Tout Mixed 2012: Team Singman

First off, I just want to say “Hi” to all the readers. I know I’ve been quiet this offseason but I’m hoping this article will get me jump started again on a regular writing schedule. This past weekend I traveled into the City for my first year in the Tout Wars League. For those unfamiliar, Tout Wars and LABR are considered the two premier expert leagues in the country.

I’m not one to overstate the importance and level of competition of such leagues, though they are as competitive as any high-money league you’ll come across. As a first year player, I was placed into the 15-team mixed league (participants generally “graduate” into the AL or NL-only leagues as spots open up). The format for the draft is a live auction, which put me at a bit of a disadvantage since I’ve never drafted in this manner before. The amount of info you are required to keep track of during a live auction is much greater compared to online, or even a live snake draft, so keeping up without letting it distract me and affect my bids was a new challenge.

Madison Bumgarner. (Icon/SMI)

This is not all an excuse for drafting a poor team. Overall I feel my team is not the best nor the worst, somewhere in the middle. Here is a link to a spreadsheet with all the teams and below is my team with the price I paid for each player.

| POS | PLAYER           | PRICE |
| C   | J Saltalamacchia | $ 7   |
| C   | Nick Hundley     | $ 3   |
| 1B  | Ryan Howard      | $ 7   |
| 2B  | Jason Kipnis     | $ 7   |
| 3B  | Brett Lawrie     | $28   |
| SS  | Starlin Castro   | $25   |
| CI  | Jhonny Peralta   | $ 8   |
| MI  | Mike Aviles      | $ 2   |
| OF  | Curtis Grandy    | $33   |
| OF  | Nick Swisher     | $11   |
| OF  | Lucas Duda       | $ 7   |
| OF  | Ben Revere       | $ 4   |
| OF  | Carlos Quentin   | $ 1   |
| UT  | Mike Moustakas   | $10   |
| P   | Cole Hamels      | $20   |
| P   | M Bumgarner      | $17   |
| P   | Brandon Beachy   | $13   |
| P   | Chris Sale       | $ 7   |
| P   | Lance Lynn       | $ 1   |
| P   | J.J. Putz        | $13   |
| P   | Carlos Marmol    | $10   |
| P   | Frank Francisco  | $ 6   |
| P   | Brett Myers      | $ 5   |
| BN  | Eric Thames      | RSV-1 |
| BN  | Andrew Cashner   | RSV-2 |
| BN  | Cliff Pennington | RSV-3 |
| BN  | John Jay         | RSV-4 |

Overall I stayed away from the big name hitters but came away with Curtis Granderson, Brett Lawrie, and Starlin Castro as my middle-lineup guys. Not a great core but with the extra cash I was able to get my targets later in the draft, like Lucas Duda and Jason Kipnis.

To compensate, I got two top pitchers: Cole Hamels and a very reasonably priced Madison Bumgarner for $17, probably my best purchase. Brandon Beachy and Chris Sale round out my rotation as two high-strikeout guys who solidify my staff as one of the best. I didn’t spend for a top-tier closer but did come away with four so I should be competitive in saves.

Paying $7 for Salty was merely a function of me having extra cash at the end of the draft and not enough talent to spend it on. Ditto for the $10 Moustakas bid as well. Despite these overpays I still finished the draft with $16 left over, so clearly I did not spend as much as I could have earlier in the draft. With optimized budgeting my team could clearly have been better, but I still feel I managed to assemble a competitive roster.

What are your thoughts on my team? If you can, try to look at the other teams so you can a sense of how it compares.

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  1. Brandon said...

    I agree with Fletcher.  I think you lack a guaranteed bat.  You need Lawrie to produce top 3 at his position and hope Grandy doesn’t regress too much to stay afloat.

    I think you did well in pitching, but at the expense of offense.  Maybe you can trade away one of the RPs if you build a lead.

  2. KISFantasy said...

    I don’t know, I don’t see it as that bad a draft. Howard could be back by early May, and if that happens and he is capable of playing every day, $7 could be a steal. Replacing Quentin at $1 isn’t a big deal. Once Span goes to the DL with concussion-related symptoms Revere and his speed will be right back in it. You just have some short-term gaps to fill, and with Thames having won the job in TOR that takes care of Quentin spot right there. You’ll be fine, especially if you can move a RP like Brandon said.

  3. sean said...

    It’s tough to get a feel in these type of auctions, especially when you come in with the mindset that you are going to let others pay for the high priced elite hitters.

    Granderson can easily return $33, but I don’t feel comfortable with him being your cornerstone. Lots of risk on this team, but you have to take the risk that your player evaluation and projection skills are better than others in an expert league like TWs. If Lawrie and Castro return second round value, your team is going to look really nice. I love Swisher at $11. I like your pitching staff, but I think you’re going to be light on Ws and Ks with four starters.

    Auctions are so exciting, but they can be so fickle. Constantly re-evaluating value based upon the dollars spent and the dollars remaining is tough. Overall, I think this team is midling at best on paper, but if things go your way, I could see it being finishing 3-5, especially if Ryan Howard gets 25/85.

  4. Fletcher said...

    Looks like with Howard and Quentin injured, and Revere perhaps without a job you’re going to have a lot of holes to fill.  That $16 could have gone a long way to fixing that.

    Like Aviles for $2; don’t like that you spent $31(!) on relief pitchers.

    Overall looks like if you spent more wisely and allocated better you could have come away with similar guys plus another star hitter.

  5. Polka said...

    First of all CONGRATS on diving straight into the deep end! Secondly, for your first draft you did pretty damn good! If I hadn’t read that you came into the city for this I still would have been able to tell you’re a New Yorker bye the players you drafted;)
    Don’t be afraid to go the extra buck or two early, there are plenty of $1 gems floating around the entire draft! $15 Clams on the table could have been Papelbon instead of Putz? You understand, good team though!!!

  6. Brad Johnson said...

    Not too bad Paul. You’re going to need to scrounge quite a bit on offense as some of the others pointed out, but you’ll be fine.

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