Archive for ‘2013 Fantasy Guide’

Friday: 03.8.2013

The 2013 Pitching Guide: Coming Out Today!

Ladies and gentlemen,

You’ve been waiting all winter for this moment and the day is finally here. The finishing touches are being put on the 2013 Guide and it will be released this afternoon. Those of you who have ordered will find it in your inboxes this afternoon. The army of 1 is working at a Paul Walkeresque and Vin Dieselian rate to get everything in order with final edits, clean ups, charts, graphs, and even the final handful of profiles.

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Friday: 03.1.2013

So close!

Officially a week away from the SP Guide being released!

Wednesday: 02.27.2013

SP Guide Update

I wanted to give y’all an update on where things are with the guide as we near release. The original target date for the release of this year’s Starting Pitcher Guide was March 1st. We aren’t going to hit that date, but we are definitely zooming ever closer to release. There have been several sleepless nights in a row – and I’m not complaining, I absolutely love working on it – and there are still more coming up. In order to put out the guide I’m comfortable with more time is needed. The date you can now look forward to is March 8th. By the way, this is why I usually hesitate to set a firm date at the very beginning of the process. I just never know exactly how long it’s going to take. Those of you that asked me via email or Twitter probably noticed I was rather non-committal.

But now we have a firm date!

For those of you with drafts this week (March 2nd and 3rd) who wanted the guide specifically for those drafts only, it simply will not be ready in time. If the guide is no longer of use to you and you want a refund on your order, please email me at thespguide@gmail.com. While I really wanted to release on March 1st, it was only a key date because it started a month. It was arbitrary beyond that. Most drafts and auctions will still take place well into March and the guide will be ready in time for all of those.

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The first thing I see most mornings about 3 inches from my face.

The anticipation and excitement surrounding the guide has been incredible and I truly appreciate it. Please know how hard I have been working to give you the best product possible. If I was smart, I would’ve just blame Doug, right? When it doubt, throw it on the new guy?

I probably could’ve slapped it together to meet an arbitrary date I set in my head and never really announced, but I saw zero value in that. I take pride in putting together a product you will all love and this final week-plus will afford me the time to put together the best iteration yet. I know several of you are very excited for it and I know the last thing you wanted to hear was that it won’t be released this instant, but at the same time you now have a firm date to look forward to and it’s next Friday.

Now, here is a beagle with a fitted sheet on his head.

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And the same beagle inexplicably guarding my socks:

"I'll protect these."

“I’ll protect these.”

Monday: 02.4.2013

2013 Starting Pitcher Guide Sample

As we turn the calendar over to February, baseball season is right around the corner. Many football fans close the book on that sport with the end of the Super Bowl and turn their attention back to baseball. Two weeks ago, I began taking pre-orders on the 2013 Starting Pitcher Guide and that will continue for another 10 days through Valentine’s Day. Perhaps you’re on the fence about the purchase and a trip down memory lane through the previous guides isn’t what you looking for to get you over the proverbial hump. Well how about a sample of what you will be getting in this year’s guide? Yeah, that does sound nice, doesn’t it?

I had Doug send over his report card on Oakland youngster Jarrod Parker and paired it with my profile on him to give you a taste of the 2013 guide in the PDF found below.

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(left-click to view in browser;
right-click to save file to desktop)

Notice how robust the coverage is for the 24-year old Parker. Nearly 500 words went into it. I mentioned this in the SP Guide Announcement, but I’ll reiterate here that the effort expended in the guide will be spent on those who can move the needle forward on your 2013 season. There will still be prospect coverage without question, but there were instances in last year’s guide of a Low-A prospect with no shot of contributing in 2012 getting a 200-plus word write up when 75-100 would’ve been sufficient and that surplus could’ve been better spent elsewhere.

This is especially important because not the majority of folks do no play in dynasty leagues or leagues with a minor league taxi roster of three to five guys. Don’t worry, dynasty leaguers, I’m not leaving you out in the cold. The top prospects and those are on the rise will still get their due, but I can tell who to chase down in a more efficient way than I did last year.

Finally, for those unfamiliar with 20-80 scale used in Doug’s Mechanics Report Card, don’t fret as it will be explained in an essay from him in the guide. In the meantime, understand that a 50 grade is average and not at all an indictment of talent.

Questions & comments can be directed to thespguide@gmail.com

Order now to save 25%!!!

