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## The Roto Grotto: rate targets

Posted by Scott Spratt at 4:25am

Through Wednesday’s games, we are almost exactly 70 percent through the baseball season. By now, you probably have a clear picture of what ground you need to make up to win your league. The difficult part is determining whether the trades and waiver claims you’ve made will add enough production to close the gaps, especially in the rate categories.

With nearly three quarters of your season banked, your rate stats have roots. At this point, it can take a lot to move them a little. However, that is not necessarily justification to abandon those categories, or to leave them untouched when some improvements could lead you to a fantasy title. The important thing is to recognize the numbers you need to hit for the rest of the season in order to reach your targets.

To make things easy for you, I’ve made some approximations of those targets for batting average, ERA, and WHIP for the rest of the season. The reference tables below have your current rates on the left and the rates needed for each roto point tier across the top. If you’re new to this column, the values I’ve selected to represent what you need for 10, nine, eight, etc. roto points are not random. I’ve based it on actual league statistics from ESPN standard leagues.

First, here are the targets for batting average:

1098765432
.2856.2813.2784.2762.2743.2724.2704.2682.2655
.250.369.354.345.337.331.325.318.311.302
.255.357.343.333.326.319.313.306.299.290
.260.345.331.321.314.308.301.295.287.278
.265.334.319.310.302.296.290.283.276.267
.270.322.308.298.291.284.278.271.264.255
.275.310.296.286.279.273.266.260.252.243
.280.299.284.275.267.261.255.248.241.232
.285.287.273.263.256.249.243.236.229.220
.290.275.261.251.244.238.231.225.217.208
.295.264.249.240.232.226.220.213.206.197
.300.252.238.228.221.214.208.201.194.185

If you’re starting with a .250 team average and are hoping for the full 10 roto points, then you’re probably out of luck. You would need to hit .369 the rest of the season, a mark you’d likely fail to reach if your team was made up only of copies of the batting champion. To even reach two points, you’d have to hit north of .300 the rest of the season, a difficult target for a team hitting .250 to date. For you, punting the category—if you haven’t been already—is likely the way to go.

A team in the .270 range is in the sweet spot to make up ground. Adding 60 points of average may be enough to jump you four roto points. To do so, you would need your team to hit .291 the rest of the way, a plausible number with average-focused additions.

For teams exceeding targets, this is the time to sell off your excess. If you are hitting .300 at this point, you can drop your average to .252 the rest of the way and still likely capture 10 roto points. Trade your advantage for help in categories where you aren’t so successful.

Next, here are the targets for ERA:

1098765432
3.2183.3673.4633.5463.6223.6973.7773.8683.984
4.200.931.421.742.022.272.522.793.093.48
4.151.041.541.862.142.392.642.913.213.60
4.101.161.661.982.252.512.763.023.333.71
4.051.281.772.092.372.622.873.143.443.83
4.001.391.892.212.492.742.993.263.563.95
3.951.512.012.332.602.863.113.373.684.06
3.901.632.122.442.722.973.223.493.794.18
3.851.742.242.562.843.093.343.613.914.30
3.801.862.362.682.953.213.463.724.034.41
3.751.982.472.793.073.323.573.844.144.53
3.702.092.592.913.193.443.693.964.264.65
3.652.212.713.033.303.563.814.074.384.76
3.602.332.823.143.423.673.924.194.494.88
3.552.442.943.263.543.794.044.314.615.00
3.502.563.063.383.653.914.164.424.735.11
3.452.683.173.493.774.024.274.544.845.23
3.402.793.293.613.894.144.394.664.965.35
3.352.913.413.734.004.264.514.775.085.46
3.303.033.523.844.124.374.624.895.195.58
3.253.143.643.964.244.494.745.015.315.70
3.203.263.764.084.354.614.865.125.435.81
3.153.383.874.194.474.724.975.245.545.93
3.103.493.994.314.594.845.095.365.666.05
3.053.614.114.434.704.965.215.475.786.16
3.003.734.224.544.825.075.325.595.896.28

Teams holding out hope for a win in ERA will likely need a current ERA below 3.50 to have a chance. Any ERA north of 3.30 will require a sub-3.00 ERA the rest of the season to get there. Meanwhile, a team with a 3.70 ERA needs a 3.19 ERA the rest of the way to jump to seven roto points.

Finally, here are the targets for WHIP:

1098765432
1.1781.2051.2221.2371.2501.2621.2761.2921.311
1.500.430.520.570.620.670.710.750.810.87
1.450.540.630.690.740.780.820.870.920.99
1.400.660.750.810.860.900.940.991.041.10
1.350.780.870.920.971.021.061.101.161.22
1.300.890.981.041.091.131.171.221.271.34
1.251.011.101.161.211.251.291.341.391.45
1.201.131.221.271.321.371.411.451.511.57
1.151.241.331.391.441.481.521.571.621.69
1.101.361.451.511.561.601.641.691.741.80
1.051.481.571.621.671.721.761.801.861.92
1.001.591.681.741.791.831.871.921.972.04

For WHIP, the threshold for contention is probably around 1.25, as anything higher will require a sub-1.00 WHIP for the rest of the season to win the full 10 roto points.

If you are in a league with differences in scoring or teams and can’t find a relevant example in the tables, you can calculate them with the formula:

ROS Target Values = (EOS Target Value – (0.7 * Current Value)) / 0.3

In the formula, 0.7 and 0.3 represent the percent of season banked and remaining. If you have inning caps and are not on an evenly-distributed pace, replace them with the percent of cap used and remaining.

Scott was named Newcomer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association for his fantasy football writing at Pro Football Focus. In addition, he contributes to ESPN Insider as a research associate for Baseball Info Solutions. You can reach him on Twitter.

Brandon said...

I’m a bit surprised at the WHIP averages.  My 12 team league is currently running these rates.

1.07, 1.12, 1.13, 1.16, 1.16, 1.17, 1.18, 1.22, 1.23, 1.24, 1.25, 1.28

This could be a results of SV+H, thus more RP.

Posted 08/08  at  08:42 AM
S. Urista said...

I was also surprised by the WHIP figures as well (and ERA, to a lesser extent). My league also has nobody over 1.28, and three guys are under 1.10. We have an innings cap (1250 IP).

Posted 08/09  at  09:30 AM
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