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07-02

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Fantasy Freestyle: The Evolution of Rubby De La Rosa
by
George Bissell

07-01

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: How We Got Here
by
Mike Gianella

06-24

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11

Fantasy Freestyle: The Injured Starter Market
by
J.P. Breen

06-23

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: What Can We Learn From Mookie Betts Exit Velocity?
by
George Bissell

06-18

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Desert Ray
by
George Bissell

06-16

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7

Fantasy Freestyle: Projecting Buy-Low and Sell-High Pitchers by cFIP and DRA-
by
Wilson Karaman

06-12

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: Dynasty League Risers: Pitchers
by
J.J. Jansons

06-10

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: May/June Leaders
by
J.P. Breen

06-09

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Jesse Chavez Is Better Than You Think
by
George Bissell

06-05

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: Hello Vickrey, My (Now) Old Friend
by
Mike Gianella

06-04

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10

Fantasy Freestyle: Dynasty League Risers: Hitters
by
J.J. Jansons

06-03

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Fantasy Freestyle: Don't Forget Your Eraser
by
Nick Shlain

06-02

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Who Is This Williams Perez?
by
Wilson Karaman

06-02

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: Coming Up Rosales
by
Nick Shlain

06-01

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1

Fantasy Freestyle: The Chris Young Enigma
by
George Bissell

05-29

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Table-Setting Thieves
by
J.J. Jansons

05-26

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Fantasy Freestyle: Two American League Outfielders of Interest
by
Nick Shlain

05-21

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Fantasy Freestyle: Rebuilding = Opportunity
by
J.J. Jansons

05-21

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Fantasy Freestyle: Revisiting the AL-Only Reliever Landscape
by
Nick Shlain

05-20

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Fantasy Freestyle: Early-Season Back-End Breakouts
by
Wilson Karaman

05-20

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8

Fantasy Freestyle: Staying Afloat in a Sea of Fluctuations
by
Jeff Quinton

05-20

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: The Evolution of Lucas Duda
by
Greg Wellemeyer

05-19

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Fantasy Freestyle: AL-Only Adds, Part Two
by
Nick Shlain

05-18

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: In Search of the Next Joc Pederson
by
J.J. Jansons

05-14

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: Danny Salazar: On the Cusp of Stardom?
by
Greg Wellemeyer

05-12

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Fantasy Freestyle: Finesse the Pitching
by
Nick Shlain

05-07

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: Changed Expectations
by
Nick Shlain

05-06

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: Hey, So What Happened to Jason Heyward?
by
Wilson Karaman

05-05

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: Junior Circuit Players to Monitor
by
Nick Shlain

04-30

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6

Fantasy Freestyle: Checking in on April Leaders
by
J.P. Breen

04-29

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Daily Leagues and Strikeouts
by
J.P. Breen

04-28

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6

Fantasy Freestyle: AL-Only Adds
by
Nick Shlain

04-23

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Fantasy Freestyle: Preaching Patience
by
Nick Shlain

04-22

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9

Fantasy Freestyle: Early-Season Stat Line Scouting
by
Wilson Karaman

04-21

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8

Fantasy Freestyle: CC Sabathia's Early-Season Promise
by
Nick Shlain

04-16

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: New Managers and Stolen Bases
by
J.P. Breen

04-15

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Streaming Two-Start Pitchers
by
J.P. Breen

04-14

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3

Fantasy Freestyle: Early Returns
by
Nick Shlain

04-09

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: Is Now the Time for Zach McAllister?
by
Nick Shlain

04-08

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15

Fantasy Freestyle: Five Bold Predictions
by
Wilson Karaman

04-07

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Fantasy Freestyle: Celebrating National Jump to Conclusions Day
by
Nick Shlain

04-01

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10

Fantasy Freestyle: Endgame Targets for 2015
by
Bret Sayre

03-30

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6

Fantasy Freestyle: Shadow Auctioneering
by
Mike Gianella

03-27

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5

Fantasy Freestyle: BP Rankings vs. ADP
by
Wilson Karaman

03-26

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4

Fantasy Freestyle: Endgame Picks
by
Nick Shlain

03-24

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2

Fantasy Freestyle: 2014 Graduated Prospects, Part 2: 26-50
by
Ben Carsley

03-20

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14

Fantasy Freestyle: 2014 Graduated Prospects, Part 1: 1-25
by
Ben Carsley

03-18

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6

Fantasy Freestyle: Spring Training Battles to Watch
by
J.P. Breen

03-16

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13

Fantasy Freestyle: Case Studies of Two Auctions
by
Mike Gianella

03-11

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Fantasy Freestyle: ADP Underachivers: Hitters
by
Wilson Karaman

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May 14, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Danny Salazar: On the Cusp of Stardom?

