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.
Here is the Tout Wars report. LABR was posted earlier.
|ACashner, Tex||Rob Leibowitz 164||Nando DiFino 33|
|CRuiz, Sea||Wolf/Colton 26||Mike Podhorzer 3|
|NMartinez, Tex||Wolf/Colton 21||Jeff Erickson 3|
|BZimmer, Cle||Chris Liss 21|
|DRobertson, TB||Seth Trachtman 21||Chris Liss 5||Jeff Erickson 2||Wolf/Colton 0|
|LHendriks, Oak||Nando DiFino 18|
|BMaxwell, Oak||Jason Collette 13||Mike Podhorzer 3||Wolf/Colton 1||Patrick Davitt 0|
|ZMcAllister, Cle||Nando DiFino 4|
|JStaumont, KC||Jeff Erickson 3|
|JHolder, NYY||Patrick Davitt 2|
|NVincent, Sea||Chris Liss 2|
|JSucre, TB||Mike Podhorzer 1||Patrick Davitt 0|
|YPetit, LAA||Seth Trachtman 0||Jeff Erickson 1|
|RGoins, Tor||Wolf/Colton 0||Seth Trachtman 0|
|KKendrick, Bos||Rob Leibowitz 5|
|DOverton, Sea||Rob Leibowitz 3|
|AMeyer, LAA||Chris Liss 2|
|BPeacock, Hou||Chris Liss 1||Rob Leibowitz 0||Jeff Erickson 0||Seth Trachtman 0|
|MBolsinger, Tor||Jeff Erickson 1|
|RTepera, Tor||Wolf/Colton 1|
|RTorreyes, NYY||Wolf/Colton 0||Seth Trachtman 0|
|CBassitt, Oak||Chris Liss 0|
|CColon, KC||Wolf/Colton 0|
|CDArnaud, Bos||Wolf/Colton 0|
|JGraterol, LAA||Wolf/Colton 0|
|MMartinez, Cle||Wolf/Colton 0|
|RFlaherty, Bal||Wolf/Colton 0|
|TGosewisch, Sea||Wolf/Colton 0|
|HHembree, Bos||Rob Leibowitz 0|
|PKozma, Tex||Seth Trachtman 0|
Lawr Michaels' Commentary
In a week that seemed to scream low key, Rob Leibowitz dropped nearly 20% of his FAAB budget on Rangers starter Andrew Cashner. Cashner's 2.63 ERA may pass the eye test, but note his more unsightly 15 whiffs to 19 walks in 27.1 innings.
That is a lot, and Rob's team is languishing, so the question is can a guy like Cashner make a difference?
Contextually, first, having been in Rob's position, one has to do something to shake things up. Second, that is what FAAB is for. But, third, and most important, being at the bottom of the standings is a rugged row to hoe, however, it is also important to remember though we are a just over month into the season and even a good team endures 4-5 lousy weeks. Ideally Rob got his out of the way off the top, for surely while many of us have been struggling this time of year, similarly I have had those hot streaks that pushed my team towards the top. And, well, like I said, you have to try to do something.
Elsewhere, pitchers and catchers led the FAAB du jour, with Rick Wolf and Glenn Colton going $26 on Carlos Ruiz, Jason Collette put $13 on Bruce Maxwell, while Mike Podhorzer went the minimalist $1 route for Jesus Sucre.
Rick and Glenn also reached down for an arm, spending $21 on Nick Martinez, Chris Liss went the same $21 for Tribe prospect fly-chaser Bradley Zimmer, while Nando DiFino spent $18 on Liam Hendricks.
One other move of interest: Defending champ Seth Trachtman spent $18 on Rays shortstop Daniel Robertson, who does have a suspect line (.191-3-6) but also a chunk of power/speed potential.
Whenever I see a prospect acquired in FAAB, I like investigate the reason. Remember the Tout Wars rules, we can acquire minor leaguers so long as the bid is non-zero and the player resides on our roster all week.
