Archive for March, 2016

2016 Bold Predictions: Zach Sanders

Last season, my inaugural Bold Predictions didn’t click, as I went just one-for-nine — but my one was pretty impressive — and embarrassed my entire family more than usual. I have dusted myself off and am prepared to hit it out of the park this year.

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MASH Report (3/31/16)

• Don’t expect a bunch of analysis on Monday (I will write up any major injury though) as I will be dealing with transferring the injury database from off-season to in-season mode. I hoped more teams would have officially placed some players on the 15-day DL, but I only have three as of this morning. I expect I will have 50 or so to do come Monday with a few unreported injuries.

Andrew Miller is out with a bone chip in his non-throwing hand.

The Yankees have been blessed with good health for most of the spring, but those fortunes took a turn on Wednesday afternoon when lefty reliever Andrew Miller was hit on the right wrist by a line drive.

Initial X-rays were negative, but a CT scan revealed a chip fracture in the wrist. Miller will visit a hand specialist to determine the next step, but it is possible that the Yankees will begin the season lacking two-thirds of their vaunted bullpen trio.

I tried to look back to find any past occurrences of this exact injury, but could find any. Looking at just a hand fracture for pitchers, the average return time is 66 days with the minimum at 42 days. I think I will go with 45 days lost until more information is available.

Last minute update. It seems like Miller will try to pitch through the injury.

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Paul Sporer Rotographs Chat – 3/31/16

Chat starts at 12:45 PM Central, but you can get your questions in now!

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2016 Second Base Tier Rankings: Preseason Edition

I always enjoy a quality theme when composing these tiers. From Kurt Russell movies to hard rock bands to vacation destinations, I’ve had a healthy variety of themes. With WrestleMania coming up this weekend, I considered some sort of wrestling theme. However, my writing is frequently littered with wrestling references — both obvious and subtle — on a regular basis, so using it as a tier theme could amount to overkill.

For this first set of tiered rankings, I decided on the theme of Final Four teams. The main reason I settled on this theme is that I’m only splitting the players into four tiers this month. As the season gets underway, more clear delineations will likely develop within the tiers, and I’ll probably add more to reflect that.

As of right now, however, there’s just not much separating most of these guys right now. My second tier stretches all the way from No. 6 to No. 20, with much of the tier separated by extremely small gaps. For example, would it be surprising at all if Josh Harrison (No. 14) outperformed Ben Zobrist (No. 9), despite the fact that I have Zobrist five spots higher? That’s a pretty good illustration of how tightly grouped the players within these tiers are heading into the season.

If I forgot any players who you think should be on this list, please let me know in the comments section below and I’ll update it. For reference, I used Yahoo’s position eligibility requirements.

Jose Altuve
Dee Gordon
Robinson Cano
Ian Kinsler
Brian Dozier

Being the sole 1-seed remaining, UNC is obviously the favorite to take home the title. Of the Final Four teams, the Tar Heels are the one squad that was largely expected to be here all along, and they’re the total package. They should cruise to the championship game with little resistance. HOT TAKE: When you rank No. 2 out of 351 teams in both offensive efficiency and rebounding, you’re going to win a lot of games.

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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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Our Most Common Bold Predictions

Over the last couple weeks, we’ve been releasing our bold predictions, and I noticed some patterns emerging. Before I wrote mine, I made a number of edits to my list because I didn’t want to cover the same player as my fellow Rotographs writers, unless I was going to be more bold than they were.

To facilitate that, I was tracking the other writers’ predictions. Because of that, I now have a list of the players where we overlapped – the 30 players who were the focal point of more than one bold prediction.

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Roto Riteup: March 31

Hello, from Sarasota, where the Baltimore Orioles made a bit of news Wednesday but were hardly the newsiest.

On the agenda:
1. Trevor Bauer is headed to the bullpen
2. Roberto Osuna is the Jays’ closer
3. Jose Reyes’ domestic abuse case to be dropped
4. Andrew Miller has a chip fracture
5. Hyun-Soo Kim headed to the minors…? Miguel Gonzalez released
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Miguel Sano: The big early riser at third base?

Earlier this week, I published the first installment of third base rankings for 2016. Those rankings featured no surprises at the top, but the third tier did bring about a bit of intrigue and basis for discussion. Smack dab in the middle of that third group was Minnesota Twins third baseman/outfielder/designated hitter Miguel Sano. Overall, he was ranked 13th. While that initial edition of the rankings will change almost immediately once the season gets underway, it certainly stands to reason that Sano could very well be among the quickest risers this fantasy season.

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Guessing Wrong in Tout Wars

Last Friday, I asked our RotoGraphs readers on how they would approach my Tout Wars mixed 12-team head-to-head auction. The strategies stated in the comments were similar to the approach I took. But that is not how the rest of the teams operated and it threw me for a loop.

A person must remember the rules to this league are fairly unique with a head-to-head component making up 80% of  the league’s wins and a roto component being the other 20%. A full rule set can be found here and the abridged set here.

Going back to the comments from Friday’s, here are the approaches the various readers would have taken.

Pitching Strategy

Few high K starters to make minimum IP, RPs otherwise
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The Math of Winning Ottoneu (2015)

Ottoneu founder/creator Niv Shah once described Ottoneu as an economic system that just happens to be built for fantasy sports.  The entire platform is finely tuned to bring the stats, rules, and interface together to provide an excellent overall gameplay experience perfectly suited for baseball nerds.

Nerds often like math (which is why baseball nerds love sabermetrics), so let’s spend some time digging into some of the math behind the game of Ottoneu.  This will be a blend of benchmarks and strategy, but overall the goal here is to create a reference for Ottoneu owners looking to win their leagues.

Ottoneu Basics

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