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Jeff Quinton 

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07-29

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The Quinton: Searching for Trade Deadline Targets
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Jeff Quinton

07-20

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The Quinton: Is There a Best Day (of the Week) to Trade?
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Jeff Quinton

07-07

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Player Profile: Matt Kemp
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Jeff Quinton

07-01

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The Quinton: Trading With or As the Leader
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Jeff Quinton

06-30

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Tools of Ignorance: Is Now the Time to Sell?
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Jeff Quinton

06-24

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Player Profile: Zach Davies
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Jeff Quinton

06-17

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The Quinton: In-Season Solutions, Missed
by
Jeff Quinton

06-08

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: Mark Trumbo and Being Wrong
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Jeff Quinton

06-06

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Transaction Analysis: Small Trade James
by
James Fegan, Jeff Quinton, Christopher Crawford and Bryan Grosnick

05-26

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13

Tools of Ignorance: The Team-Mandated Player Opt-Out
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Jeff Quinton

05-23

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The Quinton: Trades, Supply Chains, and Lead Times
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Jeff Quinton

05-12

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The Quinton: The Cost of a Trade
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Jeff Quinton

05-04

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Tools of Ignorance: The Somewhat Dubious Outlook For the Next Generation of Rebuilds
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Jeff Quinton

04-22

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Free Agent Watch: Week Four
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J.P. Breen and Jeff Quinton

04-21

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The Quinton: The Big Trade, Untouchables, and Storytelling
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Jeff Quinton

04-12

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The Quinton: Bold Predictions and Confirmation Bias
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Jeff Quinton

04-08

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7

Free Agent Watch: Week One
by
J.P. Breen and Jeff Quinton

04-05

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10

The Quinton: Keeper-League Auction Takeaways
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Jeff Quinton

04-02

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TINO (There Is No Offseason): Ep. 67: Avocados
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George Bissell, Ben Carsley, Craig Goldstein and Jeff Quinton

04-01

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My Model Portfolio: Punting Saves
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Jeff Quinton

03-22

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The Quinton: Beating the Wisdom of the Crowd
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Jeff Quinton

03-14

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Flags Fly Forever Podcast: Ep. 82: Draft Strategy with Jeff Quinton
by
George Bissell and Jeff Quinton

03-14

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The Quinton: On Paying for Saves
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Jeff Quinton

03-04

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Tools of Ignorance: The Dodgers' Breakable Rotation
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Jeff Quinton

02-29

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The Quinton: Partaking in Both Auctions and Drafts
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Jeff Quinton

02-23

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TINO (There Is No Offseason): Ep. 64: The BP Annual Drinking Game
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George Bissell, Ben Carsley, Craig Goldstein, Bret Sayre, Meg Rowley, Matt Sussman and Jeff Quinton

02-22

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The Quinton: The Biggest Advantage of Mock Drafts
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Jeff Quinton

02-19

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10

The Quinton: On Reaching
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Jeff Quinton

02-08

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The Quinton: Shortstops, Uncertainty, and Scarcity
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Jeff Quinton

02-08

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7

Tools of Ignorance: Forget It, Jake
by
Jeff Quinton

02-01

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The Quinton: Third Base, Year-to-Year Shifts, and Reference Points
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Jeff Quinton

01-27

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The Quinton: Trades That Aren't Being Made
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Jeff Quinton

01-18

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The Quinton: The Representativeness Heuristic and Baseball Positions
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Jeff Quinton

01-13

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The Quinton: Strategy Planning, Sub-Strategies, and Catcher Strategies
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Jeff Quinton

01-04

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6

The Quinton: Two New Year's Resolutions
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Jeff Quinton

12-30

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Best of BP 2015: Winning By Design
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Jeff Quinton

12-28

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Tools of Ignorance: Behavioral Economics and the Rise of the Player Opt-Out
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Jeff Quinton

12-18

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The Quinton: Valuing Disappointing Players
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Jeff Quinton

12-09

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Transaction Analysis: Cubs Implement Flextime
by
Jeff Quinton, Sahadev Sharma and J.P. Breen

12-08

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Transaction Analysis: Sorry We Broke Up, Soria Missed You
by
R.J. Anderson, Sahadev Sharma, Rian Watt and Jeff Quinton

12-07

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The Quinton: Negotiating the Trade Process
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Jeff Quinton

11-30

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The Quinton: Obstacles to Strategic Agility
by
Jeff Quinton

11-12

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5

Winning By Design
by
Jeff Quinton

11-11

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Winning By Design
by
Jeff Quinton

11-10

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Winning By Design
by
Jeff Quinton

11-02

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BP Unfiltered: Why The Broadcasters Hated Your Team
by
Jeff Quinton

10-20

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The Quinton: Audit Season
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Jeff Quinton

10-14

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Playoff Prospectus: ALDS Game 5 Previews and PECOTA Odds
by
Jeff Quinton and Matthew Trueblood

10-11

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Playoff Prospectus: PECOTA Odds and Sunday Game 3 Previews
by
Jeff Quinton and Matthew Trueblood

10-06

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Tools of Ignorance: Non-Strategies, Ben Cherington's Job, and the Cole Hamels Trade Market
by
Jeff Quinton

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This is a BP Fantasy article. To read it, sign up today!

