Rotowire’s Derek VanRiper Explains How He Won Tout Mixed Auction.

Over at Rotowire’s blog.

Good health and good pitching pickups on the waiver wire were a part of it, but to get the full measure check out the full post. His showing of draft prices and season earnings for each roster spot is instructive.

Fred Zinkie Makes a Trade! Scott Pianowski Writes About It!

Actually, Spianow wrote a story over at Yahoo! explaining why he sold low on Shin Soo Choo, by trading him to Jeff Erickson in the Yahoo Friends and Family League and to Fred Zinkie in Tout Wars Mixed Auction. So the headline here could have been:

Pianowski: Ah Choo!

Or ScottP: The Shin Soo Also Sets.

But we chose to go with the Dog Bites Man hed, though it would seem to foreclose on us using it again. Because Zinkie will make another trade. He also promises us his thinking about taking on a bum like Choo later, after he handles some personal business.

In the meantime, enjoy Scott’s Closing Time piece. There really is something good called Selling Low.

UPDATE: Fred’s angle.

Tout Notes: The Sherpa and a Madman

Brian Walton weighs in on the Tout Wars rules regarding FAAB, and how Scott Swanay’s draft day adventure puts them in a different light.

Follow Zach Steinhorn’s thoughts about this Tout Wars Mixed Auction team, closers, Vickery, injuries and more, as they unfold!

I Like My Draft! Notes from the TW Mixed Draft 2014.

I woke up the day after the TW Mixed Draft to a curious email. It was addressed to me and said that my team had won the draft because my team had taken Mike Trout (duh) with the first pick in the previous night’s draft. Okay.

The issue was I was the live blogger, not a participant, but then I realized that in order to observe the draft I made myself a coowner of Tom Kessenich’s team. Tom had the first pick by virtue of having finished second in the league’s inaugural season and last year’s champ, Mike Podhorzer, moving to play in one of the only leagues this year.

So, I read on. CBSsports, who hosted the draft, went on to say:

Draft Recap

Thanks to players like Mike Trout, Tom Kessenich are the team to beat

It’s a long way to October, but you have won the first round, winding up with the top ranked draft. Your squad, led by Mike Trout, are projected to wind up with 96 category points. That’s 39 more points than Ray Murphy are projected to come up with. Coach Murphy will have all year to prove us wrong, but for now, Ray Murphy are slated to finish in last place.

Another team that will have some struggles is Tim McLeod, who have the worst infielders in the league. Coach Mcleod will have to trot out Corey Hart, Howie Kendrick, and Cody Asche into the starting lineup. Perry Van Hook, meanwhile, are the class of the league in that area, with infielders Miguel Cabrera, Mark Trumbo, and Jose Altuve.

Your strength is mainly in your pitchers, who project out to be the 2nd best in the league. That outstanding group is the reason why you are expected to wind up in 3rd place in the wins category.

Turning to individual picks, we tapped charlie wiegert as having made the best pickup with Robinson Cano in the 18th slot. He was projected to be off the board a full 11 picks earlier. On the other hand, Ray Murphy made the worst move of the draft. Coach Murphy selected Shin-Soo Choo with the 20th pick, which we pegged as a serious reach.

Your best pick up of the draft was Max Scherzer, who was expected to have been selected in the 24th slot, but who you got with pick #30. However, you mixed in some (minor) duds as well, the worst of whom was Zack Greinke, taken 12 spots ahead of what his average draft position suggests.

Paragraphs in italics are unique to your version of your league’s Draft Recap.

Now let’s return to some more human commentary.

Perry Van Hook’s draft review runs at Mastersball. He makes an astute point about reserve and DL list use in Tout, and lists the rookies taken and when they went.

Nick Minnix writes about forgetting that Tout Wars uses On Base Percentage rather than Batting Average, which led him to take Adam Jones instead of Joey Votto with the seventh pick. Remember Touts! All Tout Wars leagues are OBP this year! AL touts are hoping Larry Schechter forgets.

