Welcome to "You Look FAABulous", our look at the FAAB reports for Tout Wars and LABR. Each week, your friends at Mastersball will post the results of the weekly Tout Wars and LABR FAAB run, featuring the winning bid as well a the runner-up bids.
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 bid is 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.
There are five Tout Wars leagues, a 12-team AL only, 12-team NL only, 15-team Mixed Auction League, 15-team Mixed Draft League and a brand new 12-team Mixed Auction Head to head format. All use on-base-percentage instead of batting average with the Head to Head league also using other unique categories. You can see the complete standings for each league by clicking on the appropriate heading, located just under each player photo.
New to Tout Wars this year is a $1000 free agent acquisition budget (FAAB) and no Vickrey. Teams are still allowed $0 bids.
Here is the Tout Wars report. LABR was posted earlier.
|TAustin, NYY||Jason Collette 302||Larry Schechter 179||Chris Liss 40||Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 27|
|Mike Podhorzer 12||Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 2||Seth Trachtman 1|
|Steve Moyer 0|
|WDavis, KC||Seth Trachtman 75||Patrick Davitt 6|
|ECarrera, Tor||Larry Schechter 45|
|THernandez, Hou||Chris Liss 40||Larry Schechter 34||Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 27||Mike Podhorzer 12|
|Seth Trachtman 1||Steve Moyer 0||Chris Liss 0|
|FSalas, LAA||Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 27||Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 2|
|RDetwiler, Oak||Ron Shandler 25|
|MMuncy, Oak||Seth Trachtman 1||Steve Moyer 0|
|CBuchholz, Bos||Mike Podhorzer 0|
|MMahtook, TB||Steve Moyer 0|
|MStrahm, KC||Chris Liss 0|
|DOtero, Cle||Lawr Michaels 0||Patrick Davitt 0|
|TBarnette, Tex||Larry Schechter 0|
|JCoats, CWS||Chris Liss 2|
|CPennington, LAA||Seth Trachtman 1|
|DMachado, Det||Seth Trachtman 1|
|DCeciliani, Tor||Steve Moyer 0||Chris Liss 0|
|MBarnes, Bos||Larry Schechter 0|
|MBush, Tex||Larry Schechter 0|
|PNeshek, Hou||Larry Schechter 0|
|LHendriks, Oak||Chris Liss 0|
Lawr Michaels' Commentary
Tout AL suddenly finds itself in a bit of a tangle among the top four teams, with 15.5 very very soft points separating the squads of Seth Trachtman, Larry Schechter, Patrick Davitt, and me.
The top slots, owned today by Trachtman and Schechter, fostered moves by those teams, with Schecther grabbing Ezequiel Carrera for $45 and Tony Barnette ($0), while Trachtman dropped a somewhat hefty $75 on Wade Davis coupled with the the Athletics Max Muncy ($1). As for me, I plugged the hole left by the injured Nathan Eovoldi with Dan Otero, while Davitt, on the heels of spending a wad on Jonathan Lucroy last week sat out the bidding this cycle.
Other moves included Jason Collette making the big buy, purchasing Tyler Austin for $302 while sixth placer Chris Liss spent $40 on Teoscar Hernandez, coupled with a $0 bid that brought him Matt Strahm. Ron Shandler, holding tight to fifth, took a shot with Ross Detwiler ($25) and closing out the festivities, Rick Wolf and Glenn Colton nabbed Fernando Salas for $27.
The stretch run does look like fun ahead!
So who is Teoscar Hernandez and why is he drawing so many bids here and in LABR? Hernandez is a 23 -year old outfielder signed by the Astros out of the Dominican Republic, blessed with the power/speed combo inciting fantasy players to drool. As is often the case in this scenario, Hernandez's plate skills were lacking, at least until this season. First at Double-A Corpus Christi and more recently with Triple-A Fresno, Hernandez cut back on the whiffs and increased the walks. The Astros have a lot of moving parts but when Colby Rasmus went down, they were left with only Jake Marisnick to roam in center field so Hernandez was summoned. Marisnick then tweaked his groin, giving full-time run to Hernandez for the weekend - and perhaps beyond. Both are right-handed hitters so there won't be a platoon. Rasmus is out until early to mid-September after having a cyst removed from his ear. The Astros didn't make any moves at the deadline, instead relying on internal options like Alex Bregman and Yulieski Gurriel to provide a spark. It looks like Hernandez may end up fanning the biggest flames.