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Monday: 01.21.2013

2013 Starting Pitcher Guide Announcement

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It is with great excitement that today I announce details regarding the 2013 Starting Pitcher Guide. This is the sixth year of the guide and it has grown exponentially since that first iteration which actually started on a message board (the now-defunct Rotojunkie.com which has morphed into RJ Bullpen). In the 2008 debut, I ranked 100 guys (or 112 if you consider “12 Under 30” add-on) in about 11,000 words growing to last year’s 400 player/76,000 word epic that spiked download count by 2x over 2011 and was even mentioned by Bill Simmons on his podcast. We’re ready for another step forward in 2013.

The first big piece of news related to the 2013 Guide is the addition of Doug Thorburn (Twitter) as a contributor. Doug is my colleague over at Baseball Prospectus and does some of the most amazing work on the site analyzing pitcher mechanics. He has also co-authored a book with Tom House on the mechanics of pitching. He has worked at the National Pitching Association (NPA), too, adding yet another impressive notch on his pitching resume (and those are just the highlights!). Both this 2008 interview with him at BP (before he started working there) and his latest article on Gio Gonzalez are free to view.

Take a look at the Gonzalez piece especially because that will give you a feel for what he will be contributing to the guide (and because it’s amazing). In addition to an essay on pitch mechanics to help us better understand them he will also be contributing a series of Mechanics Report Cards similar to the one you saw in the article. The report card list will be hand-selected by Doug with each team being represented by at least a couple players, though some teams will have a more robust offering. There will also be insight attached to the report cards crystalizing the information found within the card. We are still fleshing out some details, but this gives you a general idea and the one thing I can promise is that it will be awesome.

The next big news is the addition of bullpen coverage! Closers, for better or worse depending on your view, are a big part of fantasy baseball and having a firm handle on how to evaluate those who have a beat on the role as well as (and perhaps more importantly in some cases) those who might end up in the role can be extremely helpful to your success. It will also create an avenue to discuss the Middle Reliever Methodology that I have long been a fan of utilizing, especially in AL/NL-Only auction leagues.

Essays are returning to the 2013 guide! In 2011, the front of the guide contained a series of essays on various pitching-related topics, but they were absent a year ago. They are coming back with a vengeance this year with the only difference from 2011 being that I will be writing all of them (except for Doug’s pitching mechanics one, obviously). Topics will include strikeouts, prospects, bold predictions (often found here yearly, but this time tied to the guide), and park factors, plus much more. I have some other ideas, but they aren’t as set in stone so I’ll go with “plus much more” instead so you can dream about what might be included (you’re welcome!).

Projections are returning for 2013! Last year was my first attempt at putting together a projection set and it went well so I’m going to do it again this year. The ERA ranges will be used again spanning four to seven earned runs. I think it gives a better idea of what I’m expecting out of the pitcher, plus it covers a bit of luck on both ends. The ranges aren’t too wide over 185-200 innings and that’s another reason I do it. When you see 3.29-3.60, it feels quite significant, but it’s a seven run difference or one every five or so starts.

Of course this is all in addition to the player capsules you’ve grown accustomed to year in and year out. There isn’t a set number of capsules and there won’t be an announced number ahead of time so I don’t paint myself into an unnecessary corner by excluding someone to stay under an arbitrary round number. Instead, I’ll just say that it will likely be a number between 400 and 600. I have over 700 names on the initial list to be pared down as some situations became clearer and some low upside far-from-the-majors minor leaguers are eliminated.

Like last year, the focus will be on plentiful profiles of those with the most impact and upside, so Jason Hammel is going to get more attention than Carlos Martinez (Cardinals prospect at Double-A), but Martinez is going to get more attention than Nick Blackburn. Hammel is impacting 2013 and Martinez is impacting 2014 & beyond for dynasty/keeper leaguers. Blackburn, by costing the Twins $5.5 million dollars this year, is only impacting their ability to buy a free agent better than Kevin Correia. Blackburn isn’t even on the 40-man roster. That’s a foolproof sign that your signing has gone awry.

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With the continued enhancements to a product you’ve hopefully already come to enjoy, we are moving to a very affordable pay model. The guide will available in late-February just in time for the fantasy season and is available for $12.

The guide comes via email in PDF form.

Order now!

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Questions & comments can be directed to thespguide@gmail.com

Monday: 01.21.2013

2013 Starting Pitcher Guide Now Available

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Full details on the 2013 Starting Pitcher Guide

With the continued enhancements to a product you’ve hopefully already come to enjoy, we are moving to a very affordable pay model. You can order for $12! The guide, which comes via email in PDF form, is now available.

We now have a sample entry available for you to peruse so you have an idea of what you’re getting in the 2013 Guide. Click below to see both mine and Doug’s thoughts on Oakland A’s youngster, Jarrod ParkerDownload the Sample Here.

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Available Now

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Questions & comments can be directed to thespguide@gmail.com

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