Popular Features

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings
    April 30, 2019
    2019 NFL Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings

    Davis Mattek’s 2019 NFL Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings With the 2019 NFL Draft wrapped up and in the books, it is time to get to Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings. Most dynasty leagues that I am in are ready to begin their rookie drafts for the 2019 NFL Draft class. The draft brought…

  • Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Tight End
    May 28, 2019
    Three Impending Fantasy Football Breakout Seasons

    These Three Fantasy Football Breakout Players Are Ready To Shine It is no secret that every year in fantasy football, players emerge who were just barely on the periphery of fantasy football relevance during fantasy football draft season. Last year at this time, you did not know who Phillip Lindsay was, James White was just…

  • Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft
    May 8, 2019
    Industry Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft

    Fantasy Insiders Industry Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft It is Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft season! While I compiled my top 40 rankings of rookies for dynasty fantasy football purposes, we have yet to address Superflex dynasty leagues in the NFL365 package. I participate in the Fantasy Insiders SuperFlex Best Ball Dynasty league with…

  • Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Strategy
    May 14, 2019
    Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Targets

    Ten Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Targets By this point, most RotoExperts readers are probably familiar with the concept of Zero RB drafting. Last week, I put together a list of ten Zero RB fantasy football candidates to help you in your fantasy football leagues. However, a less discussed strategy is the Zero wide receiver fantasy football…

  • Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Running Back
    May 30, 2019
    Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Running Back

    Five Running Back Fantasy Football Sleepers Finding late round running back fantasy football sleepers is the surest way to attain a league-winning roster. Phillip Lindsay and James Conner were legitimate league-winners at the running back position last year and they barely had ADP’s. Unlike most of our recent content, including the ULTIMATE Guide To Winning…

  • The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver?
    July 18, 2019
    The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver?

    The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver? As the passing revolution has continued, the value of the absolute top wide receiver in fantasy football has increased. It used to be that the top running back was the prized jewel of fantasy football but now multiple wide receivers have justified…

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Trade premium
    July 17, 2019
    Closing Window: Dynasty Fantasy Football Buys Before Training Camp

    Closing Window: Dynasty Fantasy Football Buys Before Training Camp We have taken a look at dynasty buys here on RotoExperts a few times over the offseason but now, it is game time. Dynasty fantasy football is about to get real. Training camp, injuries, preseason games, roster movement, all of the good stuff is going to…

  • Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019 Chris Godwin's Stock Rising, Eagles Alshon Jeffrey's Falling
    July 16, 2019
    Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019

    Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019 Last season, the NFL saw a total of  17,671 pass attempts or 34.5 for each team per game. In 2017, that number was 34.2. The average team scored 21.7 points per game in 2017, while the average team scored 23.3 points per game in…

  • Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019
    July 15, 2019
    Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019

    Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019 Every single year, fantasy football leagues are swung by rookie running backs. Saquon Barkley was drafted as a superstar but Phillip Lindsay was a UDFA in 2018. Nick Chubb exploded in the second half of the season after Carlos Hyde was traded. Even Sony Michel returned value after…

  • 2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings premium
    July 12, 2019
    2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings

    2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings Maybe more than at any other position, fantasy football tiers rankings are important for quarterbacks and tight ends. You are going to be drafting a plethora of wide receivers and running backs regardless of their tiers. There isn’t going to come a point where you say…

Looking at Trends to Start Your 2018 Fantasy Baseball prep!

RotoExperts Staff January 10, 2018 3:58PM EDT
Winter is in full affect as many of us are dealing with freezing temperatures and a ‘bomb cyclone,’ which has an awesome name but is really just a winter storm. However, there is one thing that can really warm us up, and that is the thought of our 2018 Fantasy Baseball drafts coming up soon!

While the thought of that may make you feel all warm inside, first you have to do the research! But look, we get it, you got really into Fantasy Football, started your research in the summer and by September you were completely checked out of baseball. It is ok, it happens. I have not written about baseball since the summer, although it is my favorite sport. Football just has that effect and becomes the focus starting every July. However, as you start to dive back into baseball, you should not simply just start looking into players you want to draft. First, you need to look back at last season, see all the numbers and trends, compose a strategy and then find players to fit that strategy. My goal with this article is to get you up to date with as many of those trends as possible for both hitters and pitchers! Later articles will use these trends to come up with a strategy, and then there will be articles that find the best players to fit that strategy. So, be sure to continue to come back all draft season!

Hitter Trends

It is no surprise that there has been an uptick in power over the last two seasons. However, you may not realize that last year there were more home runs hit than ever before. We thought we saw a lot in 2016, and we did, as there were the (now) third-most ever hit that season. However, last year there were 6,105 homers, which was 495 more than in 2016. Yeah, that is a lot of homers and it comes with some trends you may expect. Dating back to 2010, we saw a high in runs (22,582), RBIs (21,558), and in strikeout rate (21.6 percent) last season. The three-true outcome (home run, strikeout, or walk) game is in full affect as the 8.5 percent walk rate was tied for the highest rate since 2010.

It is one thing to see that total home runs are up but maybe this will put it into perspective: 117 batters hit

2018 fantasy baseball

Chris Sale led all starting pitchers in innings pitched,
but the number may surprise you. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

at least 20 home runs last season. Think that is bad? Well, 41 hit at least 30 and 74 hit at least 25. You have to Men In Black-style erase your memory of what is a good power season. It used to be 20 homers was a solid year and 30 was great, now 20 is around or below average. In fact, there were only 144 qualified hitters last season and 89 of them hit 20 homers, which equates to roughly 62 percent. You simply cannot look at 20, or even 30 homers the same way. Players have to do more for your team than simply provide some power or else they are not worth owning.

