About four times a season, Eno unleashes the shocky monkeys and a few of us slow-footed writers
are forced to enjoy ranking all the players. For the next few days, I am going to go over how I prepared my rankings.
Note: I am trying to keep the amount of math to a minimum. If somewhere you get lost in the procedure let me know and I can explain the procedure in more detail.
The first item to remember is all leagues are not even close to being the same. In my three keeper leagues, two are points based and the other is an AL only league with one pitcher category being Wins+Saves+Holds. Additionally, some leagues have keepers. How the keeper’s “salary” is set determines a their value. Other league options have innings pitched limits (good rates stats needed) or as in the case of my league with W+S+H, an IP minimum is set to keep owners from only using relief pitchers. Catcher rankings can vary quite a bit from a one catcher to two catcher leagues or even two catcher slots with a 162 game limit as in Ottoneu. For my rankings, I did them off a basic 5×5 12-team league with 23 positions (14 position players, 9 pitchers).
If possible, I like to use the standing points gained method (a couple of explanations on the methodology). Some other methods may or may not be better, but I like it because it shows the league’s biases and gives me good baselines for final league positioning. I will not go into every gory math detail of the ranking method, so you may want to go back read the two articles previously reference or read Art McGee’s book, How to Value Players for Rotisserie Baseball or Larry Schechter’s new book, Winning Fantasy Baseball.
To get my values, I calculated the average final 2013 values from the last 20 teams to draft at NFBC last year. Here are the final totals and averages for each place in the standings along with the value (slope method) it takes to jump up one position in the standings.
|Change to move up||0.00195||20.8||7.8||21.4||8.2|
|Change to move up||0.081||3.0||0.015||33.3||6.8|
These tables can be used for two purposes.
Number 1: Knowing where your teams stands during drafts and auctions.
I keep track of a couple of items (in the points leagues, just one, total points) during the draft to make sure I am not getting too unbalanced, SB and HR (possibly AVG). Once a player is picked, just total their projected stats. You can then know how close you are at getting to a value which will put you too high in the rankings and over killing a stat.
One item to notice is how the top and bottom one or two teams are further away from the pack. These teams won by too much and wasted the stats they accumulated. When you are building a team, don’t aim for the previous top value, aim for just more than second place.
Number 2: Value Players.
Well, I am going to go stop here and go over this step in detail in my article tomorrow. Please let me know if you have any questions so far.
Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won three FSWA Awards including on for his MASH series. In his first two seasons in Tout Wars, he's won the H2H league and mixed auction league. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.