Friday, March 28, 2008

Ask the Hurler: Wuz I robbed (part three)?

Client-9 writes:

I play in an 8 team, 5x5 roto league (with OBP instead of AVG), 28 man rosters, 1750 IP limit.

We were in the 13th round of our draft and I had no 2B or 3B. Zimmerman and Weeks were players I was targeting with my next two picks and they had both just been snagged by Owner X.

So I immediately asked Owner X about a trade (he already had Miggy Cabrera and Brian Roberts so he had 2B and 3B covered), and he said he would trade me both Zimmerman and Weeks for Adam Dunn (my astute 5th round choice). I got him to throw in his 14th round draft choice, who I used to select A.J. Burnett, and he got my 27th and 28th rounders (Heath Bell and Justin Upton).

Owner X gets Adam Dunn, Heath Bell, and Justin Upton

My team gets Weeks, Zimmerman, and A.J. Burnett

Trading away quality to get depth is usually a bad idea, and I gave up the best player in the deal, because Dunn is a stud in OBP leagues. Wuz I robbed?

Bob responds:

First off, congrats on using the best fantasy format there is: 5x5 with OBP instead of batting average. That's the scoring my money league utilizes, and, as the French say, c'est magnifique. Now, onto your inquiry ...

... which, I must admit, is tough to answer. My first instinct is to say that if you had the give up your fifth-round pick while still drafting because you were short two starting infielders, then your draft prep work kind of sucked this year. I don't mind you targeting Weeks and Zimmerman as mid-round picks, but you should have had a back-up plan in mind in case you didn't get them. (And "trading a guy who has a career OBP of .381 before the draft has even ended" does not qualify as a good back-up plan.)

If we were to examine this thing from just a draft-pick standpoint, though, it appears you traded your fifth, 27th and 28th-round picks for additional 12th, 13th and 14th-round picks. The trade doesn't sound as bad if you look at it that way. In the 27th and 28th rounds, you're starting to enter shots-in-the-dark territory (even with a small eight-team league), while quality players can still be had in the teen rounds.

I guess my main problem is the guys you got. Zimmerman posted a measly .330 OBP last season. Weeks has tons of talent but has yet to prove that his body can hold up for a full season. A.J. is even more of an injury risk. These guys would be considered gambles (perhaps educated gambles, but gambles nonetheless) if you just drafted them the normal way. You actually gave away your fifth-round pick -- a guy for whom you can pencil in 40 home runs and a .380 OBP -- to get them!

Verdict: You didn't exactly get full-on robbed, but I'd say a street hoodlum tried to pick your pocket and then, after you caught him doing it, he gave you black eye before fleeing into the cold, dark night.

8 comments:

Mike Bock said...

I like this deal much less than Bob. Dunn's one problem in 5X5 leagues is his poor batting average. Take that away, and even in an eight team league he should be a third or fourth round pick. Meaning that you traded a player who's worth more than his fifth round draft selection.

Don't trade quality for depth, particularly in shallow leagues. With an eight team league, those mid round picks aren't going to be as valuable as they would be if there were 12 or 15 teams. With fewer teams to divvy up the available players, you're going to see tons and tons of equivalent players on the waiver wire. You probably have realized this already, as A.J. Burnett is likely your fourth or fifth starter and could be easily replaced.

I also just flat-out don't like Weeks, and considering that there are six premium 3Bers available this year (A-Rod, Wright, Cabrera, Braun, Aramis, and Atkins) you've basically ended up with one of the worst starting third baseman in your entire league.

Final analysis: not good. And if Weeks or A.J. go down, it's going to look worse.

Anonymous said...

with OBP instead of AVE, I submit that Dunn is about the 20th best player. Don't forget that handfull of SBs.

Mike Bock said...

I don't understand how the hell Dunn made it out of the third round, let alone the fourth.

Bob Taylor said...

In my OBP league, Dunn was selected with the 16th overall pick. How in the hell he made it to the fifth round in Client-9's eight-team league is a damn fine question. (But not the one he asked.) Maybe he'll drop by to elaborate.

Steve said...

Just wondering, why the love for OBP over AVE?
My league counts both which has always struck me as a bit odd. I think it got put in there because Bonds and Pujols owners were whining about their guy being walked...

Bob Taylor said...

I could go on forever about why OBP is a better fantasy category than batting average (and perhaps I will one day). But the short answer is: Walks help real baseball teams, so they should help fantasy baseball teams.

True, base hits, especially multi-base hits, are preferable to walks because they produce more runs. But in fantasy, we already have a runs scored category ... and an RBI category ... and an entire category devoted just to home runs. Run production is more than covered by those three categories.

So why not use one category to credit players for EVERY time they get on base, even if it's courtesy of a good eye (or opposing pitchers being scared shitless of them)?

Also, don't forget that playing fantasy baseball is supposed to be fun. Doesn't it suck to be watching a game and feel bad about your player drawing a walk? Wouldn't you rather feel good about that? I know I would.

client-9 said...

Thanks for your analysis. I have no idea how Dunn dropped to me in the 5th round, but I probably should not have traded him.

However, I did snag Jim Thome in the 15th and Pat Burrell in the 12th to make up for the loss in power an OBP. Do you like the move a little better now?

Also, with the 1750 innings limit adding AJ Burnett really helped round out my staff.

And I'm the league commish so thanks for the props on the scoring system. A few guys complained about using OBP but I told them that we were using it because its not 1992 anymore.

client-9 said...

here's how my roster ended up

1B
Lance Berkman
(Hou - 1B,RF)
-/- - - - - -
2B
Rickie Weeks
(Mil - 2B)
-/- - - - - -
3B
Ryan Zimmerman
(Was - 3B)
Atl 7:05 pm -/- - - - - -
SS
Jimmy Rollins
(Phi - SS)
-/- - - - - -
LF
Matt Holliday
(Col - LF)
-/- - - - - -
CF
Chris Young
(Ari - CF)
-/- - - - - -
RF
Vladimir Guerrero
(LAA - RF)
-/- - - - - -
Util
Pat Burrell
(Phi - LF)
-/- - - - - -
Util
Jim Thome
(CWS - Util)
-/- - - - - -
Util
Paul Konerko
(CWS - 1B)
-/- - - - - -
BN
Jason Bay
(Pit - LF)
-/- - - - - -
BN
Troy Glaus
(StL - 3B)
-/- - - - - -
BN
Josh Hamilton
(Tex - CF,RF)
-/- - - - - -
BN
Michael Bourn
(Hou - LF,CF)


RP
Jonathan Papelbon
(Bos - RP)
- - - - - -
RP
Huston Street
(Oak - RP)
- - - - - -
P
Jason Isringhausen
(StL - RP)
- - - - - -
P
Kevin Gregg
(Fla - RP)
- - - - - -
P
Troy Percival
(TB - RP)
- - - - - -
P
Brandon Lyon
(Ari - RP)
- - - - - -
P
--empty--
- - - - - -
BN
Cole Hamels
(Phi - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
Dan Haren
(Ari - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
Aaron Harang
(Cin - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
A.J. Burnett
(Tor - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
Matt Cain
(SF - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
Ben Sheets
(Mil - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
Pedro Martínez
(NYM - SP)
- - - - - -
BN
--empty--
- - - - - -
DL
--empty--
- - - - - -
DL
Andy Pettitte
(NYY - SP) DL
- - - - - -