|LWeaver, StL||Grey Albright 87||Derek Carty 66||Scott Wilderman 12||Steve Gardner 2|
|Phil Hertz 2|
|RStripling, LAD||Derek Carty 15||Mike Gianella 10||Phil Hertz 0|
|PClemens, SD||Mike Gianella 10||Todd Zola 1||Phil Hertz 0|
|TCahill, ChC||Mike Gianella 10|
|BPaulsen, Col||Brian Walton 4||Phil Hertz 2||Andy Behrens 1|
|TRivera, NYM||Brian Walton 3||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0||Phil Hertz 0|
|MSzczur, ChC||Tristan H. Cockcroft 1||Brian Walton 1||Phil Hertz 0||Andy Behrens 0|
|EBurgos, Ari||Phil Hertz 1||Grey Albright 11|
|SHathaway, Ari||Todd Zola 1|
|BHand, SD||Todd Zola 1||Steve Gardner 0|
|SBrito, Ari||Andy Behrens 1||Brian Walton 1||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0||Phil Hertz 0|
|ChJohnson, Mia||Phil Hertz 1||Andy Behrens 0|
|MPina, Mil||Brian Walton 0|
|CKnebel, Mil||Steve Gardner 0|
|WPeralta, Mil||Phil Hertz 0|
|CRichard, SD||Derek Carty 0||Todd Zola 1|
|NNoonan, SD||Brian Walton 1|
|PGosselin, Ari||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0||Brian Walton 0|
|EGoeddel, NYM||Steve Gardner 0||Phil Hertz 0|
|TGosewisch, Ari||Brian Walton 0|
|JMathis, Mia||Brian Walton 0|
|EFryer, Pit||Brian Walton 0|
|EAdrianza, SF||Brian Walton 0|
|CHeisey, Was||Brian Walton 0|
|WDifo, Was||Phil Hertz 0|
|TKelly, NYM||Phil Hertz 0|
|SRomo, SF||Phil Hertz 0|
|JParedes, Phi||Phil Hertz 0|
|HRobles, NYM||Phil Hertz 0|
|BGoodwin, Was||Phil Hertz 0|
|TJenkins, Atl||Steve Gardner 0|
|NWittgren, Mia||Todd Zola 0|
Brian Walton's Commentary
No one would have guessed that Luke Weaver would have made a start for the St. Louis Cardinals this season before more highly-touted Alex Reyes, but that is what happened on Saturday in Chicago. Ironically, Reyes backed Weaver up in relief. With the Cardinals rotation showing signs of weakness, Weaver will be given more chances to start after yielding two runs in four innings in his debut. Grey Albright’s $87 bid was the winner, trumping Derek Carty’s $66.
Carty was not shut out, however, as he picked up Ross Stripling of the Dodgers for just $15. Since rejoining the rotation, the right-hander has allowed five earned runs in 12 innings with eight strikeouts and just one walk.
The third double-digit player this week was also a rebounding pitcher. The Cubs, needing innings, have brought back Trevor Cahill to make a start in Tuesday’s doubleheader, his first this season. Mike Gianella paid $10 for Cahill, who has been out for the last five weeks due to injury.
Man, this is tough. Sometimes what you need to do is clear, other times, not so much. I begin the week with a precarious 2.5 point lead over the Clayton Kershaw-less Derek Carty. My ESPN colleague and Rotogrinder contributor also remains without Rich Hill, his big FAAB catch. The always dangerous Brian Walton lurks in third, looking for any opening to move up.
I REALLY want to DO something to increase the lead, but my hands are tied.
I look at things and as mad as I'll be if I end up losing without making a late trade, I'll be just as mad if the trade backfires. The difference here is I'd make the trade in a heartbeat if it was necessary to win. This is a win or go home scenario. Second place is first loser. If the only way to win is with a deal, I pull the trigger even if there's risk of falling lower. We're not going to get any additional Platinum subscribers with a second or third place place finish.
The two categories I can gain are RBI and saves. I'm leading the league in homers and whiffs. Dealing power to get saves hurts my chances to grab the RBI points. Dealing a starting pitcher for saves or a hitting upgrade weakens my ability to get wins, perhaps the most volatile category in this league as I can gain half a point (currently tied for the most wins with Derek) or lose five or six points.
I have limited FAAB with the hopes A.J. Pollock comes back. But even that may not help as RBI is his weakest contribution.
