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J.P. Breen 

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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

12-17

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

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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9

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

12-04

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9

Fantasy Team Preview: Colorado Rockies
by
J.P. Breen

11-18

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9

Fantasy Freestyle: Five Fantasy Busts
by
J.P. Breen

11-13

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Fantasy Freestyle: Five Fantasy MVPs of 2014
by
J.P. Breen

11-11

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8

Transaction Analysis: Cuddyer Quashes Qualifying Offer
by
R.J. Anderson and J.P. Breen

11-05

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Fantasy Team Preview: Chicago White Sox
by
J.P. Breen

10-28

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Looking Back: Madison Bumgarner for Cy Young
by
J.P. Breen

10-15

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Playoff Spotlight: Lorenzo Cain
by
J.P. Breen

10-06

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Playoff Spotlight: Sergio Romo
by
J.P. Breen

10-06

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6

Playoff Prospectus: A Royal Shocker
by
J.P. Breen

10-03

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7

Playoff Prospectus: Baseball Nirvana Game Previews
by
Sahadev Sharma, Jeff Quinton, Mike Gianella, Doug Thorburn and J.P. Breen

10-02

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Are Elite Pitchers Becoming More Numerous?
by
J.P. Breen

09-22

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Circling Back to The Holy Trinity
by
J.P. Breen

09-17

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Streaming Strikeouts
by
J.P. Breen

09-10

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2

The Buyer's Guide: Lance Lynn
by
J.P. Breen

08-27

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The Call-Up: Jorge Soler
by
J.P. Breen and Mauricio Rubio

08-25

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2

The Buyer's Guide: Carlos Carrasco
by
J.P. Breen

08-21

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0

Flags Fly Forever Podcast: Ep. 31: J.P.! You Made It
by
Bret Sayre, Mike Gianella, J.P. Breen and Mauricio Rubio

08-20

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Being Wrong About Yovani Gallardo
by
J.P. Breen

08-18

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2

The Buyer's Guide: Jonathan Lucroy
by
J.P. Breen

08-13

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3

Fantasy Freestyle: Setting Expectations on Superstars
by
J.P. Breen

08-11

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1

The Buyer's Guide: Josh Harrison
by
J.P. Breen

08-11

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7

The Call-Up: Michael Taylor
by
Tucker Blair and J.P. Breen

08-04

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2

The Buyer's Guide: Lucas Duda
by
J.P. Breen

08-01

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14

Transaction Analysis: The Great Big David Price Trade
by
R.J. Anderson, J.P. Breen, Sam Miller, Jordan Gorosh, Paul Sporer, Craig Goldstein and Jeff Quinton

08-01

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4

Transaction Analysis: Astros, Marlins, Swap Sell-Low Guys
by
Zachary Levine, Jeff Moore, J.P. Breen and Jason Parks

07-31

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0

Transaction Analysis: Andrew Miller Goes to Baltimore
by
R.J. Anderson, Tucker Blair and J.P. Breen

07-31

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2

Transaction Analysis: Brewers Get Parra's Glove
by
R.J. Anderson and J.P. Breen

07-28

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0

The Buyer's Guide: Francisco Liriano
by
J.P. Breen

07-23

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3

Fantasy Freestyle: Useful Non-Closer Relievers
by
J.P. Breen

07-21

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9

The Buyer's Guide: Jason Kipnis
by
J.P. Breen

07-14

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2

The Buyer's Guide: Howie Kendrick
by
J.P. Breen

07-09

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6

Fantasy Freestyle: Don't Forget About Me
by
J.P. Breen

07-07

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The Buyer's Guide: Michael Brantley
by
J.P. Breen

07-01

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7

The Buyer's Guide: Jake Arrieta
by
J.P. Breen

06-25

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Checking in on Cinderella: Pitchers
by
J.P. Breen

06-24

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6

The Call-Up: Marco Gonzales
by
Jeff Moore and J.P. Breen

06-23

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5

The Buyer's Guide: Billy Butler
by
J.P. Breen

06-18

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7

Fantasy Freestyle: Checking in on Cinderella: Hitters
by
J.P. Breen

06-16

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5

The Buyer's Guide: Michael Wacha
by
J.P. Breen

06-09

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The Buyer's Guide: Pablo Sandoval
by
J.P. Breen

06-02

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13

The Buyer's Guide: Homer Bailey
by
J.P. Breen

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October 6, 2014 2:19 am

Playoff Prospectus: A Royal Shocker

6

J.P. Breen

The Royals are the latest team to remind us to expect the unexpected in the playoffs.

