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Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby guffee » Tue Mar 11, 2008 3:42 am

Russell James wrote:Thanks for the feedback.

To clarify something, I go pitcher heavy...not all out pitching. Seems like some of you guys are confusing that a bit.

One of my leagues in brief summary:

Pitchers I got:

Santana 1st
Peavy 3rd
Webb 5th
Sabathia 7th
Harang 8th
Beckett 13th
Felix Hernandez (17ish, can't remember what round)


It was ridiculous how undervalued pitchers were last year. I remember almost drafting Haren in the 9th because he was still sitting there. Everyone was sold on Zambrano, Bonderman, Oswalt and others. I was never on the Big Z bandwagon. I did pass up Bedard late and he went on to have a big year. Although he once again did not throw 200 innings.

I ended up trading Felix Hernandez right after he shut down the Red Sox early in the season. I traded him for Derek Jeter (Jeter was drafted in the 3rd round) Picked up Carmona off the wire, thank you Baseball Prospectus for that one. Traded Josh Beckett for Carlos Lee and David Weathers

Hitters I drafted that stayed with me to the end of the season:
Ichiro, Holliday, Posada, Markakis, Helton, Figgins, Polanco and Youkilis

Off of Waivers:

Braun, Pence, Lincecum and the aforementioned Carmona.

Traded Pence for Lowell

I had some role players that I would grab for the occasional start.

I mentioned this in another thread, but pitchers are undervalued in the draft and then overvalued during the season. One of the big reasons that I love drafting so many pitchers early is because they are so tradable. A great pitcher drafted in the 8th round is more valuable then the decent hitter you get in the 8th round.

I also only place guys on my team that have a high average. I have found that even though they don't have as much power than guys like Dunn and Howard, they don't go on prolonged droughts.

I don't like to draft closers. I don't care if I punt that stat, but you can easily just pick guys off the waiver wire and be competitive. Last year I was winning with Embree, Corpas and Borowski as my closers. All of which I got off the wire.

Another part of my strategy is trading. I am a huge buy low/sell high guy. I love selling my players at their peak value. Sometimes it makes me look like a genius and other times an idiot (I traded LT two seasons ago in fantasy football). I am definitely not one of those guys that has untouchables. The Josh Beckett trade displayed that. Having great starting pitching allowed me to trade off aces like that.

Someone mentioned that my league allowed me to wait on guys later in the draft because OBP was a stat. Actually that is wrong. There are great OBP guys late in the draft, like Helton and Youkilis, but most of the late round guys cause me to sacrifice AVG and H. They rack up their OBP by walks. Guys like Swisher, Thome and Dunn come to mind.

There is my strategy in depth, maybe it makes more sense.

I do not use this strategy in roto leagues though. In roto leagues I won't start drafting pitchers until round 3.



I see your point and agree. No point in taking bats who will sit on your bench. In every league I have been in, by the end, everyone has 8-9 pitchers and maybe 1 bench bat.

You went heavy in the first 10 rounds which can be dangerous. I tried this strategy a few years back but to the extreme end of the spectrum. It was the first year of the unit with the yankees. I had sheets, unit, schilling, & gagne in the first 5 rounds. Unit was sub par and the rest got injured. Pitchers are way too volatile to take heavy in the first 6 rounds. This year, especially, there are so many great arms at the 60 plus area that taking 1 in the first 5 rounds isn't a necessity. If this fits into your format then use it till you lose it. Don't attempt this in all formats cause you will get burned at some point.
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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby josebach » Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:49 am

Anytime you force a draft and don't let the natural progression of the draft dictate what players you choose, the odds are against it working out in your benefit because you'll inevitably be passing on numerous picks that offer more value.

Don't force your draft.

Not only that, but to me hitting cats are fun. I don't want to manage a team where every single week I'm hoping to just squeeze out one or two hitting cat victories. That just doesn't seem very fun to me. :-S
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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby Russell James » Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:59 am

umm I don't know if you read what I was saying, but I win or place high in most of my leagues.
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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby Ender » Tue Mar 11, 2008 10:12 am

Russell James wrote:Thanks for the feedback.

To clarify something, I go pitcher heavy...not all out pitching. Seems like some of you guys are confusing that a bit.

One of my leagues in brief summary:

Pitchers I got:

Santana 1st
Peavy 3rd
Webb 5th
Sabathia 7th
Harang 8th
Beckett 13th
Felix Hernandez (17ish, can't remember what round)



Hitters I got in one league last year

Cabrera 1st
Hanley Ramirez 2nd
Fielder 7th
Markakis 10th
Phillips 12th

Point is there are just as many hitter values as pitcher ones. The trick is more doing a good job projecting the players than favoring hitting or pitching. As long as you pick the right players at the right time any strategy you use is going to get you an ok team. The guy who used your strategy and took Carpenter, Oswalt, Halladay and Zambrano with some of those early picks probably ended up last in his league.
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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby roninmedia » Tue Mar 11, 2008 10:37 am

Ender wrote:Point is there are just as many hitter values as pitcher ones. The trick is more doing a good job projecting the players than favoring hitting or pitching. As long as you pick the right players at the right time any strategy you use is going to get you an ok team. The guy who used your strategy and took Carpenter, Oswalt, Halladay and Zambrano with some of those early picks probably ended up last in his league.


Sagely advice on picking the right players. Any strategy can work if you hit on the right players. The prevailing theory is that pitchers are less easy to project than hitters and I do agree with that.

In a 10 Team league last year, my keepers that I inherited at season's end were: Alex Rodriguez, Justin Morneau , Mark Teixeira, Jake Peavy, Chris Carpenter, Billy Wagner. <--- This keeper list would have made a lot of people wary at the time because of the pitchers. Due to a series of trades and m first 5 picks in the draft, I ended up with 5 pitchers on my squad so my squad looked like. Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder, Justin Morneau, Ichiro Suzuki, Alex Rios, Rocco Baldelli, Jake Peavy, Brandon Webb, Felix Hernandez, Cole Hamels, Billy Wagner.
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Re: Going Pitcher Heavy in the Draft

Postby Yoda » Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:19 am

In my keeper league draft on Sunday, pitching went very heavy early. I had the 12th pick in this 12 team league and I wound up with:
1-Pujols (keeper)
2-MCab (keeper)
3-Peavy (keeper)
4-Vlad (keeper)
5-CBYoung (keeper)
6-Kinsler
7-Hart
8-Furcal
9-Krod
10-Cain
11-DYoung
12-Billingsley
13-Hamilton
14-A.Gordon
15-Jered Weaver
16-Sherrill
17-B.Wilson
18-Pedroia
19-J.Upton
20-Kuroda
21-Butler
22-K.Wood
23-Baker
24-Towles
=========================
C-Towles
1B-Pujols
2B-Kinsler
3B-MCab
SS-Furcal
CI-Gordon
MI-Pedroia
OF-Vlad
OF-CBYoung
OF-Hart
OF-DYoung
OF-Hamilton
U-J.Upton
SP-Peavy
SP-Cain
SP-Billingsey
SP-Weaver
RP-Krod
RP-Sherrill
P-B.Wilson
P-Kuroda
BENCH-Butler
BENCH-K.Wood
BENCH-Baker

With Peavy as my keeper, I didn't feel the need to draft a pitcher until well into the draft. I didn't feel comfortable with other upper tier pitchers like Smoltz, Young types so went with value players.

It depends on how the draft is going but I felt that pitching has been very thin for the most part this year. I participated in a 12 team mock, 12 team Yahoo Winners, 20 team and 12 team keeper so far.
"Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that." ~George Carlin
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