CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Fantasy Articles 

Search Fantasy Articles

All Blogs (including podcasts)

Active Columns

Authors

Article Types

Archives

12-18

comment icon

2

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

12-18

comment icon

3

Fantasy Team Preview: San Francisco Giants
by
Jeff Quinton

12-17

comment icon

0

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

12-17

comment icon

0

Fantasy Freestyle: Undervalued NL Starting Pitchers
by
Keith Cromer

12-16

comment icon

10

Fantasy Freestyle: The Trouble With Tiers
by
Mike Gianella

12-16

comment icon

8

Fantasy Team Preview: New York Mets
by
Bret Sayre

12-15

comment icon

2

Fantasy Team Preview: Atlanta Braves
by
Nick Shlain

12-12

comment icon

9

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

12-12

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Miami Marlins
by
Ben Carsley

12-11

comment icon

0

Fantasy Freestyle: Jose Quintana, Forever Underrated
by
Matt Collins

12-10

comment icon

0

Fantasy Freestyle: American League Speed Options on the Cheap
by
Keith Cromer

12-10

comment icon

4

Fantasy Team Preview: San Diego Padres
by
Wilson Karaman

12-09

comment icon

1

Fantasy Freestyle: Is Yordano Ventura Overrated Now?
by
Nick Shlain

12-09

comment icon

5

Fantasy Team Preview: Cincinnati Reds
by
Bret Sayre

12-08

comment icon

1

Five to Watch: Fantasy-Relevant Winter Meetings Rumors
by
Ben Carsley

12-08

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Philadelphia Phillies
by
Mike Gianella

12-05

comment icon

1

Fantasy Freestyle: The Moderate Rebuild
by
Craig Goldstein

12-05

comment icon

9

Fantasy Team Preview: Chicago Cubs
by
Jeff Quinton

12-04

comment icon

9

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

12-04

comment icon

1

Fantasy Freestyle: Hey, So What Happened to Mike Minor Last Year?
by
Wilson Karaman

12-04

comment icon

3

Retrospective Player Valuation: Mixed-League Pitchers
by
Mike Gianella

12-03

comment icon

6

Fantasy Freestyle: Relief Help
by
Keith Cromer

12-02

comment icon

0

Retrospective Player Valuation: Mixed-League Hitters
by
Mike Gianella

12-02

comment icon

4

Fantasy Freestyle: Keeper Decisions
by
Nick Shlain

12-01

comment icon

2

Fantasy Team Preview: Arizona Diamondbacks
by
Matt Collins

11-26

comment icon

2

Fantasy Team Preview: Baltimore Orioles
by
Craig Goldstein

11-25

comment icon

4

Fantasy Freestyle: Christian Yelich is Poised to Break Out
by
Matt Collins

11-25

comment icon

2

Fantasy Freestyle: Offseason Trades and Responding to the Default Effect
by
Jeff Quinton

11-25

comment icon

1

Fantasy Freestyle: 40-Man Additions to Know
by
Craig Goldstein

11-24

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Detroit Tigers
by
Nick Shlain

11-21

comment icon

5

Fantasy Team Preview: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
by
Wilson Karaman

11-20

comment icon

1

Fantasy Freestyle: Offseason Trades and the Default Effect
by
Jeff Quinton

11-20

comment icon

0

Retrospective Player Valuation: National League Pitchers
by
Mike Gianella

11-19

comment icon

4

Fantasy Team Preview: Kansas City Royals
by
Ben Carsley

11-18

comment icon

3

Retrospective Player Valuation: National League Hitters
by
Mike Gianella

11-18

comment icon

9

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

11-17

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Oakland Athletics
by
Keith Cromer

11-14

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Seattle Mariners
by
Nick Shlain

11-13

comment icon

8

Retrospective Player Valuation: American League Pitchers
by
Mike Gianella

11-13

comment icon

0

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

11-12

comment icon

11

Fantasy Team Preview: Cleveland Indians
by
Matt Collins

11-12

comment icon

3

Five to Watch: More Post-Hype Prospects for 2015
by
Ben Carsley

11-11

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: New York Yankees
by
Bret Sayre

11-11

comment icon

1

Retrospective Player Valuation: American League Hitters
by
Mike Gianella

11-10

comment icon

7

Fantasy Team Preview: Toronto Blue Jays
by
Wilson Karaman

11-07

comment icon

0

Fantasy Team Preview: Tampa Bay Rays
by
Jeff Quinton

11-06

comment icon

5

Five to Watch: Post-Hype Prospects for 2015
by
Craig Goldstein

11-06

comment icon

2

Fantasy Freestyle: What to Make of Odrisamer Despaigne
by
Keith Cromer

11-05

comment icon

0

Fantasy Freestyle: Curb Your Pitching Enthusiasm
by
Nick Shlain

11-05

comment icon

0

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

<< Previous Column Entries No More Column Entries

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

December 18, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Don't Forget the Vets

2

Matt Collins

They might be on the wrong side of 30, but these players can provide a safer return than many hotshot 20-somethings in 2015.

