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Rotoderby: Upside versus Reliability PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Don Drooker   
Thursday, 27 March 2014 17:28

Donald's Ducks

Fairly basic approach, as I went through the list and tried to find players who would hit more HR's than last year for various reasons. The first eight were Craig, Headley, Pujols, Fielder, Bautista, Myers, Heyward and Puig. Their totals left me with room for 78 additional HR's, so I added Cabrera and Beltre.

Quack-Ups

Used reliability as the main focus on this entry, utilizing players with zero (or close to zero) DL days. The first eight were Hosmer, Goldschmidt, Encarnacion, Rosario, Rios, Myers, Puig and Trout. Their totals left me with room for 33 additional HR's, so I added Craig and Pujols.

Obviously, the downside is that four players are on both teams and a significant injury to one of them could derail the chances of both squads. Normal DL stints, however, will still allow the teams to be competitive in the monthly standings. _____________________________________________________________________

The staff at Mastersball is joining our colleagues at Fantasy Alarm in a private Rotoderby league. Over the next several days, those of us participating will write a blog discussing our strategy. A few of us are so enthralled that we're also playing for real. So if you've always wanted to be in a league with one of us, now's your chance. Just click on the logo below and sign up!

 

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Last Updated on Thursday, 27 March 2014 22:44
 
Longball Derby: Miggy and Trumbo Lead the Way PDF Print E-mail
MASTERSBLOG
Written by Pasko Varnica   
Wednesday, 26 March 2014 08:16

Zen Master says “Know your league.” RotoDerby teams have one unmodifiable lineup for the entire season with 6 infielders and 4 outfielders. Scoring is simple: 5 points per HR, 1 point for each RBI and minus 1 for a strikeout. That’s it.

RotoDerby has pre-assigned a salary to each player equal to the number of homers they hit last season. Teams cannot exceed a total of 220. The choice of players is limited to those hitting at least 13 long balls last season.

Let’s look at how to build a team i.e., at the RotoDerby strategy. First, since it is a single lineup cast in stone before the start of the season, I eliminated players who have a history of injuries. A perennial wishful thinking, I know. I stayed away from Matt Kemp, Albert Pujols and the likes.

Next step was to create a custom players ranking appropriate for RotoDerby. Since most rankings are roto 5x5 oriented, I modified Mastersball projections by adding a column having the formula ((HR*5)+RBI-K). Then I sorted the spreadsheet. Unsurprisingly, Miguel Cabrera and his 233 projected RotoDerby points came on top but Mike Trout, a jewel in the crown of the Roto 5x5 leagues, was 68th. Know your league!

My ideal team had Cabrera (my understanding is that last year’s injury was not significant) and Mark Trumbo, who in Arizona may impersonate last year’s Chris Davis. Unfortunately, there was no way to fit them both within the 220 budget. Technically, it was possible, but the team would not be ideal, with two expensive players using most of the allotted budget. Consequently, I chose to have two teams, one with Cabrera and the other with Trumbo.

I created my two teams using the custom spreadsheet. I wish that I had a computer program, say, an Excel formula, but that would have required entering RotoDerby values by hand. If this were Buffett’s billion-dollar bracket, I would have done it. But it is not. So I created the lineups by hand, going back and forth several times, adding and removing players until I found the ideal combination of productive players worth a total of 220.

The projected RotoDerby points of my two teams are a tad below 1,200. Will that be enough? Who knows, RotoDerby is new. What’s the projected total of your teams? Can you build a lineup that exceeds 1,200 points?

_____________________________________________________________________

The staff at Mastersball is joining our colleagues at Fantasy Alarm in a private Rotoderby league. Over the next several days, those of us participating will write a blog discussing our strategy. A few of us are so enthralled that we're also playing for real. So if you've always wanted to be in a league with one of us, now's your chance. Just click on the logo below and sign up!

 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 21:06
 
Longball Derby: Core Philosophy Focuses on RBI's and K's PDF Print E-mail
MASTERSBLOG
Written by Ryan Carey   
Tuesday, 25 March 2014 13:13

After reading Marc’s post yesterday regarding his two squads for the Rotoderby Longball Challenge, my first reaction was that maybe I hadn’t put enough thought into constructing my rosters as he apparently had. At the very least, while my approach in essence was based on the same basic principles, I did not go down the path of constructing two squads so uniquely different.  Rather, my two squads are both anchored by the same core of six players, so instead of taking two very different paths to the 220 home run cap, after identifying who I wanted that core to consist of, I only shuffled four cards from one team to the next.

As I hinted at above, my method of selecting which guys I wanted was pretty basic. Having only HR, RBI’s and strikeouts to consider, my first consideration was to look for players who don’t strike out too much. Next, I tried to identify who I thought had the most room for improvement in their power numbers, since the cost to “buy” a player is his home run total from a year ago. Here is the Core 6 I decided to roll with in both leagues:

Albert Pujols (17) - I agree with Marc’s assessment that Pujols is too good to pass up at this price. A rebound to 30 homers looks good and he has never struck out more than 100 times in a season.

David Wright (18) - Again, I like the combination of price, lack of strikeouts and lineup position here. There isn’t a ton of HR upside here, but I think he can get back to 25 and make a push for 30.

Hanley Ramirez (20) - He has nice power upside, hits third in a great lineup and doesn’t strike out out too much. The best value in my book at SS.

