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MLB SEASON COUNTER: 33.3%

Major League Baseball has now completed exactly 1/3 of the season through Sunday June 5th. So if you want in-depth and complete analysis of your fantasy teams, you can just triple every number and be assured that this is how you will finish – right? Maybe? Possibly?

For most of the 705 NFBC Main Event owners, the Earned Run Average statistic was a focus on draft day. The thinking was – and I went around the room in Las Vegas asking this question and this is the answer that was ALWAYS given – if a fantasy owner can draft a good solid set of pitchers you should be fine in the ERA category – how hard could it be? A couple of aces, a top reliever, and a few later round bargains and your ERA will be up near the top. Well, maybe back in the Jurassic Era, this was all you needed to do. (Yes, there was fantasy back then – well a SORT of fantasy – all I know is T-Rex was the number one overall draft selection).

Well, unfortunately (at least for me), plans do not always lead perfectly to results. But this is not always about me – even though it’s MOSTLY about me – so what if you have a partner – what guidelines should you adhere to? Well, for that fantasy managers need only to turn the highly realistic movie Jurassic Park, which is often quoted by savvy fantasy managers (I checked with a large number of them as research for this article) for how partners should operate effectively together. It DEFINITELY has two important lessons we can take away to improve our game.

This one is important. First, make sure you’re being specific and clear when you communicate. Otherwise, you and your partner might end up working at cross-purposes:

John Hammond: Our attractions will drive kids out of their minds.

Dr. Alan Grant: [meaning the attractions] What are those?

Dr. Ellie Sattler: Small versions of adults, honey.

And then there is this (which happens to me) – you tell your partner that this new rookie is just like Mike Trout. He disagrees and notes that he has a .210 batting average with 1 home run in the minors. You’ve just made a poor comparison, just like this one:

YOU MIGHT WANT TO RETHINK THAT COMPARISON

John Hammond: All major theme parks have delays. When they opened Disneyland in 1956, nothing worked!

Dr. Ian Malcolm: Yeah, but John, if The Pirates of the Caribbean breaks down, the pirates don’t eat the tourists.”

If this happens to you as well – you KNOW you made a mistake…

 

The MLB Environment: Improvement Shown

Through Sunday 6/5, MLB hitters have been scoring just 4.30 runs per game, well below the 4.53 in 2021. However, this runs per game has improved sharply from the 4.08 average five weeks ago and has jumped up from last week’s 4.24 average. Perhaps the warmer weather is helping after all? This has been built by two main factors (see chart below):

  • Batting average is now at .240 (.232 five weeks ago and .239 last week – but still down from .244 last year).
  • Home runs are now 02 (from 1.22 in 2021 but up from 1.00 last week).
MLB HITTING STATS RUNS/GAME HOME RUNS BATTING AVERAGE
2022 YTD 4.30 1.02 0.240
2021 4.53 1.22 0.244
2020 4.65 1.28 0.245
2019 4.83 1.39 0.252
2018 4.65 1.15 0.248
2017 4.65 1.26 0.255

As we’ve stated previously, MLB strikeouts have been down and held steady this week at 8.33 per game, and with walks also holding level at 3.17 per game up, MLB WHIP is now 1.266 slightly up from last week’s 1.261, which is still historically very low. Batters are definitely striking out less – almost as low as 2017.

MLB PITCHING STATS MLB WHIP STRIKEOUTS RECORDED WALKS ALLOWED K:BB RATIO
2022 YTD 1.27 8.33 3.17 2.63
2021 1.30 8.68 3.25 2.67
2020 1.33 8.68 3.39 2.56
2019 1.33 8.81 3.27 2.69
2018 1.30 8.48 3.32 2.55
2017 1.34 8.25 3.26 2.53

 

Earned Run Average: 80% Target 2022 = 3.294

No matter if you’re communicating poorly with your partner, you need to remember that there HAS been less scoring in MLB this season. So it would make sense that the 80% Earned Run Average target to hit in the Main Event is better than in 2021. In the 2019 Main Event, fantasy owners needed an Earned Run Average of 3.85 to get 80% of the overall points available in this category. In 2021 (skipping 2020 because of the shortened season), that number decreased to 3.65 (about 5.2% lower). Thus far in 2022, a Main Event team would need an average of 3.29 to get 80% of the points available, or 9.9% lower than 2021 (and 14.5% lower than 2019).

