Fantasy Value Above Replacement: Part Two

This is the second part in a published four part series. If you’re interested in reading Part Three, and the Update, click through!

If you haven’t already, make sure to read the introduction to Fantasy Value Above Replacement from earlier this morning.

Step Two: Adjusting for Positional Replacement Levels
Theory 2: There will be more outfielders drafted than any of the other position players, and there will be more 1B drafted then any other infield positions.

Replacement levels are taken on a positional basis. While it may seem that it is just doubling up on the positional adjustment, it is still important to do it this way. If we only standardized replacement level across positions without accounting for the number of players drafted, we could end up with very uneven numbers. There will be more outfielders drafted than any other position players, and more first baseman drafted than any other infielders. We have to reflect that in this number, and this is how we do it.

A replacement level player is defined as “a player who is available on the waiver wire in a majority (50.01%) of leagues.” This will mean that some players taken in the last couple rounds will be at (or below) replacement level, and that is just fine. When I originally created this system, I had it set for 246 players above replacement level. According to the crowdsourcing data that I collected, you guys agree that the numbers should indeed be 246, since the last 2.5 rounds of a 23 round standard draft are replacement level or below.

Because the overall replacement level doesn’t necessarily help up pinpoint the levels at each position, I did a sampling of mock drafts this offseason to help come up with the numbers. Below is a list of how many players are considered to be above replacement level at each position.

C: 12
1B: 23
2B: 18
3B: 17
SS: 16
OF: 62
SP: 62
RP: 36

The data was found using a sampling of ESPN and Yahoo mock drafts to try and prevent one site’s bias from screwing with the data.

When we set a replacement level at each position, we do so by forcing the 13th catcher (for instance) to be a replacement level player. The FVAAz number will change every year depending on the strength of the position, so we just simply adjust using the 13th catcher instead of a set number. We use the 13th catchers’ FVAAz, and add the respective value (or subtract, in some cases) to force their Fantasy Value Above Replacement to equal zero. We then use the same factor and add (or subtract) it to every other player’s FVAAz at the position.

We now have our FVARz, and once we have one for every player at every position, we can directly compare these players. Now, regardless of position, a player with a FVARz of 10 is more valuable in drafts than a player with a FVARz of 9.

Next, we’ll look at how to convert FVARz numbers into “auction dollars,” as well as going over some semi-random notes.

Zach is the creator and co-author of RotoGraphs' Roto Riteup series, and RotoGraphs' second-longest tenured writer. You can follow him on twitter.

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Hey Zach,

Cool stuff. 2 questions:

1. Is this different than what Last Player Picked does? if so, how is it different?
2. Will you guys be publishing this as a tool, in order to factor in different categories and positions?

great stuff!