5

Greg Wellemeyer

If you're hoping to acquire the Indians righty in your fantasy league, you'd better get on that.

I’m new here. When I began thinking about my first column, using Deserved Run Average (DRA) as a springboard was an obvious choice. I’d show some love to my new colleagues, highlight a complex and stimulating piece of research, and hopefully find something to explore that’s as curious as Jason Schmidt being sandwiched by peak Pedro performances as the top three seasons of the past 25 years.

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May 12, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Finesse the Pitching

1

Nick Shlain

A look at how to address pitching weaknesses in-season, if your auction plans went awry.

If your fantasy baseball philosophy is anything like mine, chances are you decided to fade pitching in at least one league this year. This strategy can go a number of ways. Sometimes, despite spending significantly more on offense at the auction, you’re able to hit on a few (or more) bargains and end up with more profit coming from the pitching staff. Other times, you might only get what you paid for, which isn’t much.

In the latter scenario, action is necessary. This isn’t real-life baseball, where general managers don’t make big trades until June at the earliest. It’s the middle of week six of the season, and all that should mean is there’s plenty of time left for your team to come together and make a run at a fantasy pennant. But you must actually plug your team’s holes, whether they are on the pitching or offense side.

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May 7, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Changed Expectations

5

Nick Shlain

The outlook for these three players is much different than it was five weeks ago.

“Things Done Changed” is the second track and first song on The Notorious B.I.G.’s debut album Ready to Die. In the song, the chorus of which samples Biz Markie and Dr. Dre, Biggie laments the negative changes he’s seen over time in his neighborhood and in his own life as he turns the page to 1993. His frustration builds throughout the song, going off beat to scream the only escape routes, “Either you’re slinging crack rock or you got a wicked jump shot.” Then culminating in the last line of the third verse, “My Momma got cancer in her breast, don’t ask me why I’m (expletive) stressed, things done changed.”

While the song deals with some serious issues and it’s still early in the season, things have certainly changed since draft day. I’ll examine a few players who now have different expectations for their output this season than they did five weeks ago.

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May 6, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Hey, So What Happened to Jason Heyward?

5

Wilson Karaman

Is there any reason to hope for a rebound from the Cardinals outfielder?

Entering draft season, Jason Heyward was something of a controversial player. Some (myself very much included) saw a young player who’d shown a consistently solid approach and flashed tantalizing power and speed components at various points in his career, enough to suggest that if the 25-year-old ever put everything together at once, there might just be top-10-in-fantasy-baseball upside in his bat. Others saw a passive hitter who couldn’t hit lefties and whose swing mechanics had devolved from his days as an elite prospect.

He ended up going 74th overall in NFBC drafts, but with a significant variance between high (36) and low (118) draft slots that reflected the uncertainties surrounding his profile. Fast forward through the first month of the season, and regardless of where in that range he went in your league, the returns have been… not good.

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May 5, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Junior Circuit Players to Monitor

5

Nick Shlain

Two bats and an arm who might be of service to your AL-only squad.

While it’s still early in the season, owners need to be constantly evaluating their rosters. If your team is in need of reinforcements, there’s still obviously plenty of season remaining and time to make changes. If you’re dealing with injuries or players struggling in an AL-only league, here are three names that could help you out this season.

Chris TaylorSeattle Mariners

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April 30, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Checking in on April Leaders

6

J.P. Breen

A breakdown of and buy-low candidate at every position.

We can only glean so much information from looking at April’s statistics. It’s inherently a small sample size. However, in my experience of dishing out advice to fantasy owners in the Bat Signal and on Twitter, it’s obvious that owners don’t often evaluate the “state of the position.” That is, they tend to look at individual players and not focus on the context of the position.

