Tag Archive | "Baseball Reference"

Guest Post: Retrosheet is Still Retro Cool

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Guest Post: Retrosheet is Still Retro Cool

Posted on 31 July 2012 by Guest Writer

By Jeff Polman

Take a trip back to July 18, 1958. It’s a Friday night in Los Angeles, and 10-year-old David Smith is at the Memorial Coliseum to attend his very first game, between the Phillies and Dodgers. His hero is Sandy Koufax, years before he became a great pitcher, and this is far from Sandy’s best performance. In the first inning, he strikes out two but walks four and gets yanked from the action.  Maybe he is just under the weather, because he starts the next night and goes seven and a third innings.

The Dodgers won that Friday night 8-6, lost the next night, and for a long time, David Smith thirsted for the actual accounts of those games.

It was undoubtedly his inspiration for the birth of Retrosheet.

Fifty-four years later, Dave Smith’s non-profit Web site has researched and catalogued over 120,000 major league baseball games for our pleasure and historical use. In some cases you’ll just find box scores, in many others, detailed play-by-play. Because of Retrosheet, in less than a minute you can learn that the first batter Smith saw Koufax face was Hall of Famer Richie Ashburn; that there were 24, 532 other people at the Coliseum and the game took two hours and fifty-five minutes; that Chico Fernandez’s fifth inning homer off Johnny Klippstein went over the short left field screen; and that Shag Crawford and Jocko Conlan were two of the umpires.

Sean Forman’s staggeringly enormous Baseball Reference site can also get you this information, though as Smith relates, a lot of their game data comes from Retrosheet.  A little over a month ago, Retrosheet released box scores for the 1916 and 1917 seasons, and play-by-play details for 1927 and 1947. Although their research is done on a volunteer basis, they have between fifteen and twenty people working on various projects at a given time, so you can expect a constant stream of discoveries ahead.

The first time a friend shared the Retrosheet link with me, I was immediately taken by the site’s lack of visual pizzazz—to be honest, it has no pizzazz whatsoever—but also by the easy-to-navigate passage into Retrosheet’s historical fact library. That the old school TextEdit look of the thing absolutely never changes is part of its charm. As Smith puts it: “Once we found a form that we thought was easy to navigate, we decided not to fiddle with it just for the sake of novelty.”

As a place to instantly find countless baseball facts, it is also one of the greatest Internet time sucks ever created. Dead of winter and you’re stuck at your desk on lunch break and feel like taking in a game? No problem. I’ll do it right now. Let’s see…going to their “link-block” of years, shutting my eyes and clicking my mouse on…1936.  Dropping down to the yearly calendar to hit Saturday August 8th…Okay, the Browns and Tigers split a twinbill in Detroit, with St. Louis scoring seven in the 8th and two in the 9th to take the nightcap, with Jim Bottomley driving in four and Moose Solters three! That was easy.

How about just a quick check of the American Association standings on July 25, 1884? Ah yes, the Columbus Buckeyes are still in second place with a .684 winning percentage and a +114 run differential, but just a half game behind the second place Louisville Eclipse!

Naturally, the first thing I did when I discovered Retrosheet was locate the box score and play-by-play of the first game I attended, 1963 at Fenway Park with the Yankees. (As an aside, framed copies of first game box scores make great gifts for friends and family members.) Retrosheet doesn’t have play-by-plays for every season, but some of the earlier accounts from say, 1921, are a joy to read.  Just so you know, on Saturday April 30 at the Polo Grounds, Giants catcher Earl Smith was ejected in the 6th inning after a called ball for “throwing his glove down.”

Of course, digging up minutiae like this is incredibly time consuming for the Retrosheet team. As Smith says, “The release of play-by-play accounts takes longer than I would like, but it is essential that files not be posted for the public until they have been rigorously proofed. I do not want to be in the position of making retractions.”

Retrosheet formally began in 1989 and was incorporated as a non-profit in 1994, one year after the site was launched. They have five board members and a “webmaster”, and hold their annual meeting at the SABR conference, a group that values the findings of Retrosheet like no other.

When I attended the recent SABR event in Minneapolis, I wandered by the small open room where Retrosheet was starting its meeting. I had heard Dave Smith’s lively presentation two days earlier on the dramatic rise and fall between leagues of stolen base attempts from 1947 to the present, and now he was chairing the modest gathering of Retrosheeters, dressed in his signature Dodgers jersey, his Santa Clausian features lighting up another room. But I wasn’t a Retrosheet member, didn’t really want to hear a “report from the treasurer,” and wandered away.