July 29, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: Searching for Trade Deadline Targets

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Jeff Quinton

How to identify the players you should seek in your upcoming fantasy barters.

Earlier this week our wonderful fantasy staff put together their Second-Half Buys. I, absent such fullness of wonder, did not participate, and for that, I apologize. To make up for this, my plan is to help us try to develop some tools for finding our own second-half buys, our own trade targets.

This skill, finding trade targets, is incredibly important, obviously, but it is likely even more important in today’s (fantasy baseball) game. Why is it more important today than it was ten years ago? Because, as we have said many times, the internet has made it difficult to differentiate via information asymmetry. Put differently, as soon as we posted our staff’s “second-half buys,” those players likely became more difficult to acquire—either their acquisition price in trade or FAAB went up or someone looked to scoop them from the free agent pool. This does not hold true for every player or recommendation (some fantasy baseball participants do not read fantasy analysis and some only read some sites), but it holds true for more players than you, or at least I, originally thought. Why? Because these recommendations are not random strokes of genius. We, as a fantasy baseball analysis community, largely follow the same twitter accounts, read the same articles, and are thus likely to write-up and analyze the same player because those players are most likely to be top of mind. This is not a criticism, it is just how our brains work, and I point it out in order to highlight the increased importance of finding trade targets outside of and in addition to recommendations from fantasy baseball experts. Moreover, the more players we can target, the more we can shop around for the best price. Lastly, not everyone wants to put in the effort, so those willing to do so can often get better than expected deals.

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July 20, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: Is There a Best Day (of the Week) to Trade?

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Jeff Quinton

Why most barters occur on the day weekly transactions are processed, and how to take advantage of such trends.

Fantasy baseball trades, as we have discussed previously, tend to happen at certain times. They happen after the last of the big free agents sign in the offseason, right before the keeper deadline, and right before the league’s trading deadline. More than anything though, at least in the leagues in which I participate, trades happen on the day of weekly transaction. For many leagues, this day is Sunday. These days, especially at this time of the year in leagues with active trade markets, are fun days. If we’re lucky, the messages, emails, and texts are flying as we see what is out there and try to improve our team.

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July 7, 2016 11:16 am

Player Profile: Matt Kemp

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Jeff Quinton

The Padres outfielder has seen his once-electric tools diminish, but is he still a significant fantasy asset?

Matt Kemp, out of Midwest City High School, was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the sixth round of the 2003 MLB draft. Upon debuting in 2006 (his age-22 season), Kemp hit the ground running as an impact fantasy baseball player. He proved to be a speed and power threat from the start, hitting seven home runs and stealing six bases in 166 plate appearances in 2006. An early season shoulder injury and a subsequent 39 game stint in Triple-A limited Kemp to 98 games played in 2007, but his potential as an impact five-category player was on full display as he roto-slashed .342/10/47/42/10 (AVG/HR/R/RBI/SB).

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July 1, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: Trading With or As the Leader

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Jeff Quinton

Examining the tacticts behind consummating a swap if you're in first place or dealing with the first-place team.

First, to clarify, by leader, we mean an entity that all others are trailing in a competition, not an entity that others follow in action.

Right now, and always, we are either leading, tied for the lead, or not leading; that’s fantasy baseball for ya. Here at The Quinton, we tend to have our discussions more in terms of teams that are focused on the short term (buyers) and teams that are focused on the long term (sellers) as opposed to teams currently in first and teams not currently in first. The reason for this is that, in theory, which team is in first place should not matter; each team should be focused making decisions that will most increase their odds of winning. As we have so often said, though, “in reality, this reality ain’t theory.” In this case, it does matter which team has the lead. It also matters whether the league is in a redraft or dynasty/keeper league. We will discuss each of those scenarios below, what behaviors those situations tend to cause, and what we can do take advantage or best deal with those behaviors. (Lastly, the scenario we are going to be discussing is when a team has clear lead.)

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Why do teams almost always wait until late July to make significant trades?

Evan Drellich’s article in Boston Herald this past Sunday quoted Red Sox general manager Dave Dombrowski as saying about potential trades:

“It’s still early. I can tell you I’ve done a great deal of work, there’s five clubs that are willing to talk about it. They’re the same five clubs that have been at it all year, so it’s still a little early for that type of situation. We’ll just see what happens. I think the thing you got to remember is, it takes two clubs to make a deal. And most clubs, as I’ve said all along—and it hasn’t changed whatsoever really—are not prepared to move towards 2017 and be in a position of where they’re willing to move.”

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June 24, 2016 6:00 am

Player Profile: Zach Davies

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Jeff Quinton

A look at whether the Brewers righty can sustain his first-half breakout.

Player Background

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June 17, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: In-Season Solutions, Missed

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Jeff Quinton

Why the moves you decide to make in-season can be a function of how you frame your team's problem.

