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01-24

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2

Transaction Analysis: Reliever Roundup
by
Bryan Grosnick and Nicholas Zettel

01-24

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8

Fantasy Tiered Rankings: Second Base
by
Mike Gianella

01-24

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1

Tale of the Tape: Ian Kinsler vs. Jason Kipnis
by
Alex Chamberlain

01-24

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4

Banjo Hitter: Best of the Rest
by
Aaron Gleeman

01-24

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10

Prospectus Feature: Introducing Pitch Tunnels
by
Jeff Long, Jonathan Judge and Harry Pavlidis

01-24

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0

Welcome to Splitsville: Second Base
by
Tim Finnegan

01-24

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0

Baseball Therapy: Let's Dig Into These Tunnels
by
Russell A. Carleton

01-24

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1

Deep, But Playable: Ventura and Marte
by
Craig Goldstein

01-24

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1

Player Profile: Matt Carpenter
by
Scooter Hotz

01-23

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2

Rumor Roundup: Don’t Call Him the Comeback Kid
by
Ashley Varela

01-23

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0

The Quinton: Second Base and Changes in Landscape
by
Jeff Quinton

01-23

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0

Fantasy Players to Target: Second Base
by
BP Fantasy Staff

01-23

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9

Early ADP Analysis: Second Base
by
Matt Collins

01-23

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5

Transaction Analysis: Trumbo Stays in Baltimore
by
Matthew Trueblood

01-23

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17

Prospectus Feature: Command and Control
by
Jeff Long, Jonathan Judge and Harry Pavlidis

01-23

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0

State of the Position: Second Base
by
George Bissell

01-23

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2

Flu-Like Symptoms: New Year's Resolutions: Control
by
Rob Mains

01-23

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12

2017 Prospects: San Diego Padres Top 10 Prospects
by
Jeffrey Paternostro and BP Prospect Staff

01-22

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0

BP Boston
by
Matthew Kory

01-22

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0

BP Milwaukee
by
Nathan Desutter

01-22

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8

Players Prefer Presentation: Would You Like to Play a Game of Telephone?
by
Meg Rowley

01-22

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0

Transaction Analysis: Reds Cash In Straily
by
Bryan Grosnick and Steve Givarz

01-20

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12

Fantasy Players to Avoid: First Basemen
by
BP Fantasy Staff

01-20

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0

The -Only League Landscape: American League First Basemen
by
Mike Gianella

01-20

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0

Player Profile: Miguel Cabrera
by
Matt Collins

01-20

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18

2017 Prospects: Colorado Rockies Top 10 Prospects
by
Jeffrey Paternostro, Wilson Karaman and BP Prospect Staff

01-20

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2

Tale of the Tape, Dynasty Edition: A.J. Reed vs. Dan Vogelbach
by
George Bissell

01-20

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4

Transaction Analysis: One More Go-Round in Toronto
by
Bryan Grosnick

01-20

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0

Rumor Roundup: Hunting Starters
by
Demetrius Bell

01-19

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3

The -Only League Landscape: National League First Basemen
by
Scooter Hotz

01-19

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5

Dynasty League Positional Rankings Continued: First Basemen on the Ocean Floor
by
Wilson Karaman

01-19

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5

Tale of the Tape: Brandon Belt vs. C.J. Cron
by
Mark Barry

01-19

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2

Flu-Like Symptoms: New Year's Resolutions: Pitchers' Plate Discipline
by
Rob Mains

01-19

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5

Transaction Analysis: Extension Party
by
Bryan Grosnick, Jared Wyllys and Matthew Trueblood

