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12-20

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2

Transaction Analysis: Martin in Miami, Nate to New York
by
R.J. Anderson and Mike Gianella

12-20

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8

Transaction Analysis: Padres Wish Upton a Star
by
R.J. Anderson, Wilson Karaman, Bret Sayre, Jordan Gorosh, Jeff Moore and Ethan Purser

12-19

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5

Transaction Analysis: Catchin' Relief
by
Matthew Trueblood, R.J. Anderson, Wilson Karaman, Mike Gianella, Jordan Gorosh and Chris Rodriguez

12-19

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0

Transaction Analysis: Bringing the Band Back Together... Again
by
Daniel Rathman and Wilson Karaman

12-19

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0

Transaction Analysis: Live That Fantasy
by
Sahadev Sharma and Wilson Karaman

12-19

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4

Raising Aces: Best and Worst Mechanics: NL West
by
Doug Thorburn

12-19

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1

Rumor Roundup: Kenta Maeda Will Not Be Appearing In This Feature (Beyond Today)
by
Daniel Rathman

12-19

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0

Pitching Backward: Brandon McCarthy and the Outlier Curveball
by
Jeff Long

12-18

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4

Transaction Analysis: What the Rays and Nationals Got
by
Tucker Blair, Jordan Gorosh, Chris Rodriguez and J.P. Breen

12-18

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0

Rumor Roundup: Pitching at a Premium
by
Chris Mosch

12-18

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Don't Forget the Vets
by
Matt Collins

12-18

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10

Skewed Left: Padres Can't Play It Safe
by
Zachary Levine

12-18

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3

Fantasy Team Preview: San Francisco Giants
by
Jeff Quinton

12-18

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6

Moonshot: In Search of Pedro Cerrano
by
Robert Arthur

12-18

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8

Transaction Analysis: Padres Add Myers
by
R.J. Anderson, Wilson Karaman and Tucker Blair

12-17

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0

Rumor Roundup: A Monster Myers Move?
by
Chris Mosch

12-17

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7

The Lineup Card: Unconventional Winners and Losers of the Offseason to Date
by
Baseball Prospectus

12-17

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0

Fantasy Team Preview: Milwaukee Brewers
by
J.P. Breen

12-17

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0

Fantasy Freestyle: Undervalued NL Starting Pitchers
by
Keith Cromer

12-17

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2

Daisy Cutter: The Value of Five-Plus Players
by
Sahadev Sharma

12-17

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4

Transaction Analysis: Royals Bank on a Rios Rebound
by
R.J. Anderson, Ben Carsley and Nick Shlain

12-17

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1

Transaction Analysis: Angels Happy Re: Joyce
by
Craig Goldstein and Nick Shlain

12-16

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5

Pitching Backward: Curveballs and Changes
by
Jeff Long

12-16

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22

Ninety Percent Mental: It's Happening!
by
Lewie Pollis

12-16

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10

Fantasy Freestyle: The Trouble With Tiers
by
Mike Gianella

12-16

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8

Fantasy Team Preview: New York Mets
by
Bret Sayre

12-16

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5

Baseball Therapy: Should Teams Worry About Lineup Balance?
by
Russell A. Carleton

12-16

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1

Rumor Roundup: It's Hard To Make Dan Haren Happy
by
Daniel Rathman

12-16

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5

Transaction Analysis: The Headley Weapon
by
R.J. Anderson and Ben Carsley

12-15

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2

The Week in Quotes: December 8-14, 2014
by
Nick Bacarella, Chris Mosch and Nick Wheatley-Schaller

12-15

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0

Rumor Roundup: The Slugging Korean Shortstop, Or Perhaps Non-Slugging Third Baseman
by
Daniel Rathman

12-15

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2

Fantasy Team Preview: Atlanta Braves
by
Nick Shlain

12-15

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9

Prospectus Feature: The Surprising Math Teams Use to Value a Compensation Pick
by
Jeff Quinton

12-15

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2

Transaction Analysis: Looks Like We May/Det
by
R.J. Anderson, Tucker Blair and Ben Carsley

12-15

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9

Transaction Analysis: Melky Laughs Last
by
Sahadev Sharma and Wilson Karaman

12-15

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6

Rule 5 Draft Recap
by
Jeff Moore

12-15

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6

Transaction Analysis: Sixty Percent of a Red Sox Rotation
by
Andrew Koo

12-12

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15

Transaction Analysis: All the Fantasy Angles
by
J.P. Breen, Mike Gianella, Wilson Karaman, Ben Carsley and Nick Shlain

