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What It Takes To Win: Steals

Time for another installment of  What It Takes To Win.    In this series, I examine my keeper league and determine the necessary thresholds to finish strong in each category.  I feel that my league is fairly standard: 23-man rosters, 12 teams, normal 5x5 categories.  I've got three years of data to work with, and my goal is to finish at least third in each category.  10 points times 10 categories equals 100 points, enough to win the league.  Last time I looked at runs.

In looking at three years of data for my league, I've determined that 172 steals should earn you at least third place in the category.

  • That's 12.3 steals per position player.  I've got 69 players swiping this many or more.  In real life, 73 stole 12 or more bags in '07 and 56 did it in '06.  If your two catchers and your 1B swipe 9 bags total, you really need about 15 steals per player.  In other words, assemble a speedy outfield.
  • Only four players are projected to meet all benchmarks (basically hit at least .288-22-81-84-12).  Those are David Wright, Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, and Hunter Pence.  At most you'll have two of 'em.
  • I'm projecting eight 20/20 players in '08:  Hanley Ramirez, Jimmy Rollins, Chris Young, David Wright, Grady Sizemore, Corey Hart, Alfonso Soriano, and Brandon Phillips.  Relaxed to 17/17 you'll find B.J. Upton, Eric Byrnes, Matt Kemp, Ian Kinsler, Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, and Curtis Granderson.  These are the types of players I typically strive for, because it's easier to win with a balanced team.

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