“Dear Mr. Rotoman:
First off, if you want to read the Mock Draft Commentaries, go here.
If you would like the FBG projections and prices update, it is here. The password is the last name of the first player profiled on page 90 of the 2017 Fantasy Baseball Guide. It is case sensitive.
This is the place where I’ll post corrections and updates to the 2017 Guide. There is a link in the top nav bar, so you can always find it.
Page 6: Talking about team names, as we do sometimes, Yoan Moncada and Lucas Giolito were traded from Boston and Washington respectively last winter. While the team changes for both, to the White Sox, made it into their capsules, the wrong team names linger on this page of rookies.
Page 6: Very embarrassing. The photo credit is wrong. The picture of Yoan Moncada is by friend and new contributor Buck Davidson. I’m sooo sorry Buck, and will get a fixed PDF for you to use as a clip.
A Reader Writes:
The Fantasy Baseball Guide is a great pub and is most useful. I have one question and one suggestion:
Q. It appears to me that Matt Moore’s “Big Price” of $14 is not consistent with his projected stats of 4.44 ERA and 1.35 Whip. I believe his Win and K totals of 11 W and 127 K are very average. I understand he has upside potential, but it appears too me that the $14 projection is not supported by your projections. Please explain.
S. It seems to me it would take little effort on your part to include the player’s team either in the “Player’s by Position” section or the Full Profiles. I play in a hybrid NL + 2AL teams (Houston and Texas) and many of us have limited knowledge of other AL players. I understand there will be changes between the start of the season and your publication date, but that’s not near the problem of having no idea of the player’s team (and whether or not he is on one of our teams). Please consider including the team for each player.
Thank you for your consideration.
Dear Reader. The projection in the Guide was the mechanical projection that derived from Moore’s history, and as you note looked rather pessimistic for a player I’m fairly keen on and three other writers made PICKS of this year. I work on the projections all winter and at some point I upgraded Moore to a 3.72 ERA and 1.23 WHIP. It just so happens this projection, also in 150 innings pitched, is worth about $12 and I’ve dropped his bid price to $13. Note that in CBS and LABR, Moore went for $13 and $11, so I was definitely in the ballpark on Moore’s bid price if not his projection in the Guide.
The Guide projections and price update is due tomorrow, probably in the evening, here on the corrections page. It will have hugely reworked projections and bid prices for those who bought the Guide. You may still find it on the shelves at Barnes and Noble and other magazine retailers, and you can also buy the online version at thefantasysportsguide.com. Use the promo code Rotoman17 and get $1 off.
As to the issue of team names, they are available in the stat lines for all the players with major league experience last year. And I do add team names to the end of the prospect capsules because readers very much want them, but it really is a problem to be more definitive. The magazine heads off to the printer just days after the Winter Meetings conclude, and at that point there are still hundreds of free agents out there. Plus, trades will be made. So, the choices are to either list the team name that the player ended last year with, which in hundreds of cases will be wrong, or their team name at press time, which means hundreds will be listed as a Free Agent.
It’s always seemed to me that the team name in the stats is just as reliable as either of the above methods, and doesn’t pretend to an authority that we don’t have in mid December. I’m open to suggestions, surely, so please feel free to send them along.
A reader named Jeffrey reports: I figure that if Tyler Anderson and Jon Gray are worth $2 apiece, then Tyler Chatwood should be worth a bid of $1. If I see anything else of note, I will send another email.
On page 2, in the credits for the Position Pages, Marc Meltzer’s name is spelled incorrectly. Sorry Marc.
On page 73-75: STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE
The lists of teams with the easiest schedules are wrong. Here is the correct info (and sorry for missing this):
RUNNERS AGAINST DEFENSES
Chicago, Tennessee, Denver, Pittsburgh, and Baltimore
Oakland, Tampa Bay, Minnesota, Detroit, and Buffalo
New England, Indianapolis, Miami, San Francisco, and New Orleans
New England, Seattle, Cincinnati, Green Bay, and Miami
PASSERS/RECEIVERS AGAINST DEFENSES
Baltimore, Dallas, Kansas City, Cleveland, and Cincinnati
Buffalo, Tampa Bay, Oakland, San Diego, and New York Giants
New England, Philadelphia, New York Jets, Buffalo, and Indianapolis
Seattle, Denver, Indianapolis, Tennessee, and New England
DEFENSES AGAINST OFFENSES
Indinapolis, Jacksonville, Tennessee, San Diego, and Green Bay
Buffalo, Jacksonville, San Diego, Indianapolis, and San Francisco
Washington, Cleveland, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia
Tampa Bay, Minnesota, Arizona, Baltimore, and Oakland
This is the place you’ll find updates and corrections and explanatory notes about the Fantasy Baseball Guide 2016. If you have a question or comment and don’t see it addressed here, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download updated projections and bid prices for purchasers of the Guide right here. FBGUIDE2016-March Update-pro The password is the last name (in lower case) of the only $14 player on page 66 of the Fantasy Baseball Guide 2016.