As tough as it is to do, my decision, at least to this point, is playing more defense than offense. I'd honestly prefer to be challenging Derek with Kershaw on his roster, but we all incur injuries (see Pollack, A.J.) and right now the best recourse is not losing points, hanging in the low 90s and hope Derek's pitching and Brian's guile aren't enough to overtake me.
|AJudge, NYY||Gene McCaffrey 183||Scott Swanay 120||Derek Van Riper 105||Fred Zinkie 68|
|Cory Schwartz 26||Nando DiFino 12|
|TAustin, NYY||Scott Swanay 66|
|RIglesias, Cin||Ray Flowers 33||Joe Pisapia 33||Derek Van Riper 5|
|LWeaver, StL||Joe Pisapia 33||Cory Schwartz 20|
|POrlando, KC||Ray Flowers 29||Fred Zinkie 5||Scott Pianowski 4|
|AGarcia, Atl||Nando DiFino 17|
|TKemp, Hou||Nando DiFino 12|
|CMcGehee, Det||Ray Flowers 9|
|ASanchez, Det||Fred Zinkie 3|
|JRoss, Was||Cory Schwartz 2|
|CBethancourt, SD||Al Melchior 0|
|HStrickland, SF||Scott Swanay 0|
|KSiegrist, StL||Scott Swanay 0|
|MPerez, Tex||Bret Sayre 0|
|MMaldonado, Mil||Cory Schwartz 0|
|RVogelsong, Pit||Derek Van Riper 0|
|COwings, Ari||Ray Flowers 17||Nando DiFino 12||Scott Swanay 0|
|YAlonso, Oak||Nando DiFino 12|
|AReed, Hou||Ray Flowers 7||Scott Swanay 0|
|DFreese, Pit||Ray Flowers 7||Scott Swanay 0|
|WMiley, Bal||Ray Flowers 7|
|ZGodley, Ari||Ray Flowers 7|
|CDevenski, Hou||Ray Flowers 3|
|BPaulsen, Col||Scott Swanay 0|
|HNeris, Phi||Scott Swanay 0|
|JDiekman, Tex||Scott Swanay 0|
|JSmoak, Tor||Scott Swanay 0|
|MFeliz, Hou||Scott Swanay 0|
|MGivens, Bal||Scott Swanay 0|
|MMontgomery, ChC||Scott Swanay 0|
|NFeliz, Pit||Scott Swanay 0|
|PBaez, LAD||Scott Swanay 0|
|RBuchter, SD||Scott Swanay 0|
|RHoward, Phi||Scott Swanay 0|
Zach Steinhorn's Commentary
If only Aaron Judge or Tyler Austin played for a small-market team, maybe they would slip through the cracks in FAAB bidding and I'd actually be able to afford them. But when the Yankees call up a top prospect, let alone two of them, the baseball world tends to know about it. And when both top prospects homer in their first big league at-bat and one of them homers again the following day, even the non-baseball world is going to hear about it. So, with only 49 FAAB bucks at my disposal, I knew I had no chance of adding either hitter to my roster, so I didn't even bother bidding on them.
Aside from Judge and Austin, it was a fairly quiet week on the FAAB front, but one other acquisition that caught my attention was Joe Ross. I actually considered bidding on the Nationals righty, who has proven to be a solid mid-rotation fantasy starter when healthy. The only problem is that he's not healthy right now and has no clear return timetable. Scott Pianowski preferred the $20 in FAAB rebate to keeping Ross on the DL. The downside of adding Ross is that he would need to be in my active lineup for a week. And since I'm in a close race near the top of the standings, I decided that I couldn't afford to waste a starting lineup slot for the upcoming week on a guy who might or might not help me down the stretch. Maybe passing on Ross will prove to be a mistake, but this is an important Tout Wars rule that can greatly influence FAAB decisions.
If you're thinking, "Silly Zach, that whole Yankees bias isn't really out there", I ask you, where's the bidding on Teoscar Hernandez? I can understand the agressiveness with Judge, but Hernandez certainly deserves the same attention as Austin, though to be fair, Austin drew only one bid. But I bet if Hernandez came up with the Yankees, he'd be on the report somewhere.
In what looks like a lost season for the Cincinnati Reds, they could be looking at their future back-end of their bullpen. After watching Tony Cingrani et. al. fail to hold the sparse leads they took into the ninth, Raisel Iglesias has finally been handed closing duties. Better yet, Michael Lorenzen has been nails in the set-up role. Granted, it's always better to have a couple of live arms like Lorenzen and Iglesias start every fifth day, but the one thing the Reds have is young pitching depth. If a couple of these arms emerge as late-inning stoppers, perhaps the season isn't lost after all.
