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Saturday 27th May 2017

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Each week, your friends at Mastersball will post the results of the weekly Tout Wars FAAB run, featuring the winning bid as well as the runner-up bids. There are four Tout Wars leagues, a 12-team AL only, 12-team NL only, 15-team Mixed Auction League and 15-team Mixed Draft League. The Mixed leagues use on-base-percentage instead of batting average. You can see the complete standings for each league by clicking on the appropriate heading, located just under each player photo.

Tout Wars uses a Vickrey system to award bids. For a complete description of the Vickrey system, click HERE for the Tout Wars constitution.

Included with each league report will be commentary from a Mastersball staff member participating in that league. We invite you to ask questions and post comments at the bottom of the report.

All contingency bids for awarded players are included. Sometimes, this is a bid tied to a player that the owner received, so at times the bid amount is larger than the winning bid. We are including it to provide as much information and context as possible with each report.

*PLEASE NOTE - We have slightly altered the presentation in an effort to help you reconstruct the actual bidding a little better. The amount the owner paid is listed in a column followed by the non-adjusted Vickrey bid. The remaining bids for that player are then listed in order of amount. if the amount of an unawarded bid is greater than what was charged, the bid was a contingency bid by that owner and they were awarded a player of higher priority.

New to the report is "Todd's Take" where Lord Zola will share his unique perspective focusing on FAAB strategy, game theory and league dynamics.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

kiermaier

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

KKiermaier, TB 15 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 16 Larry Schechter 14 Jeff Erickson 5
Mike Podhorzer 3
ESuarez, Det 14 Lawr Michaels 23 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 16 Larry Schechter 13
Joe Sheehan 10 Larry Schechter 7 Mike Podhorzer 3
LSardinas, Tex 5 Joe Sheehan 5 Jeff Erickson 5
VNuno, NYY 4 Andy Behrens 15 Joe Sheehan 3
SVogt, Oak 3 Larry Schechter 14 Ron Shandler 2 Jeff Erickson 1
Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 1
CBedrosian, LAA 1 Jason Collette 3 Lawr Michaels 0
CSanchez, CWS 1 Joe Sheehan 1
HNoesi, CWS 1 Joe Sheehan 1
SRomero, Sea 1 Jeff Erickson 3 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
CGillespie, Sea 0 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0 Lawr Michaels 5
ACrow, KC 0 Lawr Michaels 0
JSaunders, Tex 0 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0

UNAWARDED BIDS

JGiambi, Cle Jeff Erickson 1
KYates, TB Jason Collette 1
EnChavez, Sea Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
JGuzman, Hou Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
JHerrera, Bos Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
MSierra, CWS Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
FAbad, Oak Lawr Michaels 0
JFrasor, Tex Lawr Michaels 0

Lawr Michaels' Commentary

In the biggest move of the week, bolstered by the signing of Kendrys Morales who was neatly tucked on his reserve list, Inside Edge's Steve Moyer swapped Billy Butler to Rotowire's Chris Liss for the now road weary Sean Doolittle (this would be Doolittle's third Tout team this season). Ideally the offense will help Chris, and well, the saves and whiffs go to Steve.

On the FAAB front, rallying to exploit the offense among the a pair of the top AL Tout teams, first placers Glenn Colton and Rick Wolf (the Fantasy Alarmists, who bid $16) shelled out $15 and beat out three other hopeful owners to win the rights to Kevin Kiermaier, hot out out of the blocks as the apparent replacement for the injured Wil Myers, while third placer, yours truly, was willing to go to $14 (I actually bid $23) for the services of new Detroit shortstop, and equally hot Eugenio Suarez.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Yahoos! struggling Andy Behrens, hit with nearly as many crippling injuries as the Rangers team, tried to bolster his pitching a bit by purchasing Yankees hurler Vidal Nuno for $4, besting Joe Sheehan's $3 thanks to a Vickrey cushion of $11 (Andy actually bid $15)

Similarly, defending AL champ Larry Schechter copped catcher Steven Vogt for $3, though he too used Vickrey to his advantage with a $14 bid, beating out Ron Shandler who tried unsuccessfully to jettison the ever wandering George Kottaras.

Among the remaining pickups, the last that looked interesting was Jason Collette acquiring former first rounder Cam Bedrosian, a bona fide closer in the making (eight saves this year and 45 whiffs over 24 minor league innings with just six hits and eight walks, good for a 0.583 WHIP) with a $3 bid that beat out my $0 attempt. Meaning Bedrock Jr. could be a great $1 investment over the course of the season.

