Trade: Rocky Mountain | TBD

Rocky Mountain Oysters sends: 2016 7th overall selection (1st round)
TBD sends: 2016 78th overall selection (5th round) & $25 in ’16 Auction Budget

Jordan’s thoughts: This is a pretty solid trade. I like it for both teams. TBD doesn’t sacrifice either one of their first two picks to get another first round draft pick. The cost of 25 auction budget could be devastating, but without any pre-cursor draft, it’s hard to judge what kind of talent that player will be. For RMO I like getting the cash, and falling back to the fifth round might not be all that much different in the grand scheme of things. The extra $25 provides a lot of flexibility in the draft coming up.

Update: The 7th overall selection was used on Rangers prospect OF – Lewis Brinson. High upside, could be a real star, a tad raw. Interesting use of auction funds to get a guy that’s a bit further off. Time will tell how the decision plays out.

Update 2: And now we know the 78th overall pick was used for Touki Toussaint. Toussaint is a former first round pick, high stuff, underdeveloped command, make or break pitcher. You love the upside if he figures it out. The downside is a bullpen pitcher. For the 78th pick its a good spot for RMO. Again I’m going to side with RMO getting the favorable side of the deal.

Rule changes, they’re here!

After a week of polling we are now settled on four distinct rule changes, mixed with some minor clarifications to clear some things up. With that let us get right to it.

1) Free Agent Keepers –

Current: Acquired free agents currently are not keepable.
Proposed: Acquired major league free agents would start with a salary of $3, which to keep the following season would be subject to the $2 raise and greed rule. Minor league free agents would be keepable without incurring a salary.

With a 12 to 4 vote, the league has decided to change the rule to the proposed rule. With that being said, all free agents will be now be keepable.

2) Position eligibility –

Current: To qualify at a position a hitter must play 5 games at position this season or 10 games last season.
Proposed: To qualify at a position a hitter must play 5 games at position this season or 15 games last season.

With a 10 to 6 vote, the league has decided to keep the rule as it is currently written. This makes a difference for a few players, but ultimately the league has decided!

The next two votes were closer, but were decided by the league as well.

3) Initial waiver wire order – It wasn’t set per the rules.

Option 1: Reverse order of minor league draft.
Option 2: Random draw.

With a vote of 9 to 7, the league has voted to reverse draw the waiver order from the minor league draft as stated in option 1.

4) Change top 30 protection to top 2 per team.

Current: Currently players with the top 30 salaries in the league are protected from greed voting.
Proposed: Remove protections from players with top 30 salaries. Cost controlled (arbitration) players remain protected.

Finally with a vote of 9 to 7, the league has voted to keep the current rules as it comes to spending greed money on players. Players who are in the top 30 of salaries, will remain protected as well as players who are in the arbitration (cost-controlled) status.

With that we’re one step closer to the league getting going. These changes will be reflected in the league rules and setup next week, and will be highlighted to show that they’ve changed.

What is Billy Hamilton worth?

When debating value of fantasy baseball players there is always going to be some discrepancy between one league to another. There’s even a difference when you look at different daily fantasy sites. They all have slightly different scoring or valuation of each player, causing some need for adjustments on the user end. This is more true with Billy Hamilton than almost any other player. Standard Roto fantasy baseball has Hamilton as a quite valuable outfielder. Stolen bases are 20% of hitting value and Hamilton whether or not a good ballplayer, is amazing at stealing bases.

Stolen bases in Dynasty Grinders here have value, but it is no where near 20%. Much like in real life, stolen bases lack value. They are sexy, they are exciting, but even in the post-steroid era where smallball is making a comeback, their value is capped off well below 20%. Dynasty Grinders gives you 2.5 points for every stolen base. A hitter getting on base and stealing a bag is worth a bit less than a hitter who just gets a double. Why? Well the run scoring valuation of a double is higher than a single and stolen base. Doubles score runs more often. Simple as that.

Last year, Billy Hamilton the hitter was quite awful on all accounts. .251 wOBA, 52 wRC+, his offense was worth -12.2 runs according to FanGraphs.com. That being said Hamilton the baseball player does add value, his base running made up that difference adding 13.4 runs, plus his defense in center field by all accounts is quite good. In standard Roto you can eat the bad hitting and make it up elsewhere, but last year he stole 57 bags, and that’s hard to find these days. Billy Hamiltion’s potential for 70+ steals is category winning for Roto. His potential for Dynasty Grinders is not winning you much of anything.