80% Updates on Categories Already Covered (counting stats adjusted for full season):

Runs: 1077 (359 currently)

Home Runs: 270 (90 currently)

RBIs: 990 (330)

SB: Not Covered Yet

Batting Average: .2532

K: 1326 (442)

Wins: Not Covered Yet

Saves: Not Covered Yet

ERA: 3.294

WHIP: 1.135

 

 

My Favorite Martin

 

But who are the pitchers that are providing the most help in Earned Run Average? In the chart below you can see – through Saturday 6/4 – the top 20 qualified pitchers (to qualify a pitcher needs to throw at least one inning per team game for the season) along with their ADP. Of course, as we ALL suspected on draft day, the two top qualified ERA leaders through June 4th are…Martin Perez and Nestor Cortes (wait…huh?). The Main Event ADP of these two aces was 738 (i.e. undrafted) and 341. Then sanity is somewhat restored with Joe Musgrove and Sandy Alcantara in the #3 and #4 positions, as they were drafted well inside the top 100 players in the spring. All in all, the top 20 hurlers in terms of ERA were drawn as follows – top 100: 8 pitchers; ADP 101-200: 6 pitchers; 201-300; 1 pitcher; 301-400: 1 pitcher (Cortes); and undrafted (600+): 4 pitchers (Martin Perez; Paul Blackburn; Kyle Wright; and Tyler Anderson).

EARNED RUN AVERAGE RANK THRU 6/4 PLAYER Batting Average MAIN EVENT ADP MAIN EVENT ADP
1 Martin Perez 1.42 738 x
2 Nestor Cortes 1.50 341 x
3 Joe Musgrove 1.64 73 x
4 Sandy Alcantara 1.81 44 x
5 Alek Manoah 1.98 94 x
6 Shane McClanahan 0.34 109 x
7 Tarik Skubal 0.33 186 x
8 Pablo Lopez 2.18 141 x
9 Logan Gilbert 2.22 153 x
10 Justin Verlander 2.23 92 x
11 Jameson Taillon 2.30 299 x
12 Kyle Wright 2.41 670 x
13 Corbin Burnes 2.50 11 x
14 Kevin Gausman 2.51 71 x
15 Framber Valdez 2.57 143 x
16 Tyler Anderson 2.59 601 x
17 Paul Blackburn 2.62 751 x
18 Max Fried 2.74 71 x
19 Adam Wainwright 2.75 194 x
20 Gerrit Cole 2.78 8 x

 

Konnor Takes the Honor

Konnor Pilkington (yes, this is a real person) earned the win last Wednesday over the Royals, with eight strikeouts in five shutout innings. And even though he hadn’t shown much through his first two starts with the Guardians, this excellent performance coupled with his fine statistical base (2.65 ERA; 1.59 WHIP and 23:10 K:BB across 17 innings) was enough for Main Event fantasy owners when coupled with a fantastic upcoming schedule – this week home for Texas and Oakland.

Pilkington was the leader in the 10th FAAB run – as he was added in all 47 leagues. In addition, 9 other players were picked up in 32 or more leagues (see below). Other wide pickups were Luis Garcia – rookie 2B for the Nationals, Ross Stripling – who is likely to fill in for Hyun-Jin Ryu of the Blue Jays, Graham Ashcraft (who has looked good as a starter) for the Reds, and Edward Cabrera – who has plenty of talent to offer in the Marlins’ rotation.

ADDED IN MOST MAIN EVENT LEAGUES Leagues Added Reason Highest Winning Bid Lowest Winning Bid
Konnor Pilkington 47 Nice Two Start Week 72 3
Luis Garcia WAS 43 Impressive Rookie 2B 103 5
Ross Stripling 41 Two starts for TOR 46 3
Graham Ashcraft 40 SP looks good in CIN 77 1
Edward Cabrera 38 Loads of talent in MIA 331 17
Ser. Dominguez 37 Closing opportunities? 139 1
Ezequiel Duran 36 Rookie TEX 3B 63 5
Jose Trevino 35 C hitting well for NYY 77 1
Tanner Scott 34 Closing opportunities? 77 2
Bryson Stott 32 Rookie PHI 3B 69 1

 

The Wow Bid of the Week

One of our highlighted features – the Main Event Wow Bid of the Week – goes to the largest bid of each FAAB period. This week that honor goes to a $331 bid for Miami starting pitcher Edward Cabrera, which easily beat the runner-up bid of $87 (Cabrera was also won in two other leagues with bids between $200-299, and 19 other times between $100-199).