Todd's Take

I occasionally receive personal correspondence from someone confused by the listing of bids. Since this week's AL ledger has every possible scenario, it makes for the perfect model to explain how to read the bids.

Starting with Kiermaier everything looks fine. Moving onto Suarez, it's odd that Colton and Wolf bid $16 but the Vickrey reduced price for Michaels was only $14 which is in accordance with Schechter's $13 bid. The reason is Glenn and Rick had Suarez listed as a contingency to Kiermaier. Admittedly, the string looks confusing but including it adds a little value in that you can discern Glenn and Rick favored Kiermaier over Suarez.

From the reader's end, any time there appears to be a bid out of sequence, look at the other bids to find a player that cost more. In almost all instances the out of order bid was superceded by a higher bid on another player. The same scenario can be witnessed with Cole Gillespie as Michaels bid $5 is listed after the zero dollar winning bid from Colton and the Wolfman. Looking back, Gillespie was Lawr's contingent to Suarez. The lesson here is Lawr favored Suarez enough to bid 23 bones while he was only willing to go 5 balloons on Suarez.

A procedural note from this FAAB run is Sheehan beat Erickson for Luis Sardinas based place in the standings. It helps to know the tie-breaking process since that may influence your bid.

NATIONAL LEAGUE

davidperalta

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

DPeralta, Ari 14 Seth Trachtman 14 Scott Wilderman 13 Phil Hertz 8
Peter Kreutzer 3 Tristan H. Cockcroft 2 Derek Carty 1
DGregorius, Ari 13 Lenny Melnick  15 Brian Walton 12 Gene McCaffrey 10
Scott Wilderman 7 Phil Hertz 6 Derek Carty 5
Seth Trachtman 5 Mike Gianella 2 Tristan H. Cockcroft 2
JPeterson, SD 6 Lenny Melnick  17 Seth Trachtman 5 Brian Walton 3
Peter Kreutzer 2 Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
MMcKenry, Col 2 Steve Gardner 2 Phil Hertz 1 Brian Walton 1
RBrignac, Phi 1 Brian Walton 1 Derek Carty 0 Scott Wilderman 0
JRealmuto, Mia 1 Mike Gianella 1 Brian Walton 0
TWatson, Pit 1 Gene McCaffrey 2 Scott Wilderman 0
MDenDekker, NYM 1 Scott Wilderman 9 Peter Kreutzer 0 Tristan H. Cockcroft 0
Derek Carty 0
ABrown, NYM 1 Peter Kreutzer 6 Scott Wilderman 0
DSolano, Mia 1 Peter Kreutzer 5 Scott Wilderman 0 Tristan H. Cockcroft 0
JLocke, Pit 1 Phil Hertz 2
MEllis, StL 0 Scott Wilderman 0 Tristan H. Cockcroft 0 Brian Walton 0
TTeagarden, NYM 0 Brian Walton 0 Phil Hertz 1

 UNAWARDED BIDS

DButera, LAD Mike Gianella 1 Steve Gardner 0
JMathis, Mia Mike Gianella 1
JGutierrez, SF Gene McCaffrey 1
NEvans, Ari Scott Wilderman 0 Peter Kreutzer 0
GKontos, SF Phil Hertz 0
CHernandez, Phi Brian Walton 0 Scott Wilderman 0

Brian Walton's Commentary

The biggest transaction in NL Tout this week occurred out of the public view. Baseball Prospectus’ Mike Gianella gobbled up $50 FAAB (and a reserve catcher) from Wise Guy Baseball’s Gene McCaffrey in return for Cubs third base prospect Kris Bryant.

Both of the owners (along with me) are currently in the bottom quarter of the league, with obviously different ideas on how to improve.

With that single stroke, Gianella turned a $1 investment made just two weeks ago into a large FAAB hammer heading into the interleague trading period. Mike told me that a key factor in his trade decision was a belief that Bryant will not reach Chicago until September. (Bryant had been released in April by Peter Kreutzer, who paid $1 on draft day.)

Through last week, Gianella had the fourth-most money remaining at $92. Now his total is $46 more than anyone else. McCaffrey’s revised total of $36 still does not put him quite in the league cellar and with enough money remaining to make reasonable moves the rest of the way.

David Peralta is a great story. A washout as a minor league pitcher, he was released by the Cardinals only to remake himself as an outfielder in independent ball and get a second chance in affiliated baseball with Arizona. Seth Trachtman needed every one of his $14 to win the spirited bidding.

