Baseball Prospectus Night Miller Park - August 27
The Player Forecast Manager is one of many tools we provide to our fantasy subscribers in order to help them draft the most productive team possible. It utilizes PECOTA projections and organizes them for you, based on your inputs, in order to tell you who you should be drafting, and, in the case of auctions, how much you should be paying for them.
The PFM has loads of customization available to it, and we've been tweaking it over the years (and continue to do so) in order to make it that much more effective, so we're updating our "Tips and Tools" article to better serve your needs. If you're ever lost about what the PFM does, or how specific functions work, you can reference this article, and hopefully find your answers within.
We'll go through, step-by-step, starting from the top left of your options.
This is fairly straightforward—League Type lets you choose between whether you are playing in a Rotisserie or a Points-based league. Draft Type lets you signify an auction or a straight (or snake) draft. League Used is simply AL- or NL- only, or a mixed league. You can input the number of teams in your league, and since there is no dropdown menu, you can enter whatever quantity you use. You can also adjust the budget allowed your team in an auction setting from here—simply input the total budget, then how much you would like to spend on hitters, and the pitching column will fill itself in. You can also input the lowest salary allowed in Minimum Salary, as well as the minimum number of games played in order to be eligible at a position.
This section allows you to tidy up the tables generated by the PFM. You can choose to set a minimum for dollars or points here—if you only want the best of the best shown, you can do so. You can show playing time—which just plops projected PA, AB and IP columns into the table, as well as their league, team and age via Biographical Data.
This section allows you to modify what positions you need for your league's rules. The boxes are filled in for you with default values, so be sure to edit these as necessary before you start, or else the data returned by the PFM will not be as accurate as it could be for your situation. Player values change depending on how many of each position you need—if you were to play in a hypothetical league where three shortstops were necessary (standard 5x5 otherwise) the cost of players like Elvis Andrus and Hanley Ramirez would rise significantly due to scarcity.
Hitter and Pitcher Categories
This is where you choose what statistics and categories your league is using. The default is set to standard 5x5, but if your league uses on-base percentage instead of batting average, you can change that and have it reflected in the PFM values shown. Were you playing in a 1x1 league that used WARP, Albert Pujols and Adrian Gonzalez would come in at prices that are nearly unheard of in standard leagues due to their Gold Glove caliber defense mixed with two of the most productive bats in the league. Getting this right is important, but the fact it's this customizable, and can always tell you the proper value of the players within your league, is what makes the PFM as useful as it is.