Yet that does not make him worthless. In, 2014, Hamilton would have added some value. If Billy Hamilton is more like 2014 than 2015, he’s certainly worth a flier in DG. If you think he’s better in 2016 than he’s ever been (low bar to jump over), he starts making some serious sense. Last year his OBP was .274. His BABIP was .264. Adjusting that to 2014 levels using regression is easy enough. Hamilton’s walk rate did slightly improve last year and he struck out less. What little power he did feature before 2015 disappeared. Maybe that comes back? It’s quite possible.

What makes Hamilton so intriguing, is that you hear about him in the mainstream fantasy media all the time, he’s a top 20 OF. In Dynasty Grinders he’s not likely a top 20 CF. But for him to jump into the top 10 he only needs to be a little bit better. If he improves his walk rate a little. Improves his luck on BABIP (if you’re so damn fast get on base more often, pop up less!). Gets some of his power back. Plays everyday. If he can do all of that. Well then we’re talking. He’s 25 years old. If he somehow slashed a .250/.310/.360 slash line with 70 stolen bases (again not as valuable but they do count). It gets interesting.

All that wishing and hoping aside, there is just a good of a case that in a 16 team league with 30 man major league rosters, for Hamilton to go undrafted in the initial draft. He probably will get drafted. The stark difference between Dynasty Grinders and traditional fantasy is crystal clear when evaluating Hamilton.

The Inaugural Minor League Draft Order

Here with Dynasty Grinders we do nothing short of awesome. With that said, this commissioner lives in a very supportive household, where this draft order selection was done with help from my whole family. Thank you!

The order was spun going from 8th to 16th, then from 7th to 1st. It was quite fun.

Final draft order:

16 – Sano Big Deal
15 – The Foundation
14 – TBD
13 – BetterNameLater
12 – Who’s Your Haddy
11 – Hustle Loyalty Respect
10 – Beach Bum
9 – Team aarnicdy
8 – Preseason Favorite
[11:21]
7 – Rocky Mountain Oysters
6 – Team Canada
5 – Team johnnywise
4 – We Talk Fantasy Sports
3 – Capital City Senators
2 – Team Gaut
1 – Team Hydra
The minor league draft will begun as a slow draft on February 1st after everyone has paid their league dues. Good luck!

The injury prone player, what are you good for.

Oh the ballad of Troy Tulowitzki and Giancarlo Stanton. Could you guys just play a full season and stay healthy the whole time, please?

Easier said than done, baseball is a hard sport to play and some players seem to be more prone to not being able to play the long season as well as everyone else. With that in mind, that doesn’t mean that these kinds of players have lost all value.

In fact these players have quite a bit of value yet. It hurts so bad when they get hurt, because typically they’re quite great when they’re healthy. So what’s their value? You have two parts greatness, one part injury concern, and one part luck. When drafting Stanton or Tulo, you’re taking a risk. They’re great players, but are you getting 140 games played?

Well Stanton played 145 in 2014, but only 74 in 2015, 116 in 2013 and 123 in 2012. That’s three partial seasons and almost one full season. This is not a great track record. But, when he plays he’s great. Stanton is one of those guys you will see 50 point weeks. The average weekly score in our league should sit around 550-600, 50 is a lot! Even better when Stanton gets hot, he could score 100. It’s been done. Crazy!

That’s some wicked value from a talented player. It hurts when he doesn’t play. Over the course of a long season, perhaps you cannot count on Stanton or Tulo to get you a full season worth of work, but does that mean you should settle for Nick Markakis or Erick Aybar because they’ll play everyday? Probably not.

You lose the player when they get hurt, but you don’t lose the roster spot. You can replace them. And their replacements put up value, granted not as much, but its not zero. Heck, 400 PAs from Giancarlo according to Steamer Projections is worth about 610 PAs from Brett Garnder. Steamer has Gardner projected for the 45th best OF.

And that’s with playing Gardner everyday. If you play Giancarlo for 400 watch him get hurt and replace him with a replacement level guy (worst case scenario) for 210 PAs you still have almost a 900 point player for the season. Wow. Or Ryan Braun.

Plus we discussed the one part luck, what if Giancarlo is healthy, plays 150 games. Well then you have a top 2-3 hitter on your hands, congratulations!

Injury prone guys have their risks, but they are attractive because they are often worth it anyway. Sure there’s a chance lady luck is against you and the player misses the whole season, but that can truly happen to any player.

A little thinking out side of the box and it’s not hard to see how the risk and reward of these kinds of players is truly worth.