Keeper Leagues

Keeper Analysis

Kevin writes in asking for keeper help.  He is in a 5x5 roto league and is allowed ten keepers from the following:

Justin Duchscherer
Jorge Campillo
Aaron Harang
Ricky Nolasco
Manny Parra
Jered Weaver

Billy Wagner
Adam LaRoche
Adrian Gonzalez
Brandon Phillips
Miguel Cabrera
Troy Tulowitzki
Carlos Quentin
Curtis Granderson
Nate McLouth
Nick Markakis
Lastings Milledge
Victor Martinez
Jason Bay

Here's who I'm taking right off the bat: Markakis, Quentin, Cabrera, Gonzalez, McLouth and Phillips.  Those six are just no-brainers for me.  Quentin has been ridiculous, so even without more evidence I can't even consider excluding him.  I also love the well-rounded abilities of McLouth, so he's in even if it's only been one season.   Phillips is an easy choice even in an off-year.

The final four will come from the following: Harang, Duchscherer, Nolasco, Tulowitzki, Granderson, Martinez, and Bay.  Duchscherer looks pretty flukey, and I can't see him staying healthy next year.  Nolasco, while solid, is the type of pitcher you can typically find on the waiver wire.  Harang - question marks with health and performance after logging tons of innings in 2006-07.

So it looks like I'm keeping nothing but position players.  I am skeptical of Tulo, but I feel that he's worth hanging on to.  I think Martinez can come back healthy and Bay/Granderson will remain solid.   If I could trade an outfielder plus a pitcher for a catcher, middle infielder, or corner infielder, I'd look into it.  Or, perhaps an outfielder can be traded for a quality starter with no health questions, like James Shields.

Here's the lineup:

C -
C - Victor Martinez
1B - Adrian Gonzalez
2B - Brandon Phillips
SS - Troy Tulowitzki
3B - Miguel Cabrera
CI -
MI -
OF - Nick Markakis
OF - Carlos Quentin
OF - Curtis Granderson
OF - Jason Bay
OF - Nate McLouth
DH -

If Cabrera's 14 games don't qualify him at third, he's the CI and you're in the market for a 3B.  Clearly the keepers I've chosen leave little outfield flexibility, so trading one for a starter should be explored.  As you can see, I just don't like keeping starters based on one good season.

Full Story |  Comments (8) | Categories: Keeper Leagues

Keeper Analysis

Just a warning - I received tons of keeper emails, so unfortunately I won't be able to get to many of them.  Anyway, let's kick it off.

Melissa writes in with a 10 team 6x6 roto league (quality starts and doubles being the extra stats).  She is allowed six keepers from the following list:

Mark Teixeira
Jimmy Rollins
Ryan Braun
B.J. Upton
Nick Markakis
Adrian Gonzalez
Josh Beckett
Chad Billingsley
Jamie Shields
Justin Verlander

Solid group!  I have to admit I have little experience with the 6x6 format.  Seems like a good pitcher or slugger should get plenty of quality starts and doubles anyway, so it shouldn't change things drastically. 

  • Braun is a no-brainer for me, a first-round five category monster.
  • I love five-tool players; they make it really easy to balance a team.  I am taking Markakis.
  • Even with a down year Rollins is a huge asset at shortstop.  He's in.
  • Shields is reliable and proven; I'll take him.
  • I tend to lean toward dependable early-round sluggers, so I'll take Teixeira.
  • That leaves one slot left.  I have to choose between Upton, Gonzalez, Beckett, Billingsley, and Verlander.  To me it was between Upton and Beckett.  Both are having off years compared to '07, but have still provided value.  With Upton losing his 2B eligibility, I will go with Beckett.  With his peripherals he could easily be in the mid 3's with 13-14 wins.  Upton also has question marks in the batting average and power categories.
  • So, the keepers are Braun, Markakis, Rollins, Shields, Teixeira, and Beckett.

Full Story |  Comments (7) | Categories: Keeper Leagues

RotoAuthority Picks Your Keepers

Judging from the reader suggestions, you want more posts about keepers this time of year.  I'm up for that.  Email me your keeper situations and I'll try to pick a representative handful each week to diagnose.  Be sure to include the league type, number of keepers, and candidates for consideration.

By the way, I've been doing a much better job keeping the Fantasy Baseball Closers post up-to-date.  Check it out.

Full Story |  Comments (2) | Categories: Keeper Leagues

My Keeper Roster

My favorite fantasy baseball league is one I do with a friend and have been in for years.  It's a keeper league that uses a live auction.  Standard 5x5 categories with no bench, 14 hitters, and 9 pitchers.  If a guy hits the DL you get an injury replacement.  Our draft is March 9th, and our keepers are due soon.  Each team gets up to ten keepers, so inflation is huge.  Often, top and mid-tier players are priced at double the dollar values you might have for a non-keeper league (and this is reasonable given the amount of talent kept cheaply).

I have a very pitching-heavy team, but was unable to strike any deals for position-playing talent this winter.  Typically I am better at acquiring good pitchers off the waiver wire rather than position players.  Here is the look of my team currently:

C - Jarrod Saltalamacchia - can keep for $4
C - Ramon Hernandez - can keep for $13
1B - Lance Berkman - can keep for $23; free agent after '08
2B - Howie Kendrick - can keep for $4 and lose after '08, or give a raise at $4 per additional season. So if I want him through '09 I have to pay $8 for him in each of the '08 and '09 seasons.
SS - Julio Lugo - cannot keep
3B - Alex Gordon - can keep at $10
CI - Kevin Youkilis - can keep at $4
MI - Kelly Johnson - can keep at $5
OF - Carlos Beltran - can keep at $41 and lose after '08, or give raise at $4 per year
OF - Manny Ramirez - can keep at $43
OF - Chris Young - can keep at $4
OF - Corey Hart - can keep at $4
OF - Mark Teahen - can keep at $13
DH - Felix Pie - can keep at $4
SP - Chad Billingsley - can keep at $4
SP - C.C. Sabathia - can keep at $32
SP - Jamie Shields - can keep at $4
SP - Javier Vazquez - can keep at $4 and lose after '08, or give a raise at $4 per year
SP - Felix Hernandez - signed through '09 at $12 per season
SP - Rich Hill - can keep at $9
SP - Jeremy Guthrie - can keep at $4
RP - Kevin Gregg - can keep at $4
RP - J.J. Putz - can keep at $4 and lose after '08, or give a raise at $4 per year

So I ask of you: which ten to keep?  Here are my initial thoughts to consider before you advise.

  • I am unlikely to keep Salty, Ramon Hernandez, Gordon, Youkilis, Teahen, Pie, Guthrie, or Gregg.  Some of you may suggest keeping Gordon and/or Pie but from experience I can get these guys again at similar prices in the auction.  And I'd prefer sure things in my offense, for the most part.
  • I am likely to choose just one of Kendrick/Johnson.  Kendrick has the name value, but lacks power and a good spot in the batting order.  Johnson comes out higher in my dollar values and could lead off for the Braves.  I am leaning toward KJ.
  • In this league, Berkman at $23 is good value, as is Sabathia at $32.  I am likely to keep both.
  • Beltran at $41 at least deserves some consideration, as top tier talent is scarce in this league and he's a five category guy.  Manny at $43 is probably a pass.
  • Hart and Young are pretty much locks to be kept.
  • It would be really hard to not keep any of Shields, Vazquez, Felix, Hill, and Putz.  I hate to lock in six of nine pitchers since I'm good at finding them, but these are all great value.  Billingsley would normally be kept but with six pitchers already he's questionable.
  • If I sign Putz and Vazquez through '09, I'm at $73 for six pitchers.  I'd prefer not to spend more than $80 on pitchers, so the other three would be late bargain picks.
  • Overall, I am leaning toward keeping Berkman, Johnson, Young, Hart, Sabathia, Shields, Vazquez, Felix, Hill, and Putz.  What would you do?

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