Raisel Iglesias (Page 28 and Page 122): This is a doozy. In the Draft at a Glance Chart on page 28 he’s listed twice, at $10 and $7. And then he’s profiled on page 122 with a Big Price of $8. You’ll note that along with his profile, in which HC Green says he has “considerable upside,” he scored seven picks and a single pan. Steve Moyer’s Pan was contrarian, based on what seemed like excessive enthusiasm from the chattering roto classes at Shandlerfest. Iglesias signed a long contract out of Cuba last spring, and was not considered a top prospect. A reliever in Cuba, he converted quickly to starting, was sent down to Triple-A to build his arm strength, and was excellent from August onward. That is, 45 strikeouts in 39.7 innings and a 2.27 ERA from August on. I can explain how he ended up twice in the Draft at a Glance chart. I changed his price from $7 to $10 late in the magazine’s production because of all those Picks. No way was he going for single digits this spring. We messed up the edit of the chart, and I missed the mess up while proofing. I have no idea how the $8 price ended up in the profile box. That must have been another fidget about his price.
And this might be another one. Tony Blengino broke Iglesias’s game down at Fangraphs in January, which is worth reading here. He’s a fan. The main takeaway: “He’s in the immediate next tier, in a virtual dead hear with Gerrit Cole, Kyle Hendricks, Carlos Martinez and Shelby Miller. Pretty good company. Plus, a bunch of those guys owe their 2015 rankings to BIP authority allowed, which fluctuates more than Ks and BBs, more so than Iglesias.”
I think that may be a fair assessment of how Iglesias expressed his talent last year, but it would be a mistake to bid him up that high (into the $15-$20 range) based on his small sample of success. $10 seems fair, maybe $12 if your psyched, but odds are that’s not going to get him. Thanks to Jeffrey of Brooklyn for finding this mistake and a few others. It’s much appreciated.
Will in Chicago Writes: “You asked for corrections?
Page 3 Paragraph 2
In the letter from the editor, you mention Ernie Lombardo. You were referring to Hall of Famer Ernie Lombardi. (Ed. Yes I was.)
Perhaps you play the guitar and you were thinking of the guitar maker Ernie Lombardo? Or maybe you were writing this during New Year’s Eve and thinking of the late Guy Lombardo? (Ed. I’ve seen Guy Lombardo lead, have not seen Ernie Lombardo make a guitar, but I have seen Mike Lombardo win three Tout Wars NL titles.)
I look forward to reading the rest of the magazine. Does this correction make the blog?
Will in Chicago”
Kelby Tomlinson (page 89): Called up at the end of the season, when Joe Panik was down, Tomlinson had a very nice stint as the Giants regular second baseman. This comes on the heels of a good season in split between Double and Triple-A, during which he put up a MLE of 2 homers and 17 steals with a .275 BA in 375 AB. In the Guide I gave him 184 AB for 2016, because he’s blocked at second and short by players who are regulars when healthy. I also gave him a $9 Big Price, which reflects my enthusiasm for him should he find his way to at bats. Good contact speed guys in the middle infield are potent forces in deep fantasy leagues, but given the lack of a path to playing time Tomlinson’s price should have been $4, which is still enthusiastic. Also, his projected BA should be .275, good but not great.
Jarrett Parker (Page 72): He had a sweet cup of coffee in September, but it was only 29 at bats (and really one 3 homer/7 ribbie game in Oakland). The formula chewed that into quite a 2016 season for the young slugger and strikeout fiend. Those numbers are way wrong. Parker’s MLE in Fresno for 2015 was a .224 BA, with 14 homers and 14 steals in 400+ at bats. His contact issues are a problem going forward, but the bigger change since the Guide closed is that the Giants added Denard Span, which makes Parker at least the fourth outfielder on their depth chart, if not the fifth. If he gets 295 at bats, as originally projected, he could hit seven homers and steal nine bases, while hitting .235 or so. At the same time, guys with solid minor league production but low contact rates do sometimes mash, at least for a while, if they get the chance to play. If Parker falls into some PT he’s certainly worth a short term for the power/speed thing, but his batting average is going to eventually hurt.
