My mate Lord Zola and I spend a lot of time talking about players and strategies and such.
But, it is not like we are baseball geeks in the classic sense.
True, like all of our buds who are lucky enough to write about baseball, we do love the game, but, all of us have other interests for certain.
Z and I, though discuss positions and scarcity and formats more as a matter of fact, kind of like an old married couple talking about their grown up kids, the state of national affairs and the price of Metamucil. In fact, if you have ever ridden in a car with the two of us--and Todd usually drives--you will understand just how true the domestic simile is.
During our dialogues, usually conveyed via the miracle of G-Chat, we have drafted teams (don't forget that the country separates Todd, who lives in Boston, and me, a San Francisco Bay Area resident), confirmed the value of Alex Rios, and the lack thereof for Rick Porcello, and dealt with the horrors of draft quandaries Position Scarcity and ADP.
I think though that position scarcity is a misnomer, as Todd has discussed, although I think we would both agree with the world that we would always want to get the best possible player for each position on any team.
As we all know, however, in any draft or auction league, no one is going to get the best players, and we will always have those holes to fill.
Well, he is right.
Furthermore, and we both I believe are down with this, how you draft a team doesn't matter as long as the resulting numbers make for a competitive squad.
Now, while this surely dictates that during the first rounds, obviously the Mike Trouts and Miguel Cabreras are the guys to take first--simply because they do produce, along with giving very little indication of dropping off. Once we do indeed get into the middle and later rounds, drafts are truly an exercise in trying to fill in the best fit for the position, relative to statistical need.
Meaning if you can bag Trout, Rios and Jose Fernandez over the first few rounds and augment with a few solid outfielders and relievers, then taking Walker in the 18th round (he does have a .273-16-80 average over 162 games) might seem boring, but it sure as hell is not going to hurt your team going in.
So, what I have also determined is that if you covet the likes of Kole Calhoun, Corey Kluber, Starling Marte or Leonys Martin, to name a few of the experts favorites I like this year, then grab them when you can.
Of course, it is true that you always want to get the upside skill of any player rostered. And, to correlate, I also believe that we win to a large degree with dull players who all hit career baselines, but for some reason are not valued by the rest of your league.
I think though, what this all boils down to is there is no specific formula (aside from the judiciousness of a Larry Schechter, who approaches his craft with the meticulousness of a NASA scientist, and whose tome, Winning Fantasy Baseball, I am moving through at present) that will guide you to a fantasy title.
What I am saying is that you pick a team of guys you like, theoretically who are or have been healthy, and are on successful teams.
Now, I am not saying to lose objectivity, but as we are on the verge of spring training and real drafts, select a team that will be fun to manage.
Because, we do play this game for fun.
And, well, as long as you know what you need to win, and can assemble a roster that will match that going into the season, that is the best you can hope for.