Though Didi Gregorius’ fast start in his return to Arizona may not sustain, it appears he will receive enough at-bats to be NL-relevant. I thought my $12 bid was aggressive, but it was not enough to top Lenny Melnick’s $15. Even worse was that Melnick was willing to go $17 for my disabled Jedd Gyorko’s replacement, Jace Peterson. It only took $6, however. I hope I don’t regret going higher on both of the middle infielders, as I had to settle for a $1 Reid Brignac.

Todd's Take

If you've been following recent reports, the FAAB action in the Senior Circuit has been eerily quiet. But this week the Touts showed they're willing to open up their wallets if warranted as seven of the 12 owners were willing to spend at least $5. I'm in this league and was not involved in the bidding but what I notice is the highest bid was $17 from Lenny Melnick with a few others in the low double digits. To me, these seem like regular bids and not bids expected to be protected by Vickrey. of course a player with a greater skill set than those purchased this run would cost more but a bid in the 20's for a player of similar caliber than I really want is not likely to require the full boat. That is, I can bid a few more and be willing to take the Vickrey reduction instead of haggling whether to bid $14 or $17.

MIXED LEAGUE AUCTION

cron

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

CCron, LAA 5 Ray Guilfoyle 8 Ray Flowers 4
MChoice, Tex 4 Paul Singman 5 Ray Flowers 3 Fred Zinkie 0
KGausman, Bal 3 Derek Van Riper 12 Cory Schwartz 2
JMercer, Pit 1 Ray Flowers 4
DEspinosa, Was 1 Ray Flowers 3
BMiller, Sea 1 Nando DiFino 8 Ray Flowers 3 Cory Schwartz 1
Fred Zinkie 0
CMaybin, SD 1 Cory Schwartz 1 Ray Flowers 3
BHolt, Bos 1 Scott Pianowski 9 Ray Flowers 3 Nando DiFino 1
NRamirez, ChC 1 Nando DiFino 11
JMcGee, TB 1 Scott Swanay 7 Paul Singman 2 Nando DiFino 1
DNava, Bos 1 Nando DiFino 4
RWolf, Mia 1 Patrick Davitt 3
WDavis, KC 1 Scott Swanay 7
JPeralta, TB 1 Paul Singman 8
KKiermaier, TB 1 Paul Singman 2 Fred Zinkie 0
BZiegler, Ari 1 Zach Steinhorn 21
AHeaney, Mia 1 Fred Zinkie 4
NSchierholtz, ChC 0 Fred Zinkie 0 Ray Flowers 3
CBedrosian, LAA 0 Patrick Davitt 0
DButera, LAD 0 Scott Pianowski 0
JHapp, Tor 0 Scott Pianowski 0

UNAWARDED BIDS

EButler, Col Derek Van Riper 7
JCosart, Hou Derek Van Riper 3
ELucas, Mia Ray Flowers 3
DStoren, Was Scott Swanay 3
JChacin, Col Derek Van Riper 2 Fred Zinkie 0
TSipp, Hou Scott Swanay 2
JTazawa, Bos Scott Swanay 2
JBroxton, Cin Scott Swanay 2
KYates, TB Derek Van Riper 2
RTejada, NYM Ray Flowers 2
JTurner, LAD Ray Flowers 2
BRoberts, NYY Ray Flowers 2
JNicasio, Col Derek Van Riper 2
MMoustakas, KC Nando DiFino 1
HNoesi, CWS Nando DiFino 1
AAmarista, SD Nando DiFino 1
ERamirez, Sea Derek Van Riper 1
TWatson, Pit Scott Swanay 1
EVolquez, Pit Patrick Davitt 0
BCumpton, Pit Patrick Davitt 0
CMartinez, StL Nando DiFino 0

Zach Steinhorn's Commentary

Only three players fielded winning bids in excess of $1 this week, and unsurprisingly, C.J. Cron was one of them. Cron was purchased in FAAB four weeks ago by Derek Van Riper only to be released two weeks ago, probably due to playing time concerns. But maybe a solid 5-for-18, 4 RBI week will finally convince the Angels that Cron deserves to be in the lineup every day. With three homers and 15 RBI in just 95 at-bats, the stats certainly back him up.

The highest rational bid of the week (more on that later) went to Kevin Gausman, the former top prospect who has yet to stick in the big leagues. But after dominating a dangerous Oakland lineup over the weekend, Gausman has earned another start, which is scheduled for Thursday against the Blue Jays. It will be his second straight tough test, but if he passes, he might not make a return trip to the Minors. Oh, and the winning bid for him next week would be a whole lot higher than $3.