Rymer Liriano (page 64): For some reason he doesn’t have 2015 stats in his statbox. He played in Triple-A El Paso all year and the stats looked good:.292 BA, 14 homers, 16 steals, but Triple-A El Paso is not a real hitting environment. What looks like a rebound from 2014 struggles really wasn’t. The MLE for his 2015 Triple-A season is .229, with nine homers and 12 steals, not the stats of a major league corner outfielder, which perhaps explains why the Padres dropped him from their 40 man roster today (Jan. 22, 2016). He’s still young, he still has a chance to find a role as a useful parttimer perhaps, but clearly the Pads don’t think he has a chance to be a ML regular.
CATCHER At A Glance (page 19): Devin Mesoraco was left off this chart because he only played four games last year. Usually a guy like him shows up in the DH section, and then I move him over. I don’t know how I missed him, especially because I have him priced at an aggressive $15. That’s a good price for him if he’s totally recovered from his hip problems, but that is hardly a sure thing. Hips are tricky. It’s too early to know, and upon reconsideration I would say that at this point he’s probably a $7 player, understanding that he could drop to $0 if he is reinjured, and likely to cost as much as $15-17 if he is actually healthy.
Kris Bryant’s Projection (page 37): There is no mechanical projection that can take a first year look at a player who played a part of a year in the majors and nail it. So, years ago I stopped pretending and started handling the one-year guys manually. The problem is that what comes out of the spreadsheet looks a lot like their first year numbers, and sometimes when I go through the list while putting the projections together for the magazine, I miss one. I missed Bryant. Partly because I think the quantitatives are pretty reasonable. It’s the batting average that bugs me. A 64 percent contact rate should be a .220 batting average. Bryant hits the ball so hard and has so consistently put up huge BABIPs, that you have to give him extra credit. So, maybe his BA should be .240-.250. No way can he sustain .275 striking out 30 percent of the time. So, .240, 90 R, 30 HR, 100 RBI, 13 SB seems about right.
THE GUIDE, Lawr Michaels’ Picks and Pans: He sent them in in plenty of time. I didn’t cut them into my master file. They aren’t in this year’s Guide. Sorry about that, Lawr. But here they are . . .
Wilmer Flores: When Ruben Tejada lost his knee to Chase Utley in the playoffs, I heard people ask if the Mets could win without Tejada. Huh? Flores, who did play 137 games last year, hit 16 big flies and didn’t turn 24 till August. He is going to be good.
Henry Owens: For a team struggling so deeply to identify decent starting pitching in 2015, it is impressive that the team was so concerted with the development and promotion of lefty Owens. The tall (6’6”) hurler whiffed 572 over 516 minor league frames, and then went 2-2, 3.38 over last five starts at Fenway. Not that it matters, but he does have the strange Twitter handle of @H____O_______.
Anthony DeSclafani: Sneaky good starter, DeSclafani might well be dismissed by owners who look to ERA, but if he can build on the 9.6 K per nine innings he grabbed the last month, the righty makes a nice fourth starter gamble for probably cheap.
Brandon Finnegan: Potentially dominant, Finnegan, the Royals #1 pick in 2014 had enough skills to debut that same year. 55 whiffs over 55 big league innings, Finnegan might be overlooked based upon his 2015 line.
Greg Bird: Arod and Teix are 75 years old between them, and if anyone thinks they can knock off 500 at-bats each, I know of tickets on a space shuttle trip to Alpha Centauri you might like. Bird will establish himself as a starter by June, and that will be that.
Stephen Piscotty: Pretty hard to not like a Stanford alum who debuts as well as Piscotty did last year.
Xander Bogaerts: Big jump in skill mastery last year as Bogaerts knocked out 199 hits. With his youthful Boston mates, Bogaerts will simply get better.
Gary Sanchez: He is big and slow and has a lot of pop, and just looks like he should be a Yankees catcher. What is not to like?
Marcell Ozuna: So, talented, but pushed forward so quickly, I am guessing Ozuna matures a little and settles down with the Fish, or better gets swapped, picks it up, and haunts Miami for the next ten years.
Randall Grichuk: First round pick of the Angels in 2009, then stolen by the Cards for David Freese, Grichuk has the stuff to replace Matt Holliday in all ways except a crappy attitude.
Ender Inciarte: Finished fifth in ROY polling in 2014, and stepped it up last year and hit .303 while steaking 21. This kid is good.
Brad Miller: More power first half, more plate discipline second half. I am guessing he learned.