12-12

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1

Rumor Roundup: Remember James Shields?
by
Daniel Rathman

12-12

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20

2015 Prospects: Arizona Diamondbacks Top 10 Prospects
by
Nick J. Faleris and BP Prospect Staff

12-12

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9

Fantasy Freestyle: Shortening Your Dynasty Rebuild
by
J.P. Breen

12-12

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0

Fantasy Team Preview: Miami Marlins
by
Ben Carsley

12-12

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8

Transaction Analysis: The Dodgers' First Dump
by
Craig Goldstein

12-12

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10

Transaction Analysis: The Pitchers the Reds Shed
by
R.J. Anderson, Zachary Levine and Jordan Gorosh

12-12

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0

Transaction Analysis: Turn Down For Rut
by
R.J. Anderson and Bret Sayre

12-12

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6

Transaction Analysis: Santana and Morales, One Year Later
by
Sam Miller

12-11

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13

Transaction Analysis: The Night the Dodgers Had
by
Craig Goldstein and Nick J. Faleris

12-11

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0

Fantasy Freestyle: Jose Quintana, Forever Underrated
by
Matt Collins

12-11

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4

Rumor Roundup: Yoenis Cespedes Is Always Good, Fit
by
Daniel Rathman

12-11

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1

Before They Were Prospects
by
Todd Gold, Patrick Ebert and David Rawnsley

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December 16, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: The Trouble With Tiers

10

Mike Gianella

Why adhering to tiered rankings might be an impediment in auctions.

It is only a few players into your 2014 NL-only fantasy auction and you are already unhappy with how the auction has progressed. It isn’t because you panicked and overspent on a player or two early but rather because everyone else is buying players and you’re still sitting on the sidelines, waiting to hit your spot. The problem is that you’re reaching the point of the auction at which you have to fill your top offensive slot with a $30-plus player and they’re almost entirely gone. You don’t want to pay $35 for Hanley Ramirez, but the only alternative left is David Wright, and you have a bad feeling about him this year.

For some fantasy players, this scenario might not sound familiar. However, if you use a tiered approach to auctions, it is entirely possible that you can get trapped in a scenario where you feel like you have to overpay a player or two in order to fill out your “tiers” on offense.

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December 16, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: New York Mets

8

Bret Sayre

Things are trending upward in Queens.

Another year, another almost middle-of-the-road season for the Mets—who have now won between 74 and 79 games in each of the last five seasons. However, over the last four, the direction of the franchise has been noticeable and it’s reflected in the blurbs that make up this fantasy preview. Even in an age of diminishing offense, the Mets have gone from allowing 742 runs in 2011 to 709 to 684 to 618 runs in 2014. What the organization has lacked in producing homegrown hitters, they’ve done their best to make up for on the mound—and with the specter of a Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard playoff rotation dangling in the future, they find themselves without the necessary offense to make it a reality.

It’s been a very quiet off-season so far for the Metropolitans, who signed Michael Cuddyer and John Mayberry and have otherwise sat on their hands. They also haven’t been rumored for any big name free agents, with the exception of Korean superstar Jung-Ho Kang (who may or may not be a shortstop—stop me if you’ve heard that before with this organization). Additionally, in what appears to be a yearly rite of passage at this point, the Mets are also moving the fences in yet again at Citi Field—this time solely in right-center field. While this could be mildly good news for the left-handed sluggers on the team, it’s unlikely to make a substantial difference.

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December 16, 2014 6:00 am

Baseball Therapy: Should Teams Worry About Lineup Balance?

5

Russell A. Carleton

What's the penalty for a bunch of lefties hitting in a row?

This offseason, there’s been much made of the supposed lack of right-handed power hitters. Some teams are feeling their lineups leaning a little too heavily to the port side and are thinking that they need to either re-condition one of them to hit from the right side or trade for someone (Hello Justin Upton!). The tactical aspect of it is fairly obvious. Teams don’t like stacking left-handed hitters in their lineup, because it makes them vulnerable later in the game to a LOOGY coming in and being able to have a platoon advantage against a couple hitters in a row without having to worry about facing a righty somewhere in the middle there.

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December 16, 2014 3:36 am

Rumor Roundup: It's Hard To Make Dan Haren Happy

1

Daniel Rathman

The Marlins might try to flip Dan Haren, but options are limited. Also, the Cubs aren't interested in Colby Rasmus, and Brad Penny is mentioned.

Marlins might flip Dan Haren
When Haren signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Dodgers on November 25th, 2013, he made it clear that he only wanted to pitch in the Los Angeles area for the remainder of his major-league career. A player option worth $10 million vested when Haren reached 180 innings in 2014, giving him the right to stay with the Dodgers, which he (unsurprisingly) exercised before Halloween.


