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Monday 18th Dec 2017

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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.

andrew cashner

AMERICAN LEAGUE

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

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    

UNAWARDED BIDS

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.

Todd's Take

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.

 gregor blanco

NATIONAL LEAGUE

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

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      

UNAWARDED BIDS

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.

Todd's Take

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.

One.

ONE!!!!!

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.

MIXED LEAGUE AUCTION 

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

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    

UNAWARDED BIDS

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.

Todd's Take

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.

 jerad eickhoff

MIXED LEAGUE DRAFT

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

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    

UNAWARDED BIDS

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.

Todd's Take

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.

yonder alonso 

HEAD-TO-HEAD MIXED AUCTION

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

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      

UNAWARDED BIDS

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.

Todd's Take

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.

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