Chris Liss placed a fairly aggressive $21 bid on Bradley Zimmer. The 24-year old is slashing a modest .264/.327/.495 at Triple-A Columbus with a 30 percent strikeout rate. If it weren't for the punch outs, Zimmer may already be with the big club. Chris sees an outfield with Abraham Almonte, Lonnie Chisenhall and Brandon Guyer as nothing special, but more importantly, Michael Brantley hurt his ankle over the weekend. At bid time, the prognosis was unclear, though Monday, it was announced the club feels it's minor, maybe costing Brantley a game or two. Still, it's well worth the gambit as Zimmer will likely get the call as soon as his strikeouts lessen.
Jeff Erickson plunked a three-spot on Kansas City future starting pitcher Josh Staumont, toiling for Triple-A Omaha. Staumont has been clocked at over 100 mph but lacks control. Keeping in mind Omaha is in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League, he's recorded a 4.35 ERA and 1.29 WHIP. More telling is an 11.8 K/9 with a 5.1 BB/9. With heat like that, the bullpen is a viable safety net, but it's understandable why the Royals are hoping the 23-year old righty hones his control as he has top of the rotation potential. Even with Ian Kennedy out, there isn't an immediate need for a starter in Kansas City. That said, it wouldn't be a surprise to see Staumont debut sometime this season.
|GBlanco, Ari||Andy Behrens 169||Steve Gardner 28||Brian Walton 12||Craig Mish 1|
|MGarza, Mil||Scott Wilderman 72||Brian Walton 11||Phil Hertz 11||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0|
|JTurner, Was||Phil Hertz 72||Todd Zola 13||Brian Walton 11||Grey Albright 11|
|Tristan H. Cockcroft 0|
|TPham, StL||Grey Albright 61||Steve Gardner 53||Phil Hertz 47||Mike Gianella 34|
|Craig Mish 27||Brian Walton 23||Scott Wilderman 12|
|Tristan H. Cockcroft 0|
|BTreinen, Was||Lenny Melnick 45||Grey Albright 1|
|JUrena, Mia||Brian Walton 35||Scott Wilderman 33||Grey Albright 11||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0|
|MSierra, StL||Mike Gianella 26||Craig Mish 6|
|MAlbers, Was||Grey Albright 11||Brian Walton 12|
|KPlawecki, NYM||Mike Gianella 8||Phil Hertz 2|
|LAdams, Atl||Steve Gardner 5|
|TAdleman, Cin||Phil Hertz 4||Tristan H. Cockcroft 0|
|PValaika, Col||Todd Zola 3|
|JTorres, SD||Scott Wilderman 1|
|JBlevins, NYM||Scott Wilderman 1|
|WLeBlanc, Pit||Scott Wilderman 1||Todd Zola 0|
|RHanigan, Col||Phil Hertz 1||Mike Gianella 4|
|JRuggiano, SF||Craig Mish 1|
|AAmarista, Col||Mike Gianella 6|
|ACole, Was||Phil Hertz 3|
|EButler, ChC||Phil Hertz 1|
|JBarrett, Ari||Grey Albright 1|
|JBlanton, Was||Grey Albright 1|
|JMathis, Ari||Mike Gianella 6|
|PNeshek, Phi||Scott Wilderman 1|
|RDavis, Cin||Phil Hertz 4|
|RRuiz, Atl||Todd Zola 1|
|TMilone, Mil||Phil Hertz 1|
Brian Walton's Commentary
For this year, Tout Wars abandoned the Vickrey Rule for FAAB bidding, which set the price for an acquired player at $1 more than the second-highest bid. This week, that change cost Andy Behrens of Yahoo $141, or 14.1 percent of his full-year spending. Several others also felt the no-Vickrey sting.
The primary subject is Gregor Blanco, fresh off the disabled list. The veteran outfielder is expected to serve as a reserve for Arizona, which led to mild bidding from two others that stopped at $28. Behrens’ only offer of the week was the $169 winner. He clearly knew what he wanted and bid to win.