6/5: Edward Cabrera $331

5/29 Ryan Helsley $312

5/22: Nolan Gorman $482

5/15: George Kirby $557

5/8: Brendan Rodgers $424

5/1: Eloy Jimenez $452

4/24: Jesse Winker $508

4/17: Matt Manning $475

4/10: Josh Lowe $613

4/3: Matt Brash $244

 

The Century Club Has 12 Members This Week

There were 12 players that attracted SUCCESSFUL bids over $100 during this FAAB run (down from 15 last week), and just 4 of those players had at least one winning bid over $200 (the same as last week – see chart below). The only players attracting the bids over $100 were the previously mentioned Edward Cabrera (23), plus Andres Gimenez and Seranthony Dominguez (2 each). There were 36 successful bids over $100 (down from 53) and 6 successful bids over $200 (down from 8 – see chart below) – and one interesting note – there was a $2 bid for no player at all this week – dropping Drew Steckenrider. Now I’m no big fan of Drew Steckenrider as a fantasy asset at this point of the season, but paying $2 to drop him with no add seems like overdoing it a little:

TEAM BIDS OVER $100 – MAIN EVENT Winning Bids over $100 Winning Bids over $200 Highest Winning Bid (FAAB $)
MIA Edward Cabrera 23 3 331
CLE Andres Gimenez 2 1 277
STL Dylan Carlson 1 1 211
ATL Jace Peterson 1 1 207
NYY Aroldis Chapman 1 0 151
PHI Seranthony Dominguez 2 0 139
NYM Taijuan Walker 1 0 132
NYY Joey Gallo 1 0 111
CHC Caleb Kilian 1 0 107
WAS Luis Garcia WAS 1 0 103
LAD Daniel Hudson 1 0 101
SF Brandon Crawford 1 0 101
36 6

 

For the 10 FAAB runs thus far, the average Main Event team has won 18.6 bids this season (1.86 per week) and spent $563.59 per team. This dollar amount is just 2.8% lower than last year when $580.01 was spent per team. This means that in 2022, the average team has $436 of FAAB left, so the resources are dwindling. The drop-off in spending is happening and will accelerate.

2022 TOTAL NUMBER OF MAIN EVENT WINNING BIDS TOTAL FAAB DOLLARS SPENT MAIN EVENT AVERAGE WINNING BID MAIN EVENT AVERAGE AMOUNTS SPENT PER ME TEAM
1 403 $7,962 $19.76 $11.29
2 1035 $36,124 $34.90 $51.24
3 1445 $46,026 $31.85 $65.29
4 1431 $44,112 $30.83 $62.57
5 1367 $37,945 $27.76 $53.82
6 1300 $50,280 $38.68 $71.32
7 1580 $58,965 $37.32 $83.64
8 1527 $46,398 $30.39 $65.81
9 1487 $36,434 $24.50 $51.68
10 1573 $33,085 $21.03 $46.93
TOTAL 13148 $397,331 $30.22 $563.59

 

Colosseum Stats: Four Players from Three Weeks Ago…Results: 1 Good Add out of 4:

Again this season we’ll be keeping tabs on the 4 most added players from 3 weeks ago to see how some of the biggest free agent acquisitions have been doing for their fantasy owners. These are the players acquired in the most leagues on the 7th FAAB run this season – on 5/14 (stats are from 5/15 through 6/5):

  • George Kirby: 22.0 IP; 4.50 ERA; 1.23 WHIP; 23 K; 2 BB; 1 WIN – Kirby has been solid thus far – he hasn’t been a world beater, but he’s held his own. With the strong control and promise of future success, I am scoring this as a WIN.
  • Alek Thomas: 14-for-72 .194 AVG; 4 HR; 0 SB – the power is nice, but the average is a little disappointing. Thomas is playing every day though, and has shown enough for observers to believe he will be a good producer. Based on the first three weeks, I’m placing this as a PUSH – he should be a helpful addition this season.
  • Chase Silseth: 10.1 IP; 7.84 ERA; 2.03 WHIP; 7 K; 5 BB; 0 WINS – sadly this Angels pickup has not worked out – LOSS.
  • Rowan Wick: 10.1 IP; 6.10 ERA; 1.84 WHIP; 9 K; 5 BB; 0 WINS; 1 SAVE – and this hasn’t really helped fantasy owners. LOSS.

