Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Let's Try This "Blogging" Thing Again, Again

I've been thinking that it's time to try getting back into writing. I truly did enjoy it when I was at my heyday of putting out an article a day and part of me misses it. While time may play a role in not allowing me to write as much as I would like, I'm going to give it a go, again, again.

The focus however will shift, it will shift to "Fantasy" baseball. While writing about Major League Baseball from an outsiders perspective providing feedback and breaking down trades provided a good starting off point, I feel as though I can't offer anything to the baseball community and the fans at large - at least at this point.

As such, I will focus on fantasy baseball and essentially provide my two cents. Of course I will try to remain open-minded, albeit with a bias towards ex-Bisons, past and present Indians, Canadians, and Koreans, my objective is to provide some insight and strategy for my readers, something I feel is currently lacking. That is, outside of the major media outlets, there is very little in terms of authentic fantasy baseball writing.

Where is this coming from? Today I purchased a "fantasy" guide, USA Today's 2011 publication. Honestly, it isn't to give me an inside edge over my peers in my leagues, rather to give me something to read while otherwise preoccupied. I've went through a few articles and one specifically stood out to me. The author of the article was discussing how fantasy managers "chase" pre-rankings, and average draft positions (ADP). The author made out as if it was foolish to follow these or use them as a guide and instead, owners should create their own set of "values".

While I won't disagree with the author's assertion that owners ought to create their own set of values - I for one have no interest in paying for a Jayson Werth unless he costs $10-12 or is a mid to late round draft selection - I caution an owner who strictly follows their own set of values.

Here's an example. I am in a 13 team, 5x5, mixed auction dynasty league. Two years ago in that league I took a "flyer"on Gordon Beckham in the reserve round. As you know he turned into a very promising keeper, one who cost me a very affordable $5 for the 2010 season. Unfortunately this $5 "bargain" ended up being a terrible disappointment and a huge over-expense.

Here we are just weeks before I am due to select keepers and Beckham's price tag for the 2011 season is now inflated to $11. This is where I'm torn. Had Beckham had the 2010 season I expected him to have (or, essentially the season he is projected to have this year - .273-15-81-77 - Bill James via FanGraphs) there's no question I keep him at $11. However, after his awful sophomore season, it got me thinking that I could potentially land him for a couple dollars less, after all, his 2011 season was disastrous before a mid-season turnaround.

In any event, even though I value Beckham as a $15-18 player and that's where I would take him in a re-draft league (I see 25 home run upside in him) I must adjust my strategy on Beckham based on his pre-draft rankings and "book" auction values. Instead of being torn whether or not to keep him at $11, a price I see him being more then worthy of, I must make a decision based on my league, not based on how I value my player.

That is, do I feel that $11 will be a "value" in my league, or do I feel that it will be too costly? I had originally pegged Beckham at $5-7 based on feedback I had received from my league mates. However, now that I see a lot of his expert values up over $11, it's tough to imagine I'll get him at $6 below cost.

Boiling this down to one quick conclusion, while the magazine I was reading suggested that average draft position should not be your be-all end-all, and there is some merit to that, one certainly has to consider the general consensus of a player when creating his value.

Next up, I will write about knowing your opponents.

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