In fact, across the league, pocketbooks opened wider than at any time during April. Oddly, $72 was the top price fetched for two rebounding pitchers from different owners.
Matt Garza, whose best seasons are several years behind in the rear-view mirror, is off to a very good start for Milwaukee. Specifically, through three starts, the 33-year old sports a 2.55 ERA and 15:3 strikeout to walk count. That drew the attention of three owners, willing to pay up to $11, plus the winner, Scott Wilderman of onRoto.
Not long ago, Jacob Turner was a promising starter for the Marlins. In 2017, he is a minor league addition who made one start followed by three appearances out of the Nationals bullpen. With the surprising demotion of Joe Ross and a potential rotation opening, four owners went up to $13 for Turner, but all lost to BaseballHQ’s Phil Hertz.
Needing to replace the disabled Adrian Gonzalez and the demoted Scott Van Slyke, I filtered for available corner infielder to find exactly one guy with a chance of at bats this week.
Fortunately, my $3 try on Pat Valaika got the job done. The Rox are home all week so maybe I'll luck into some mile-high production.
Faced with the inevitability of carrying a zero this week, I though about taking advantage of the aforementioned prospect rule and dropping a buck on a farmhand.
The only two first baseman with a realistic shot of helping this season are already stashed on reserve. Mike Gianella scooped Rhys Hoskins (Phillies) last week while Scott Wilderman is sitting (not literally) on Dominic Smith (Mets). I did throw a buck at the Braves Rio Ruiz as a back-up to Valaika, but he is only third base eligible so I would have been saddled with two goose eggs. Both Lucas Duda and Jhonny Peralta are nearing a return so help is on the way from my DL.
|LMorrison, TB||Scott Pianowski 103||Fred Zinkie 89||Ron Shandler 78||Derek Van Riper 67|
|Scott Engel 14|
|MGarza, Mil||Tim Heaney 46|
|AWilson, Det||Tim Heaney 36|
|TPham, StL||Scott Engel 34||Scott Swanay 24|
|JTurner, Was||Brent Hershey 33||Tim Heaney 0|
|JBiagini, Tor||Al Melchior 23||Fred Zinkie 0|
|CSpangenberg, SD||Ron Shandler 18|
|MGonzalez, CWS||Zach Steinhorn 17||Fred Zinkie 10|
|DEspinosa, LAA||Gene McCaffrey 13|
|MMontgomery, ChC||Gene McCaffrey 11||Tim Heaney 16||Scott Swanay 0|
|BHand, SD||Gene McCaffrey 9||Scott Pianowski 0||Fred Zinkie 0|
|JNelson, Mil||Scott Swanay 8|
|TBauer, Cle||Scott Swanay 8||Brent Hershey 5||Jeff Zimmerman 1|
|MPerez, Tex||Scott Engel 7|
|SLeon, Bos||Scott Pianowski 7||Bret Sayre 0|
|MMaldonado, LAA||Brent Hershey 1|
|MClevinger, Cle||Jeff Zimmerman 1|
|YGomes, Cle||Bret Sayre 0|
|AReed, NYM||Fred Zinkie 0|
|AWarren, NYY||Scott Pianowski 0||Gene McCaffrey 3|
|DODay, Bal||Tim Heaney 16|
|SGreene, Det||Tim Heaney 16|
|TDuffey, Min||Gene McCaffrey 11|
|CEdwards, ChC||Gene McCaffrey 11|
|WPeralta, Mil||Tim Heaney 6|
|ACashner, Tex||Tim Heaney 6|
|JSoria, KC||Tim Heaney 6|
|JuGuerra, Mil||Tim Heaney 6|
|TRivera, NYM||Scott Engel 5|
|MFiers, Hou||Scott Swanay 4|
|RHanigan, Col||Scott Pianowski 3|
|NMartinez, Tex||Brent Hershey 2|
|MMontero, ChC||Brent Hershey 1|
|MAlbers, Was||Jeff Zimmerman 0||Bret Sayre 0|
|FRivero, Pit||Jeff Zimmerman 0|
|ASwarzak, CWS||Scott Pianowski 0|
|ACole, Was||Tim Heaney 0|
|EButler, ChC||Tim Heaney 0|
|JDeLaRosa, Ari||Tim Heaney 0|
|RDull, Oak||Tim Heaney 0|
|TClippard, NYY||Tim Heaney 0|
Zach Steinhorn's Commentary
Logan Morrison's red-hot start to May (.353 AVG, 2 HR, 4 RBI) was enough to garner a triple-digit winning bid and the top spot for this week's FAAB run. Let's see if Morrison, who has never quite lived up to expectations as a former top prospect, can maintain mixed league relevance for the entire season. The good news is that although it seems like he's been around forever, he's still only 29 years of age. Also note that he's a little more appealing in OBP leagues, as his career OBP is a respectable .327, this compared to his underwhelming .245 career batting average.