An hour later during a panel discussion, I was visiting them again—but back on my phone to look up a box score. For me, Retrosheet remains not just a great resource tool, but a trusty digital baseball Wonderland, a place to happily tumble into at any time. Thanks, David.

Jeff Polman writes fictionalized baseball replay blogs, his current endeavor being Mystery Ball ’58. His first such blog, “1924 and You Are There!” has been published by Grassy Gutter Press and is available on Amazon.

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An increasing trend in baseball: 40 steals, 100 strikeouts

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An increasing trend in baseball: 40 steals, 100 strikeouts

Posted on 21 March 2012 by Graham Womack

For a speedy center fielder, Cameron Maybin must have been swinging for the fences in 2011. Besides stealing 40 bases last year, more than he’d swiped in his four previous seasons combined, the Padres outfielder struck out 125 times, also a career-high. It wasn’t the greatest of feats for Maybin, a long-heralded prospect and a centerpiece of the Tigers-Marlins Miguel Cabrera trade in December 2007 who’s been known more since then as something of a baseball vagabond.

Thing is, Maybin’s far from alone in the amount that he struck out and stole bases last year.

Ninety players in baseball history have recorded at least 40 steals and 100 strikeouts in a season, all but two having done so since 1960. Numbers have spiked in recent years, with 30 men accomplishing the feat since 2000 including five each of the past two seasons, a record.

A full list of the men with at least 40 steals and 100 strikeouts in 2010 and 2011 is as follows, courtesy of the Play Index from Baseball-Reference.com:

Rk Player HR SB SO Yr Tm PA AB R H 2B 3B RBI BB CS BA OBP SLG OPS
1 Matt Kemp 39 40 159 2011 LAD 689 602 115 195 33 4 126 74 11 .324 .399 .586 .986
2 Drew Stubbs 15 40 205 2011 CIN 681 604 92 147 22 3 44 63 10 .243 .321 .364 .686
3 Cameron Maybin 9 40 125 2011 SDP 568 516 82 136 24 8 40 44 8 .264 .323 .393 .716
4 Emilio Bonifacio 5 40 129 2011 FLA 641 565 78 167 26 7 36 59 11 .296 .360 .393 .753
5 Michael Bourn 2 61 140 2011 TOT 722 656 94 193 34 10 50 53 14 .294 .349 .386 .734
6 Carl Crawford 19 47 104 2010 TBR 663 600 110 184 30 13 90 46 10 .307 .356 .495 .851
7 B.J. Upton 18 42 164 2010 TBR 610 536 89 127 38 4 62 67 9 .237 .322 .424 .745
8 Brett Gardner 5 47 101 2010 NYY 569 477 97 132 20 7 47 79 9 .277 .383 .379 .762
9 Michael Bourn 2 52 109 2010 HOU 605 535 84 142 25 6 38 59 12 .265 .341 .346 .686
10 Chone Figgins 1 42 114 2010 SEA 702 602 62 156 21 2 35 74 15 .259 .340 .306 .646


What’s behind the surge?

I put the word out on Twitter on Tuesday and got a variety of responses. My friend @dianagram reminded me that, in general, strikeouts are up in baseball; teams whiffed 1,150 times apiece on average in 2011, in contrast to the MLB average of 801 strikeouts in 1960. Heck, it was 496 per team in 1930. There’s talk of the strikeout being less destructive, which sounds backwards to me. I miss the days of Joe DiMaggio and Stan Musial striking out roughly five percent of their at-bats. Tony Gwynn did this in recent years, but he was a throwback.

Other followers in my Twitter feed pointed to an increased use of specialized relievers with high strikeout totals, less emphasis on contact hitting, and more emphasis on power. Josh Wilker, author of Cardboard Gods, replied to me, “Fewer slap-hitting lead-off types nowadays? GMs avoid the ol’ Omar Moreno style of contact ‘hitting,’ maybe.” There were other ideas as well, with my friend @figurefilbert suggesting that expansion has diluted talent levels, and @MikeGianella countering that the US population has nearly doubled since 1960. It’s part of a broader question about if baseball’s gotten better or worse over the years, a question I couldn’t answer in one post.