01-19

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4

Dynasty League Positional Rankings: The Top 50 First Basemen
by
Bret Sayre

01-18

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0

Cold Takes: Why Do Hall of Fame Voters Love Relievers?
by
Patrick Dubuque

01-18

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0

Rumor Roundup: Must-See TV
by
Emma Baccellieri

01-18

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10

Outta Left Field: Cooperstown Changes
by
Dustin Palmateer

01-18

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26

2017 Prospects: Los Angeles Dodgers Top 10 Prospects
by
Jeffrey Paternostro, Wilson Karaman and BP Prospect Staff

01-18

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1

Rubbing Mud: Dozier and the Doyers
by
Matthew Trueblood

01-18

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4

Fantasy Three-Year Projections: First Base
by
Greg Wellemeyer

01-18

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2

The Adjuster: First Base
by
Eric Roseberry

01-18

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2

Tale of the Tape: Tommy Joseph vs. Eric Thames
by
Bryan Joiner

01-18

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9

Get to Know: First Base Prospects
by
Ben Carsley

01-17

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2

Player Profile: Hanley Ramirez
by
Wilson Karaman

01-17

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1

Cold Takes: Stan Javier Saves a No-Hitter
by
Patrick Dubuque

01-17

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9

Rubbing Mud: Flashback Friars
by
Matthew Trueblood

01-17

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15

Fantasy Tiered Rankings: First Basemen
by
Mike Gianella

01-17

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0

Welcome to Splitsville: First Base
by
Tim Finnegan

01-17

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3

Tale of the Tape: Victor Martinez vs. Carlos Santana
by
Alex Chamberlain

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January 23, 2017 6:00 am

Early ADP Analysis: Second Base

9

Matt Collins

A look at where keystoners have been selected in the early batch of drafts this spring.

We have moved on to second base week, with everything you need to know about the keystone coming over the next five days. In this space, you’ll once again find everything you need to know about early ADP trends as you start your preliminary draft preparation. As a reminder, this is pulled from the NFBC ADP data, and the average round is assuming a 15-team league. With that housekeeping out of the way, let’s dig into this extremely top-heavy position that appears to be on the rise.

The (Very) Early Rounds

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Mark Trumbo returned to the Orioles after finding the free agent market somewhat lacking.

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Introducing new tools to evaluate command and control through the lens of strikes.

About a year and a half ago, Baseball Prospectus revealed a suite of catching stats that formed the basis for our industry-leading valuation of catchers. These new stats would shape how we perceived and discussed catcher value, but they also opened the door to better understanding the performance of pitchers.

Two key statistics—CSAA and CS Prob—serve as the basis for the pitch framing portion of our catching metrics. Today, we’ll show how those same statistics can tell us a great deal about pitching as well. CS Prob was initially introduced in 2014 with Harry Pavlidis and Dan Brooks’ first catcher framing model. Early the next year, Jonathan Judge joined the effort and the team introduced CSAA, officially moving our framing models beyond WOWY.

Of the two, CS Prob—short for Called Strike Probability—is the more straightforward: the likelihood of a given pitch being a strike. CS Prob goes beyond what the strike zone ought to be and instead reflects what it is: a set of probabilities that depends on batter and pitcher handedness, pitch location, pitch type, and count. Good pitchers understand that while the strike zone is a dynamic construct, it nonetheless has some consistencies depending on which combinations of these factors are present. We calculate CS Prob for every pitch regardless of the eventual outcome.

The other statistic, CSAA, stands for Called Strikes Above Average; a measure of how many called strikes the player in question creates for his team. In the case of catchers, we isolate the effects of the pitcher, umpire, and other situational factors which allows us to identify how many additional called strikes the catcher is generating, above or below average. For catchers, this skill is commonly described as “framing” or, in more polite company, “presentation.”

For pitchers, we can apply a similar methodology—controlling for the catcher, umpire, etc. to identify the additional called strikes created by the pitcher. CSAA is calculated only on taken pitches, an important nuance. A pitch must be taken in order to be eligible to be called a strike by the umpire, so while CS Prob looks at all pitches, CSAA only takes into account pitches where the outcome is left up to the umpire.

