Word of warning: Yahoo! stats can’t be trusted

That starting pitcher you are thinking of retaining probably isn’t as good as you think he is, if you are basing your decision on stats from his Yahoo! fantasy profile.

The Yahoo! stats are flawed, particularly when it comes to pitchers’ slugging average allowed, which also makes his on-base plus slugging average incorrect.

Let’s take the top pitcher from the 2013 season, Clayton Kershaw. Let’s look at his lefty-righty pitching splits.

kershaw-yahooLet’s ignore for the moment that Yahoo, in its effort to deliver a prettier page than it used to, has decided to order its stats with slugging before on-base, which is annoying in itself. But here it shows Kershaw with slugging allowed numbers of .234 vs. lefties and .262 vs. righties.

kershaw-espnCompare this with ESPN, which shows slugging splits of .253 and .283. As a result, Kershaw’s OB+Slug numbers differ too: .442 and .493 on Yahoo’s page, .477 and .532 on ESPN’s page.

Yahoo’s OB and Slug numbers don’t even add up to the number they display as “OBSA.” With Kershaw vs. righties, .248 + .262 would equal .510, not .493 as it displays.

Baseball-reference.com’s stats and FanGraphs’ stats match those of ESPN.

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2014 defensive ratings coming soon

Strat announced Nov. 26 that release of its 2014 defensive player ratings isn’t far off at all:

Furthermore, a sneak peek is coming next week, if you follow @StratOMatic on Twitter:

Four teams assessed draft-pick penalties for 2013 violations

The Rules Enforcement Committee  has concluded its evaluation of several end-of-year violations. Six cases were considered, resulting in assessment of four draft-pick penalties and two warnings.

The REC created a set of guidelines to follow to assist it in assessing fair penalties. These guidelines provide rough parameters while still allowing for the exercising of judgment within those ranges. One tier of guidelines applies to accidental infractions; the other tier to willful or neglectful violations. In both tiers, the effect of the violation on standings integrity, and consideration of whether this was a repeat violation, were factored into the decisions.

Further, the REC decided that when a penalty assessment involves a draft pick, managers will lose the right to select a player where the pick was originally slotted. Instead, affected picks will be moved to a special end-of-draft supplemental round. Those picks can still be traded but the selection of players with those picks will still be withheld until the supplemental round.

Here are the six case summaries:

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The ‘weight’ is over: English awarded No. 1 pick in weighted draft lottery

Let the “Destiny in Destin” wisecracks begin!

UPDATED, 11/19, with corrected draft order below.

The Franchise Still Known as English captured the first overall pick in the 2014 I-75 League Draft Saturday night during the league’s first weighted draft lottery proceedings. Manager Mark Gergel gets a free shot at Yasiel Puig or any of the other stud players on the free-agent market. The English Pigdogs franchise that Mark inherited midseason is expected to relocate to Destin, Fla., for 2014. Maybe they’ll change their name from Pigdogs to Puigdogs?

South Grand Prairie came out with the No. 2 spot and Chatfield fell to No. 3.

After the top three spots, picks 4-9 revert to best winning percentage among non-playoff teams. All of this was voted in last year.

The draft lottery was conducted live with seven participants observing via a Join.Me interface. Video was recorded by it is in a format that does not allow us to embed or link to. First we used Random.Org to break the tie between Hickory and Applegate; the Nuts won that one (four Buffalo head nickels out of five came up heads, just one came up tails for the Paperclips).


drawThat completed the slotting for the weighted draft lottery. Chatfield, with the worst record in the league from 2013, had 45 chances out of 165 to earn the first pick; English had 36 chances, and South Grand Prairie 28 chances. We used DraftLotto.com to conduct the weighted random lottery. Top to bottom, the number of “pingpong balls” looked like you see on the right.

After two practice runs, the official drawing was conducted, and English and South Grand Prairie nudged past Chatfield.

Thus the complete order for the first round of the draft is as follows:

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The Strat league directory is here! The Strat league directory is here!

And we’re in it!

Our league is registered and listed in Strat’s new league directory. Check it out!

Volcanoes wear regular-season crown; playoff matchups tentatively set

With 15 wins in October play, the Margaritaville Volcanoes secured the North Division title, the best record in the league and a franchise-record 109 wins.

UDPATE, 11/9: Margaritaville forfeited one win over Applegate for using starting pitcher Cory Luebke on short rest, giving it 108 wins.

John Gridlock’s club earns a first-round bye, so long from Bush — er, along with Bushwood, which won the West with 105.

Wisconsin is the South Division champ, but with 92 wins will have to fight its way through one more round of playoffs than the other two division champs.

Pending verification of all final stats and resolution of penalities if any, the tentative playoff round looks like this for 2013:

* No. 3 seed Wisconsin (South champ at 92-68) hosts No. 6 seed Savannah (87-73). Winner advances to face No. 2 seed Bushwood (West champ at 105-55).

* No. 4 seed Superior (93-67) hosts No. 5 seed Bismarck (92-68). Winner advances to face No. 1 seed Margaritaville (North champ at 108-52).

The non-playoff teams line up like this. Remember that we now have a weighted draft order, giving the three worst teams the best shot mathematically at top three draft picks. After the first three teams are chosen, places 4-9 are awarded to the non-playoff teams in order of highest winning percentage. Then picks 10-15 are awarded to playoff teams in order of lowest winning percentage. Stay tuned for details on how the weighted draft order results will be unveiled.

UPDATE, 11/9: Picks below reflect odds of gaining the overall No. 1 pick and Hickory/Applegate are now tied for the lowest odds.

1/2. Hickory/Applegate, 82 wins each, 1 or 2 percent chance of the No. 1 pick.
3. Springfield, 75 wins, 4 percent chance.
4. Michigan, 69 wins, 6 percent chance.
5/6. Iowa/Satellite Beach, 67 wins each (tie to be resolved), 9 or 13 percent chance.
7. South Grand Prairie, 64 wins, 17 percent chance of a Top 3 pick.
8. English, 62 wins, 22 percent chance of a Top 3 pick.
9. Chatfield, 55 wins, 27 percent chance of a Top 3 pick.