There are few worse things a fantasy owner can experience than losing their closer, whether it be due to poor performance or injury, and then see his likely replacement land on another roster. Addison Reed could be fine, but considering that Brad Ziegler was the one who closed out yesterday’s victory due to Reed having a “tired arm”, I didn’t want to take any chances. So I used the strategy of overbidding by a crazy amount to make sure I got my guy, and was somewhat surprised that Ziegler didn’t receive any other bids.

Todd's Take

Every week since the season began I have looked at the Tout Mixed Auction league with extra interest and every week I end up shaking me head wondering why Scott Swanay wasn't more aggressive on a player or two. If you recall, Swanay was going to leave the table with over 60 unspent auction dollars, so he took advantage of a rules quirk and purchased an injured player with the intent of turning them in and getting the auction price back in a FAAB rebate (know thy league rules). Well guess what. Scott has done a remarkable job and is currently in the middle of the pack and is in a position to make some FAAB purchases going forward that can help him rise even higher in the standings. I challenge all of my fellow pundits that used Scott's plight as column fodder in the spring to follow up and give the guy some props.

MIXED LEAGUE DRAFT

michael-choice

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

MChoice, Tex 1 Adam Ronis 9 Grey Albright 2
JTurner, LAD 1 Charlie Wiegert 9 Scott Engel 0
JDanks, CWS 1 Tom Kessenich 7
CWhitley, NYY 1 Eno Sarris 5 Tom Kessenich 3
JTomlin, Cle 1 Ray Murphy 5
ESuarez, Det 1 Tim McLeod 5 Adam Ronis 3
BBarnes, Col 1 Perry Van Hook 4
AHeaney, Mia 1 Tim McLeod 3
MMoustakas, KC 1 Grey Albright 3
RChirinos, Tex 1 Grey Albright 2
DSantana, Min 1 Eno Sarris 2 Adam Ronis 9
SRodriguez, TB 1 Paul Sporer 2
KSuzuki, Min 1 Scott Engel 1 Grey Albright 1
KBlanks, Oak 1 Scott Engel 1 Adam Ronis 0
ARecker, NYM 0 Anthony Perri 0 Scott Engel 1

UNAWARDED BIDS

JCosart, Hou Tom Kessenich 5
DEspinosa, Was Adam Ronis 4
JGuthrie, KC Tom Kessenich 4
NRamirez, ChC Eno Sarris 2
EButler, Col Tom Kessenich 2
JFamilia, NYM Eno Sarris 1
HConger, LAA Grey Albright 1
BAbreu, NYM Eno Sarris 1
LValbuena, ChC Adam Ronis 1
YPetit, SF Tom Kessenich 1
LOverbay, Mil Scott Engel 0
JRealmuto, Mia Scott Engel 0
DButera, LAD Scott Engel 0
BPena, Cin Scott Engel 0
KKiermaier, TB Eno Sarris 2 Adam Ronis 0
DMurphy, Tex Adam Ronis 0

Perry Van Hook's Commentary

It was dollar night in the mixed draft league – all players FAABed going for just one dollar to whoever put up the high bid. The would be high bid was $9 for Rangers outfielder Michael Choice but Adam Ronis only had to use one of those dollars to roster his Choice.

My four dollar bid on Colorado fly chaser Brandon Barnes like all the others similarly reduced as I tried to bolster my outfield depth – a good week to do that it seems.

Todd's Take

As Perry points out, every non-zero bid (after contingencies were taken out of the process, see the AL Todd's take) was reduced to $1. This emphasizes how everyone values players differenttly with the caveat that needs are involved.

For instance, Perry favors Barnes over Choice. Charlie Wiegert bid on Justin Turner but not the similar Sean Rodriguez while Paul Sporer did the obvious.

Looking at pitching, Ray Murphy was the only one to bid on Josh Tomlin. Not only that, there are a bunch of other starting pitchers others bid on but Ray did not get in on the action - he wants Tomlin. As an aside, this tells me to take a second to look at Tomlin. Ray does not do things on a whim. As most of you know, he is part of the management team at Baseball HQ. This tells me there is something in his peripherals that warrant some investigation. But the larger point is if you asked five of these guys which available starting pitcher they liked the most this week, you'd get five different replies. This is relevant in trade talks as you just never know how others perceive a player's potential.

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