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April 29, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Daily Leagues and Strikeouts

2

J.P. Breen

Examining pitching staffs worth targeting in DFS formats.

Some people who play daily fantasy contests, such as on DraftKings, have come to me and lamented the randomness or luck involved in such leagues. I take this complaint to stem from the fact that one can analyze the matchups, analyze the park factors, and even analyze the recent hot/cold streaks to craft the ideal team each day, and the results are not certain to follow. Well-crafted squads often don’t win, while non-ideal squads can dominate on occasion. It feels wrong, in a way.

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April 28, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: AL-Only Adds

6

Nick Shlain

A few players who could help your squad in junior-circuit formats.

It’s the fourth week of the baseball season, which is right about time to start to cut bait on draft-day ideas that went awry. If you’re one of those out there who’s hurting, these three should help you in AL-Only leagues.

Jimmy ParedesBaltimore Orioles

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April 23, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Preaching Patience

1

Nick Shlain

The importance of knowing what you have.

When it’s this early in the season, it can be tough to get a good read on your fantasy team, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less important to know what you’re holding. It can be even more difficult to judge young players early on as we don’t have the benefit of looking back at a sizable track record. I’ll look at a few young players I believe deserve the patience of fantasy owners and one that you can likely move on from.

Micah JohnsonChicago White Sox

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April 22, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Early-Season Stat Line Scouting

9

Wilson Karaman

Examining minor leaguers whose hot starts make them worth monitoring.

The full-season minor-league schedule has officially kicked off, and we’ve got a good week and a half’s worth of data to work off of now. And we all know what that means: it’s time to start adjusting our pre-season rankings to account for out-of-the-gate performance! Kidding, kidding. For the 52,472,832nd time, using minor-league stats lines for information on prospect status is a terrible, terrible idea. And using nine or 10 games worth of stats is a really terrible idea. Yet there’s still, somehow, a semblance of relevance here insofar as the early returns do affect our perceptions of players despite what we may tell ourselves. And when perception of a prospect changes, even in a small way and against our will, the trade and acquisition values we assign him in dynasty formats is affected. Over the next month as our assorted prospects for a run this season begin to formalize it’ll be these early season performances that inform our recency bias in evaluating prospects to target or sell.

So with caveats noted and demands for caution aired in full, let’s take a look at some interesting super-early performances, both from prospects already firmly on the radar and others who’ve shown some early signs off life from the depths of the prospect ocean.

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April 21, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: CC Sabathia's Early-Season Promise

8

Nick Shlain

Has a return to his old figure brought about a sustainable resurgence for the Yankees lefty?

It’s still early in the 2015 MLB season, but some players’ years are already starting to take shape. The shape of the pitcher I’m focusing on today, CC Sabathia, has been debated and ballyhooed in the past. He slimmed down for last year and couldn’t pitch a full season after having the worst ERA of his career in 2013 (4.78), but he looks a lot like his old self now and in more ways than one.

As I noted in a post at BP Bronx after CC Sabathia’s second start, despite his high ERA the big man seemed to be pitching pretty well and was just getting unlucky with poor results. His ERA was 5.68, but his FIP was just 1.90 due to a 15-to-4 K:BB ratio and just one home run allowed. His .389 BABIP against, .288 AVG against, and 48 percent strand rate all pointed to bad luck, and Sabathia proved that hypothesis correct, at least for one more night, as he continued to keep the ball down and on the corners.

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April 16, 2015 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: New Managers and Stolen Bases

5

J.P. Breen

A look at how the six new MLB skippers could impact players' fantasy values with their base-stealing philosophies.

A half-dozen teams have new managers in 2015. While that fact may have already crawled its way out of our collective consciousness in the first couple weeks of the year, new managers do have some impact on fantasy baseball production. Perhaps most directly, changes atop the totem pole in the dugout can lead to strategic differences on the base paths. In other words, the frequency with which a team runs on the basepaths can change with a new manager.

The Detroit Tigers are a prime example of this. In 2013 with Jim Leyland at the helm, the Tigers stole the fewest bases (35) in Major League Baseball. After Leyland retired and Brad Ausmus became skipper, the Tigers ran wild. Their 106 stolen bases a year ago ranked seventh in the league. Coming into Wednesday’s games, they had stolen the second-most bases in baseball. Different managers, different strategies.

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