Whatever the case, the trend of high strikeout and stolen base totals doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. This comes even with Bill James and other baseball researchers showing in recent years that the caught stealing rate can be no more than 15 percent before base stealing efforts become counterproductive. Old habits die hard, I guess. That being, I would doubt that teams are all that concerned. After all, the Padres just signed the soon-to-be 25-year-old Maybin to a five-year, $25 million extension two weeks ago.

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Where to now, Vladimir Guerrero?

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Where to now, Vladimir Guerrero?

Posted on 14 March 2012 by Graham Womack

I’ve been spending a fair amount of time lately on Twitter, and the other day, @uniformcritic had an interesting tweet. To any baseball history fan unfamiliar with @uniformcritic, he’s worth a follow, generally providing vintage baseball photos and sometimes-rare film. On Sunday, though, he departed from form to tweet:

Vladimir Guerrero hit .290 last season and he can't find a job? Hard to believe.
@uniformcritic
Stirrups Now!

I have mixed feelings. Sure, Guerrero hit .290 last season. But he did it against an OPS+ of 101 and an aging-Joe-Carter-esque WAR of 0.1. Even by traditional numbers, Guerrero’s 2011 campaign with the Baltimore Orioles was nothing special. In nearly 600 plate appearances, Guerrero had 13 home runs and 63 RBI, and for hitting .290, his 17 walks made for an anemic .317 on-base percentage.

Slow-footed outfielders approaching 40 have been down the road Guerrero’s on before, and it generally doesn’t get any better. I’m reminded of Joe Carter, Sammy Sosa, Jose Canseco, and so many others. So the question is: Where to now, Vladimir Guerrero?

I see a few options for the current free agent and former all-world right fielder who in his prime was good for at least 30 home runs, 30 stolen bases, and an average somewhere around .330:

  1. Guerrero can retire: At 37, with 449 home runs, a .318 lifetime batting, and nine All Star appearances, there is no shame in this. According to Baseball-Reference.com, Guerrero’s already banked $125 million in his career. In his prime, he was one of the best in baseball. Unless steroid rumors surface, he’ll probably have an eventual, deserved spot in Cooperstown.
  2. Guerrero can accept a part-time role on a contender: This is easier said than done. With limited defensive abilities and just 20 games in the field since 2009, Guerrero might not make even a passable backup outfielder. He’s no pinch runner, and as a right-handed batter, he isn’t a great pinch hitting option, either. But he might fit somewhere on a team like the Yankees, who are glutted with a veritable senior center of options at designated hitter but play in a ballpark Guerrero is hitting .375 in, thus far.
  3. Guerrero can find a second-tier team willing to start him: Again, easier said than done. Guerrero went this route for 2011 and it equaled his one-and-done campaign with Baltimore. I don’t know what other American League team has an opening. The Royals have Billy Butler at designated hitter. The Mariners have Jesus Montero. The Athletics have what looks to be market corner on mediocre outfielders. Guerrero could try to find a weak-hitting National League like the Pirates or Astros willing to take a flyer on his glove, but that’s nothing to postpone retirement over.
  4. Guerrero can head to the independent or international circuits: The Atlantic League can offer Guerrero a chance for gaudy numbers. It’s where Carl Everett, Edgardo Alfonzo and so many others wound up in their mid-3os after their time in the show was up. Japan might be able to offer Guerrero more money, if that’s what he’s after at this point.

So those are Guerrero’s options as I see them, none of the possibilities particularly great. But it’s still a better end run in baseball than that of Sosa, Canseco, and so many others of Guerrero’s generation. Coming on the heels of the Steroid Era, that has to be good for something.

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Enough About WAR. Let’s Get RAW!

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Enough About WAR. Let’s Get RAW!

Posted on 14 February 2012 by Daniel Aubain

Let’s be honest. Most of us baseball fans have learned more about WAR over the last two years of baseball’s Hall of Fame voting than we ever did in years of taking American History classes from middle school through college. Okay, okay. Different kinds of war. I get it. One is a heated battle between those who feel they are right and will go to any lengths to prove it while fighting to the death against those who disagree and the other is a state of armed conflict between different nations or states or different groups within a nation or state.

Alright, enough with making the yuck yuck. I consider myself an avid learner and as a life-long fan of baseball on the field and someone who is well into his second decade of playing fantasy baseball, gaining a basic understanding of the more popular sabermetric statistics and concepts seems like the logical progression of my obsession. And no topic is more hotly discussed and debated than the idea of WAR (Wins Above Replacement). So debated that there are actually two versions of WAR: FanGraphs‘ fWAR and Baseball-Reference‘s rWAR.

