Shane Victorino is SCARY good. Or not exactly.

Center Fielder, Shane Victorino

It is hard for people to forget about how much they ended up paying for their players in their auction drafts. So much so that we recreate their actual value as a fantasy player based on how much they went for in our auction.  This is a term I am going to coin as: “Rationalizing Over Paying” or ROP for short.

ROP is an epidemic in some of my leagues that cause guys to email such nonsense as: “…Shane Victorino is SCARY good…” as part of declined trade emails. The reality is that Shane Victorino is a good, safe option at CF that someone overpaid for and now has to get max stats from him to make up for that overpayment.

It’s OK, every fantasy owner has suffered from ROP at some point.  However your auction is over and the season getting underway. You need to let go of the price you paid for your players as their value and begin to fixate on their stats!

If we go by projected stats – without regard to name or auction value – we may be able to break free from ROP for a moment.

Here are 4 CFs and their projected stats (by Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks) for our 7×7 Tunacorn League: Runs-HRs-RBIs-BBs-(-Ks)-Steals- AVG

Player A 86-16-44-49-135-37-.259

Player B 68-14-53-48-77-17- .276

Player C 76-23-79-53-64-18- .279

Player D 88-19-67-68-181-44- .257

Looking at these numbers it would probably depend on the rest of your team to know if you could afford the hit in Ks for a couple of these guys to take on their double or more stolen bases (among other stats), but there aren’t enough sub-100-strikeout guys out there that each team in a 15 team league like ours wouldn’t have at least 3-4 guys over 100 Ks.

Now I am going to give you the dollar amounts that was paid for each player, followed in parenthesis by the pre-draft value that us Crackerjacks estimated:

Player A is Cameron Maybin $10 ($8)

Player B is Melky Cabrera $13 ($11)

Player C is Shane Victorino $29 ($20)

Player D is Drew Stubbs $17 ($18)

According to both our stats and our pre-draft value Victorino grades as the top.  He is also the most sure to be right on with our projections for him this season as he has the most career numbers to draw from.  The days of Victorino steals 25+ bags are gone but he is developing power to hit over 20 home runs.

The nice thing about Victorino in our 7×7 league is that he doesn’t strike out a whole lot, but there is reason for optimism in the strikeout numbers for both Maybin and Stubbs as their K:B ratios trended well towards the end of last season.

Also, even in a league that counts Ks and BBs for hitters giving up that many steals for one position to cut down in Ks isn’t THAT worth it.  If you take into account the batting averages they might help tip the scale, but then again I can see all 4 of these guys hitting around .265 and making that category a wash.

As the season progresses and the numbers fall where they will I doubt that Victorino going for SO much more than these other 3 center fielders will make sense after all.

The same goes for whoever you may have overpaid for.  Hopefully at some point the ROP goggles will be lifted for all of us on our own personal Shane Victorinos from these most recent auctions, and we will be able to assess trades as they come with a more objective approach.

So the challenge moving forward is how to separate your personal attachment to your players and being able to trade or even drop guys to acquire other players that will help you.

  1. First and foremost, you need to have goals for what you think you need to do to win your league.  I always advocate this and I always will: it helps to look at your team as a collection of stats.
  2. Second, you need to have baseline expectations for your players.  These will give you an idea of how close you will come to your goals if guys give you the minimum of healthy stats.
  3. Third, you need address where you have the most room to improve and where you ended up with an abundance of stats.  If you have Albert Pujols as your first baseman, then you can probably not upgrade much.
    But if you have a guy like Colby Rasmus in CF, you can probably upgrade.  (However, Rasmus is a great sleeper this year, but I digress.)  If you ended up with an extra closer you didn’t think you would get and now have 20 saves more than you think you will need, you might want to shop those saves coupled with Colby Rasmus for a player like BJ Upton.

There are no guarantees in fantasy sports, but there are ways you can align your situation to create the best starting point for yourself.  The key is being aware of what you need and not to rationale what you paid  for what you have. Only then can you get to what you need!

Tags: Auctions Budget Coupling Shane Victorino Trades Upgrades Value

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