The runner-up award for this week goes to Matt Garza, who has quietly pitched well through three starts this season, registering a 2.55 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 15-to-3 K/BB ratio. Garza used to be a household name in fantasyland but injuries and ineffectiveness have plagued him in recent years, and he was sidelined for the first few weeks of this season due to a groin injury. Maybe a healthy Garza could be of use to mixed league fantasy owners going forward. But considering his 5.18 ERA and 1.54 WHIP from 2015-2016, I have my doubts.
The injury to Cole Hamels left me scrambling to find an adequate SP replacement, at least for this week. Thanks in large part to the crazy high number of injured starting pitchers, the waiver wire pickings were slim. Ultimately, I settled on Miguel Gonzalez, who is boring but has notched four quality starts in six tries so far. This week, Gonzalez gets to face the same Twins team that he limited to two runs across six innings back on April 8. I'd gladly take another quality start.
Yikes, Zach wasn't kidding as two reliever-turned-starters along with Garza lead the bidding for arms this week. I think young Mr. Steinhorn did well nabbing Gonzalez.
Cory Spangenberg is an intriguing pick-up if you have a void in the middle. He's playing left for the Padres, earning outfield eligibility while also playing third against southpaws. One more game at the hot corner will give Spangenberg eligibility at three spots. With so many injuries, having the ability to move Spangenberg around helps get the best players in your active lineup each week.
|JEickhoff, Phi||Scott White 167||D.J. Short 130||Corey Parson 111||Anthony Perri 34|
|Tim McLeod 32||Rudy Gamble 16||Adam Ronis 7|
|KFreeland, Col||Tom Kessenich 66|
|CGranderson, NYM||Jeff Boggis 57||D.J. Short 25||Anthony Perri 14||Corey Parson 12|
|AGriffin, Tex||Jeff Boggis 56||Corey Parson 32||Charlie Wiegert 12||Adam Ronis 7|
|TCollins, Det||Jeff Boggis 56|
|CTaylor, LAD||Perry Van Hook 47|
|TPham, StL||Perry Van Hook 43||Corey Parson 12||Adam Ronis 7|
|BTreinen, Was||Jeff Boggis 34|
|LValbuena, LAA||D.J. Short 25|
|MMontgomery, ChC||Corey Parson 23||D.J. Short 20||Anthony Perri 11|
|NKarns, KC||Charlie Wiegert 22||Adam Ronis 2|
|MGonzalez, CWS||Tim McCullough 21||Scott White 0|
|GGarcia, StL||Tim McCullough 21|
|AAvila, Det||Tim McCullough 21||Ray Murphy 16||Tom Kessenich 4||Perry Van Hook 1|
|Scott White 0|
|KVargas, Min||Corey Parson 12||Adam Ronis 7|
|JSoria, KC||Tim McLeod 7|
|DGarneau, Col||Rudy Gamble 6||Perry Van Hook 0|
|CVazquez, Bos||Tom Kessenich 4|
|CIannetta, Ari||Ray Murphy 4||Rudy Gamble 1|
