Archive for September, 2017

Paul Sporer Baseball Chat – September 29th, 2017

Paul Sporer: Yoooo!! It’s the final regular season chat for me!! Let’s talk some baseball

Dave: Name the fantasy-relevant pitcher whose 2018 ranking you are most unsure of right now. Why?

Paul Sporer: Luis Castillo. I love him, but want to be careful not to overrate him. The Luis Severino comps seem to forget that Sevvy flopped after his debut before exploding this year. Prospect growth isn’t linear!

Luke: Who’s winning the World Series?

Paul Sporer: No clue, of course. I think it’s a wide open playoff and should be a lot of fun, but I’ll go Nats. They’ll finally win a  series and then take off to the World Series

Moltar: Sigh, Quintana’s going to throw a gem against me in my insanely tight h2h points championship. Here’s trying to jinx him out of a no hitter at least

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Low-Ownership Starters for Final Weekend

It’s the season’s end. Good luck to everyone and hopefully I can help a few teams win their titles. Now, if there ever was a time to second guess me, it’s this weekend. Teams are limiting their pitcher innings and changing starters, especially the playoff-bound teams. Do a bit of fact checking before picking anyone up.

Note: All players have a 10% or less Yahoo! ownership.


Luke Sims (5% owned) at Marlins (Odrisamer Despaigne)

If you’re streaming just for Wins, Sims is a perfectly decent option. He’s pitching good enough to squeak out a Win, especially against a beatable Miami team. His strikeouts are reasonable at ~7 K/9. His ERA and WHIP are likely to be high but it’s just one game.

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Pitcher Spotlight: Jordan Montgomery’s September Surge

The season is coming to a close and we’re looking for that one extra start to put us over the edge. Jordan Montgomery is fresh off two 6.0 IP outings with just 1 ER total between them, slated to make the final start of the regular season on Sunday. With his 26.0% ownership rate in ESPN Leagues, he’s a possible late add that could save your season and you may be wondering if you should pull the trigger. Let’s dive into Montgomery’s latest start – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BB, 5 Ks against the Rays – to see if he really deserved the impressive results.


Entering this outing, Montgomery turned to his Curveball 25.8% of the time across his 28 starts in the majors. It’s a good pitch, holds the highest pVal in his repertoire (8.7), and is hard for batters to handle with its big break starting at one of the highest release points in the majors: Read the rest of this entry »

Dear Disengaged Owner

Dear Disengaged Owner,

This has been hard for you in the past, but please read carefully.  Today, we are officially ending our relationship.

I wish I could say it’s been fun, but I think we both know this is long overdue.  As good as your original intentions may have been when you first joined our league, this is no longer meant to be.  But don’t worry, it’s not me, it’s you.  

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The New Charlie Morton’s Pitched Very Well

Charlie Morton generated some buzz in the spring, and I was part of the buzzing crowd. A little over a month into the season, I checked back in on Morton and remained high on him. Still, I wasn’t quite high enough on him. Heading into his final start of the regular season tonight, ESPN’s player rater has him ranked as SP29. The 33-year-old hurler is having a career year, and the reinvention that he teased in an injury-abbreviated 2016 in four starts turned out to be a precursor of his big 2017 season. Read the rest of this entry »

The Daily Grind: The End

~This is the end, my only friend, the end~


  1. Closing Shop
  2. Weather Reports
  3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse
  4. SaberSim Says…
  5. TDG Invitational Returns!

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Field of Streams: Episode 301 – The Cardinals Fan, The Nacho Man

Episode 301 – The Cardinals Fan, The Nacho Man

The latest episode of “Field of Streams” is live!

In this episode, Dylan Higgins and Matthew Dewoskin discuss grumpy Jon Lester, the Mets being interested in Robin Ventura, maybe possibly trusting Kyle Gibson, Dylan making an Andre Ethier joke, disagreeing a bit on J.P. Crawford’s immediate viability, hesitating to trust Carson Fulmer without seeing the Indians lineup, Matt believing in Brad Miller, Matt making a Victor Caratini joke, hobbies and video games for the offseason, and closing out the final show of season four.

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Revisiting Brandon’s Warne’s 10 Bold Predictions for 2017

Why do we do this to ourselves?

We’re back again to savage my terrible preseason 10 Bold Predictions. Without further ado:

1. Robbie Ray finishes as a top-10 starter in the NL

I’m pretty proud of this one. ESPN’s player rater in 5×5 has him as the No. 10 pitcher overall, and No. 6 among NL starters behind Max Scherzer, Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez. Ray has been terrific this season in 160.1 innings, as he’s fanned 217 batters with a 1.16 WHIP, 2.86 ERA and .200 BAA.

Batting: 1-for-1 (1.000)

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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 499 – ”Did I put my cup on?“


The latest episode of “The Sleeper and the Bust” is brought to you by Out of the Park Baseball 18, the best baseball strategy game ever made – available NOW on PC, Mac, and Linux platforms! Go to to order now and save 10% with the code SLEEPER18!

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  • How our seasons have gone

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OUTs Top Ranked Bats Heading Into 2018

Earlier this year I developed two closely related stats which I called OUTs and bbFIP. I’m reasonably proud of these two stats, as I feel they do a pretty good job capturing the skill of each player. They account for the numbers of weakly and strongly hit balls, balls that have high home run rates, strikeouts and walks.

In other words, it accounts for every aspect of bat generated offense, ignoring base running ability. However running speed is used to judge whether batted balls are weakly or strongly hit for each individual batter. For example, a batted balls by Billy Hamilton may be near automatic singles, whereas they would be almost guaranteed outs if hit by Albert Pujols.

The formula is constructed as follows:














Where W = weak contact (xOBA ≤ .245), S = strong contact (xOBA ≥ .634), and sHR = strong home runs (xHR% ≥ .55).

You can convert this OUTs score to an ERA scalar by multiplying by -11 and adding a constant (~5.4). This will give you what I call bbFIP, a version of FIP that is superior to standard FIP both in season and between seasons. You can also find an offense’s average OUTs score by weighting each batter by their number of plate appearances, and then translate that number to the ERA scalar to figure out how many runs you might expect them to score through the course of a season.

There are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Lower numbers are better. I tried to build this concept into the name, so it is easier to remember. It is called OUTs, outs are bad, whoever has the least of them is the best.
  2. The average score is about 0.1. This season it is closer to .09.
  3. The standard deviation is about 0.1.

As the 2017 regular season is coming to a close and we begin to gear up towards the 2018 season, I have a few preliminary OUTs and xOBA projections. These projections haven’t yet baked in the aging curve, so maybe ‘projection’ is the wrong word to use here. Either way, I have selected what I refer to as the ‘significantly above average’ projections in terms of OUTs. In other words, anyone who has a score less than 0. I’ve also supplied Z-Scores, xOBA, and xOBA Z-Scores. Read the rest of this entry »