Youth has always dominated the sports landscape, and it’s only getting more prominent. With more and more press being given to the prospects around baseball, it’s becoming even more fun to dream on a player’s potential in hopes of a bright future. Fantasy baseball is no exception to this. In your various drafts, you will always have people who fall in love with a specific name and put them on their team expecting the upside to be hit. Now, don’t get me wrong, this is an important part of anyone’s draft. If you’re going to win your league, you need to take some chances on the upside plays and hope they provide value relative to where they were drafted or what you bid on them. With that being said, you can’t have a roster full of those guys. Balance is an important thing, and sprinkling in some relatively sure things with the potentially great youngsters is important. The problem, of course, is that after the very top-tier, most of these sure things come in the form of aging veterans, guys who you never know when the decline will actually start. The following group of players won’t be the sexiest pickups for your team, but are a good bet for solid production to surround your young, potentially great players.

Note that these write-ups are for 2015 only. Obviously things change significantly for those of you in dynasty and keeper leagues.

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

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

December 18, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: San Francisco Giants

3

Jeff Quinton

A trio of studs compensates for the defending champs' barren farm system.

Champions of baseball, collection of various fantasy baseball talents. We all know the headliners: Posey, Pence, and Bumgarner. Beyond that, there is an unresolved third base role to go along with a lot of veterans and role players. The only interesting 25-or-under talents other than Bumgarner are Joe Panik and Andrew Susac, and interesting is being used liberally here. The Giants minor-league system is even less interesting for fantasy purposes. Anyhow, it is often the boring, the old hat, the suboptimal that gets overlooked in fantasy, and it is these very players that can turn some of the nicest fantasy baseball profits. Continue reading for analysis.

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.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 17, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: Milwaukee Brewers

0

J.P. Breen

Thump and speed in the lineup make up for a mediocre rotation and a possible by-committee closer situation.

The Milwaukee Brewers are an intriguing club for fantasy owners. The squad lacks any obvious flops who project to receive significant playing time. At worst, mediocrity should reign supreme—especially in the starting rotation—but one can reasonably expect above-average production at almost every offensive position. That’s what makes the Brewers attractive for owners; however, that’s also the reason why the Brew Crew could compete for an NL postseason berth, despite being forgotten by the masses due to a quiet offseason.

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.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 17, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Undervalued NL Starting Pitchers

0

Keith Cromer

These senior-circuit hurlers might be better fantasy assets than you think.

You will always find value with starting pitchers in shallow mixed leagues, but even in the deepest of NL-Only 5x5 leagues, there are usually a handful of pitchers from year-to-year that produce solid earnings, yet never get the love they deserve. In most cases, these pitchers are undervalued because of their strikeout totals, the team they pitch for, the metrics show regression, or simply that there is never any buzz when their names are called out.

I target these pitchers each year, knowing the investment will be low and the earnings will be positive. Now mind you, you don’t want to fill up your pitching staff with pitchers of this ilk, especially in 5x5 leagues. Yet it seems many forget there are three other traditional starting pitcher categories in 5x5, get hung up on K/9 rates and pass these pitchers by. In my experiences, in competitive NL- Only 5x5 leagues, grabbing one or two of these unappreciated arms in your respective drafts or auctions can help you pile up quality innings and wins without hurting your ratios.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

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.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

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.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

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.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 12, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Shortening Your Dynasty Rebuild

9

J.P. Breen

A look at some ways to get your team back in contention post haste.

Dynasty leagues with extensive minor-league rosters have become more popular in recent years. It’s one of the greatest ways to keep all owners engaged throughout the season, as the action never quits. However, such intensive and deep leagues can be intimidating for first-time owners. For example, I joined my first dynasty league in 2014, and it wasn’t with a bunch of amateurs. I jumped into the deep end and participated in TDGX—a 20-team, 40-man roster dynasty league with fantasy experts from across the internet baseball landscape.

It was my first dynasty draft and my first attempt at fielding my own team. Needless to say, it didn’t go smoothly. I made rookie mistakes in the draft. Grabbing elite prospects is important because the league includes a 10-man minor-league roster, but I erred and drafted prospects too early. That made my big-league roster far too shallow.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 12, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: Miami Marlins

0

Ben Carsley

It's a new-look squad in the wake of the Winter Meetings, but aside from Mat Latos, the headliners are still the same.

The Miami Marlins are dumb and bad.

