Fantasy 411 Q&A: Feb. 26, 2009

Siano’s out the rest of the week, so it’ll be Schwartz and I getting to your questions for the next couple of days.  Remember to check out today’s podcast, which will be available on the site sometime this afternoon.  For the first time in a really long time, you will see neither Mike nor Cory.  Petey Mac will run the show alongside new addition to the 411 family Corey Gottlieb.  They’ll talk underrated/overrated heading into ’09. 

I stand by my guarantee that we’ll complete our mock draft before the start of the regular season.  We’re in the middle of the 21st round now.  I’ll post an update upon the conclusion of the round.  Hopefully, a final mock draft result list will follow shortly after.

That’s all for now.  Fire away!




I am in the process of finalizing my keeper list for my 12 team mixed
auction league. I have Orlando Hudson at $3. I am worried about the
wrist and the move from Chase Field to Dodger Stadium and wonder if it
would be better to have the roster spot…or is $3 worth the risk due
to his past production? I am pretty weak at the MI position and do not
yet know who will be available at the draft this year.


Chris, I don’t mind O-Dawg for $3… as Mike and I discussed on
Tuesday’s podcast, he should be good for a strong AVG, 10-12 homers and
steals, and decent run/RBI numbers depending on where he hits in the
lineup. But he’s no superstar, so this is a case where you have to
weigh his consistently good production vs. “roster spots have value.”
Who will be out there who might be more worthwhile that you think you
can get for a good price? The available market should make the call for
you here… if it’s deep, you might want to gamble and let him go, but
if not he’s a very reasonable keeper at that price.



Thanks for everything guys….a question I asked a couple days ago got buried in the mix. The following is a re-post:

Hey Cory…thanks again for the combined projections!

I’ve been taking hacks at converting the projections into some sort of snake draft rankings/tiers but its all total homemade stuff.

Ive tried calling the top guy in each category 100% then everyone beneath him a fraction of 100% then summing the figures…also tried messing with averages of the top 30 at each position and using standard deviations, but all of that is way over my payscale.

I know many people are looking forward to your take for the auction format, but i’d be very interested in your snake draft spin as well. Also, rather than just the results, any theory you can share to help me/us apply the projections to non-5×5 leagues would be helpful (how are you actually doing the calculations??)…my main league is a 6×6 with OPS and Holds.

Asahoryu, the way I converted projections into rankings was a multi-step process. In a nutshell:

* Figure out the top “x” number of guys that will be drafted at each position and overall.
* The best undrafted player then becomes “replacement level”… he’s the best player on the waiver wire.
* Figure out roughly how many of each stat are needed to win each category and how many the last place team will have, using last year’s standings as a guide… i.e., first place has 300 homers and last place has 180.
* Divide the difference between the first-place total and the last-place total by the number of teams in the league… for HR, that’s 300-180 = 120, divided by 12 teams = 10 HR. So 10 HR’s are worth one point in the standings.
* Divide the difference between each player’s total in each stat and the replacement level total… so if Pujols has 35 HR and the replacement-level guy has 15, that’s 20 HR.
* Divide that by the amount of each stat needed for one point… in the case of HR, it’s 10, and Pujols is projected for 20 HR above replacement… 20/10 = 2.0 points in HR.
* Do that for each stat for each player and then sum them up for total “standings gain points” for each player.
* Rank descending by SGP and voila, you have rankings.

This isn’t really as complicated as it sounds; the real trick is correctly anticipating who will be drafted in each league. But then again, as you get further from the top, the difference between drafted and undrafted players is very minimal.

This will all be in the next spreadsheet I post, in another week or so…




Cory, just thought of this: Does the same math apply to the ratio categories? Don’t know why it wouldn’t, but just checking.

Chris in Honolulu

Johan scratched from today’s start due to pain in his elbow…how concerned are you?

Not very concerned…yet. The Mets have deemed the decision precautionary, and pitching coach Dan Warthen was quoted as saying “It’s nothing abnormal for him.” Monitor closely.


Hey Guys,

I asked Cory this a little while back but I’m still curious. What sources (books, magazines, software, etc.) do you use to prepare for drafts?

Thanks, Davis in Mass

Davis, I’m not a big fan of preview magazines as they generally are very outdated by the time you buy them, but I usually purchase one of these just to read the blurbs and look through the projections. I like to compare these to the Preview projections just to get an additional viewpoint. But for the most part (the company man that I am), I use the printable cheat sheets for each position as a base, adding my own notes and highlighting certain value guys. The layout, with the projections and one-sentence comments, is easy to glance at during the draft, especially in order to determine the tiers at each position and whether you can afford to wait another round or two to address that position or a certain category need. I also usually make a “sleeper” list of guys I can get in the lass few rounds who could pay big dividends.


Cory or Mike —

I’ve been offered a trade in a standard 5×5 keeper — I’d give up Mark Reynolds and I’d get Joachim Soria. Getting Soria would mean I’d be keeping him as my 12th-round keeper instead of Chien-Ming Wang. My question is …. who has better value as a 12th-round keeper …. Wang or Soria?

Zach — My bad. I meant to address my previous question “Cory or Zach.” Thanks.

Cory :
very interested in your response to Asahoryu .
step # 3 …. “using last year’s standings as a guide” <=== here’s where i get stuck .
1st year doing roto , and every league is a start-up .
it would be nice to use the 300-180 scale for each of the categories , but obviously , that ain’t happening .
the rest all makes sense , though .
12 team standard .
care to share some “ballpark” figures ?
(similiarly , i’m having trouble with assigning a $$ figure to the # 1 guy in an auction draft)

thanking you , in advance ,
big o

Big O, you can still use “last year’s” standings as a guideline. Ultimately you just need a framework to work against; every league is going to be different every year anyway so the key is to get a reasonable scale to work against. For reference though, here are the 1st and last place values in each category in last year’s 411 Listener League:

AVG: .2881/.2662
R: 1273/1044
HR: 321/222
RBI: 1256/1011
SB: 187/112

W: 104/80
SV: 114/4 (next-to-last was 46, then 63, then 90… that’s nine teams between 90 and 114, probably a better scale)
ERA: 3.266/4.227
WHIP: 1.225/1.352
SO: 1326/1031

Chris in HI, the same basic logic applies in rate stats categories but you have to back out the H/AB, etc., to calculate individual SGP’s. For example, in the AVG category above, .2881 – .2662 = .0219, divided by 12 is .001825. Then figure out the baseline H/AB and sub in each player to see how much above that his AVG would lift you. I hope that helps!


Mike Zimmer, do this deal instantaneously and don’t even waste a moment in thinking about it. This is an utter steal for you. Soria is a top-five closer. Get this done!


Hey guys. Keeper question for a 12 team, 6×6, roto. I have to keep 5 out of this group: Howard, Mi. Cabrera, Carlos Lee, Rios, Markakis, B. Roberts, Lincecum, and J. Nathan.
Also, Cory where are you doing the FBC out of this year?


Totally agree with Cory on Soria vs Wang. Wang is extremely overvalued as a fantasy player. Yeah, he’ll get you wins, but that’s about it. Ratios are just slightly above average and he doesn’t strike anyone out.


Hack, this keeper list is outstanding, so the choice is extremely difficult. Can you package Howard and Rios/Markakis to get Pujols and turn around with a Lincecum plus Rios/Markakis and get Braun? Seriously think about possible trades, even if, on face value, you’re giving up more than the other guy. If I had to choose, I’d leave out Rios, Markakis, and Lincecum, but this is a must trade situation.


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