What can these two statistics tell us about pitcher performance and skill? First, we should define a few important things:

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January 23, 2017 6:00 am

State of the Position: Second Base

0

George Bissell

The 30,000-foot-high view of the keystone for fantasy purposes.

The Big Question: What if we’re completely wrong?

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January 23, 2017 6:00 am

Flu-Like Symptoms: New Year's Resolutions: Control

2

Rob Mains

Using our new pitching metrics to ask new questions.

One of the reasons we’re excited about the pitching metrics we’re introducing this week is that they allow us to answer new questions. Who had the best control among ERA qualifiers in 2016, measured by Called Strike Probability (CS Prob)? Bartolo Colon, for whom 52.1 percent of his pitches were called strikes, followed by Jimmy Nelson and Hisashi Iwakuma. Who had the best command, measured by Called Strikes Above Average (CSAA)? That’d be Zach Davies, who got 3.5 percent more called strikes than average, followed by Josh Tomlin and Kyle Hendricks.

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There’s a real big pile of sticks. You know you better stop messin’ around.

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January 22, 2017 6:00 am

BP Boston

0

Matthew Kory

Boston's young core is set up to win now, but things could start to get tricky soon.

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January 22, 2017 6:00 am

BP Milwaukee

0

Nathan Desutter

Great speed and tons of aggression doesn't always equal positive value.

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What would managers and catchers chat about if they had NFL-style headsets?

Last week, it was reported by Teddy Cahill at Baseball America that the American Baseball Coaches Association’s committee on pace of play was considering putting a digital headset in catchers’ helmets, similar to those used by NFL quarterbacks, so coaches could more quickly relay play calls in-game.

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Miami further empties out a weak farm system to get Dan Straily from Cincinnati.

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January 20, 2017 6:00 am

Fantasy Players to Avoid: First Basemen

12

BP Fantasy Staff

You might want to let someone else draft or buy these players in your leagues this spring.

Paul Goldschmidt, Arizona Diamondbacks
Man, this has a chance burn me badly and make me look really stupid at the end of 2017. Paul Goldschmidt is still an awesome, amazing fantasy asset, so don't think I'm disparaging his skills or anything. It's just that he had some declines in a few areas last year that I want to shed light on.

In a year where power was up across baseball, possibly because of a juiced ball, Goldschmidt had a noticeable drop in power. His .192 ISO was exactly league average for a first baseman, and was down about 50 ISO points from where it was the prior 3 seasons, where it sat at .247. He slugged under .500 for the first time since 2012 and ranked 10th among qualified 1B in slugging, down from ranking 2nd from 2013-2015, when he slugged .556. His park and league adjusted OPS+ fell from an incredible 162 from 2013-15 to 134 in 2016, a drop of almost 30 percentage points.


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January 20, 2017 6:00 am

The -Only League Landscape: American League First Basemen

0

Mike Gianella

An overview of the fantasy options at this position in the junior circuit.

For some, $30 in fantasy earnings is the rarified air that makes a player elite. By this admittedly arbitrary standard, first base in the AL is not the place to shop if you are looking for an elite player. Miguel Cabrera ($30) was the only first baseman who reached this threshold in 2016. Edwin Encarnacion finished second at $26. Chris Davis exemplifies the challenge power hitters face in fantasy. His 38 home runs, 99 runs, and 84 RBI were worth $21, but his one steal and .221 batting average pushed him all the way back to $15. Cabrera and Jose Abreu were the only Top 10 AL first basemen to hit higher than .269 and provide more than one dollar of earnings from AVG, while no AL first baseman stole more than nine bases. It is difficult for three category players to earn more than $30, particularly if one of those categories isn’t stolen bases.

The expert market treaded conservatively at the position, with only one relative shot-in-the-dark based on prior performance. Table One lists the 10 most expensive AL first basemen in 2016, based on their average salaries in the CBS, LABR, and Tout Wars AL-only leagues. Position eligibility in Table One is based on each player’s status at the beginning of last season.

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