Scott Kazmir: Great story. Great comeback. Learned to pitch, but I fear the ride is over.
Gerrado Parra: Baseline is probably a lot closer to his Baltimore 2015 line as opposed to his Milwaukee one.
Taylor Jungman: A 4.10 minor league ERA with a 1.358 WHIP tells me 2015 was an anomaly, and 2016 means a correction.
In the Fantasy Football Guide 2015 Professional Edition mock draft, we had a glitch (as discussed earlier on the corrections page). Tim Heaney, sportswriter at USA Today, friend, and all around good guy, was unable to connect with the draft room, and his team was autopicked.
The problem was that we did not have time to gather another 14 fantasy experts and have another mock draft, and while Tim’s team was not one he would have picked in a million years, it wasn’t a total joke. Tim agreed to comment on his autopicks, and we decided to run with what we had.
Kind of like having an online draft with 13 regs and that one guy who always screws up.
While writing this up for the correction page it occurred to me that I should have had Tim write up who he would have taken with each of his picks, if he’d actually been drafting. Shoulda, but I didn’t, then. But I did this week, and here are the guys Tim says he would have picked if he’d been able (he had the 12th pick) :
1 Calvin Johnson WR1
2 C.J. Anderson RB1
3 Keenan Allen WR2
4 C.J. Spiller RB2
5 Matthew Stafford QB1
6 Charles Sims RB3
7 Charles Johnson WR3
8 David Johnson RB4
9 Pierre Garcon WR4
10 Tyler Eifert TE1
11 Danny Woodhead RB5
12 Rueben Randle WR5
13 Jameis Winston QB2
14 Dan Herron RB6
15 Indianapolis Colts DT1
16 Matt Prater PK
We very much appreciate your helping with this. Send any errors to askrotoman (at) gmail.com. Thanks.
The first email I received about the magazine was this one:
I am disappointed with your magazine. You have several players as this years breakouts and as overhyped players. Can you explain why they are in both categories?
Your mock draft is a joke. I enjoy reading different writers strategies on why they picked who they did and what adjustments they had to make during the draft. All you did was a auto draft.
I would not recommend your 2015 Fantasy Football Guide to anyone.
I hate letters like this, because I feel misunderstood, and worry I didn’t communicate what was happening clearly enough. Here’s what we have in the magazine that think is worth recommending:
The front section of the magazine are one line comments by the magazine’s writers about NFL awards and the top Rookies, Breakout and Overhyped players for 2015. It is a jumble of different opinions by different writers, who are identified by name. Some writers think some players are potential Breakouts, while other writers think those same players are being Overhyped.
This is a feature, not a bug. It is the conversation about these competing points of view that should help us sort out who to take earlier this year, and who to take later.
As for the Mock Draft, we had a mix up and 13 owners drafted their teams live, and Tim Heaney did not. Because of the timing it was not possible to redo the Mock, and Heaney kindly enough wrote about the draft software’s picks.
I wish it were different, I would like to know Heaney’s actual choices for those spots (hmm, I think I should have asked him), but those of us involved with the draft thought the information was still valid and useful, even if not pure.
I’ll post other issues here as they come in.
The following are my fault. I seem to have joined the 2015 team name to these guys, rather than their new teams. I’m sorry for the error. Thanks to Corey Stanley.
Page 53, Larry Fitzgerald Profile: Should have a Cardinals helmet.
Page 49. Mike Evans: Should have a Buccaneers helmet
Page 40, LeSean McCoy is on the Bills, not the Eagles.
Page 40, DeMarco Murray is on the Eagles, not the Cowboys.
Page 51, Andre Johnson should be on the Colts.
For the mid-March Projection and Big Price Update, visit this page. The password is the last word in Buck Davidson’s Allen Craig profile on page 46 of the 2015 Guide.
THE FANTASY BASEBALL GUIDE 2015
Page 52: The Moyer Pan of Andre Ethier is meant to be a Moyer Pan of Andrelton Simmons on Page 86. The tipoff? Ethier is not valued for his glove, no way no how. Blame Rotoman for bad cutting and pasting.
Page 69: For some reason, J.D. Martinez and Victor Martinez appear alphabetically before Leonys and Russell Martin. This is wrong, but you’ll have to ask Excel how it happened, and Excel isn’t talking.
Page 71: Will Middlebrooks isn’t included in the Guide. I don’t have an explanation for that, except I made a mistake. I’m not high on Middlebrooks at all, I think there’s a fair chance he’s going to fail utterly if he can ever stay healthy enough to get consistent playing time, but he should have been in there.