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December 16, 2014 12:04 am

Transaction Analysis: The Headley Weapon

5

R.J. Anderson and Ben Carsley

The Yankees re-sign Chase Headley, the Astros get a hitter to play shortstop, and Brett Anderson has incentives.

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Running through the notable quotes from the week that was.

DODGERS SHAKE THINGS UP AT WINTER MEETINGS

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Posting will begin soon for Jung-Ho Kang, Ian Desmond seems intent on testing free agency, and Mike Morse is mentioned for the Marlins.

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December 15, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: Atlanta Braves

2

Nick Shlain

Jason Heyward is gone and Justin Upton might follow, but there are still a few studs on Fredi Gonzalez' roster.

The Braves appear to be a team in flux after failing to win at least 80 games for the first time since 2008. Atlanta isn’t necessarily full-on rebuilding, but with turnover in the front office as well as on the field—the Braves said goodbye to Jason Heyward, Ervin Santana, and Jordan Walden this offseason—they aren’t so far away from that. Still, the National League East isn’t the strongest division and a run at the second wild card isn’t out of the question. Now that I’ve sufficiently angered optimistic Braves fans, let’s take a look at the fantasy relevant players in Atlanta.

A note for our readers. While informative, since we are still months away from pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training, these previews are far from definitive or complete. Free agent signings, trades, and other offseason news will change the landscape for most if not all teams. For any moves that take place after a team preview is written, please look to our Transaction Analysis coverage for instant reactions, and then check back on the Team Previews for more detailed updates (including lineups, rotations, bullpens, etc.) as we get closer to Opening Day.

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Why does the value a team places on a draft pick seem to change from situation to situation?

“The Yankees never made an offer to David Robertson; determined they’d rather sign Andrew Miller and get the draft pick [compensation] for Robertson.” – Buster Olney, via Twitter

All other factors equal, it is preferable to sign a free agent who is not attached to a qualifying offer than a free agent that is QO-attached. This is obvious. What is not obvious is by how much, or whether that “how much” is always constant from free agent to free agent for each team. First round pick protection, competitive window, payroll limit, state of one’s minor-league system, and upcoming draft class will all determine how each team costs (values) losing a draft pick. According to traditional financial, economic, whatever-you-want-to-call-it theory, weighing these factors all makes sense. But, according to traditional theory, each team would individually weigh the cost of giving up a draft pick equally across all QO-attached free agents. Example time:

Team X puts the cost of losing its first round pick at $8M. Absent the qualifying offer, Team X values Max Scherzer at six years, $150M and Ervin Santana at two years, $25M. Taking the cost of losing a first round pick into account, Team X should value Scherzer at 6 years, $142M and Santana at 2 years, $17M.

Cool, makes sense. Alas, mental accounting, which posits that “people spontaneously generate their own mental accounts, and where we place these boundaries subtly (but profoundly) influences financial decision making,” indicates that our traditional theories may be oversimplifying things here. Specifically, it notes that we create topical accounts, in that our decisions are altered by the context of the situation. Whereas most think it absurd to drive 15 minutes down the road to another car dealership to save $75 on a $25,000 car, many will stand in line for an hour in the middle of the night to save that same $75 on a $250 smart phone.

Question: What does this have to do with QO-attached free agents?

Answer: Given the use of topical accounts, we could hypothesize that if GMs categorize Scherzer as an impact player and Santana as a role player—and are less willing to give up a draft pick to get a mere role player—that teams might be either (i) undervaluing the cost of the QO when valuing top free agents (saving $75 on the car) and (ii) overvaluing the cost of the QO when valuing lower-end free agents (saving $75 on the smart phone).

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December 15, 2014 5:03 am

Transaction Analysis: Looks Like We May/Det

2

R.J. Anderson, Tucker Blair and Ben Carsley

A Transaction Analysis involving John Mayberry, Ross Detwiler, and a very forced pun headline.

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December 15, 2014 12:57 am

Transaction Analysis: Melky Laughs Last

9

Sahadev Sharma and Wilson Karaman

The White Sox continue to upgrade their many positions of doom, signing Melky Cabrera to a three-year deal.

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December 15, 2014 12:01 am

Rule 5 Draft Recap

6

Jeff Moore

Intel on the 13 players selected on Thursday.

Rule 5 draftees are not the high-end prospects we know and love, but they’re not without their merits. The hope for each team that drafts a player is that he has one skill that is good enough to justify a roster spot on a major-league club for the entire 2014 season. If not, the player is returned to his original team. Because of this, many clubs elect to pass on selecting a player.

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