The Kansas City Royals entered the 2014 postseason as the feel-good team of the year. The franchise hadn’t enjoyed home cooking in October since the glorious 1985 season. Of course, they weren’t considered a dominant club in the regular season this year by any stretch, but thanks to a combined 34-21 record in August and September, the Royals ended that woeful 29-year postseason drought. The baseball world rejoiced. It was a tremendous story.

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Four postseason games, with the first pitch scheduled before breakfast on the West Coast. Previews of all four of them.

All losses count the same no matter the score, so after a dismaying loss Thursday the Tigers get a chance to even the series.

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October 2, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Are Elite Pitchers Becoming More Numerous?

2

J.P. Breen

We might be in the "Era of the Pitcher," but does that mean that the league is teeming with top-shelf arms?

Early last week, I reintroduced the concept of the Holy Trinity and outlined the 19 starting pitchers who qualified for the elite status. Furthermore, I argued that Holy Trinity pitchers, on average, significantly outperform the league-average pitcher. While that’s not a groundbreaking discovery, the estimated margin of 1.00 ERA for any HT pitcher over the league-average starter is remarkable enough to perhaps persuade fantasy owners to specifically alter their draft board in order to target them.

However, the HT list from 2014 is merely a piece of the puzzle. It begs the question: Are HT pitchers increasing in frequency as pitching continues to dominate across Major League Baseball?

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September 22, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Circling Back to The Holy Trinity

2

J.P. Breen

A look at the pitchers who excelled in the three statistical areas fantasy owners cherish most.

The Holy Trinity is nothing new ‘round these parts. Bret Sayre discussed the concept and gave it its moniker last season, and I brought it up once again in my first piece at Baseball Prospectus. For those who are unfamiliar with The Holy Trinity, though, it’s pretty simple. As fantasy owners, we like pitchers who can either strike guys out, limit walks, or generate copious amounts of ground balls. But we love pitchers who can do all three. Thus, The Holy Trinity occurs when a pitcher posts better-than-average strikeout, walk, and ground-ball rates.

In short, they’re generally the guys to covet in fantasy leagues. They tend to be the anchors for your starting rotation, as they can provide above-average production in all categories. We’re not talking about someone like Francisco Liriano, who will rack up the strikeouts but drag down the WHIP category. These are guys like King Felix who provide value in strikeouts, wins, ERA, and WHIP.

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September 17, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Streaming Strikeouts

1

J.P. Breen

If your fantasy squad needs some late-season Ks, J.P. has you covered.

As we move to the closing weeks of the season, fantasy owners in the championship hunt are forced to chase specific categories. Realistically, only a category or two leave room for fluctuation with so few games remaining, so any late-season waiver pickups tend to relate to those specific needs.

In this article, I want to focus on little-owned starting pitchers who could help rack up the strikeouts down the stretch. Most leagues have moved beyond the trade deadline; thus, any potential additions must come from the waiver wire. All ownership statistics are from ESPN leagues, but one can reasonable assume that Yahoo! and CBS ownership rates would be roughly equivalent.

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September 10, 2014 6:00 am

The Buyer's Guide: Lance Lynn

2

J.P. Breen

Has the Cardinals righty truly become a fronline starter, or should owners look to dump him on someone who believes in his breakout?

With less than a month remaining in the 2014 season, we begin to shift our gaze toward the 2015 fantasy campaign. That’s not only because many leagues have moved beyond their trade deadlines, but also because it’s too difficult to project performance over a two- or three-week period of time. Too much fluctuation exists. Thus, the buy, hold, or sell discussion at the end of the piece will be geared toward the 2015 campaign while still providing some analysis in regards to the remaining three weeks.

September and October is when fantasy owners begin to reflect on the entire year and dish out accolades. While we’ll be talking about Fantasy MVPs and Fantasy Busts soon enough, the Most Underappreciated Player is regularly one of the more interesting distinctions discussed each autumn. In that vein, it seems right-hander Lance Lynn is deservedly getting some love as of late. He’s been overshadowed by Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha this year—and even Shelby Miller more recently, to some extent—but he owns a sterling 2.80 ERA and has easily been a top-30 fantasy starter.

