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Your Hidden Enemy: Accounting for Variation in Fantasy Baseball

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Your Hidden Enemy: Accounting for Variation in Fantasy Baseball

Postby WebHamster » Mon Apr 03, 2006 2:26 pm

This thread contains comments on Miss Agnes Gotowar's Article "Your Hidden Enemy: Accounting for Variation in Fantasy Baseball", which was posted in the Cafe's Point of View section on April 3, 2006. The full article can be read here.
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Postby Madison » Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:02 am

Second link needs to be fixed. Where it says "here". It doesn't work. ;-) Off to read the article now since the other link works just fine. ;-D
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Postby Madison » Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:10 am

Solid writeup ;-D . I remember that thread, and remember reading about it all. I too was surprised when I saw the actual numbers and did wind up changing a few of my rankings accordingly because of it. A very solid piece of fantasy baseball information for all players to consider when doing their rankings. ;-D
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Postby Arlo » Tue Apr 04, 2006 1:42 pm

Link fixed. :-)

And I agree that this is a very, very good article. Nice one, GTWMA!
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Postby MentalPowerHouse » Tue Apr 04, 2006 3:17 pm

I will still pick up Drew over Green, even if I only expect Drew to play half a season, Drew's Half of season + WW Replace Half of Seaons > Greens full season. Add that to the chance Drew plays a full season, its a easy decision.
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Postby swyck » Tue Apr 04, 2006 7:05 pm

MentalPowerHouse wrote:I will still pick up Drew over Green, even if I only expect Drew to play half a season, Drew's Half of season + WW Replace Half of Seaons > Greens full season. Add that to the chance Drew plays a full season, its a easy decision.

I agree with this, and made the same choice, Drew over Green.

The thing with Drew is that when he plays, he plays great, even when injured. The risk with many players, e.g. Thome, is that they may have the type of injuries that let them start, but play poorly. You get no production from them, they may kill your rates, and use up valuable player games. They will linger for weeks or months, and when you finally yank them from your lineup they will take up a bench slot until they finally DL.

So IMO I'm not taking a chance on Drew playing poorly and wasting a spot. I just figure I'll have to DL him eventually and use a waiver wire player to make up the ABs. In the meantime I get good maximized production from his roster slot.
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Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:32 pm

Thanks Guys.

I was afraid that the Drew versus Green issue would cloud the point, so ignore specific players. You have two players to pick from, both of whom have identical predictions for what they are likely to do.

Player A, however, has the following performance over the prior 4 years (I'll just use OPS for summary): 700, 950, 700, 850

Player B has the following: 800, 800, 800, 800

Which player would you choose?

Most fantasy players would choose A. But, that's the wrong choice.
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Postby swyck » Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:06 pm

Normally I would pick player B, and I agree with your analysis of drafting based on solid player baselines. That is something that I try to go with most of the time.

I'm not that much of a believer in "upside". I'd rather take someone who's done it and should do it again. I'd never draft King Felix in the 6th, or Hermida in the 8th, the way some have.

I dont often fool with fragile players except towards the end of a draft, at which point pretty much everyone is a sleeper. Thome was always gone by the time I'd feel comfortable taking him. Green was someone that I had targeted on all my lists, and would have been comfortable with as a #3OF or UT, though I didnt wind up with him in any league.

The Drew vs Green issue complicates things with the concept of maximimizing player time, which is something that doesnt really apply all that often.

Taking your numbers, say A (Drew) scored 700 this year and B (Green) scored 800. Player A may score those 700 points in .75 of a season while B needs the whole season to score his 800. That means you need to only make up 100 points in .25 of a season, a 400 rate, to come out ahead of B. With good waiver wire management you should be able to do better then that.

Of course, I'm using Drew as an example of a productive injury prone player. I'm not sure how much of reach that really is, but basing that on Drew's history, I was comfortable taking him where I did. I'm not actually looking at him being injury free all year, but I'm expecting that he will produce at this historical rate while active.
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Postby El Guapo » Tue Apr 04, 2006 11:46 pm

This is an outstanding article. I really enjoyed the comparison to picking a portfolio of stocks because it got my wheels turning about managing in a whole new way. Thanks for taking the time to write this and I for one, would like to this topic and others like it explored further.
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Postby Apollo » Wed Apr 05, 2006 11:42 am

I think this particular bit of analysis only holds water in relatively deep leagues. In that case, when you're basically stuck with the person you pick, variation is a lot more important. But (and I know we're supposed to ignore the example, but it's all I've got to work with), I can pick someone up off the waiver wire in most leagues that is comparable to Green. If Drew flames out again, I still won't be losing much by choosing him over Green.

Player A, however, has the following performance over the prior 4 years (I'll just use OPS for summary): 700, 950, 700, 850

Player B has the following: 800, 800, 800, 800

Which player would you choose?


The info that's missing is the best person on the waiver wire. If that player runs 775, 775, 775, 775, give me player A--he's not really that much of a risk. If, on the other hand, the best player on the waiver wire goes 600, 600, 600, 600, I might be more tempted to take player B.
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