## How do I determine the replacement-level player?

Moderator: Baseball Moderators

### How do I determine the replacement-level player?

Hey guys,

Long time reader, first time poster. I'm trying to create some custom rankings for my 12-team, ML H2H 6x6 league with OPS and Holds. I'm using the aggregate projections from Curtis Pride (thanks again for your work: http://www.fantasybaseballcafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=367584&hilit=Aggregate+Rankings), and my plan was to find the "replacement level" for each position, then use Z-scores for each stat, and finally sum the Z-scores to assign a single value to each player. (I'm aware basketballmonster and lastplayerpicked use very similar methods, but I wanted to do it myself, both so I can use projections that I trust and so I can learn how it's done).

For example, looking at catchers, should I take the 13th best projected run total from catchers as my runs (let's say it's Hernandez with 65), do the same with RBI's (Pierzynski with 68), etc., so that I have six numbers from up to six different players? Or should I pick one player and use his entire line, and just guess as to which player is the 13th best? I've also considered averaging the stats for the top 12 catchers and using that as my baseline, but once again, I'm having trouble determining who are the top 12.

poogums
Little League Legend

Posts: 5
Joined: 10 Mar 2009
Home Cafe: Baseball

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

What I would recommend is looking at the overall rankings for 2008 (not the O-Rank, but the actual rank), and take the average of the catchers ranked 10th through 15th. This would be the lowest three ranked catchers likely to be on a team, plus the next three catchers. Their averages for each cat should center on what a "replacement" catcher would do. That way you are not relying on any one player's performance, but still getting a sense of what the "average" player at the bottom looks like.
"I don't want to play golf. When I hit a ball, I want someone else to chase it."
GotowarMissAgnes
Hall of Fame Hero

Posts: 5516
Joined: 12 Dec 2003
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Happy Valley

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

GotowarMissAgnes wrote:What I would recommend is looking at the overall rankings for 2008 (not the O-Rank, but the actual rank), and take the average of the catchers ranked 10th through 15th. This would be the lowest three ranked catchers likely to be on a team, plus the next three catchers. Their averages for each cat should center on what a "replacement" catcher would do. That way you are not relying on any one player's performance, but still getting a sense of what the "average" player at the bottom looks like.

Very good suggestion. I never thought of doing this...
rookies and cream
Hall of Fame Hero

Posts: 6490
(Past Year: 15)
Joined: 4 Apr 2007
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Long Island, NY

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

Something to keep in mind. Replacement level isn't the "worst player" on a team, but what is easily available from the waivers, which if your in a 12 team league, usually isn't the 12th or 13th player. The numbers I use which come from a hardballtimes article I read(it does vary a little depending on year), but the numbers are for a 12 team:

18 catchers(30 in a 2 catcher league)
24 1B
19 2B
21 3B
19 SS
50 OF

Your generally better off using the average around this guy(so for catchers 16,17,18,19,20) in case there is a serious outlier in the bunch like someone who steals a lot of bases or hit a few extra homeruns but is terrible at everything else so is replacement level. Depending on your league this may vary a little bit but I think its a good baseline for 12 teamers.
Check out my blog at http://www.rotopulse.com for fantasy baseball analysis, injury reports, commissioner info and more.
talan37
College Coach

Posts: 316
Joined: 13 Apr 2007
Home Cafe: Baseball

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

poogums wrote:Hey guys,

Long time reader, first time poster. I'm trying to create some custom rankings for my 12-team, ML H2H 6x6 league with OPS and Holds. I'm using the aggregate projections from Curtis Pride (thanks again for your work: http://www.fantasybaseballcafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=367584&hilit=Aggregate+Rankings), and my plan was to find the "replacement level" for each position, then use Z-scores for each stat, and finally sum the Z-scores to assign a single value to each player. (I'm aware basketballmonster and lastplayerpicked use very similar methods, but I wanted to do it myself, both so I can use projections that I trust and so I can learn how it's done).

For example, looking at catchers, should I take the 13th best projected run total from catchers as my runs (let's say it's Hernandez with 65), do the same with RBI's (Pierzynski with 68), etc., so that I have six numbers from up to six different players? Or should I pick one player and use his entire line, and just guess as to which player is the 13th best? I've also considered averaging the stats for the top 12 catchers and using that as my baseline, but once again, I'm having trouble determining who are the top 12.

The problem with using z-scores to only compare catchers to other catchers is that it makes sb's more valuable. For 1B it also makes sb's a lot more valuable than HR's, for SS it basically makes HR's more valuable than SB's. Basically it makes the rare categories of each position more valuable then they actually should, it doesn't matter what position your sb's come from as long as you have them.
californiasunshine
College Coach

Posts: 122
Joined: 2 Mar 2009
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Sunshine state

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

You can determine the relative value of a unit (a Run, a Save, etc.) and apply this to every player's production above the replacement level. This gets rid of the catcher SB 'problem' and is also a nice middle ground between the scarcity and BPA crowds. (In other words, generate a player's value not on his actual stat line but rather his contribution to the environment.)

I never use fuzzy baselines. I think went it comes to generating dollar values it is of questionable use.
Maine has a good swing for a pitcher but on anything that moves, he has no chance. And if it's a fastball, it has to be up in the zone. Basically, the pitcher has to hit his bat. - Mike Pelfrey
Amazinz
Mod in Retirement

Posts: 18800
Joined: 16 Mar 2004
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: in Canada, toughening up figure skaters

### Re: How do I determine the replacement-level player?

talan37 wrote:Something to keep in mind. Replacement level isn't the "worst player" on a team, but what is easily available from the waivers, which if your in a 12 team league, usually isn't the 12th or 13th player. The numbers I use which come from a hardballtimes article I read(it does vary a little depending on year), but the numbers are for a 12 team:

18 catchers(30 in a 2 catcher league)
24 1B
19 2B
21 3B
19 SS
50 OF

Your generally better off using the average around this guy(so for catchers 16,17,18,19,20) in case there is a serious outlier in the bunch like someone who steals a lot of bases or hit a few extra homeruns but is terrible at everything else so is replacement level. Depending on your league this may vary a little bit but I think its a good baseline for 12 teamers.

Good point. I was forgetting about bench players on rosters.
"I don't want to play golf. When I hit a ball, I want someone else to chase it."
GotowarMissAgnes
Hall of Fame Hero

Posts: 5516
Joined: 12 Dec 2003
Home Cafe: Baseball
Location: Happy Valley