|AJudge, NYY||Perry Van Hook 234||Craig Mish 130||Anthony Perri 57||Charlie Wiegert 44|
|Rudy Gamble 16||Adam Ronis 12|
|AOttavino, Col||Adam Ronis 138||Rudy Gamble 22|
|AHicks, NYY||Charlie Wiegert 46|
|TKemp, Hou||Charlie Wiegert 35|
|THernandez, Hou||Charlie Wiegert 33||Anthony Perri 23||Perry Van Hook 1|
|KBroxton, Mil||Adam Ronis 33||Adam Ronis 66||Perry Van Hook 11||Tim McLeod 0|
|BreAnderson, LAD||Anthony Perri 32|
|BShipley, Ari||Perry Van Hook 17||Tim McLeod 3|
|RLopez, Was||Perry Van Hook 17|
|APollock, Ari||Anthony Perri 15|
|TWolters, Col||Charlie Wiegert 8|
|DEspinosa, Was||Rick Wilton 6|
|CKuhl, Pit||Tim McLeod 2||Perry Van Hook 0|
|CCuthbert, KC||Tim McLeod 2|
|MMaldonado, Mil||Craig Mish 2|
|MClevinger, Cle||Craig Mish 1|
|LChisenhall, Cle||Perry Van Hook 1|
|TAustin, NYY||Perry Van Hook 123||Charlie Wiegert 39|
|POrlando, KC||Charlie Wiegert 31||Anthony Perri 12||Charlie Wiegert 10||Tim McLeod 1|
|JBlash, SD||Charlie Wiegert 30||Perry Van Hook 0|
|LWeaver, StL||Perry Van Hook 11|
|ARecker, Atl||Charlie Wiegert 7|
|AGarcia, Atl||Anthony Perri 6|
|CCrisp, Oak||Charlie Wiegert 5|
|AAlmonte, Cle||Perry Van Hook 1||Perry Van Hook 0|
|CRuiz, Phi||Charlie Wiegert 1|
|RRua, Tex||Rick Wilton 1|
|DNorris, Det||Perry Van Hook 0|
|KGraveman, Oak||Perry Van Hook 0|
|MMuncy, Oak||Perry Van Hook 0|
|RDetwiler, Oak||Perry Van Hook 0|
|RVogelsong, Pit||Perry Van Hook 0|
|SRodriguez, Pit||Rick Wilton 0|
|TCahill, ChC||Perry Van Hook 0|
Perry Van Hook's Commentary
Would the high bid this week in the Tout Mixed League go to the shiny young Yankees fly chaser or the new Rockies closer?
The answer is that though Adam Ottavino went for $138 to Adam Ronis, my bid of $234 for Aaron Judge exceeded Ronis by nearly $100..
Bids at this point in the season are often reflective of each team's place in the standings, and what relative position the owner is fighting for. Perhaps that is why seven of the fifteen teams did not place any bids (of course they may be saving their units for September call ups). Teams with a long shot to win the league may take a more aggressive short view while those at the top of the league may play more conservatively with their remaining FAAB units. And, though I don't have a shot at first, I do need to gain eight more points to bypass the threshold where my team would incur a FAAB penalty to start next season, hence the heady bid for the Pinstripes flychaser.
Strangely there was not a winning bid for Tyler Austin. I had him second to Judge on my first list and two teams had him lower on their list than the player they won meaning Austin is still out for the masses to spend on next week. Note that I did think about bidding less for Judge and trying to win both Yankees baby bombers, but I was afraid of spreading my FAAB dollars too thin and didn't want to come up short on Judge (several teams could have bid more than I did had they had an all in mentality).
I also wanted to improve my pitching for the coming week and was lucky enough to win both Reynaldo Lopez, and Braden Shipley, for $17 each. Adding Lonnie Chisenhall for a buck brought my total to $269 for the evening leaving me just $29 for the balance of the season but I "judged" that this was the week to go for the points.
I usually give the photo to the second place finisher if the winner was displayed elsewhere but since Teoscar Hernandez has been a focal point, I thought you may want to see what he looks like. Sorry for the image with the baby bump, but that's all that was available.
