How to be in first in Tout Wars

Last month I debuted my inaugural Tout Wars team here to the painfully honest THT crowd, whose feedback consisted of more constructive criticisms than compliments. Admittedly the criticism was well deserved as during the draft I essentially made every rookie mistake in the book. I left money on the table, overspent on closers, and drafted two hitters on the DL and another that would be sent down the minors not long thereafter. My lineup had more holes to fill than a Mark Reynolds swing.

One month into the season, lo and behold, my team has outperformed the other fourteen and I’m currently perched fairly comfortably atop the standings. Sometimes it is better to be lucky good.

We see you, Josh. (US Presswire)

Setting luck aside, I’ve done some nifty patchwork to my roster along the way that has contributed to my current standing. Specifically my past purchases have been:

Week 1: Josh Reddick ($1), Brian Bogusevic ($2)
Week 2: Ryan Sweeney ($1)
Week 3: Andy Dirks ($1), Tony Campana ($2)
Week 4: Michael Saunders ($7), Anthony Bass ($10*)

Bogusevic was dropped following the first week, but Reddick has been a productive fixture in my lineup ever since. I have similar hopes for Dirks who, with a healthy hamstring and Brad Eldridge sent packing. can become an everyday player. Based on his .313/.327/.583 slash line he deserves the chance. The Campana campaign might have already peaked but his burst of seven steals in two weeks was fun.

Last week I splurged a little on Saunders, who I thought would be a popular bid given his 20 homer power potential—a rarity amongst waiver players. Apparently I was the only one since I could have bid just a single dollar and still have gotten him. Oh well, I have a large FAAB budget remaining compared to other teams since I’ve avoided the insane closer bidding (read: $26 for Hector Santiago).

Speaking of closers, unfortunately I gained one this week in Chris Sale. Before this news I was already short a starter (which is part of the reason I was willing to pay up to $25 for Bass, but only paid $10 because of the Vickrey system) and now I’m short once again relative to other teams. I would prefer to trade a closer for a starter immediately but if no good offer pops up, I am willing to roll closer-heavy for a few weeks and build upon my lead in saves.

This week’s bids

I took a long look at all the starters I could add and decided against Philip Humber, Brian Matusz, and Jerome Williams. However I did throw a $1 bid at Jeanmar Gomez and, as of midnight, I see that I got him.

+-----+------------------+-------+ | POS | PLAYER | PRICE | +-----+------------------+-------+ | C | J Saltalamacchia | $ 7 | | C | Nick Hundley | $ 3 | | 1B | Lucas Duda | $ 7 | | 2B | Jason Kipnis | $ 7 | | 3B | Mike Moustakas | $10 | | SS | Starlin Castro | $25 | | CI | Brett Lawrie | $28 | | MI | Mike Aviles | $ 2 | | OF | Curtis Grandy | $33 | | OF | Nick Swisher | $11 | | OF | John Jay | $ 0 | | OF | Josh Reddick | $ 1 | | OF | Tony Campana | $ 2 | | UT | Andy Dirks | $ 1 | +-----+------------------+-------+ | BN | Jhonny Peralta | $ 8 | | BN | Michael Saunders | $ 7 | | DL | Ryan Howard | $ 7 | | DL | Carlos Quentin | $ 1 | +-----+------------------+-------+

Gomez doesn’t strike many batters out, but he limits walks and generates ground balls at over a 50 percent rate, so he has that Trevor Cahill-type profile of someone who can post low ratios without gaudy strikeout numbers. His match-up against the White Sox and Jake Peavy is just alright this week, but next week he draws the Twins and Marlins, two match-ups I’ll look forward to.

After that, who knows what’ll become of Jeanmar and I.

As for hitters, I decided to stick with my current squad, though I’m not sure yet who I plan to start. I’ve got five spots for Reddick, Campana, Dirks, Saunders, Jon Jay, and Jhonny Peralta. I should probably bench one of Saunders or Campana but looking at match-ups, I have a hunch Reddick might be in for a rough week. I still haven’t decided, and suggestions are always welcome.

That’s all I’ll say for now. I know reading about someone else’s league can have the same entertainment value as sitting in a doctor’s office, but I’m hoping the combination of some player analysis and me being in first can make this interesting enough.

Bottom line, if you’d be interested in hearing next Monday about the bids I and others place and how my team did, let me know. If not, let me know too.

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12 years ago

Great stuff.  Would love to see what you do next week.

12 years ago

Congrats on 1st place…. 
If the Vickrey system is used, why did your bid on Saunders not drop to 1?  Is it because noone else bid so there is no “second highest”?

Paul Singman
12 years ago

Thanks guys. Rob, its actually a hybrid Vickrey system. Bids under $10 are handled normally (you pay what you bid) while anything over $10 gets reduced to the second highest bid + $1, and if there are no other bids over $10 then you pay $10.

I think it works well but there was a lot of clamor on draft day to either go full-Vickrey or ditch it altogether.

12 years ago

Good luck!