prove it.
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