|MAlbers, Was||Rudy Gamble 3||Greg Ambrosius 0|
|TChatwood, Col||Jeff Boggis 2|
|TBeede, SF||Tim McLeod 2|
|MMontero, ChC||Perry Van Hook 1||Scott White 0|
|AOttavino, Col||Adam Ronis 1||Tim McLeod 2|
|TDuffey, Min||Greg Ambrosius 0|
|ASwarzak, CWS||Scott White 0|
|MMaldonado, LAA||Scott White 0||Perry Van Hook 1|
|JTurner, Was||Corey Parson 21|
|CHerrmann, Ari||Ray Murphy 4|
|ONarvaez, CWS||Rudy Gamble 4|
|RChirinos, Tex||Tom Kessenich 4|
|MClevinger, Cle||Greg Ambrosius 3||Corey Parson 2||Rudy Gamble 1|
|ACole, Was||Charlie Wiegert 2|
|JSmoak, Tor||Adam Ronis 2|
|JSucre, TB||Tom Kessenich 2|
|KSuzuki, Atl||Tom Kessenich 2|
|BGamel, Sea||Charlie Wiegert 1|
|JChavez, LAA||Rudy Gamble 1|
|KBarraclough, Mia||Tim McLeod 1|
|RMontero, NYM||Rudy Gamble 1|
|KMiddleton, LAA||Greg Ambrosius 0|
|RHanigan, Col||Perry Van Hook 0|
|YGallardo, Sea||Greg Ambrosius 0|
Perry Van Hook's Commentary
They say one man's trash in another man's treasure, and Sunday's FAAB report for the Mixed Draft League would certainly suggest either I like to drop good players or that they got much better looking in a week. Three of the week's high bids, Eickhoff ($167), Freeland ($66), and Granderson ($56), are players I dropped in the past two weeks.
Scott White bid the $167 to roster Phillies pitcher Jerad Eickhoff while Tom Kessenich got Kyle Freeland for $66 and Jeff Boggis got the next three expensive players winning A.J. Griffin for $56 and outfielders Curtis Granderson for $57 and Tyler Colins for another $56.
In an effort to get some more offense I replaced Freddy Galvis with Dodger Chris Taylor for $47. Presently, Taylor qualifes at third base, but he'll add second base to his resume in two more games and heads to Coors Field over the weekend. I also added new Cardinal fly chaser Tommy Pham for $43. Needing a cheap catcher to replace Austin Romine, I received my second $1 choice with Miguel Montero. My first choice was Alex Avila who went for $21.
As Perry hints, one of the toughest aspects of a mixed league is figuring when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em. It's harder in a 10 or 12 team format since the available inventory to churn is so much plusher. This may sound like an excuse or sour grapes, but I personally struggle in mixed leagues with fewer than 15 teams. I'm wired to let water reach its level. I trust the research that concludes streaks are non-predictive. Yet, there's always someone riding strikes, drawing all aces. Yes, there's luck involved in all aspects of this game. An an analytical guy, it's frustrating when the right call isn't always rewarded.