The introduction to Paul Sporer’s piece about his team, picking from the 14th slot, before it hides demurely behind the Baseball Prospectus paywall. For subscribers only.

Inside the Mind of a Tout, is a radio clip featuring Adam Ronis talking about his team.

Lots of recaps were heard on the radio, which is a little harder to link to, but send clips if you have them!


What Went Wrong: Tout Wars Mixed Auction

Al Melchior writes about his first Tout Wars season:

Here’s what went wrong in my rookie season in Tout for my Mixed League auction team.

I normally go most aggressively after safe, consistent players at scarce positions, but I didn’t stick to that approach on auction day. I spent the most money on Ryan Braun ($40), Justin Verlander ($29), Mat Latos ($19) and Hanley Ramirez ($17). Braun and Ramirez were calculated risks, and they paid off in the sense that they produced when they played. They just didn’t play nearly enough. Starting pitching isn’t exactly a scarce position, but I did view Verlander as an elite, and I don’t think there was any way I could have seen his disappointing season coming. Latos, at $19, was one of my better buys.

With so much invested in my core, I didn’t have much to fall back on when Braun, Ramirez and Verlander didn’t produce as expected. David Freese, Josh Reddick, Marco Scutaro, Alexi Ogando and Shaun Marcum all fell far short of expectations, and a midseason buy-high on Mike Leake just did more damage to ERA and WHIP levels that hovered near the bottom of the standings. I did manage a timely early July swap of Jean Segura for Matt Holliday, and while Holliday provided much-needed help with runs and RBI, I never was able to replace Segura’s steals.

There may not be another spate of suspension risks going into next season, but I’ll certainly focus more on risks that fall outside of the realm of skill decline. And rather than pursuing steady players like Freese and Scutaro to fill out my roster, I’ll likely pursue higher-upside types, as some of my more “consistent” players had down years.

P.S. I’ve had a great time, even though I didn’t turn in a strong season. Thanks for bringing me aboard!

Fernando DiFino answered:

New rule starting next year: no more big free-agent signings on my team. Carl Crawford, Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols — they’ve all kind of burned fantasy owners in their own special way their first year with a new team.

Rule 2: no more punting OPS. That strategy does not work.

Rule 3: take PED accusations seriously.

That’s pretty much all I learned from this year. I had some unexpected down years from a couple guys I thought could have a nice year (Axford, Cespedes, Middlebrooks), a couple injuries that didn’t help, and I think I actually did pretty well in FAAB. It was just a weird season spent waiting for bouncebacks that never came.

What Went Wrong: Tout Wars Mixed Draft

Ray Flowers tells his story over at Baseball Guys.

Grey Albright reports:

What went wrong? What didn’t?

The 15th pick isn’t a death knell (14th pick is in top 2) but our draft board just didn’t line up well. We drafted a well-balanced offense in the first five rounds and ended up with two bombs (heyward, upton) and three disappointments (bautista, butler, sandoval). Missed out on Goldschmidt by 4 picks. ‘Depth’ over ‘ace’ SP strategy hurt by injury/underperformance by Niese, Beckett, and Edwin Jackson.

other notes

– Brutal first 5 rounds of draft with Bautista/Heyward/Butler/BJ Upton/Sandoval. Just a rough draft to be picking 15th – especially when our draft fave Goldschmidt goes off the board four picks before our 3rd and we end up with Billy Butler.
– We didn’t draft an SP until 7th round (Latos) but drafted a lot of depth. Shelby Miller and early FAAB pick Masterson were great but too many misses with Niese, Beckett, Edwin Jackson, and Volquez.
– We had some solid values on offense in later rounds (Cuddyer – 10th, Marte – 16th, Murphy – 19th) but not enough to recover from misses in 1st 5 rounds + disappointments like Josh Rutledge (8th) and Reddick (10th).