Lawr Michael’s thoughts about the inaugural Tout X Drauction.
I can’t believe how big the whole thing is now. Back in the day we would huddle in the dank basement of some New York bar. One year we drafted in Steve Moyer’s basement, which I thought was great but later heard tell of other putative Warriors who did not. Now there are at least a hundred people there either drafting or media-involved. Even girls! Maybe three! TV cameras, live radio broadcasts, no question we’re big shots.
The best thing is that the people are terrific. The very few assholes who have passed through the expert ranks of fantasy baseball over the years all disappeared quickly. I mean, I’m the biggest asshole there and I’m only an asshole sometimes. But you want to know about my team.
I won the battle but I may have lost the war. Here’s The Conundrum: in NL- or AL-only leagues the bargains are going to come on the pitchers, but you can’t get too many or you won’t have enough money to buy an offense. Everyone is spending 30 percent or less on pitching and bragging about it, which ABSOLUTELY guarantees that 1) pitchers will be undervalued, and 2) hitters will be overvalued. (A corollary is that some team or teams who don’t spend on pitching are going to score some pitching bargains, making them instant contenders.) When it works it looks great, when it doesn’t—which is usually since everyone is doing it—it looks terrible, but no one cares because odds are that’s what the winner did. To me this state of affairs calls for a contrary strategy and hence the conundrum. Continue reading “Gene McCaffrey (Tout NL): LET’S TALK ABOUT ME!”
NOTE: The link has been fixed.
The Top 5 All Time Tout Wars Earners (based on $100 entries divided among top teams each season):
Larry Schechter $2,920
Fred Zinkie $1,632
Mike Lombardo $1,579
Jason Grey $1,380
Tristan Cockcroft $1,253
Top 5 Earners since 2010:
Fred Zinkie $1,632
Tristan Cockcroft $1,553
Larry Schechter $1,420
Steve Gardner $736
Jason Grey $600
See all the results at The Tout Wars Leader Board.
In Tout Mixed Draft, which is in only its second year, Perry Van Hook set a new record for RBI (987), impressive in a down year. Perry also set a new record for Stolen Bases, with 211. Scott Engel set new records for Strikeouts (1448) and WHIP (1.131), while champ Tim McLeod set a record for the lowest ERA (3.166).
In Tout Mixed Auction, champ Derek Van Riper set a new record for OBP, with 3.523, and Strikeouts, with 1439. Ray Guilfoyle set records for ERA (2.696) and WHIP (1.106), and Ray Flowers rounded out the rewriting of the pitching record books with a record for Saves, with 135.
in Tout NL, Steve Gardner established the first record for On Base Percentage, with a .3386 record. Phil Hertz set a new record low for WHIP, with 1.131.
In Tout AL, Glenn Colton and Rick Wolf’s team set a new record for high points on the season, with 106, as well as the first On Base Percentage record (.3334), and new marks for ERA (2.96) and WHIP (1.161).
All Time Top 10 Earners (these are imaginary dollars, based on a $100 buy in, standard roto payout to top four or five places)
Larry Schechter 9 years $3,020
Mike Lombardo 5 years $1,579
Jason Grey 11 years $1,380
Fred Zinkie 3 years $1,345
Ron Shandler 16 years $1,146
John Coleman 5 years $849
Sam Walker 6 years $840
Trace Wood 6 years $840
Tristan Cockcroft 7 years $713
See the whole list here.
While everthing was a first and a record in the innaugural Tout Wars Mixed Draft season, new records were set in the other three Tout Wars Leagues.
In Tout Mixed Auction, Fred Zinkie of all people set new league records for ERA and WHIP, eclipsing David Gonosâ€™ (2010) and Nick Minnixâ€™ (2011) records, while runnerup David Gonos broke Tim Heaney’s strikeout mark.
In Tout Wars AL, Larry Schechter’s total of 100.5 points edges Sam Walkerâ€™s 2008 record by half a point, and Matthew Berry broke Jason Greyâ€™s 2011 record for team strikeouts.
In the Tout NL, Champ Tristan Cockcroft set new record for WHIP, with a 1.151 WHIP, breaking Greg Rosenthalâ€™s 2004 record of 1.16.
Check out all the Tout Wars Records at the Records page.
I was recently editing my upcoming book, Winning Fantasy Baseball, and I got to this section:
â€œIn March, 2005, I was invited to join the Tout Wars expertâ€™s league (www.toutwars.com). They traditionally had an AL-only and an NL-only auction league, but for 2005 they added a 12-team mixed auction.
â€œI had never been in a mixed auctionâ€”and I only had one week to prepareâ€”so this was very problematic. But I wasnâ€™t going to pass up the chance to join the renowned Tout Wars, so I said yes.â€
When reading this, it occurred to me that being invited to join Tout Wars is such an honor that anything short of my own wedding or the funeral of a parent wouldnâ€™t be a sufficient reason to decline. In other words, when Tout Wars invites you to join, theyâ€™re making you an offer you canâ€™t refuse.
That makes Tout Wars like the Mafia.Â And, of course, that means Ron Shandler is the godfather.
More about Larry’s book at Winning Fantasy Baseball.
Ron Shandler in USA Today surveys the history of rules changes in Tout Wars.