|YAlonso, Oak||Clay Link 104||Peter Kreutzer 3|
|JSamardzija, SF||Vlad Sedler 69||Clay Link 55|
|MGonzalez, Hou||Howard Bender 69||Clay Link 34||Jake Ciely 15|
|GGonzalez, Was||Clay Link 56||Vlad Sedler 19|
|TCahill, SD||Clay Link 51||Jeff Mans 37||Clay Link 34||Vlad Sedler 25|
|Peter Kreutzer 4|
|NKarns, KC||Jeff Mans 37||Vlad Sedler 37||Clay Link 12|
|ATriggs, Oak||Dr. Roto 25|
|SPerez, KC||Vlad Sedler 23||Peter Kreutzer 3||Andrea LaMont 0|
|JCotton, Oak||Vlad Sedler 19|
|AHicks, NYY||Andrea LaMont 16|
|TBeckham, TB||Vlad Sedler 14||Clay Link 23|
|KWong, StL||Peter Kreutzer 11|
|JWilson, Det||Jake Ciely 5||Clay Link 44||Peter Kreutzer 5|
|JFields, LAD||Peter Kreutzer 4|
|DNorris, TB||Peter Kreutzer 3|
|AReed, NYM||Peter Kreutzer 3|
|RChirinos, Tex||Andrea LaMont 2|
|ZCozart, Cin||Clay Link 29||Jake Ciely 5|
|BSnell, TB||Jeff Mans 28|
|MAndriese, TB||Jeff Mans 15||Clay Link 11|
|MMontgomery, ChC||Dr. Roto 15|
|AMiranda, Sea||Vlad Sedler 9|
|HSantiago, Min||Vlad Sedler 9|
|DMesoraco, Cin||Vlad Sedler 8|
|AGriffin, Tex||Vlad Sedler 7|
|JBenoit, Phi||Clay Link 5|
|AToles, LAD||Peter Kreutzer 3|
|JSmith, Tor||Peter Kreutzer 3|
|KVargas, Min||Clay Link 3|
|RHanigan, Col||Vlad Sedler 3|
|DGarneau, Col||Vlad Sedler 2|
|LMorrison, TB||Clay Link 2|
|MMontero, ChC||Vlad Sedler 1||Andrea LaMont 0|
Peter Kreutzer's Commentary
A disastrous week for me. My hitting stunk. A team "built for OBP" had an OBP of .276! And on the pitching side I managed to lose WHIP, despite winning ERA 2.43 to 4.64. So I went 1-5 against Clay Link, whose team was in last place.
Give credit to Clay. He had a strong week. He bested all but one team in Runs, was middle of the pack in HR, had the most RBI, and the highest OBP. And he tied for third-most wins. He would have done well against anyone. And then he was aggressive in waivers.
His 104 units on Yonder Alonso was the week's biggest bid. Clay had a need, Greg Bird has hit the DL, after not producing the way anyone hoped, and Alonso is producing the way many hoped he would in years past. So there is cause for optimism. On the other hand, the only other bid on Alonso was my second contingent bid for 3.
Howard Bender made one bid: 69 on Marwin Gonzalez, who hits a home run every day. He now owns him.
Link also bought the intriguing Trevor Cahill, for 51. Those of us who owned Cahill for a buck in 2010 will never forget that gift. He's never come close to that level again, and won't this year, but he's throwing strikeouts the way he didn't back then, but maybe the way he did the last couple of years throwing in relief, but with fewer walks. That raises obvious durability issues, but for now he's a starter who is pitching well with decent component stats.
Even in a shallow league that might have value.
For the record, I bought Kolten Wong, who has always been a good on-base guy but a weak contact guy. The contact seems to be a bit improved, and while I'm not hoping for his recent hotness to continue, I'd love something like his career levels of production with 20 or so AB a week, for as long as he can use him.
I also bought Derek Norris, who has been a contact mess the last few years, after showing real promise early in his career. He's been decent the last couple of week, which means I will almost certainly take a 1 for 20 with 1 walk.
Josh Fields and Addison Reed are fine setup guys with good strikeout rates, filling in for hurt and failing setup guys with good strikeout rates.
In a 12-team league, it's surprising how few free agents are better than the reserve list guys we already have.
I like to joke that we only hear about the swings and approaches that work, not the myriad of alterations resulting in nothing. That said, when someone I respect, like Eno Sarris, sheds light on a player, I pay heed. In March, Eno posted this piece on Alonso on Fangraphs. I own Alonso in a few places, but not enough.