Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Fantasy Focus: Savvy Vets 2014 Year in Review

2014 was not a good year for Savvy Vets as strategic decisions, and old fashioned bad luck conspired to produce an 8'th place finish out in a 10 team league.  If you recall, my strategy for the last 2 seasons has been to punt Saves and try to maximize Wins and K's by loading up on starting pitchers at all pitching roster spots plus keeping an all SP bench to rotates starters in and out of the rotation in a league that allows daily lineup changes.  I finished 4'th in the league with that strategy in 2013 and felt I had underspent on offense in the draft.  I adjusted the drafting strategy this season and spent about 3/4's of my budget on offense while mostly scavenging for pitching.  I tried to find SP with a low WHIP with the reasoning that WHIP approximates ERA but is more stable from year to year, and let sheer numbers take care of W's and K's.   The result was a very competitive team in 9 categories almost every week, but the matchups were not kind.  I remember one week early in the season where I finished 2'nd in the league for the week in 7 categories, but the guy I was H2H with finished first in all 7 of those categories so I got shellacked 0-10 on the week.  Had I been able to go just 5-5 that week, I would have been within a win or 2 of finishing 6'th in the regular season with a shot at the championship in the playoffs.  There were a couple of other similar weeks that ruined my season.  BTW, the guy who shellacked me 0-10 did not win the championship or even finish first in the regular season standings.

So, here is my final Savvy Vets roster with season stats for each player:

C  Jonathan Lucroy- 73 R, 13 HR, 69 RBI, 4 SB, .301 BA.
1B David Ortiz-        59 R, 35 HR, 104 RBI, 0 SB, .263 BA.
2B Jason Kipnis-      61 R, 6 HR, 41 RBI, 22 SB, .240 BA.
3B Pablo Sandoval-  68 R, 16 HR, 73 RBI, 0 SB, .279 BA.
SS Ian Desmond-     73 R, 24 HR, 91 RBI, 24 SB, .255 BA.
IF  Mike Napoli-       49 R, 17 HR, 55 RBI, 3 SB, .248 BA.
OF Carlos Gomez-   95 R, 23 HR, 73 RBI, 34 SB, .284 BA.
OF Jose Bautista-      101 R, 35 HR, 103 RBI, 6 SB. .286 BA.
OF Marcel Ozuna-    72 R, 23 HR, 85 RBI, 3 SB, .269 BA.
UT Ryan Braun-       68 R, 19 HR, 81 RBI, 11 SB, .266 BA.
UT Alex Gordon-     87 R, 19 HR, 74 RBI, 12 SB, .266 BA.

SP Rick Porcello-     15 W, 129 K, 3.43 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 0 SV.
SP James Paxton-     6 W, 59 K, 3.04 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 0 SV.
SP Bartolo Colon-    15 W, 151 K, 4.09 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 0 SV.
SP Max Scherzer-    18 W, 252 K, 3.15 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 0 SV.
SP Chris Archer-      10 W, 173 K, 3.33 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 0 SV.
RP Danny Duffy-        9 W, 113 K, 2.53 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 0 SV.
RP Josh Collmenter- 11 W, 115 K, 3.46 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 0 SV.
RP Marcus Stroman-11 W, 111 K, 3.65 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 0 SV.
P    Jared Cosart-       9 W, 75 K, 4.41 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 0 SV.
P    Alex Cobb-         10 W, 149 K, 2.87 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 0 SV.
BN Willy Peralta-     17 W, 154 K, 3.53 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 0 SV.
BN Jimmy Nelson-   2 W, 57 K, 4.93 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 0 SV.
BN Matt Garza-        8 W, 126 K, 3.64 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 0 SV.
BN Kevin Gausman-7 W, 88 K, 3.57 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 0 SV.
BN Bud Norris-        15 W, 139 K, 3.65 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 0 SV.
DL Homer Bailey-    9 W, 124 K, 3.71 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 0 SV.

I made just 2 changes in my offense over the course of the season.  I traded James Shields for David Ortiz when Brandon Belt was injured.  I also dumped Shin-Soo Choo for Ozuna as Choo had a terrible season finally ended by injury.  I waited way to long to dump Choo!  Poor seasons from Ryan Braun and Jason Kipnis hurt me quite a bit.  Braun was my highest cost player at $47. He wasn't terrible, but you have to get better production than that out of a $47 player.  Still, in a league where Mike Trout went for over $70, I'm not sure I what you are supposed to do!  On the plus side, I got a steal on Lucroy who I got for about $5.  I had 2 of the 5 20/20 players in MLB in Desmond and Gomez.

On the pitching side, I probably should have been more insistent on only rostering pitchers with WHIPs  under 1.30, but the pickings were slim after mid-season.  I made 2 big mistakes in giving up on Corey Kluber and Colin McHugh way too soon.

I'm currently trying to think of an alternate strategy that does not involve grossly overpaying for and chasing Saves, but I may have to relent and get back into the Closer Wars.


  1. I don't play Fantasy Baseball but I love your Dodgerless lineup ;-)

    1. Bunch of Dodgers fans in my league. You have to want a Dodger really bad to get one.

  2. doc

    wishing you and yours a very happy new year

    and thanks for all the hard work you put in this past year

    and despite some of my issues with sabean and bochy, after watching the dog and pony show that the niners became, im glad the giants are run by adults


    1. Thanks Bacci. Yeah, I don't know what happened to the Niners. In hindsight, it looks like maybe Harbaugh made a deal with the devil when he dumped Smith for Kaepernick. Seems like the kid has $10 million talent and a 10 cent head.

    2. actually, i was referring to all the behind the scenes stuff that was going on with the club, including all the leaks from the fo about harbaugh not getting along with baalke and players in the clubhouse

    3. I understand, but winning generally smooths over relationships. It just seems like once the league caught on to Kap, he couldn't make the adjustment and Harbaugh didn't seem to be able to come up with new schemes to help him out.

      Anyway, what do I know. I watch very little football these days.