Reader requests Harrison and Santana mingle with Kuroda and Dan Hudson in this week's Keeper Reaper
I was looking at the list of available free agent starters today, and man, is it barren out there if you're still hunting for starters. Other than Roy Oswalt and Edwin Jackson, your best bet is… Zach Duke? Jeff Francis? Kevin Millwood? It's like the Island of Misfit Toys out there. Let's get started on this week's Reaper with two user requests, and as always, I'm happy to take other suggestions in the comments.
Delving into the truthiness of mock drafts held early in the season, as well as how these drafts help determine real fantasy draft strategies.
Mock drafts represent a great source of joy for fantasy players, the first of which often symbolizes the start of preparations for a new season. However, for a fantasy baseball pundit, mock drafts present themselves as double-edged swords—especially when the results of the mock draft are to be made public. You see, for us pundits, we’ll usually be participating in these mock drafts with those who we’ll be playing in real expert and high-stakes leagues with. And even if one particular mock is low on experts you’re in line to play against for real, the results will be available for all to see.
The problem here is that, given our druthers, we don’t want to tip our hands on players we like during a draft that doesn’t count for anything. Of course, as fantasy pundits, it’s our responsibility to engage in these drafts to give readers a barometer for player value. We also have a responsibility to our readers to tell the truth about which players we like and don’t like—or at least be transparent about it if we’re not going to be completely truthful with our mock drafting. Three years ago, I actually gathered a group of fantasy pundits together to see how they felt about this dilemma, and some of the responses were quite interesting.
This week's column looks at the biggest free-agent corner-infield signing not named Albert Pujols, as well as possible rebounds from once highly regarded players
As the post-Pujols dominoes begin falling—with more to come after Prince Fielder finds a home—two corner infielders found a home last week, further shifting the balance of power in the NL Central. And as the speculation-driven hot-stove season kicks into gear, I’ll also look at some standouts from the mock drafts at mockdraftcentral.com.
Why Wilson Betemit could be a fantasy steal in 2012
As long as I have played fantasy baseball, I have always felt it is not the stars that win leagues; it is the scrubs that become stars within a season. After all, who had Melky Cabrera earning more fantasy dollars than Joey Votto or Prince Fielder in standard 15 team 5x5 leagues in 2011? In previous seasons, Andres Torres was a big surprise in 2010, Ben Zobrist shocked many in 2009, and Ryan Ludwick did the same in 2008.
BP's newest column examines which players are worth keeping in various fantasy formats
Welcome to the off-season here at Baseball Prospectus Fantasy! This week, you'll notice our writers transitioning from our in-season Value Picks column to The Keeper Reaper, which will likely run through October and November. While many owners who play in redraft fantasy baseball leagues take a breather over the next couple of months, we know that keeper league owners are active year-round and are always looking for advice. As such, this column should be of great use to keeper league owners who are trying to decide which players are worth keeping for the 2012 season and which should be thrown back. The goal of keeping a player is to reap as much excess value as possible, and The Keeper Reaper will help you to do so.
If you happen to be one of the dedicated redraft leaguers who pays attention year-round, first, congratulations; you're a fantasy player after my own heart, and your team is going to benefit from your hard work. Second, these articles should still have a lot of utility for you since their aim is to discuss a player's potential (primarily for 2012) and where they rank among their peers—things that are important no matter what kind of league you're in.
A look at whether the top competitors in Tout Wars followed common fantasy advice this season
Fantasy baseball is anywhere from 30 to 50 years old depending on which game you subscribe to, but there are a lot of commandments in this game that people still swear by because they read it in a magazine or some fantasy expert they follow told them it is the way to go. A great personal example I like to relay is my first and only experience in the NFBC draft in 2009 out in Las Vegas.
With the regular season complete, we take a look at the BP fantasy crew's votes for a variety of awards.
With the fantasy season coming to a close this past week, each member of the BP Fantasy team cast their votes for a variety of categories. Today, I'm here to hand out the theoretical hardware. After seeing who we thought had the best, worst, and most interesting 2011 seasons, be sure to tell us who you think deserved some recognition in the comments section.
Michael looks back at the best and the worst of his 2011 Value Picks at corner infield and designated hitter.
As the Value Picks writers have done all week, I’m showing off my hits and misses from this season. Hits and misses, like value itself, are subjective terms. For example, it was a bad call to add Steven Pearce the same day he hit the disabled list or Nolan Reimold just days before Vladimir Guerrero returned from the DL, but as single-league picks on the list for a week, they didn’t hurt much. And preseason choiceDavid Freese ended up with a .297 batting average, fourth among third basemen, but his value was diluted by two months lost to a broken hand.
Jason explains his strategy and picks in Tout Wars to kick off a series that will run the season.
March Madness takes on a different meaning around the Collette household. Yes, my wife and her entire family are Kentucky Wildcats supporters so they are very much interested in the NCAA basketball tournament, but March Madness to my wife means an absentee husband most weekends. Between personal and professional associations, I am in no less than eight fantasy leagues most years: 2011 is no different. Add in new commitments to local media, and March has been a blur. It may not be her favorite time of the year, but it is mine, and it is why 100 percent of what I win is spent on a nice family getaway in the fall (once the baseball season is over, of course). After all, not too many spouses handle it as well as my much better half does when I kiss her and the kids goodbye, and head up to Manhattan to participate in Tout Wars each March.
Looking for our fantasy staff's collective 2011 sleepers, breakouts, disappointments, and more? You've come to the right place.
Since we're the fantasy crew here at Baseball Prospectus, we wanted to give you some more fantasy-focused predictions for the upcoming year. This is the perfect opportunity for us to claim that the things we predicted that came true make us brilliant, and also gives us adequate time to come up with excuses for the things that did not turn out the way we planned. It's a flawless plot, and we hope that you take part with your own predictions in the comments. Here we are, in alphabetical order, which means poor old Bill Baer will be the first to be christened a visionary or insane: