If you’ve been following this series, you picked your team the right way and were properly prepared for your draft. You’ve since drafted your team and have been shuffling players in and out of your lineup through the first week of games. But how do you know if you’re team is going to be competitive?
While my process for figuring this out takes a bit of number crunching, it’s quite simple. First, we’re going to use the Standings page in Ottoneu to figure out the points you need to accumulate to finish in the top half of your league. Then, we’ll use THE BAT projections to figure out if it’s reasonable to expect your team to hit those marks. I use spreadsheets, but you could easily do this using a pen and paper and your calculator of choice. Note the following is for points leagues, if you are in a roto league check out our roto guide here.
1. Calculating the stats you need
Begin by creating a spreadsheet, here’s mine, feel free to copy it. As you can see, you’re going to find the average of the first place, third place and fifth place finishers in overall points, points per game and points per innings pitched over the last three seasons. Next, go to the Standings page of your Ottoneu league. Next to “Past Final Standings:” there are links to each prior year’s standings. Click on 2018. Scroll down to the Statistics table. Click the column header “PTS” (for points). This sorts the column for you from worst to first. Enter the first place, third place and fifth place values into your spreadsheet. Repeat for P/G and P/IP and each year. Finally, find the average of each. Once you’re done, it should look something like this. So, you have your points thresholds. Now let’s look at the projections for your team.
2. Does your team stack up?
Create another spreadsheet, again, here’s mine, feel free to copy it. You’re going to input your roster and their stats as projected by THE BAT. To find these projections, go to Fangraphs, hover over Projections and click on THE BAT. Navigating the page is pretty self explanatory. Click on the position of the player you are looking for and find his name. Enter his projections into your spreadsheet. You want to put your best lineup in. Note: I’ve included G for Games Played and IP for Innings Pitched, it will become apparent why a little later on. Also, THE BAT does not project saves, holds or hit by pitch, so you’ve got to get a little creative. For saves I used ATC’s projections. For holds I found the average number of holds per relief inning pitched last season, multiplied that by the pitcher’s projected innings pitched and then doubled that number. Finally, for hit by pitch, for hitters I divided the number of career HBPs by their career games played. For pitchers I did the same, but used innings pitched instead of games played.
Once you have what you consider your best lineup slotted in, add up your points. Then compare them to the first, third and fifth place averages. From here what I do is divide the games played maximums allowed in Ottoneu (1944) by the number of projected games played (in my example, 1699). I then multiply that number by the points. I do the same for Innings Pitched. And now we can finally assess our team. Here’s my finished spreadsheet. This is projecting me to finish basically fifth and I have to agree I think that’s the best case scenario for my team, as currently constructed. I picked up this team last year, but I didn’t use my method of picking up a team. Last year was a rebuilding year, so if I am able to finish fifth this season, I’m going to be pretty happy. With Rizzo, Votto and Abreu at 1B I have some trade fodder, though I’m in desperate need of MI and OF depth.
3. Before you go
Now, you may be questioning why I multiply the games played maximums allowed in Ottoneu by the number of projected games played and then multiply that number by the counting stats since your bench likely won’t perform as well as your best lineup. The way I look at it, even your best lineup you’re not playing every day. I’m not going to play Joc Pederson and his career 60 wRC+ against left handed pitchers. Like you would in any other fantasy baseball formats, you’re going to play the players that give you the best chance of winning.
There it is, do the damn thing! More soon.
(Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)