General rule of thumb is you have to consider every category on draft day. Some obviously more than others.
However if you keep very active you can pick up FA closers early on who will get you saves and you can always get bargain basement guys that steal but beware because they can hurt you elsewhere.
Again if you are astute and look at matchups and venues, you can pick up any amount of spot starters that can get you WINS.
Average is another story though. You will not pick up a guy that hits for average that isn't already gone, that will benefit your overall team over a season. Drafting with average in mind is always very important to me because generally a good average will take care of at least one or two other cats.
When you're right no one remembers, when you're wrong no one forgets - NZF
Joined: 19 Jan 2004
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Sitting in the Cake Tin enjoying a cold Speights
You can always pick up someone for RBI's or for AVG, but (and I think this is the same thing that New Zealand Fan is saying) most guys that hit for AVG that are available will be bad for your other categories. That said, there are always some suprises that you can get that hit for AVG and don't hurt you in other areas. Last year, guys like Mark Loretta, Frank Catalanotto, Shannon Stewart were pretty much available anytime you needed them to plug a hole left by injury without hurting your average.
As far as SB's go, depending on what kind of league you're in, there are no cheap SB's. Even Dave Roberts will go in the draft. Trying to cover SB's with waiver pickups is iffy at best. Somebody may have a breakout year, and if you pull the trigger fastest, you can grab them, but if you punt SB's during the draft, you're pretty much locked into trading for SB's, or punting them for the whole season.
For pitchers, again, it depends on the kind of league you're in. If it's a yahoo league, I'm not sure what it is, but there's something about the settings in a standard public league that makes it adantageous to have 3 or 4 good closers. Mostly because of the inning limit, and the fact that the best closers are 4 category players, just like the best starters.
K's usually take care of themselves if you draft guys for W or SV. There are some prototypical KO pitchers like Wood or Vazquez, who you can target to take care of the category, but usually you don't have to worry about it.
i dont know specific categories, but remember these tips, kids:
- people tend to jump at trades for a hot SP more than anything else. for example, i could have traded dontrelle willis for a new cadillac last year when he was 8-1 with a high 1s or low 2s era. i rode him til he broke down later on, but by then i got what i needed out of him. i could have got a closer, infielder, outfielder, or just about anything other than a stud catcher. rememebr, dontrelle willis came out of nowhere, and without fail every year a pitcher comes in and kicks some arse (remember oswalt in 01? prior in 02? yeah)
- it's easier to find tradeable pitchers in the vain of dontrelle than it is to find hot consistent hitters like pujols, in my eyes. steals usually are easier to get than 30/100 guys from "new" viable hitters
- if you dont have a good draft, veracity on the waiverwire and in the trade market can make up for it. like the regular game, fantasy is a longhaul and knowing that time is generally on your side for 75% of the year pays off. dont act irrationally for the sake of supplant one category in april, realize that its a game (stock up on saves early or later, for example, knowing that you can ride with less closers at some point of the season)
like a blind man in an orgy, you gotta feel your way through the season. so chill, watch some baseball tonight, read every boxscore every day, and buy my instructional video. you'll be fine
I would not neglect batting average. You're not going to help yourself picking up singles hitters with no power later on.
Steals can be picked up cheap, but I would still want to draft an Alex Sanchez or Dave Roberts towards the end to be safe. Just don't overpay for Ichiro or Pierre.
Wins are a very easy category to manipulate thru spot starting. If your league uses an IP limit you can also stockpile setup men, who get more wins on a per innings basis than even top starters. Don't EVER go after bad pitchers on good teams just for the wins. You'll kill yourself in the other categories.
Saves are a tricky category. I wouldn't go in to the draft planning to ignore them. I wouldn't participate in closer runs out of panic either, but you should be able to get some good value on closers if you keep your eye open.
I think Avg. is the most important offensive category, especially in roto leagues. If you start the year low in average in a roto league, it's almost impossible to catch up. If you stick with good Avg./HR guys, the runs and RBIs should follow. If you are in a head-to-head league, steals are probably the least important because most speed guys will hurt you in every other category(with the exception of Beltran, Suzuki, Pierre). You can usually boot that category and still win the majority of your categories. Saves are important, but like everyone else has said, if you watch the wire, you can usually pick some decent closers up during the season.
So go with Avg/HR guys on offense, and ERA/K guys on pitching. Of course, that's just my humble opinion.
wins are usually the easiest to plug because a vatiety of potchers pick up wins during a season. Not just a starter. Sb's tho, u should try and target at the draft. A Podsednik doesnt come around too often.
Very good responses by everyone here, and I just want to agree with everyone stressing the importance of drafting high BA. It is one of the hardest cats to improve in. Aim for .300 from pretty much every position.