2022 RECORD:

  • 10 thumbs up – 36% (full year 2021 24%)
  • 7 side thumbs – 25% (full year 2021 27%)
  • 11 thumbs down – 39% (full year 2021 49%)

 

The record of top adds in the Main Event is still ahead of 2021 through the first 10 FAAB periods. Main Event owners are consistently finding one good solid add per week thus far. Perhaps all of us are getting smarter? (OK, not me, but the rest of the Main Event owners…)

Interesting Single Team Drops

I took a look at the Main Event transactions to look for any interesting players dropped this week. These are players dropped just once that I found somewhat surprising. I mean – some of these guys were the aggressive pickups this week!

6/5: Dylan Carlson; Kole Calhoun; Nathaniel Lowe; Graham Ashcraft; Keegan Thompson; JP Crawford; Yuli Gurriel; Brady Singer; Trevor Larnach; Dany Jimenez; Taijuan Walker; Austin Meadows; Jose Miranda

 

Bendar It Like Beckham

Overall Rank: Thru 4/17 Fantasy Owner Overall Points Points Behind
1 Mark Bendar 5953.5 0.0
2 Bob Catsiroumpas 5920.0 33.5
3 Scott Jenstad 5766.5 187.0
4 Chris Fessler 5604.0 349.5
5 Richard Briskin 5595.0 358.5
6 Douglas Gruber 5589.5 364.0
7 Leonard Ringle 5578.5 375.0
8 Bill Macey 5577.5 376.0
9 Robert Cramutola 5551.0 402.5
10 Ned Donohue 5530.0 423.5
11 Tyler Jung 5517.5 436.0
12 Rob Silver 5516.0 437.5
13 Douglas Gruber 5464.5 489.0
14 Kelly Uganski 5424.5 529.0
15 Charles Sommer 5357.5 596.0
16 Christopher Vaccaro 5349.5 604.0
17 Robert Mirshak & Ian Kahn 5344.5 609.0
18 John Pausma 5320.5 633.0
19 Mark Srebro 5295.5 658.0
20 Vlad Sedler 5271.5 682.0
Average Top 20 Overall Score 5526.4

 

Congratulations to Mark Bendar for taking the Number One position – and Mark wants everyone to know: “I was actually in the hit movie Bend It Like Beckham, but it was a relatively small part so most people don’t know about it!” Wow – interesting, Mark, but what WAS your role exactly? Mark said he was too busy to get back to us but since he’ll be at the top for many weeks to come, he invited us to follow up next week. Congratulations also to Bob Catsiroumpas, Scott Jenstad, Chris Fessler, and Richard Briskin, who are all in the top five in the early season. In fact, all of these Top 20 owners are in outstanding shape.

Strike Force ME: Top Ten Picks

Harper, Bryce

Devers, Rafael

Urias, Julio

Diaz, Edwin

Lindor, Francisco

Edman, Tommy

Garcia, Luis

Gallegos, Giovanny

Haniger, Mitch

Lopez, Pablo

 

Philippe Dussault: Contemplating the Queen

Philippe Dussault – (what is happening?) – fell to 60th place overall from last week’s 46th. Phil says he is very busy (as he had to perform at the Queen’s Jubilee this past weekend) – and says he is now completely in favor of Canada celebrating the Queen’s sovereignty. He sent me this image to show how the queen responded when he provided her with some of his finest food from Canada.

Where are our 2022 Previous Overall Leaders?

Tim Lilly (4/11): Tim has dropped to 310h place (up from last week’s 344th at least), and says he has looked in on his Main Event team but refuses to leave his garden of lilies so he must look through the window at his computer to check in.

