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Closer hoarding roto strategy

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Closer hoarding roto strategy

Postby duckbillgates » Sat Apr 21, 2007 7:59 pm

OK, so I didn't set out to do this before the season, but the way things shook out in the draft had me stumble on to this strategy. It seems a little risky, so I wanted to get some thoughts before I commit to it.

The basics of the strategy (for a roto league with maximum innings pitched) are these:

1) Overload on closers early in the season. If you drafted 3 or 4 closers and have picked up a few of the new guys early, this applies.

2) Carry fewer starters than you normally would. Have some anchors, but don't start mediocre guys.

3) Stick with this for the first couple of months of the season. You theoretically should rack up a nice lead in saves and stay well below the pace for innings-pitched. Your strikeout and win totals are likely going to be taking a hit.

4) When the summer months hit (usually when pitchers are really hitting their stride), shift gears. Start dealing the bulk of your closers for starters, only hanging on to a couple of closers to keep pace. This is also the time of year that desperate managers start overpaying for closers.

5) Start rotating your starters in and out and watching for good spot starts to pick up the pace and finish the season on your innings-pitched target. The saves lead you built early should keep you in a good position there, and you'll start to make up that win and strikeout ground while you're going with starters.

To use my team as an example (please look at the strategy, not just my team), mid-tier starters were going early, so I initiated a closer run (very successfully, I might add) by taking Street and Putz back-to-back, later adding Torres and Dotel. I've added Henry Owens and (possibly) Lidge to the mix.

I have my core of starters (Felix Hernandez, Sheets, Cain) and some key stashes on my bench (Clemens, Pedro Martinez, Brett Myers (he has to start again, right?)).

So is this strategy sound? It takes guts, because you are basically setting yourself up to make a late run in the standings, but that's part of the strategy.

Thoughts?
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Postby ChipperJonesFanatic » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:04 pm

It is a fairly decent strategy. Just make sure that you get a nice lead in saves. Your ERA/WHIP should be very good as well.

Just make sure you do it early enough so you can get to the IP minimum.
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Postby bceagles04 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:06 pm

The way you explain it makes it seem like a killer strategy!

I have actually never played roto...but it seems as though your idea would work very well. ESPECIAllY the part about owners overpaying for closers in the middle of the season
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Postby BitterDodgerFan » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:07 pm

i sorta use this strategy. last year i traded away dumpster and lidge before their implosions after racking up a lot of saves.
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Postby Wharton93 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:29 pm

In most leagues you can't typically draft Street, Putz, Sheets, Felix, Cain, and Myers unless you start taking these guys in round 2 so I don't know what to make of this post.
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Postby teddy ballgame » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:30 pm

It sounds interesting but I'm not sure you'd be able to make up the difference in W's and K's over the 2nd half of the year.

I think I'd rather just draft a normal pitching staff and stay competitive in everything over the year (although I realize you said it was kind of forced upon you).

Also if I was going to do it I wouldn't want an injury risk (Street and Putz) or Torres and Dotel as my 3/4.
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Postby joemorgan » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:37 pm

Seems like some moneyball crap
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Postby MinorityAuthority » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:42 pm

I've been doing this for years.

I usually draft 2 big names, and 2-3 solid closers. Then I take a dominating setup man and usually snag one closer from waivers. For example, one league I have Nathan & Street, then Ray & Coco, then got Weathers & Wheeler off waivers. Lastly, I drafted Scot Shields as well.

This way I will have a good amount of Ks, with a few wins and respectable ERAs & WHIPs. I can package 1 of them later in the year for whatever position I need, without putting my lead in saves in trouble hopefully.
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Postby duckbillgates » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:54 pm

A few things in response:

I realize this is not a strategy you want to use going into a draft. It's more of a strategy shift.

In my case, a lot of mid-tier starters were gone, but some mid- to lower-tier closers were available, so I stocked up. That isn't terribly unusual.

Likewise, if you already had more than a couple of closers and got some of the early-season waiver closers (Wheeler, Owens, Soria).

By the way, Myers was a FA pickup (I love impatient owners). This strategy might be good for folks who have him (or Clemens) since they won't be throwing many innings early in the year.

And I disagree that you can't make up that win and strikeout ground late. If your league has a reasonable max innings pitched (Yahoo default is something like 1,250, I think), you can't rotate a full bench worth of starters without going over. If you start doing this a little further into the season, you should end up with a comparable number of starts to most other teams. In theory, it should even out.

Definitely not a strategy for everybody, but I think it's worth exploring for people who have found themselves in a similar position.
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Postby SpecialFNK » Sat Apr 21, 2007 9:00 pm

i think if your going to do that the closers you have better be quality closers, and not some of the closers that are close to or have allready lost their jobs. if you were to be heavy on closers like Ryan(INJ), Lidge, Julio, Dotel(INJ), or even have other guys who have struggled or havnt gotten any saves yet like Rivera or Putz.. then right now your stategy is pretty useless and your not going to get much for your closers when you try to pick up starting pitching.
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