That said, it's interesting to note Hernandez attracted more attention than Tyler Austin. Apparently the Mixed Draft League doesn't exhibit east coast bias. While that's written mostly tongue-in-cheek, there is an interesting distinction between the Tout Wars Mixed Auction and Draft Leagues that didn't strike me until just now. While some of the auction participants fly in to the Big Apple for the weekend festivities, a large portion are local. Gathering 15 for a live draft is tough but fortunately, there's a bevy of quality analysts living in or near New York City. So maybe there is something to greater Yankees bias in the auction versus the draft league. This is something I'd like to investigate in general as it does speak towards, "Know thy league."
|AAltherr, Phi||Andrea LaMont 101||Paul Sporer 16|
|KHendricks, ChC||Andrea LaMont 66||Peter Kreutzer 16||Paul Sporer 11|
|AJudge, NYY||Jeff Boggis 61||Jake Ciely 32|
|AOttavino, Col||Jake Ciely 37|
|DFreese, Pit||Andrea LaMont 33|
|ERodriguez, Bos||Andrea LaMont 29|
|DPhelps, Mia||Peter Kreutzer 24|
|DBundy, Bal||Paul Sporer 22|
|RDavis, Cle||Paul Sporer 18||Jeff Zimmerman 4|
|MZunino, Sea||Andrea LaMont 11||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|RSchimpf, SD||Paul Sporer 9||Andrea LaMont 11|
|MCabrera, Atl||Paul Sporer 8|
|NJones, CWS||Paul Sporer 8|
|DEspinosa, Was||Jeff Zimmerman 3|
|JMcCann, Det||Andrea LaMont 2||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|JSaltalamacchia, Det||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|MPrado, Mia||Andrea LaMont 39|
|KBroxton, Mil||Andrea LaMont 34|
|JimJohnson, Atl||Jake Ciely 32|
|MStroman, Tor||Andrea LaMont 25|
|JPederson, LAD||Andrea LaMont 21||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|MGivens, Bal||Paul Sporer 8|
|TGosewisch, Ari||Andrea LaMont 7|
|NMarkakis, Atl||Andrea LaMont 6||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|SLeon, Bos||Andrea LaMont 5|
|SClevenger, Sea||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
Peter Kreutzer's Commentary
There are five H2H periods left. Five games per team, worth 30 games in the standings.
There are also roto standings for the second half to be determined, another 12 games, and roto standings for the whole season, worth another 12 games, to be distributed at season's end.
So, while 114 games have been played, there are 54 more to come. And things are tight at the top. Which may explain why the leading teams held tight for the most part, things are working for them, and the second division teams of Andrea LaMont and Paul Sporer, racked by injuries, made a lot of moves.
LaMont picked up hot-hitting Mike Zunino, Aaron Altherr, and potentially strong pitching from Kyle Hendricks and Eduardo Rodriguez.
Sporer added the speed of Rajai Davis, the surprising power of Ryan Schrimpf, a potential closer in Nate Jones, plus Dylan Bundy, who has impressed since moving into the rotation.
Among the leaders, Jake Ciely picked up putative Colorado closer Adam Ottavino, while newly anointed leader Jeff Zimmerman made a couple of small pick ups, one with a big name (Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Danny Espinosa). Jeff Boggis grabbed Yankees banger Aaron Judge, while I added David Phelps.
David Phelps? Here's the story:
We have a minimum innings rule in this league. 450 IP in each half, and 900 overall. I easily made my innings in the first half, but injuries to Taijuan Walker and Rich Hill, plus Jake Arrieta's struggles in the second half have had me running out mostly relievers each week.
I now need to average about 45 innings each of the final six weeks to make 450 for the second half. I will easily make the minimum for the whole year. And if I fall short in the second half my ERA and WHIP is weak enough that that I won't lose too many points there, but my K/9 is strong enough to compel me to go for it.
Phelps has had two short but nice starts, and is scheduled for two starts this week. If I can get 10 innings with 10 K from him (what he did in his last two starts) I'll be a happy man, even if he gets knocked around, and then we'll reevaluate next week.
Since Peter so eloquently detailed the goings-on here, I'd like to use this space to congratulate Tout Wars founder Ron Shandler and the entire crew, past and present at Baseball HQ on their 20th anniversary of being the industry standard, not just for baseball but for fantasy sports in general. As most of you know, Ron also founded Baseball HQ, having since moved onto other projects, leaving the keys to the store in the capable hands of Brent Hershey and Ray Murphy. What they have done for the industry is immeasurable, both in terms of setting the bar incredibly high in terms of content as well as fostering the symbiosis and synergy that sets this industry apart from anything I've seen.
This is about them, but I'll sheepishly thank them for all they've done for me. They've granted me carte blanche to crash their First Pitch forum series which I've definitely abused over the years. Back when some complications in my personal life dictated transitioning from biotech with fantasy as a hobby to doing this for a living, Ron, Brent and Ray conjured creative ways for me to contribute. To this day, one of my favorite aspects of this job is the time I spend chatting with Baseball HQ Radio host-extraordinaire Patrick Davitt.
Please join me in congratulating Baseball HQ for 20 wonderful years. Here's to scores more.