Will Middlebrooks, $3: Last year’s power outage can be blamed on hand and finger injuries, which popped up throughout the season, but the contact issues that surfaced in 2013 only got worse last year. Now he heads to a park where his power, if it returns as part of his game, isn’t likely to play quite so grandly as it did in Boston. There’s enough uncertainty about his skill set to make him a possible endgame play in NL only leagues, maybe he’ll hit some homers if he proves he isn’t injury prone, that he’s just been unlucky. But the odds are strong he’s going to fail.
Yes, we sometimes make misteaks. Here is the place to find the corrections (and look below for some links):
pg. 3, Rob Blackstien should have been listed as a writer, his first working on football after years of baseball writing.
pg. 38-46, in the stats chart. Every time it says PASSING it should say RUSHING.
pg. 39. LeSean McCoy is a big player. That’s why he’s on the cover. He’s not 6’11. That’s a typo.
Team Pages: The profiles written by Marc Meltzer are id’d with the inexplicable initials MB.
There are also a number of profiles that are unattributed. These are mostly the work of Nick Minnix.
pg. 3, Copy Editor: There was (and still is) a placeholder for “the other guy,” who ended up not contributing as a copy editor and wasn’t available to notice that the placeholder should have been deleted.
pg. 6, Masahiro Tanaka profile, third line from the end, the word “store” should have been “starter.”
pg. 10, 5ive More came up a little short and should have had its name changed to 6ix More when Kolten Wong was added.
#23, Alex Hanson should be Alen Hanson. Dum.
pg. 30, the picture caption for Clayton Kershaw says: San Franscisco Giant, which is an obvious carryover from last year’s layout. The projection in the caption is also 15-7, 2.84 ERA, 0 Saves, 202 IP, 156 Hits, 60 BB, 205 K, 1.07 WHIP.
pg. 48, Khris Davis: His projection is the mechanical one that builds off his short season. The real projection featured in the update will have a much lower batting average and probably fewer homers per at bat, but I’m still working on that.
pg. 48, Ike Davis: His 2013 earnings are listed at $0. He stunk, for sure, but he actually earned $2.
pg. 66, Junior Lake: His projection is a mechanical one that gives him too high a BA. I wrote more about him here.
pg. 105, Wei-Yin Chen: bone spurts SB bone spurrs.
Projections and Prices Update. The page is password protected. The password is the first word of Rick Wilton’s comment about Albert Pujols in the Hitters section of the Guide.
Multiposition Chart. The old favorite from the Guide. All Major League and Minor League Players with 15 or more games played at two or more positions.
The Fantasy Football Guide 2013 is out now. I’ve seen it in many stores and you can buy the online or pdf versions at thefantasysportsguide.com.
This year’s Guide is full of sharp opinions, considered analysis and clear charts and stats all designed to help you prepare for your fantasy drafts this year. We even resisted the temptation to put Aaron Hernandez on the cover, so rest assured we did a lot of things right. Every year, please believe me, we put additional resources into getting things right, and we’re getting better each year I think, though there can still be the occasional headscratcher.
One big thing I screwed up this year has nothing to do with football, but is so elementally wrong I feel compelled to cop to the error here and I hope clear the air.
Each year my old buddy Jon Glascoe writes a piece for the back page of the Guide. His tone is usually comic, his subjects usually bit dark (but funny), and his writing glib and conversational and a bit philosophical. I’m always pleased to have his voice in the Guide, as I was this year.
But alas, in editing his piece called The New Male Manifesto Edition I judged that his last line paraphrase of Dylan Thomas’s hugely famous poem Do not go gentle into that good night would be improved by direct quotation.
So I changed Jon’s “Rage against the dying of the light,” to “Do not go gentle into that dark night/Rage, rage against the dying of the light.” Good idea, but the actual quote is:
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
What has been done cannot be undone, but I just want to be clear that this was my error, introduced into Jon’s copy. And I’m all apologies.
Ps. If you would like to read the whole poem you can do so at Poets.org. Thomas is great to read out loud, but there is also a recording of the poet reading the poem, which isn’t in keeping with current styles but is powerful nonetheless.
Pps. I didn’t think this particular poem had much to say about football, but then there is this stanza:
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Perhaps Aaron Rodgers should be worried.
News of Rafael Furcal’s decision to have elbow surgery last week suggested there was some chance he might be back in July of this year. In the software I cut him down to a projected 235 optimistic at bats. It now seems that he’s going to miss the whole of 2013. I’m cutting his projected AB to 0. Pete Kozma, Daniel Descalso, and Kolten Wong absorb the at bats.