View Poll Results: Strategy: Elite Prospects or Post Hype Sleepers

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  • Elite Prospects

    3 27.27%
  • Post Hype Sleepers

    8 72.73%
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Thread: Strategy: Elite Prospets or Post Hype Sleepers

  1. #1

    Strategy: Elite Prospets or Post Hype Sleepers

    I have been playing fantasy baseball for almost 30 years, and the last 10 at least I have been heavily into keeper and Dynasty leagues. I have always liked trying to discover the next big arm, but to me more often than not even the best of pitching prospects don't start producing right away.

    Just last year I scored with Lucas Giolito, and Tyler Glasnow as post hype prospects.

    Historically speaking off the top of my head there seems to be many less Clayton Kershaw/Walker Buehler types than Max Scherzer/Lucas Giolito types.

    Personally I am starting to question investing in minor league pitching prospects, and instead trying to mine for post hype pitching prospects.

    What say you junkies?
    Comparing a Fantasy Baseball Draft to an Auction is like comparing Checkers to Chess!!!

  2. #2
    For just arms, I agree that drafting minor league pitchers is quite risky. Unless it's McKensie Gore, I don't usually consider it. Guys with a few cups of coffee, even if it's bad coffee, are better options. So, I am keeping an eye on Kolby Allard even if he starts in AAA. Adding a 2 mph to the fastball is something to hang a hat on. Draft skills not roles.

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  3. #3
    All Star Sour Masher's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Binghamton, NY
    I am with you. Hitters are different, but for pitchers, I prefer to target post-hype sleepers and I generally trade my elite pitching prospects for older, more established arms. Of course, every rule has exceptions, and some pitching prospects start off great out of the gate. But generally, even the ones that do well, fall short of expectations, because, at the very least, they have innings limits. It is very rare indeed to see a pitcher reach his full potential at 22, 23, 24. Even if they are putting up great ratios, they usually do not exceed 200 IP. It takes time to build that strength.

  4. #4
    All Star Ken's Avatar
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    Feb 2016
    I don't know, it depends on what you are looking for and also how you are defining your terms of "post hype sleeper" and "elite prospect". What are you categorizing as elite? Also to be a post hype sleeper are you saying that you are targetting guys that were once elite?

    I don't think I'd ever hit on a Giolito type, for example. He's definitely post hype, and that's easy to see in retrospect. But how many other potential "post hype" guys would you miss on when you hit on Giolito? I'd think the number is very very high.

    But lets look at the top pitchers from last year just to make sure we agree with how each is categorized:

    Verlander - ROY/CYA7 in first full year, CY5 second year - elite prospect
    Cole - Good in PIT, great in HOU, but never really a "post hype" guy. The hype was always there. I'd put him in the elite prospect category.
    Strasburg - elite prospect
    DeGrom - never hyped, reach mlb at age 26. Doesn't fit in either category
    Greinke - CYA at age 25, his 5th season up? I guess post hype - 2005 was bad. But he was 21 years old still. I don't know.
    Bieber - looked great coming up, I don't think he was an elite prospect, but not post hype either
    Morton - no hype, doesn't fit in either category
    Flaherty - elite prospect
    Kershaw - elite prospect
    Ryu - foreign signing, doesn't really fit either category
    Scherzer - I guess post hype after a mediocre 2009 season. But even then there was a lot of talk about his strikeout abilities.
    Buehler - elite prospect
    Giolito - post hype
    Castillo - elite prospect
    Corbin - not an elite prospect, but I don't know that you'd call him post hype either?

    I'm not seeing a huge advantage for post hype here.

  5. #5
    I avoid minor league pitchers like coronavirus.
    I'm just here for the baseball.

  6. #6
    Journeyman TranaGreg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    The thing is that there's a limited quantity of each ... for each post hype sleeper that clicks there are guys who continue their mediocrity or worse - Eickhoff, Bundy, Godley, Velasquez, and so on. You can't have a whole staff of these kind of guys, you need some reliable innings too.

  7. #7
    In response to Ken:

    A couple others from recent and not so recent vintage that come to mind.

    Tyler Glasnow: His 16-18 campaigns had people questioning his future.

    Blake Snell: He wasn't bad his first 2 years but the shine was definitely off.

    Luis Castillo: We differ here I think he does fit post hype (he was cheaper heading into 19 than he was 18.

    Trevor Bauer: Definitely struggled early, hard to say exactly what he is now.

    Carlos Carrasco: Seemed like it took forever for him to breakthrough.

    Roy Halladay: I know I'm going back with this one lol

    I do see what you are saying I think one of the big advantages is not spending the draft or investment capital on the elite prospects to begin with though.

    Check this article about the top 10 pitching prospects of the past decade:

    Only 3 of the 15 listed started to do well, and continued to well in their careers (1. Strasberg, 10. Fernandez, 12. Cole)

    I'm not necessarily saying post hype will get a better return but if you miss your not spending as much.

    Anyway good thought provoking discussion.
    Comparing a Fantasy Baseball Draft to an Auction is like comparing Checkers to Chess!!!

  8. #8
    All Star Sour Masher's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Binghamton, NY
    My definition of post hype was inclusive of those that are doing well but not as well as their projected ceilings as prospects. So, not just the Giolito's who sucked and the suddenly were awesome. I specifically had in mind Cole, who I traded as a prospect, in the 2018 preseason right before he took it to the next level. He was certainly very good 2013-2017, especially 2015. I tried to get him back several times, but it wasn't until after the rises in era and whip from 2016 and 2017 over 2015 that his owner had decided, okay, this is where he is at now--varying from good to really good year to year--that he felt comfortable moving him. I still had to pay a steep price--Jesus Luzardo and Forrest Whitley, both the hottest pitching prospects at the time--but it obviously worked out in my favor.

    Some guys, like Carrasco, who I also had a prospect crush on, took so long I gave up on him. Giolito too. I missed the boat.

  9. #9
    All Star Ken's Avatar
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    Feb 2016
    A post hype pitcher is simply an elite prospect who had a bad year.

    Do young pitchers have bad years? Yes, very often.

    But if we are interested in using this information, we need to go deeper. Just saying that young pitchers have bad years isn't getting us anywhere, other than focusing more on more established pitchers. But those cost much more.

    So if you want to go with a cheap post hype guy, how are you specifically going about identifying which ones. Because for every failed prospect there's a failed post hype player who never made it as well.

    Why was Giolito successful in 2019? Well primarily because he was able to double his strikeout rate while reducing his walks as well, and giving up fewer HRs. Should we have seen that coming? I don't know, why would we expect Giolito to do that and others not?

    This is an interesting conversation, but I don't think the interest is trying to compare breakouts vs prospects as much as it's trying to determine if we are going to buy a breakout, how do we become more successful on hitting on it.
    Last edited by Ken; 01-24-2020 at 02:34 PM.

  10. #10
    All Star The Dane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Bay Area, California

    For years in this game, my mantra has been "I hate pitchers." This is a main reason why.

    I do not consider minor league pitchers as prospects in the same way that hitters can be prospects. I'll occasionally take a pitcher in the last round, because that pick rarely does anything anyway. Last year in the RJEL, I got Jordan Hicks in the last round. He paid off handsomely, until he succumbed to injury like seemingly every other pitcher.

    I'll often target post-hype guys, because at least I'm not paying full price or using a high pick. Pitchers fill this game with misery and disappointment, but you HAVE to have them, so get them when you don't have to overpay.

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