Now, I’m not here to share my elementary understanding of all that goes into calculating WAR or the pros and cons of using it to compare which player is more valuable to a team than another or who is more Hall of Fame-worthy. I’m here to mix up the letters of WAR and present to you my version of a fake sabermetric statistic know as RAW. And what would RAW be without two version of itself: dRAW and RAWs. Nothing helps a fake statistic catch on more than the ease of saying it as a real world word. WHIP isn’t just a cream to fantasy baseball fans.

There are only two pieces of data you need to know in order to calculate dRAW and RAWs: Runs and Walks. Catchy fake statistics should also be easy to calculate if you want people to remember them and think they possibly could become real ones with just a little bit more effort put in by the creator.

So now that we have the data we need, Runs and Walks, what are the formulas used to calculate the values of these new, fake statistics? Simple. Firstly, dRAW is calculated by dividing a player’s Runs by Walks. Or, to be more accurate to its name, divide Runs Above Walks. Secondly, RAWs is calculated by adding a player’s Runs and Walks. Or, to be more accurate to its name, Runs And Walks sum.

So let’s review some of the points up until now that could make a fake statistic go mainstream. The name of the statistic(s) should be easy to say. CHECK! It should be easy to calculate. Easy division and easy addition. CHECK! And I guess the data should be readily available. CHECK! “That’s gold, Jerry. Gold!”

Wait a second. I’ve got all the makings of a great, new, fake statistic but what about the data? What results do the formulas produce and what hypothesis can we draw these numbers? Well, I guess I should give you access to the file with the data (OpenOffice spreadsheet; PDF) I used for dRAW and RAWs. This list includes all players with a RAWs total (Runs plus Walks) equal to or greater than 100. Ninety-seven players made the cut; from a high of 237 for Jose Bautista to a low of 100 for Eric Hosmer.

Standard 5×5 scoring leagues (BA/R/HR/RBI/SB) don’t use walks in any of their scoring calculations but the idea of a high RAWs score seems to relate to a valuable fantasy baseball asset. Only six players topped a RAWs score of over 200 in 2011 and all six players were ranked within the top 16 of ESPN’s Player Rater (batters only).

Player Team Pos R BB dRAW RAWs ESPN Player Rater (Batter Ranking)
Bautista, J TOR RF 105 132 0.795 237 7
Granderson, C NYY CF 136 85 1.600 221 4
Cabrera, M DET 1B 111 108 1.028 219 5
Votto, J CIN 1B 101 110 0.918 211 14
Kinsler, I TEX 2B 121 89 1.360 210 16
Fielder, P MIL 1B 95 107 0.888 202 15

Not a bad group of fantasy baseball studs. So I guess the first conclusion I can make from this data is that a 200+ RAWs is made up of elite fantasy baseball players dominated by first basemen. NOTE: Bautista lead the majors in Walks and Curtis Granderson lead the majors in Runs, so it only seems logical they’d be at the top of the RAWs leaderboard.

The next group of players are those with a RAWs of 199 down to 170 and includes the two best fantasy baseball players in 2011.

Player Team Pos R BB dRAW RAWs ESPN Player Rater (Batter Ranking)
Kemp, M LAD CF 115 74 1.554 189 1
Pedroia, D BOS 2B 102 86 1.186 188 8
Gonzalez, A BOS 1B 108 74 1.459 182 6
Berkman, L STL RF 90 92 0.978 182 25
Santana, C CLE C 84 97 0.866 181 89
Zobrist, B TB RF 99 77 1.286 176 33
McCutchen, A PIT CF 87 89 0.978 176 37
Swisher, N NYY RF 81 95 0.853 176 83
Pena, C CHC 1B 72 101 0.713 173 118
Ellsbury, J BOS CF 119 52 2.288 171 2

Matt Kemp and Jacoby Ellsbury bookend this group of very valuable fantasy baseball assets. I was surprised to see some low-ranking players in this group because I’ve been attempting to tie RAWs to “value”. So I decided to find the average batter ranking of the 16 players in the 170+ RAWs group and came up with a 28.9 rating. So depending on your definition of “elite”, this group is holding its own so far. Be sure to take a look at the entire group of 100+ RAWs players here (OpenOffice spreadsheetPDF) and tell me what patterns you’re able to find to help validate RAWs as a useful, but very fake statistic.

