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Articles Tagged Regression To The Mean 

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April 28, 2017 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: The All-April Team


Matt Collins

Eric Thames (probably) won't keep up this home-run pace, but he still might be among the elite fantasy first basemen. It's harder to see Chris Owings and Jett Bandy continuing their respective paces, however.

On Thursday, Mike Gianella reminded all of us that it is far-too early to be worried about our rosters. April stretches obviously get us more worried than any other poor month-long periods, simply because there is no encouraging stretch of time beforehand to alleviate our concerns. To put it another way: The current sample is too small to inform any sweeping evaluations. With that being said, April performances sometimes do last all season, and identifying the sustainable early trends can catapult you to a championship. Keeping that in mind, let’s take a look at the best players at each position on ESPN’s Player Rater and see if they can remain fantasy assets throughout the season, or if they simply are mirages we’ll look back at a year from now and laugh about.

(Note: These rankings are through action Wednesday.)

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April 27, 2017 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: I’m Very Nervous


Mike Gianella

It's no longer too early to worry—which is exactly why Mike is concerned.

Yes, I know: April isn’t even over—heck, we haven’t reached the 1/8th point of the season yet—but there are reasons why I’m nervous about my chances to win this year.

To start with, my competitors seem to have all the freaking luck. I know that Michael Conforto was supposed to be good, but a .365 batting average, four home runs, 15 RBIs, and 18 runs in 86 plate appearances? I thought he was going to provide a fourth outfielder’s production. I know Bryce Harper always gets off to a fast start, but nine home runs and five steals in 96 plate appearances? Boy, do I regret not going the extra dollar on him in Tout Wars. Even more annoying are the hitters who came out of nowhere. Colby Rasmus (7 HR, 19 RBIa, 95 PA) and Aledmys Diaz (4 HR, .423 AVG, 75 PA) are killing me. not only in my AL and NL leagues, but in my mixed leagues as well.

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June 28, 2013 5:00 am

Manufactured Runs: The Mystery of the Missing .500 Teams


Colin Wyers

If .500 is average, where are all the teams with .500 records?

Sometimes, baseball research happens because you go out looking for something and you find it. Other times, it happens because you go off looking for something else and you trip over something far more interesting. This is the latter. While looking through historic team records for another project I was working on, I came across an interesting puzzle—there were far fewer teams exactly at .500 than I would have expected. I thought maybe it was a wacky feature of the sample set I was using, but I expanded my search to nearly 50 years of Major League Baseball, and the same puzzle was still staring me in the face. So I was left with three questions: Was what I was seeing really there? Why was it happening? And what did it mean?

One of the best parts of working at Baseball Prospectus is the ability to pester the staff email list with really bizarre questions. Some people use this power to ask questions where they don’t know the answer. Those people are probably much more well-liked than I am by the other staffers. I, instead, ask questions to which I already know the answer and request that people make wild guesses without doing any research first. I do this because sometimes when I’m looking at data, it helps me to get an unbiased perspective of what someone might expect the data to look like. But to get that, you need to ask people who haven’t seen the data, because once you’ve been staring at the data for too long you expect the data to look like the data.

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