Again, in my mind it's less a "strategy" and more a "who am I going to pick in the late rounds" question. It should have nothing to do with who you get as closers, except that if you get 3-4 top MRPs with good situations you've got a decent chance that at least one of them becomes an above average closer. Again, such a huge portion of a closers value is his closer job. If he's moved to setup man he's not nearly as valuable (Brian Fuentes last year). Other players aren't like this. If a hitter gets moved from 2nd to 4th in the lineup it usually doesn't affect his value much. Of course if someone gets moved down from 1st to 8th that can affect it, but he's probably not a very good hitter anyway if he's getting moved down that far.
Basically you're getting guys that will help your team as they are, but at any point in time could easily be 10th-12th round players (or better) just by changing jobs. It's high reward, low risk in my mind.
In my mind this devalues closers slightly. I try to focus on offense and SP then get a couple of the later closers with good ratios (stay away from the Todd Jones, Borowski types), draft these MRPs and watch the waiver. Having the MRPs already on your team gives you a head start when closers lose their job. And if there's another situation that becomes more volatile where there's a good MRP, you can drop one of your guys and pick this guy up early. If he does get the job, you were the early bird. If he doesn't he fits in with your MRPs.
After taking a look at how this would have impacted my performace last year (even in a H2H league), I've bought into this "strategy" hook-line-and-sinker this year.
In fact, my league this year sets up even more perfectly for it. We've changed over to a roto format this year, and we've always had plenty of Pitcher and Bench spots (8 and 5).
My major dilemma at this point is figuring out how I want to get these guys on my team. The only MR that I see getting drafted in my league (by people other than myself) would be Marmol, Joba, Betancourt and Broxton (with a very slim chance of Bell). The rest just aren't on anyone's radar. So, I'll be trying to find a good spot to grab two (or three) of them during the draft (not too early, wherever the value is there), and the rest I could just as easily pick up and release throughout the year with little or no consequence (other than my waiver priority).
By focusing my draft almost exclusively hitter-first (for the first 13-15 rounds), stopping only for an Ace pitcher and two closers, I shouldn't have much trouble putting together a good offense. Then with a very flexible group of MRs (probably 4-5 when it's all said and done), two top-tier closers, one sketchy closer, and four starters, I don't think I'll have any problems whatsoever in the pitching counting categories (W/K/SV), and I'll be completely dominating people in ERA/WHIP (so long as I pick the correct MRs and starter matchups).
To me, this is what it boils down to... sacrificing one of your bench spots (and one of your last two or three picks in the draft) in order to upgrade from what would have been a very sketchy starter to a near-ace starter. The wins will be very comparable, the Ks will likely be even (or better), and the ERA/WHIP will be exponentially better. On top of that, I've now got two guys who could very easily become closers, which would help me in Saves (or as trade-bait for guys who didn't handcuff).
Meanwhile, at the end of the draft, everybody else in my league is going to be fighting over the Bruce's, Longoria's, Votto's, and such, who have much less chance of helping their team this year.
Extremely low risk (nothing but your last couple of draft picks, who are completely expendable WW-fodder anyway), and the possibility of a very high reward (equivalent to an ace starter, with the possibility of becoming a third or fourth closer).
And after all that, with the long benches in my league, I'll still have room for two or three prospects/fliers for my offense.
I got 2nd in a Cafe HOF league last year using a staff of all Closer & MRs. This with Berkman and Hafner having down years. But it really makes little to sense to pick a MR over a closer if they are there. I think I won all the categories in pitching except Wins and Ks while just missing a few points to wint he league.
PS: This strategy gets even better in weekly leagues.
Havok1517 wrote:But it really makes little to sense to pick a MR over a closer if they are there.
Well... that's assuming that they're a closer worth owning of course.
To me, that makes sense anyway though... I'm not going to be spending 12th round picks on a setup man. I'm looking at drafting these guys at 18+, well after I've already got my closers.
Even if I end up taking a Jones or Borowski (just for Saves), I still feel comfortable that I could offset their horrible numbers with several MRs.
If it came down to drafting Brandon Lyon vs. Betancourt/Broxton in the 19th round or later... then maybe I've got a decision on my hands. But, I'd like to have at least two closers well before that point, possibly three. Like I said, I'm not investing much into these guys, they'll come way at the back end of the draft, not as a replacement for somebody who's going to be a major part of my team.
In my daily yahoo 5x5 H2H league there are 7 spots for pitching: 2 sp, 2 rp, and 3 p. How many MR's should I have on my bench/ play a week? I like to stack my lineup mostly, so I probably will forego getting an ace and getting a high second tier pitcher or two, and getting stud closers. How should I incorporate these valuable MRs?
10 Team H2H 6x6 C- B. Molina 1B- G. Jones (Berkman) 2B- Weeks (Kinsler) 3B- Arod SS- Tejada OF- Manny OF- Ethier OF- Magglio Util- Matsui BN- C Lee DL- Beltran
Bloody Sox wrote:I love the middle reliever strategy in roto... - Two good MRs can give you 150 IP, 150+ Ks, 12 W, sub-3.00 ERA, and sub-1.20 WHIP: much better stats than a #3 or #4 SP for much less cost. - Even though they take up two spots, you can carry one fewer starter so its only really one extra spot. - They are potential closers, allowing you to draft saves late. - Even though they take up roster space, they also give you flexibility because they're the first ones you can drop if you need to make an emergency pickup (or if they aren't doing well and you want to try someone else).
I also found that it worked very well in my ALH2H league last year where we have an 18 IP minimum... I was able to go with 3 SP, 2 CL, and 3-4 MRs and really do well in the pitching categories.
I'll be going after Broxton, Marmol (already good chance at closing), Accardo, Neshek, Fuentes in my main roto league.
Well, I put my money where my mouth was last night in my draft, more than I really wanted to. I picked on the end in a 12-team mixed draft, so I kept losing guys I was targeting on the next turn, especially closers - I was trying to get Capps, Soria, and Sherill and I lost them all so my only real closer is Corpas. As a result I ended up with only 4 SP (Verlander, Dice-K, Shields, Hughes) and Broxton, Marmol, Accardo, Fuentes, and Pena. We'll see how that goes for a bit... I figure Accardo already has the closer job for April and Marmol and Pena should soon follow. Then Broxton and Fuentes can effectively be my 5th starter until I find one off of free agency. We'll see.
"The government cannot give to anyone anything that it does not first take from someone else"
i'm sort of using trying to use the MR strategy and at the same time hope to get some extra saves. instead of drafting another starter or two, i decided to sacrifice a bench spot to draft 3 active MRs in delcarmen, heilman, and rauch who all could also get me extra saves. hope it works out.
Can I use MR's effectively and still not punt saves? In other words, will using MR in my two RP spots and a closer in my P spot be more beneficial in the long run than starting my 3 late round closers? (3 out of Lyon, Br Wilson, CJ Wilson, Sherrill)