This preview piece was slated to run Thursday morning, but, upon news of the Dee Gordon trade, was held back a day in order to be updated. Then, the Marlins went ahead and pulled off the Mat Latos trade, further ruining the good work of the handsome author, who is the protagonist in this story.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 11, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Jose Quintana, Forever Underrated

0

Matt Collins

Chris Sale and Jeff Samardzija will get all the press, but another starter on the South Side might be the best fantasy value.

Chris Sale is going to be the ace. He’s going to be the guy everyone targets early in fantasy drafts to head their rotation. Jeff Samardzija is the newcomer, coming off a great season, and the signal that the White Sox are, in fact, “going for it.” He will grab headlines, and may be targeted a little earlier in drafts than he ought to. These are the two who are going to demand all of the focus in the White Sox’s rotation, the ones everyone will talk about. I implore you, though, do not forget about Jose Quintana. One of the more underrated pitchers in the game, he’s done nothing but put up consistently solid numbers in his short career. No, he’s not going to anchor anyone’s rotation, but as someone who is projected to be a late-round pick, he can provide huge value in that spot.

The number one thing Quintana is going to give you is a solid ERA, despite pitching in a horrific park for pitchers. Over his three-year career, the lefty has put up a 3.50 ERA, a number that puts him in the same breath as Justin Verlander, Matt Cain, and Matt Moore. He took a big step forward last year as well, with a 3.21 ERA (30th best in MLB) supplemented by a 2.81 FIP (10th best in MLB). Now, it needs to be mentioned that part of that success was due to a 3.5 percent HR/FB rate that will almost certainly rise. However, that should be offset by his career-high BABIP falling back towards his career norms, as well as his ever-improving walk and ground ball rates. For those reasons, we have plenty of reasons to believe in his WHIP. He’s able to keep guys off the bases not only by throwing strikes, but throwing effective strikes. Quintana has become a master of pounding the low part of the strike zone, as we can see here:

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 10, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: American League Speed Options on the Cheap

0

Keith Cromer

Don't overpay for steals! Instead, put these prolific thieves on your 2015 fantasy squad.

Having had the privilege of competing in the CBS Expert Leagues the past couple of years, I started my auction prep-work around this time each year, since those leagues typically auction in February. Along with my research on relievers, as I referenced in my Fantasy Freestyle article from last week, I also spend quite a bit of time trying to identify speed options that might be undervalued come draft day.

As I headed into the AL-Only 5x5 CBS Expert League auction this past year, I went in with a strategy to get either Miguel Cabrera or Mike Trout at my sheet prices, buy Masahiro Tanaka at my sheet price, fill out my MI with fantasy-producing starters, and then figure out the rest as I went along. Well, I got Cabrera and Tanaka early as well as some solid middle infielders, and then focused my energy on getting a couple of speed guys, so I would not have to chase stolen bases later in the auction and overpay. The way the dynamics of the auction room played out, I was able to sit back and grab Rajai Davis, Jarrod Dyson, and Craig Gentry for a combined $5. No, that is not a misprint… that was a $5 investment that resulted in 92 stolen bases and $53 in earnings, or a $48 ROI, and I ran away (no pun intended) with the steals category in the league. For some reason, I have found over the years that there is not a lot love for these “one-trick ponies” despite the value they provide. As such, I always target and snatch these fantasy gems.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

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

December 10, 2014 6:00 am

Fantasy Team Preview: San Diego Padres

4

Wilson Karaman

Petco Park can turn just about any pitcher into a fantasy asset.

Injuries. Oh, the injuries these Padres have suffered. Also the terrible, terrible offensive performances. The Padres have been a broken record of a franchise for a while now, and among the ugliest incarnations of their recent archetype was on display last summer. They scored the fewest runs in baseball and finished a strong last in TAv as well. They couldn’t get on base, they couldn’t hit for power, and they were mediocre base-stealers. On the flipside, their pitching produced the fourth-best ERA in baseball and they posted top-third strikeout and WHIP numbers to boot. They were aided by a park that, while playing less extreme than in years past, was still among the worst places in baseball to hit. The bullpen routinely churns out a couple middle relievers every year who produce strong ratio support, and last year was no exception.

The team has been quiet thus far in the off-season* but has been linked to enough players to suggest an aggressive pursuit of offensive upgrades. Whether they succeed in obtaining any remains to be seen. True to form, the bulk of the fantasy value to be had on this squad right now resides on the pitching side. Still, given the wholesale reputation discount Padre hitters are likely to get on draft day there are a handful of interesting value plays worth considering on the offensive end.

The remainder of this post cannot be viewed at this subscription level. Please click here to subscribe.

<< Previous Column Entries No More Column Entries