Now that we’ve taken care of the easy addition, it’s time to head on over to the easy division. Calculating dRAW requires us to simply divide Runs Above Walks. We’ll be using the same criteria of needing a RAWs of 100 or greater so I wouldn’t have had to create multiple worksheets. But before looking at what this data means, I think we need to find a baseline norm because we are dealing with fractions and decimal points.

One of the most common synonyms for a Walk in baseball is a “free pass”. So looking at the Walk as a gift, shouldn’t a team be doing everything in its power to get that runner across the plate for a Run? Following that logic, I think the baseline (no pun intended) norm for this fake statistic should yield a 1.0. In an ideal world, every Walk received should equal one Run.

Now it is time to dig deeper into whether or not this line of logic actually makes sense. Once a runner reaches base via a Walk, he has little to no control over whether or not he will cross home plate before the inning is over. And does this logic penalize the player who walks fewer times than others or vice versa? Flawed logic. Gaff! Rather than give up at this point, let’s take a look at some of the data.

Of the 97 players with a RAWs of 100+, exactly one had the same number of Runs and Walks during the 2011 season. Kevin Youkilis had 68 Runs and 68 Walks for the only “perfect score” of 1.0 in the group. Twelve players in this group had more Walks than Runs, which takes their dRAW into the negative (less than 1.0). Here’s a look at that group:

Player Team Pos R BB dRAW RAWs ESPN Player Rater (Batter Ranking)
Pena, C CHC 1B 72 101 0.713 173 118
Bautista, J TOR RF 105 132 0.795 237 7
Swisher, N NYY RF 81 95 0.853 176 83
Santana, C CLE C 84 97 0.866 181 89
Fielder, P MIL 1B 95 107 0.888 202 15
Konerko, P CWS 1B 69 77 0.896 146 30
Votto, J CIN 1B 101 110 0.918 211 14
Werth, J WSH RF 69 74 0.932 143 105
Sanchez, G FLA 1B 72 74 0.973 146 91
Longoria, E TB 3B 78 80 0.975 158 70
McCutchen, A PIT CF 87 89 0.978 176 37
Berkman, L STL RF 90 92 0.978 182 25

It’s no surprise to see Carlos Pena lead this list on the negative side of the equation. He had a high Walk total and a relatively lower Run total. Same goes for Bautista. He lead the league in Walks, had the highest RAWs score but generated a low dRAW due to the the significant difference between his lower Runs and higher Walks.

Looking at the average batter ranking of these 12 players is 57.0 with an average RAWs of 177.6. Not bad at all for a group of players considered on the negative side of a baseball statistic.

So if we looked the the negative side of this statistic, what does the positive side (highest amount above 1.0) of this statistic look like? Let’s take a look at the top-10 dRAW players:

Player Team Pos R BB dRAW RAWs ESPN Player Rater (Batter Ranking)
Bourjos, P LAA CF 72 32 2.250 104 84
Ellsbury, J BOS CF 119 52 2.288 171 2
Aybar, E LAA SS 71 31 2.290 102 53
Reyes, J NYM SS 101 43 2.349 144 11
Hardy, J BAL SS 76 31 2.452 107 69
Castro, S CHC SS 91 35 2.600 126 23
Kendrick, H LAA 2B 86 33 2.606 119 55
Cano, R NYY 2B 104 38 2.737 142 13
Cabrera, M KC CF 102 35 2.914 137 17
Beltre, A TEX 3B 82 25 3.280 107 28

Adrian Beltre tops the list of dRAW rankings, scoring Runs at a rate of over three times the frequency of taking a Walk. This group of players seems to be filled with quite a bit of base stealers and a few free swingers. An interesting mix, for sure. But does it mean anything? Can dRAW help you pinpoint true fantasy value? The average batter ranking for these 10 players is 35.5. Hmmm, there’s value there for sure but is it predictable? Would you be drafting Aybar and Hardy in the same class as Reyes? Definitely not. Be sure to look at and play around with the entire dRAW ranks here (OpenOffice spreadsheetPDF) and let me know if you’re seeing trends or value in this new, fake statistics that I may have overlooked.

