Scheduling Advantages Down the Stretch

Sometimes a fantasy league’s trade deadline tops that of the major league action as the contenders aim to get that missing piece for a stretch run. What follows is a look at the August and September home/road breakdown of some of the parks most known for favoring its hitters and some of the parks most known for favoring its pitchers. Why pay the extra prospect or draft pick that your trade partner requests for Garrett Atkins if he’s going to spend most of September on the road where he struggles to be much more than replacement level? Maybe Tom Gorzelanny is worth it as a throw-in piece of deal if the Pirates will be at home for most of the final two months.

Hitter-Friendly Parks


The takeaways from the above list are:

– Give Colorado Rockies hitters a boost in deadline dealings as they get 10 more games at home than on the road including a very nice 18/9 split in the final month of the season.

– Temper the expectations of Texas Rangers hitters with lopsided home/road splits already on your roster and being considered in prospective trades.

– Baltimore Orioles hitters get fewer games at home down the stretch, but the four game difference isn’t overwhelming. I’d rate them as is in deadline deals with no biases about where they will play the final two months.

– Conversely (or similarly), Chicago White Sox hitters get more games at home down the stretch, but the four game difference isn’t overwhelming. Again, there should be no home-field price hike factored in during your late July trade talks for White Sox hitters.

– Finally for our hitter-friendly parks, the Cincinnati Reds hitters are nearly even in home and away tilts over the course of August and September. There is a five game difference in September in favor of road games, but they have four in Colorado and another three game set at the Juice Box in Houston. If anything, their schedule leans in their favor much like Chicago’s.

Pitcher-Friendly Parks


The takeaways from the above list are:

– San Diego, every pitcher’s dream, are about neutral on the whole but do have a 10/16 home/road split in the season’s final month including six of the final eight in Colorado and Arizona. Owners in leagues with August trade deadlines might consider moving their San Diego arms for the final month.

– Pittsburgh Pirates pitchers have a very favorable final two months with just 20 games on the road. The unfortunate part is that outside of Paul Maholm, they just don’t have very many desirable pitchers as we head into 2009. Gorzelanny and Ian Snell may bounce back, but after that it’s Zach Duke, Phil Dumatrait and Ross Ohlendorf.

– The arms of the Bay Area have nearly identical splits over the final two months with no overwhelming advantage showing up for either ballclub. I can’t imagine a scenario where you wouldn’t want to hang onto the rosterable arms of San Francisco anyway, but it’s still somewhat comforting to know that they won’t be touring the NL’s most hitter-friendly parks down the stretch. Oakland grows pitchers seemingly like no other and they have a history of turning it on during the 2nd half (last year notwithstanding) so they too are good holds for deadline dealings.

– Even though Minnesota’s schedule is tilted slightly towards road games, their pitchers are of a high enough caliber that you will want them in just about any situation.

The above knowledge likely won’t win a league on its own, but you have to try and take advantage of any potential help that may be available. I could see this knowledge being quite helpful in head-to-head leagues, too.


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