Transmogrifier wrote:A word of caution: A lot of your analyses posted here are based on a very small sample. Beware...
Agreed!! I love looking for statistical trends too, but with small sample sizes and lots of parameters it's easy to read too much into trends you might find.
For example, what do you mean by 'random sampling' of the players you chose? Did you put all the names of players in the three categories in a hat and draw out 20? Or did you pick 20 names you were familiar with? For players with a decline in value, did you exclude those who were injured? I'm not asking to nitpick, but because depending on how you picked the names you may have introduced some kind of bias.
I do think you are correct that it is worth taking a look at players that underperformed what was expected of them. We need to look beyond the numbers to WHY they underperformed, and that is certainly a good place to look for draft day bargains. There are lots of great bargains to be had in many leagues, and it's good to keep them in mind on draft day - and perhaps even to talk them down to discourage others from drafting them.
From your group 2:
Guerrero: Probably not much of a drop in draft day value.
Giambi: slight drop to late 1st, early 2nd due to knee injury. Probably warranted.
Ordonez: Might see slight drop in draft position. He will be 30 entering next season, and may be tapering off due to age. His 2002 numbers are much better than any other year. His 2003 numbers are much closer to his typical production (though his RBIs were down a bit, he actually posted his 2nd best career OPS). Expect him to post similar numbers in 2004.
Soriano: Some people might be scared away due to his post-season performance and KC trade rumors. Probably not enough for him to slip to a bargain spot on draft day. He'll probably still go top 5 overall.
RJ: As we've seen in the mock drafts, he could fall a lot. Definitely someone to keep an eye out for on draft day, but no longer a 1st rounder.
Berkman: Took a step backward, but was playing through little injuries. He could be a draft day steal. Get him in the 3rd round if he's still there.
Green: Tough to say. How can we trust that he's healthy? Last year he quietly played through a major shoulder injury (good move, management!). Worth a risk, but only after you've got a core (i.e., I wouldn't bet the farm on him).
I think you have stumbled upon one really interesting question: How many players can maintain their value over a three-year period? And how many of those players are top-tier players? I haven't looked at the numbers, but my guess is: not many. That's why we pay a premium for consistency in fantasy baseball, and that's why someone like RJ is no longer a first-rounder.
"The game has a cleanness. If you do a good job, the numbers say so. You don't have to ask anyone or play politics. You don't have to wait for the reviews." - Sandy Koufax