It’s midseason and we all have some work to do to get our fantasy baseball teams to where they need to be if we are going to maximize our chances of winning. Luckily, we all know what to do: find our weaknesses and the areas where we can improve the most, figure out what we can afford to give up to improve, and then make it happen. We have spent a lot of time discussing why we so often cannot act optimally, why we cannot execute against our strategies or our goals, and how we can take advantage of the instances when our leaguemates fall victims to these obstacles. These discussions always come with some big assumptions: (i) that we are able to find the proper strategy and (ii) that the proper strategy at the point of the discussion will remain the proper strategy. Today we will take a look at these assumptions.

Before we get into process, strategy, and decision making, we should revisit an oft-told fable from my time growing up in this country. Luckily, it is short. It goes something like this,

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June 8, 2016 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Mark Trumbo and Being Wrong

4

Jeff Quinton

Examining why we might've whiffed on the O's slugger's breakout, and how to best avoid similar misses going forward.

Mark Trumbo has been very good at baseball this season and, because fielding and base-running are not a part of fantasy baseball, he has been even better as a fantasy baseball player. Per the first edition of Mike Gianella’s in-season fantasy rankings, Trumbo was the 19th-most-valuable hitter in the American League as of June 1st. Since then, he has roto-slashed .425/3/9/9/0 (AVG/HR/R/RBI/SB). It is thus safe to say that his 2016 production to date is safely within the top 15 among AL hitters and that he is likely flirting with top-ten AL hitter value. Not too shabby for a player with an NFBC ADP of 164.52.

The reasons as to why Trumbo has been good are no mystery—he has been healthy, he is taking a lot of at-bats in Camden Yards, he is hitting in the Baltimore Orioles’ lineup, and, as pointed out by Jeff Sullivan of Fangraphs yesterday, Trumbo is doing his usual crushing of baseballs, while hitting more flyballs and fewer groundballs. Will he stay healthy? Probably; putting aside 2014, he has played a minimum of 142 each season. Will he continue to hit more flyballs? Maybe. I’d imagine the league will make some adjustment, but I’d also imagine that some of these gains are here to stay as he showed improvements toward the end of last season.

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Chicago takes James Shields off San Diego's hands for a pair of prospects.

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Within an unusual and thought-provoking trend, there is an extremely unusual and extremely thought-provoking subtrend.

We, as an internet, have thoroughly discussed the player opt-out, but oversaturation and (a lack of) timeliness have never stopped us before here at Tools of Ignorance and they will not stop us now. In December, at the beginning of the height of player opt-out-mania, I wrote about why this contract structure might have increased in popularity. I hypothesized, among other things, that players might be valuing the opt-out and flexibility it brings more than teams valued it, or that players were just flat out overvaluing the opt-out, or both. It felt right; it felt like it made sense.

Then word came out that David Price did not want a player option, but rather that Dave Dombrowski insisted on including one. The future, it turns out, can be a real know-it-all.

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May 23, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: Trades, Supply Chains, and Lead Times

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Jeff Quinton

Considering the sequence of a fantasy trade, from research to completion, can help us to avoid missing out on the best deals.

Trades are coming. We have discussed different types of trades, the importance of trades, and a lot of other things to do with trades. We have taken a look at the actual mechanics of trades here and there (we have discussed trading with different negotiation types, how we can use choice architecture when crafting trades, and so on), but we often overlook the supply chain of a trade. If, as the internet states, supply chain is “the sequence of processes involved in the production and distribution of a commodity,” then the supply chain of a fantasy baseball trade is the sequence of processes involved from the time a trade is conceptualized to the time it is agreed upon or disbanded.

The important (for this conversation) thing about supply chain, whether that of a fantasy baseball trade or that of a new-product launch, is that it is easy to overlook. It is easy to assume everything will just work out so long as we have the right idea and the right plan. This assumption, though, causes product launches to be delayed or less profitable, and it causes us to miss out on beneficial trades. Because we want to make as many beneficial trades as possible, we do not want to make this assumption—we do not want to overlook the supply chain of our trades. Maybe you do not overlook the supply chain of your trades. If so, well done. If not, or if you want to take read about the concept, then please find the below discussion around a critical concept of supply chain: lead time.

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May 12, 2016 6:00 am

The Quinton: The Cost of a Trade

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Jeff Quinton

Identifying the two costs associated with each fantasy trade, and the best ways to ensure you make the optimal move.

The real baseball teams have been playing for over a month and, consequently, so too have our fantasy baseball teams. As always happens, our perfectly planned team has proven itself to be imperfect. Maybe our hitters are underperforming, maybe are starting pitchers have fallen victim to injury, maybe our closers are no longer closers. It happens. The lucky (and/or skilled) among us have been able to address these weaknesses via the waiver wire or early season trade, but most of are or will be in the position of looking to the trade market for an upgrade.

Groundbreaking stuff, I know. But a big thing we see in a lot of trades or trade discussions is improper framing of the decision being made. The most pervasive error in this regard is to simply look at what our team is missing and then trade from a strength or redundancy to improve that weakness. This is not inherently a mistake and this process might lead to optimal decision-making and strategy, but there are other factors we need to consider to improve our odds at getting to optimal that optimal choice.

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