Player Valuation Series

Draft Week! Are you ready?

As always, I'm bringing together a sort of 'Draft Day Survival Guide' for readers that sums up the preseason work here on the Harper Wallbanger blog. Keep up the good work people. By being here, I'm guessing you're more than ready to draft, but that's just half the battle - after this, onward to in-season management!

First, the Player Valuation series all in one place for easy reading:

Tip #1: Know where player values come from
Tip #2: Set your Hit/Pitch split
Tip #3: Value your Picks and Make Preseason Trades
Tip #4: Customize your Projections
Tip #5: Draft with tiers
Tip #6: Use the best projection systems
Tip #7: Draft undervalued players

If you're using the Big Board, you'll also find these helpful:

Big Board Tutorial
Patch Notes

My sincerest thanks go out to all the supporters of Harper Wallbanger and the Big Board. It's been a banner year here, with hundreds of people signing up to use the Board. Here's hoping that every single one of you dominates your drafts this year, and manages to ride that to the 'ship in your respective leagues.

Player Valuation Tip #7: Draft Undervalued Players

Tip #1: Know where player values come from
Tip #2: Set your Hit/Pitch split
Tip #3: Value your Picks and Make Preseason Trades
Tip #4: Customize your Projections
Tip #5: Draft with tiers
Tip #6: Use the best projection systems

Draft week is nearly here! Right around now everyone is poring over their draft prep sheets and coming up with round-by-round targets. Here at the Harper Wallbanger blog, it's no different! This week, I'll be sorting through the Big Board for 12-team 5x5 leagues and coming up with the *most* undervalued players at each position, along with which round you should be targeting them in order to make sure you get them. I'll also throw in the Big Board's choices for players to avoid at all costs. Stay tuned as they roll out with the links below!

Also, hey, let's do a quick review of last year. In these same posts last year, among the players I recommended were: Gary Sanchez, Daniel Murphy, Justin Turner, Mike Moustakas, Jorge Polanco, Andrew Benintendi, Domingo Santana, Josh Reddick, Scott Schebler, Gio Gonzalez, Alex Wood, and Sean Doolittle. I also correctly identified players to avoid in Adrian Gonzalez, Ben Zobrist, Hernan Perez, Xander Bogaerts, Max Kepler, Rajai Davis, Danny Duffy, David Price, Jeurys Familia, and Mark Melancon. Were there some misses in there as well? Sure. But this is a pretty dang good hit rate for targets/avoids of mid-tier players! 

Links:

Catcher
First base
Second base
Shortstop
Third base
Outfield
Starting Pitcher
Closer

Bonus - Sultans of Stats

Player Valuation Tip #6: Use the best projection systems

Player Valuation Tip #6: Use the best projection systems

Tip #1: Know where player values come from
Tip #2: Set your Hit/Pitch split
Tip #3: Value your Picks and Make Preseason Trades
Tip #4: Customize your Projections
Tip #5: Draft with tiers

Entering now into part six of my preseason player valuation series, we arrive at one of the more important decisions of the preseason: deciding which projection system(s) to use. As a testament to how important this is, people have been asking me about this piece for weeks - wait no longer!

 

Player Valuation Tip #5: Draft with tiers

Player Valuation Tip #5: Draft with tiers

Tip #1: Know where player values come from
Tip #2: Set your Hit/Pitch split
Tip #3: Value your Picks and Make Preseason Trades
Tip #4: Customize your Projections

It may come off as odd to say this, as a purveyor of the best draft tool around, but draft tools can't do everything. One of the great subtleties to drafting in fantasy baseball is seeing and exploiting tiers within each position. While the Big Board will help you see them, it's another thing to plan for them and make sure you avoid the biggest dropoffs in each position on draft day.

(If you want to skip the words and get right to the tiers, here they are)

Player Valuation Tip #4: Customize your Projections

Player Valuation Tip #4: Customize your Projections

Tip #1: Where do player values come from?
Tip #2: Set your Hit/Pitch split
Tip #3: Value your Picks and Make Preseason Trades

Fantasy baseballers, I come to you today with an admission: I'm a total hypocrite. I am the first person that will tell you that the computer-based projection systems like Steamer, PECOTA, ZiPS, etc will beat a human-curated projection every time. And yet, year after year, I find myself *tinkering*. Changing an ERA/WHIP projection here, increasing a batting average or HR-total there. There are certainly areas where the computer systems fall short, since they don't know about injuries, can be slow to adjust to real-world depth chart changes, and tend to be skeptical of breakouts. This year, I've created a tool that allows me to go about this customization/adjustment process in a much more systematic way: the DIY Projection Tool. Thanks to this handy tool, I've been able to integrate all of my preseason research, including injuries, xStats, and depth chart info, into a set of over 300 custom projections (included in this year's Big Board). But, I'm all about empowering you all to do these things yourself, so what follows here is a comprehensive tutorial in how to build your own custom projections.