Michael leads off the regular season Value Picks with a fresh slate of productive players you can find on the waiver wire, even in the deepest leagues.
The principle at Value Picks is simple: find valuable players with less than 20 percent ownership in most (preferably all) of the Big Three fantasy sites (Yahoo!, ESPN, and CBS). It’s not always easy to find players fitting this description, but in past seasons, I’ve called readers’ attention to then-undervalued players like Gaby Sanchez, David Freese, and Lucas Duda, who enjoy much higher ownership rates these days.
Is Chipper Jones a greater switch-hitter than Eddie Murray and Pete Rose?
A little over a week ago I wrote an article on switch-hitters, focusing on a simple question: Do we evaluate switch-hitters based on their self-platoon split, or based on overall numbers regardless of the split? A case can be made for each side, as those in the self-platoon camp would argue that a good switch-hitter should be able to produce from both sides of the plate. These advocates certainly wouldn’t consider someone like Gary Matthews Jr. a solid switch-hitter, as his numbers are terrible even if his split is small. On the other side of the spectrum, it also makes sense that the best switch-hitter would be the best hitter who happens to bat from both sides of the plate. Mark Teixeira might favor one side more than the other, but his numbers from each side are far and away superior to the league average. The differentiation would be whether switch-hitting is considered a niche in which a separate definition applies. Can a good switch-hitter be a relatively underwhelming overall hitter?
With the trade deadline looming, which teams will make waves, and which will continue to flounder and drift?
Now that the All-Star Game is history and will go down as one of the more interesting Midsummer Classics in recent years, it's on to the non-waiver trading deadline as the game's next big event. Major league clubs have until 4 p.m. on July 31-just two weeks from today-to make trades without having to first secure waivers on players. While deals are often made after the deadline, they can be blocked by any club willing to claim a player.
Chipper Jones has a magical number next to his name, which hasn't been seen at the end of a full season in over sixty five years.
Sabermetric study has long ago proven that batting average is not one of the better indicators of a player's offensive prowess. On-base percentage, slugging percentage, and a host of other, more advanced metrics paint a clearer picture. A look at Chipper Jones' OBP, SLG, and EqA shows the venerable Braves third baseman is off to an outstanding start this season. Jones' 1144 OPS and .389 EqA are both second in the major leagues to the Astros' Lance Berkman (1243, .393), while his .459 OBP and .685 SLG are both third.
Since the turn of this century, what have been the best and worst performances with the bases juiced?
Who are your three best friends in the world? I'll tell you who they are-the three guys on your favorite team who find themselves on base simultaneously. When the bags are juiced and the camera pans around the infield showing the three baserunners and the announcer says their names, don't you say to yourself, "Man, I love those guys!"
Keith checks in with all kinds of fun facts from the completed season.
\nMathematically, leverage is based on the win expectancy work done by Keith Woolner in BP 2005, and is defined as the change in the probability of winning the game from scoring (or allowing) one additional run in the current game situation divided by the change in probability from scoring\n(or allowing) one run at the start of the game.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_18 = 'Adjusted Pitcher Wins. Thorn and Palmers method for calculating a starters value in wins. Included for comparison with SNVA. APW values here calculated using runs instead of earned runs.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_19 = 'Support Neutral Lineup-adjusted Value Added (SNVA adjusted for the MLVr of batters faced) per game pitched.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_20 = 'The number of double play opportunities (defined as less than two outs with runner(s) on first, first and second, or first second and third).';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_21 = 'The percentage of double play opportunities turned into actual double plays by a pitcher or hitter.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_22 = 'Winning percentage. For teams, Win% is determined by dividing wins by games played. For pitchers, Win% is determined by dividing wins by total decisions. ';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_23 = 'Expected winning percentage for the pitcher, based on how often\na pitcher with the same innings pitched and runs allowed in each individual\ngame earned a win or loss historically in the modern era (1972-present).';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_24 = 'Attrition Rate is the percent chance that a hitters plate appearances or a pitchers opposing batters faced will decrease by at least 50% relative to his Baseline playing time forecast. Although it is generally a good indicator of the risk of injury, Attrition Rate will also capture seasons in which his playing time decreases due to poor performance or managerial decisions. ';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_25 = 'Batting average (hitters) or batting average allowed (pitchers).';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_26 = 'Average number of pitches per start.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_27 = 'Average Pitcher Abuse Points per game started.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_28 = 'Singles or singles allowed.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_29 = 'Batting average; hits divided by at-bats.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_30 = 'Percentage of pitches thrown for balls.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_31 = 'The Baseline forecast, although it does not appear here, is a crucial intermediate step in creating a players forecast. The Baseline developed based on the players previous three seasons of performance. Both major league and (translated) minor league performances are considered.
The Baseline forecast is also significant in that it attempts to remove luck from a forecast line. For example, a player who hit .310, but with a poor batting eye and unimpressive speed indicators, is probably not really a .310 hitter. Its more likely that hes a .290 hitter who had a few balls bounce his way, and the Baseline attempts to correct for this.
\nSimilarly, a pitcher with an unusually low EqHR9 rate, but a high flyball rate, is likely to have achieved the low EqHR9 partly as a result of luck. In addition, the Baseline corrects for large disparities between a pitchers ERA and his PERA, and an unusually high or low hit rate on balls in play, which are highly subject to luck. ';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_32 = 'Approximate number of batting outs made while playing this position.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_33 = 'Batting average; hits divided by at-bats. In PECOTA, Batting Average is one of five primary production metrics used in identifying a hitters comparables. It is defined as H/AB. ';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_34 = 'Bases on Balls, or bases on balls allowed.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_35 = 'Bases on balls allowed per 9 innings pitched.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_36 = 'Batters faced pitching.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_37 = 'Balks. Not recorded 1876-1880.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_38 = 'Batting Runs Above Replacement. The number of runs better than a hitter with a .230 EQA and the same number of outs; EQR - 5 * OUT * .230^2.5.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_39 = 'Batting runs above a replacement at the same position. A replacement position player is one with an EQA equal to (230/260) times the average EqA for that position.';
xxxpxxxxx1160407218_40 = 'Breakout Rate is the percent chance that a hitters EqR/27 or a pitchers EqERA will improve by at least 20% relative to the weighted average of his EqR/27 in his three previous seasons of performance. High breakout rates are indicative of upside risk.
The Braves offense is annihilating everything in sight. The Twins bullpen has been lights-out for the second straight season. The Devil Rays will have plenty of options at the draft table. Plus more news and notes out of Atlanta, Minnesota, and Tampa.