While fans may love the long ball, it is killing the stolen base. Think about it. With home runs on the rise so much, a hitter is basically in scoring position once he is on first base. Due to that, it makes the chance of being thrown out an unnecessary risk. Last season there was only 2,527 steals, on par with the previous two seasons, which have been dramatically low. Just a handful of years ago, in 2012, there were over 3,200 steals recorded. We went over the drastic number of players that hit 20 home runs. Guess the number that stole 20 bases? Only 29. Up it to 30 steals and the number of players to reach that plateau shrinks to just six. You need to emphasize stolen bases in your draft, whether you decide to take someone like Dee Gordon or try to load up on guys who can give you around 15; it is a must.

Pitching Trends

The uptick in power has truly had a negative effect on pitchers. Both starters and relievers had the highest ERA, FIP, xFIP and HR/9, since 2010. Starters also had the highest BB% and WHIP since 2010, while relievers were a little better in that aspect. The only real positive for pitching is that strikeouts continue to be on the rise.

However, the increase in offense is not the biggest impact on starting pitchers. If you have watched any game over the past couple years you know that managers are quick to pull their starter and get into the bullpen, which is now filled with highly paid elite arms and specialists. That leads to fewer innings accumulated by starters. This was evident by last season, which saw just 15 starting pitchers reach the 200-inning mark. No one reached 220 innings, while Chris Sale came the closest at 214.1 IP. While the number of pitchers to reach 200 innings matches 2016, the fact that no pitcher reached 220 innings is astonishing. I went back every year all the way to 2000 and there were multiple pitchers throwing 230, 240 innings, and in some years more; yet, this is the way of the current game.

You have to take this into consideration when drafting your team. I have been a believer for the past couple of seasons that you should take two pitchers in the first four rounds, and I believe that even more as innings start to dwindle. If you can grab two pitchers that are going to give you around 200 strong innings, it gives you such an advantage. We discussed earlier how offense is up, meaning that it will be easier to find later in drafts. Prioritize pitching!

If you have any baseball questions feel free to throw them my way on Twitter, @MichaelFFlorio.

Popular Features

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings
    April 30, 2019
    2019 NFL Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings

    Davis Mattek’s 2019 NFL Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings With the 2019 NFL Draft wrapped up and in the books, it is time to get to Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Rankings. Most dynasty leagues that I am in are ready to begin their rookie drafts for the 2019 NFL Draft class. The draft brought…

  • Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Tight End
    May 28, 2019
    Three Impending Fantasy Football Breakout Seasons

    These Three Fantasy Football Breakout Players Are Ready To Shine It is no secret that every year in fantasy football, players emerge who were just barely on the periphery of fantasy football relevance during fantasy football draft season. Last year at this time, you did not know who Phillip Lindsay was, James White was just…

  • Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft
    May 8, 2019
    Industry Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft

    Fantasy Insiders Industry Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft It is Superflex Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Draft season! While I compiled my top 40 rankings of rookies for dynasty fantasy football purposes, we have yet to address Superflex dynasty leagues in the NFL365 package. I participate in the Fantasy Insiders SuperFlex Best Ball Dynasty league with…

  • Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Strategy
    May 14, 2019
    Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Targets

    Ten Zero Wide Receiver Fantasy Football Targets By this point, most RotoExperts readers are probably familiar with the concept of Zero RB drafting. Last week, I put together a list of ten Zero RB fantasy football candidates to help you in your fantasy football leagues. However, a less discussed strategy is the Zero wide receiver fantasy football…

  • Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Running Back
    May 30, 2019
    Five Legitimate Fantasy Football Sleepers At Running Back

    Five Running Back Fantasy Football Sleepers Finding late round running back fantasy football sleepers is the surest way to attain a league-winning roster. Phillip Lindsay and James Conner were legitimate league-winners at the running back position last year and they barely had ADP’s. Unlike most of our recent content, including the ULTIMATE Guide To Winning…

  • The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver?
    July 18, 2019
    The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver?

    The Case For Number One: Who Is The Top Fantasy Football Wide Receiver? As the passing revolution has continued, the value of the absolute top wide receiver in fantasy football has increased. It used to be that the top running back was the prized jewel of fantasy football but now multiple wide receivers have justified…

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Trade premium
    July 17, 2019
    Closing Window: Dynasty Fantasy Football Buys Before Training Camp

    Closing Window: Dynasty Fantasy Football Buys Before Training Camp We have taken a look at dynasty buys here on RotoExperts a few times over the offseason but now, it is game time. Dynasty fantasy football is about to get real. Training camp, injuries, preseason games, roster movement, all of the good stuff is going to…

  • Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019 Chris Godwin's Stock Rising, Eagles Alshon Jeffrey's Falling
    July 16, 2019
    Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019

    Three Ways The Passing Revolution Could Alter Fantasy Football In 2019 Last season, the NFL saw a total of  17,671 pass attempts or 34.5 for each team per game. In 2017, that number was 34.2. The average team scored 21.7 points per game in 2017, while the average team scored 23.3 points per game in…

  • Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019
    July 15, 2019
    Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019

    Justice Hill: Fantasy Football League-Winner In 2019 Every single year, fantasy football leagues are swung by rookie running backs. Saquon Barkley was drafted as a superstar but Phillip Lindsay was a UDFA in 2018. Nick Chubb exploded in the second half of the season after Carlos Hyde was traded. Even Sony Michel returned value after…

  • 2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings premium
    July 12, 2019
    2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings

    2019 Quarterback & Tight End Fantasy Football Tiers Rankings Maybe more than at any other position, fantasy football tiers rankings are important for quarterbacks and tight ends. You are going to be drafting a plethora of wide receivers and running backs regardless of their tiers. There isn’t going to come a point where you say…