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August 27, 2014 12:02 am

The Call-Up: Jorge Soler

0

J.P. Breen and Mauricio Rubio

The Cubs call up another of the most exciting prospects in the minors, as Jorge Soler takes his place in front of Wrigley's ivy.

The situation: The rebuilding Cubs find themselves in need of an outfielder as Justin Ruggiano is likely headed to the disabled list. Top prospect Jorge Soler has been mashing at Double- and Triple-A and has earned a callup that will likely last the rest of the year.

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August 25, 2014 6:00 am

The Buyer's Guide: Carlos Carrasco

2

J.P. Breen

The Indians righty caught J.P.'s attention last week, and now might be the time to pounce.

Spring training in Arizona is close to perfection for me. I adore the various unique ballparks that only fill to half of their capacity, the infectious optimism that surrounds every team, the pristine weather, and the opportunity to submerge myself in nothing but baseball. Most of all, I enjoy the action on the backfields. There’s something great about watching dozens of young players playing a wonderful game, wearing jerseys without their names on the backs, and honing their craft in relative obscurity.

The real thrill, though, comes when some no-name guy jacks one 450 feet to straightaway center. Or when a random pitcher catches your eye because he’s popping triple digits with ease. It’s that moment in which you mutter, “Wow. Who the f--- is this guy?” and quickly start scribbling notes.

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Bret and Mike take some deeper dives into important fantasy topics of the week.

Read the full article...

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August 20, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Being Wrong About Yovani Gallardo

1

J.P. Breen

J.P. wasn't expecting much from the Brewers righty, but he's been pleasantly surprised.

Admittedly, this article stems from a recent article by our own Craig Goldstein and an ongoing series by Jason Parks. It revolves around the idea of making preseason projections and ultimately being wrong. Goldstein took the high road in his article last week and explained that baseball analysts can occasionally hide behind process as a way of lessening the impact of making an incorrect prediction. He writes:

I often think my reasons at the time were justified, and that just because it didn’t break my way, doesn’t mean I was wrong, just that it turned out differently. This is hiding behind “the process.” I was wrong, and good reasoning at the time or not, that needs to be owned.

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August 18, 2014 6:00 am

The Buyer's Guide: Jonathan Lucroy

2

J.P. Breen

The Brewers backstop has emerged as a darkhorse MVP candidate, but his is improvement at the plate sustainable?

Approach at the plate has been on my mind in recent weeks. I’ve been specifically ruminating on the learned aspect of plate discipline; for example, how gifted 20-something hitters who have otherworldly hand-eye coordination can learn to eschew a simple bat-to-ball approach and focus on quality pitches to hit. That is to say, how can hitters develop the inner filter to discern between pitches they can hit and pitches they should hit, or which pitches they can merely hit and which pitches they can drive.

Obviously, such a development would be desirable for any player, and it can happen for many different reasons. Maybe it’s a maturation process. Maybe it’s a new pitching coach who presents the information in a different way. Maybe it’s trial and error. Maybe it’s studying the numbers. But I’ve been more convinced that most big-league hitters are only able to carve out sustained success over multiple seasons if they can adjust and refine their approach at the plate, at least to some degree.

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August 13, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Setting Expectations on Superstars

3

J.P. Breen

Reevaluating the fantasy value of two elite hitters you may have been nervous to draft this spring.

“He’s just a name-brand at this point. He’s not as good as people think. At this point, people are blinded by previous performance, rather than current or future performance.”

My buddy, Drew, leaned forward and smiled as he crossed off Tom Brady’s name from our pre-draft ranking sheet. Drew and I have co-owned a fantasy football team for years. He’s the brains of the operation. I’m along for the ride because it makes me more interested in the NFL than I otherwise would be, but Drew spent the better part of two months preaching to me that Tom Brady was no longer the quarterback everyone had grown accustomed to over the past decade. We had him as the no. 8 QB in our pre-draft rankings and it’s not difficult to imagine the smug look on our faces as we watched Brady go as the third-overall QB in the second round.

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