The keeper deadline for ottoneu leagues is upon us (midnight on the night of 1/31 – tonight!), and that means it is time to start auction prep in earnest. As I have the past two years, I am going to help out with my auction values for all four ottoneu formats.
Also as per usual, I made a couple tweaks to the approach this year.
- I initially set replacement level based on starters – 12 each of C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, MI, and Util, 60 OF – and then adjusted all values to make sure the right number of players were listed above replacement level. The replacement levels have been tweaked a few times thanks to feedback in the ottoneu Slack community (if you play ottoneu, you should check it out), and are probably still not 100% perfect.
- For pitchers, I assumed 60 RP, but also tried to account for teams in 4×4 and points leagues (particularly points leagues) generally trying to max out RP innings, which tend to be more valuable on an inning by inning basis. I then assumed all teams would fill out their 1500 IP with SP.
- Steamer does not project Holds, nor were HBP for pitchers in a useful format. For holds, I used an equation provided by Jeff Zimmerman to estimate. For HBP, I took a league average HBP/IP and used that. This should keep pitchers and hitters in a rough balance, however it does mean that pitchers who hit lots of batters are slightly overvalued and those who never hit batters are slightly undervalued. That said, we are talking about a matter of a handful of points in most cases, though in the most extreme cases we could be talking 30 points over the course of the year. Even so, on a per inning basis, I am comfortable with this simplifying assumption.
- Two years ago I tried to show inflated values based on who was being kept in my leagues. Last year I acknowledged that this was not a good approach and just left them off completely. This year I took a third approach – I have year one values in the $ column, and then offer 10%, 25%, and 50% inflation scenarios. In my experience, year two of a league is in the 10%-25% range, by year three or four, you are in the 25% to 50% range. These should be useful guideposts.
- As in past years, I am using un-adjusted Steamer projections (so don’t blame me if you think a player will hit more HR or give up fewer hits) and I am projecting values only based on a players expected performance this season. In your auctions, you should ratchet up or down your values based on what you expect from the player in the future or what your focus is. If you want to win this year, go ahead and grab John Lackey at his projected value. If you are focused on the future, over-pay for Marcus Stroman instead.
- Positions listed are the ones I projected the player at, even if they qualify in other positions.
And, with that, here is a spreadsheet with eight tabs – two for each format, one for hitters, one for pitchers.
Ok, that should get you started. Please let me know in the comments if you have questions. Good luck with your cuts and enjoy the countdown to Opening Day!
Chad Young is a product manager at Amazon by day and a baseball writer (RotoGraphs, Let's Go Tribe), sports fan and digital enthusiast at all times. Follow him on Twitter @chadyoung.