Scott Fleming (4/18): Still doing well at 41st overall (down a bit from 33rd), Scott is planning to phone King Willem-Alexander (the King of the Netherlands) to “fully explain” his letter and “clear up” any misconceptions.

Chris Read (4/25-5/8): Chris had an impressive three-week run at the top, and is confident that even though he dropped to 63rd place last week – he now has surged back to 47th and his attitude is good. He is still on his speaking tour in Reading, Pennsylvania and has worked his way from the local 4th grade class to the local 5th grade class.

Tyler Jung (5/15): Tyler is in 11th place (down from 4th), which is still outstanding. However, he was unavailable for comment from his “Welcome to the Jungle” tour in deepest, darkest Africa. Apparently he has been to the Democratic Republic of the Congo – and is currently in Kinshasa, the largest city and capital. He did let us know that it lies about 320 miles from the Atlantic Ocean on the south bank of the Congo River, however.
Leonard Ringle (5/22-29): Leonard hung out a shingle on the #1 overall position, but was forced to take it down this week. He is now in a good strong position in 7th place though, and is making more shingles for his eventual return to the top.

 

League of Legends

In addition, we’ll follow the individual league races this season. It is no small feat to win a league championship in the Main Event regardless of a fantasy owner’s overall place, and the top three in each league earn a cash prize and deserve recognition. You can see the 47 leagues listed in the chart below – along with the top three in the standings as of Monday morning.

NFBC League Number LEADER League Points 2nd PLACE League Points 3rd PLACE League Points
#934 Jason Anthony 114.5 Doug Moe 102.0 Daniel Semsel 99.5
#935 Mark Srebro 113.0 Anthony Botzo 111.0 Christopher Cooley 90.5
#943 Andrew Kopicz 112.5 Steve Weimer 105.5 Alan Mitchell 95.0
#1026 John Pausma 115.0 Toby Guevin 111.5 Jeff Erickson & Tim Schuler 95.5
#1027 Scott Jenstad 109.0 Tanner Bell 104.5 Justin Salinger 97.0
#1028 Russel Wyatt 111.0 Jacob Halusker 108.0 Zachary Waxman 93.0
#1029 Mark Northan 106.0 Rusty Clark 103.0 Joe Anthony 96.5
#1030 Rob Silver 118.5 Clark Olson 99.5 Zach Bettencourt 93.5
#1031 Stephen Marshall 103.0 Matthew Anderson 100.5 Dustin Wagner 99.0
#1032 Mark Bendar 128.0 Tony DiVincenzo 100.0 Ronny Mor 95.5
#1034 TIE: Ned Donohue 123.5 TIE: Robert Cramutola 123.5 Stephen Jupinka 100.0
#1132 Eric Heberlig 103.0 Roland Pinto 100.5 Tyler Jung 95.0
#1143 James Anderson & Todd Whitestone 115.5 Michelle Smith 105.5 Mark Srebro 102.5
#1192 Christopher Vaccaro 116.0 Robert Cramutola 112.5 Michael Amarante 105.5
#1221 Marc Fleisher 108.5 Mike Duggan 104.0 Bradley Libros 100.0
#1226 Michael Garcia 108.5 TIE: Patrick Longood 102.5 TIE: Robert DiPietro 102.5
#1228 Charles Sommer 116.0 John Pausma 113.5 Jeffrey Bryl 96.5
#1233 Ned Donohue 121.5 Jon Stadtmueller 102.0 Gregg Martin 100.0
#1236 Daniel Prepas 111.5 Clark Olson 107.5 Bradley Libros 104.5
#1244 Douglas Gruber 117.0 Andrew Geller 108.0 Jordan Epping 103.0
#1260 Kelly Uganski 121.5 Jason Aberli 109.0 Vince Clemente 99.0
#1263 Michael Brophy 115.0 Eric Heberlig 114.5 Kyle Brinkmann 107.5
#1264 Bill Macey 124.0 Vlad Sedler 118.5 Brian Edwards 109.5
#1265 Tyler Jung 121.0 Bob Mazur 105.5 Joe Morrison 102.5
#1287 Zack Puckett 99.0 TIE: Aaron Lawson 97.0 TIE: Glenn Schroter 97.0
#1292 Matt Modica 113.5 Steve Gregovich 108.0 Steven Heffernan 106.5
#1294 Jarrett Greco 108.5 Dohn Terrell 103.5 Scott Waggener 100.5
#1297 Richard Briskin 123.5 Zach Bettencourt 111.5 Douglas Gruber 106.5
#1304 Herb Erok 103.0 Richard Dimondo 99.5 Philippe Dussault 93.0
#1306 Dave Petroziello 109.0 David Miller 106.5 Brian Slack 106.0
#1318 Douglas Gruber 120.5 JimJ Ferrari 102.5 Emmett Ruland 100.5
#1319 Jeff Mitseff 110.0 Bob Casale 101.0 Abdulaziz Madani 93.0
#1320 TIE: Philippe Dussault 113.0 TIE: Robert Mirshak & Ian Kahn 113.0 Daniel Baker 102.5
#1321 Chris Fessler 122.5 Aaron Jones 105.0 TIE: Mike Rothe & Kyle Brinkmann 98.5
#1322 Ned Donohue 105.0 Mike Cameron 100.0 Jeff Mitseff 98.5
#1331 Bob Catsiroumpas 123.5 Bradley Libros 108.0 Robert DiPietro 105.0
#1332 Leonard Ringle 121.5 Ben Tidd 114.0 Chris Read 110.5
#1363 Kevin Grady 105.0 Matthew McDonough 103.5 Paul Hong 101.0
#1364 James Tomony 115.5 Brian Slack 104.0 Al Williams 101.5
#1365 Scott Jenstad 128.0 Craig Clarke 108.5 Matt Hurley 101.5
#1366 Isaac Cockburn 110.5 Jeff Mitseff 102.5 Chris Boudreaux 98.5
#1371 John Pausma 114.0 Brian Slack 109.5 TIE: Hunter Dorbandt & Jason Santeiu 108.0
#1402 Ray Butler 117.5 Abdulaziz Madani 110.5 Shawn Childs 100.0
#1405 Zachary Waxman 111.0 Michael Secor 100.5 Christopher Torres 98.5
#1408 Chris Avey 100.0 Jody Ryan 97.0 Eric Heberlig 96.0
#1511 Scott Fleming 110.5 Beau Reid 101.5 Ian Hubbard 97.5
#1524 Mark Srebro 115.0 Scott Waggener 110.5 Jamie Ickes 106.5
Average 1st Place Score 113.9 Average 2nd Place Score 106.2 Average 3rd Place Score 100.2