Edwin Encarnacion (36) - I wanted a guy with 40 home run potential as a lynchpin, and EE has the added plus of not killing you when it comes to strikeouts, averaging only 72 the last three years.

Wil Myers (13) - Myers is priced at the bottom of the scale, and as such I decided to roll with him on both teams based purely on upside. He doesn’t have a ton of power potential and is the most strikeout prone of my core, but he will hit fourth for TB, which should mean he has a great chance to improve significantly in his first full season.

Bryce Harper (20) - Again a bet on the upside of a young hitter breaking out, this time with a little health risk added. Still, hitting third means if he can stay on the field, the results will come.

So after locking down the core of my teams, all that was left was to figure out how to allocate the remaining 96 home runs to maximum effect: You have to roster 6 IF and 4 OF, so I was looking for two of each to fill out both squads.

Team 1 - Anthony Rizzo (23), Adrian Beltre (30), Alex Rios (18), Carlos Beltran (24)

This group is anchored by Beltre, and then mixes in Rizzo’s upside with two hitters moving into nice power ballparks. All four are locked into the middle of their lineups and  Rizzo led this quartet in K’s a year ago with 127.

Team 2 - Miguel Cabrera (44), Allen Craig (13), Jason Heyward (14), Giancarlo Stanton (24)

This quartet is led by the best player in the format, and a guy I wanted on at least one team. That led to searching for bargains and Craig and Heyward fit the bill. Like Cabrera, I wanted to take the shot on Stanton’s power upside at least once, so I paired him with the MVP.

So for the most part, my approach was to focus on guys with RBI upside who don't strike out too much and are locked into the middle of their respective lineups. We'll see if it works.

_____________________________________________________________________

The staff at Mastersball is joining our colleagues at Fantasy Alarm in a private Rotoderby league. Over the next several days, those of us participating will write a blog discussing our strategy. A few of us are so enthralled that we're also playing for real. So if you've always wanted to be in a league with one of us, now's your chance. Just click on the logo below and sign up!

 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 21:15
 
Longball Derby: Prado more Valuable than Trout?!?!? PDF Print E-mail
MASTERSBLOG
Written by Marc Meltzer   
Monday, 24 March 2014 13:02

Editor's note - this is the first of a series of blogs discussing our staff entries into Rotoderby.com's Longball Derby, a new kind of fantasy game.

In laying out my two rosters for the RotoDerby Longball Challenge, I put the first rule of fantasy sports to the test – know the scoring system. Home Runs, RBI, and strikeouts is all there is.

The first team is the “Gut Feel” team. Pick the players that look like they have the highest room to raise their value based on their 2013 home run total.  The ten-player team has no single player that cost more than 26. The infield ended up with five corners and one middle. I suspect that Albert Pujols will find his way onto most rosters as his price is artificially low based on last season’s injury. The rest of the infielders are Matt Adams, Justin Morneau, Jedd Gyorko, Freddie Freeman and Prince Fielder. Bryce Harper and Giancarlo Stanton seemed like obvious choices for outfielders with their perceived 40 home run ability. The often-injured Carlos Gonzalez and Home Run Derby stud Yoenis Cespedes rounding out the team.

Then we crunched the numbers to see how players really scored in 2013 when you factor in RBI and strikeouts. We will call this team the “Value-Based Team.” Miguel Cabrera is such a runaway high-scorer in this system that he is a must-own. Based on the 2013 numbers, Cabrera (263 points) outscored runner up Edwin Encarnacion (also on my roster) by 41 points and the fourth highest scorer Adrian Beltre (another member of my roster) by over 100 points.  Pujols is the only common player on the two teams, as his value is just too good to pass up. We could not put Martin Prado in the title without having him on the roster at a cost of 14 for the 25th highest scorer. Matt Holliday and Pablo Sandoval also score well at a low price. We take some cheap risks with the final three outfield spots, rostering Jason Heyward, Michael Morse and Wil Myers.

The staff at Mastersball is joining our colleagues at Fantasy Alarm in a private Rotoderby league. Over the next several days, those of us participating will write a blog discussing our strategy. A few of us are so enthralled that we're also playing for real. So if you've always wanted to be in a league with one of us, now's your chance. Just click on the logo below and sign up!

 

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Last Updated on Monday, 24 March 2014 21:20
 
Rotoderby: Fantasy Baseball with a Twist PDF Print E-mail
MASTERSBLOG
Written by Todd Zola   
Thursday, 20 March 2014 07:35

Do you want to join another fantasy baseball league but are short on time? Are there a couple of players you really like but just aren't going to have the chance to own this season? Do you dig the long ball?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then check this out.

There's a new game in town run by our friends at Rotoderby. It's a take-off on a salary cap game but instead of choosing players whose collective salaries are beneath a set amount, the total of the 2013 homers needs to be below the threshold. Your team then totals fantasy points with the team scoring  the most points winning!

But here's the catch. The scoring resets every month! You don't redraft your team, you stay with the same ten guys. It's just that the slate is wiped clean each month and everyone is back to square one. So not only are you looking for players to out-produce last season's numbers but health and durability are also a major concern.

Hooked yet? Did I mention that the champion wins money, perhaps a lot of it?

The staff at Mastersball is joining our colleagues at Fantasy Alarm in a private Rotoderby league. Over the next several days, those of us participating will write a blog discussing our strategy. A few of us are so enthralled that we're also playing for real. So if you've always wanted to be in a league with one of us, now's your chance. Just click on the logo below and sign up!

 

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