This week, we go through the drafts we’ve completed and review which ones went well, which ones drove us to madness, and which ones did both.
We’re in a number of leagues this year, and fortunately, our teams run the gamut—from title contenders, to gut-level renovations. In our podcast this week, we review some of the tips and strategies that we’ve gleaned from each of our drafts, and discuss ways to plan out a season from your starting draft. Hopefully, our self-criticism and philosophy will resonate with you as well.
As you listen to the podcast, you may want to follow along. Here are the leagues we’re discussing and tracking this year.
DwMurphy – Last week, we discussed the live draft for this league with coordinator Kati McHugh. You can review our actual team that resulted from this draft. As a strong contender in this league with a single-year bent, we complemented our star talent by drafting up-the-middle depth early, forgoing bargains elsewhere. We worked hard to find innings in the midgame, and saved depth plays and interesting choices for late in the draft. Notably here, we took Alex Cobb in Round 15. Although this league does not have as significant a keeper allotment as your standard league, we felt that Cobb would return value in the playoffs and be an asset even in a soft keeper format.
Kings – In the BP-founded Kings league, we have a contender aging out of its championship window, akin to the Tigers or Angels or any other fading giant. Our goal for this league was to draft to keep our window of contention open as much as possible. Unfortunately, we may have made a strategic error in keeping too many minor leaguers in hopes that we could add to our core later. The lack of depth on our team will make maintaining this contender a challenge.
Duchscherer – We’re in the second year of a rebuilding effort in this mostly standard-format league. Since we’ve joined, our only goal has been to add a couple more players to our potential core, trying to build up our top 13. This means that we’re not only taking prospects, but we’re looking strongly at distressed assets such as Hanley Ramirez. When you’re rebuilding, it’s advisable not only to focus on building up your minor league depth, but also to be keenly aware of major leaguers who can provide keeper-level value, even if they fall outside of your “window of contention.”
NorCal – This is our first year in this standard keeper, limited minor league keeper team. As an expansion team, we had to bid for the first expansion pick, which was obviously going to be Carlos Correa (as the Astros entered eligibility for the first time in NorCal). Due to the mechanics of the league, we were asked to bid picks (starting from round 14) on getting the first keeper slot. We bid 11 picks, and our expansion league competitor bid three. In essence, we chose Carlos Correa over George Springer or Jose Altuve, and gave up Khris Davis, Wade Miley, Joe Mauer, Josh Tomlin, Victor Martinez, Chris Colabello, Alex Avila, Ryan Madson, Jimmy Rollins, Yovani Gallardo, and Glen Perkins for the opportunity.
Would you have made this deal?
We’re also in an NL only one year league coordinated by Joe Sheehan comprised of newsletter subscribers. We’re huge fans of Joe’s writing and would recommend that everybody check out his newsletter, and the chance to match wits with him and with fellow readers were an opportunity too good to pass up. As a single-year league, it’s a new challenge for us, and one that we’ll undoubtedly be talking about as the season progresses. The league is drafting right now, so if you want to tune in, visit wNL Sheehan to check it out.
But that’s enough about us! How are your teams looking this year? Share your drafts and strategies in the comments.