So where do we go from here? I think there is some fantasy baseball value to recognizing a players RAWs score and probably much more if your league uses on-base percentage in place of batting average (a common practice these days). I’m not sold much can be learned from a player’s dRAW value since the player has no control over the rate in which they score runs once they reach base yet have a lot of control over the frequency in which they Walk.

Have a comment or question to add to this topic? I’d really love to hear your thoughts on RAWs and dRAW. Is there a way to improve these statistics to give them true fantasy baseball value?

Have an idea for a fake statistic you’d like me to investigate in a future post? Leave a comment here or reach out to me on Twitter @DJAubain. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed messing around with the topic of Fake Statistics.

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DOs And DONTs: Baltimore Orioles

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DOs And DONTs: Baltimore Orioles

Posted on 06 February 2012 by Daniel Aubain

One doesn’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that the Baltimore Orioles will not be a very good team on the field in 2012 (and beyond) but that doesn’t mean a few of their players won’t have impactful fantasy baseball seasons.

Below is an evaluation of their entire 40-man roster and which players should have a significant fantasy impact this season as well as those you should probably avoid.

  • DO realize the best the O’s have to offer, fantasy-wise, is OF Adam Jones. He’s currently sporting an ADP of 75.35 on MockDraftCentral.com and should provide a steady return (.280/80/25/90/15) at that point in your drafts. Just keep an eye on some of the other outfielders being drafted around this spot (Shane Victorino 75.15; Mike Morse 78.22; Drew Stubbs 81.57) who could provide a better return simply by being on better teams.
  • DON’T bother drafting any of this team’s projected starting pitchers per RotoChamp.com (Jeremy Guthrie; Zach Britton; Wei-Yin Chen; Jake Arrieta; Tsuyoshi Wada) unless you have an affection for sub-10 Win guys with plus-4.00 ERAs with 2:1 K:BB ratios.
  • DO draft C Matt Wieters as your primary catcher (ADP 99.43) before the bottom falls out of viable options around this point. He’ll provide a standard 5×5 line around .270/70/20/70/0 and save you from killing yourself for having to draft the likes of Chris Iannetta, Miguel Olivo and Josh Thole.
  • DON’T worry. 1B/3B Mark Reynolds will probably hit over .200 this season. Probably. On the bright side, he’ll definitely hit over 30 home runs. Okay, okay. That’s a probably, too. There are so many negatives to drafting him that you’re probably better off letting someone else draft him. Make that definitely better off.
  • DO continue to expect steady production from OF Nick Markakis in line with his career numbers. He’s averaged (over 162 games played per Baseball-Reference.com) a .295/89/18/85/9 line over six seasons in the Bigs and seems to be a safer bet than Jones to continue doing so.
  • DON’T expect much out of 2B Brian Roberts until he proves he’s fully recovered from his concussion. He’s only played in a combined 98 games over the last two seasons and reports have him and the O’s being cautious moving forward through Spring Training. Grabbing him in the final rounds of your deep mixed leagues and stashing him on the bench until his health concerns become clearing is not a bad strategy but keep your expectations low.
  • DO draft SS J.J. Hardy if you like 15-25 home runs from your low-average, zero-speed shortstop position. AL-only and very deep leaguers have no choice but to draft him when needed but in those 8-10 team mixed leagues that don’t utilize extra roster slots like MI or IF, you’d be better off aggressively pursuing a top-tier shortstop and leaving Hardy’s ownership to some other unfortunate sucker.
  • DON’T you dare draft 1B/3B Chris Davis! How many times are you going to be fooled into believing he’s “on the verge of big things”. Until he actually proves he can provide “big things”, stay away.
  • DO you think RPs Jim Johnson, Kevin Gregg or someone else will emerge as the team’s closer? Does it matter? One of these guys will get 20-30 Saves and my money would be on Johnson.

What Orioles’ player(s) are you most excited to draft and which are you avoiding like the plague? Be aware, though. This is the kind of team that could throw in the towel pretty early and start shipping valuable players off in deals to go young and cheap. Why else would they be linked to Manny Ramirez? And if they do start a fire-sale, what young players get first crack at the big leagues?

This article is the latest installment of “DOs And DON’Ts”. Be sure to check out all of the other teams covered already here and keep an eye out for your favorite team sure to be covered soon.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on my assessment of the Orioles and the value that this series brings to your fantasy baseball drafting strategies. Use the comments section below or interact with me on Twitter @DJAubain.

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