 

There are multiple NFBC players who are in the top three places in more than one Main Event league. Even at this early stage, that is impressive. Shout-outs:

  • Ned Donohue – three 1st and 10th overall
  • Avid standings watcher Mark Srebro – two 1st, one 3rd and 19th overall
  • The dominator Douglas Gruber – two 1st; one 3rd and 5th AND 13th overall
  • Jeff Mitseff (one 1st one 2nd and one 3rd)
  • Eric Heberlig – (one 1st one 2nd and one 3rd)
  • Newly-inducted Hall-of-Famer (and 2018 Main Event Champ) John Pausma – two 1st and a 2nd and 18th overall
  • Podcaster for Rotowire and all-around smart guy Scott Jenstad (two 1st and 3rd overall)
  • Tyler Jung, Zachary Waxman and the great Phil Dussault (one 1st, one 3rd)
  • My podcast partner Robert DiPietro, one 2nd and one 3rd
  • Crowd favorite Brian Slack with two 2nd and one 3rd
  • 2016 Main Event Champ Rob Silver – 1st in his league, 12th overall, and as he told me this week – he loves working with the great Jeff Zimmerman
  • Clark Olson and Robert Cramutola (two 2nd)
  • Bradley Libros (one 2nd and two 3rd)
  • My pal Christopher Vaccaro (one 1st and 16th overall)
  • Abdulaziz Madani and Scott Waggener (one 2nd and one 3rd)
  • Matty Modica (one 1st and 22nd overall)

Great job by all!

Good luck to all fantasy baseball owners, and PLEASE REMEMBER if you’re in the Disneyland ride Pirates of the Caribbean, keep a close eye on the pirates!!

 

 

Todd Whitestone

Todd Whitestone

Writer for SPstreamer.com focusing on the NFBC Main Event

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