The guys over at Greener on the Other Side and myself exchanged five questions and answers each. My answers are on their site, which means of course that these are the answers they supplied:
R.J.: Which stat do you value more when judging an offensive player: RC/27 or OPS+?
GOTOS: I tend to sway away from OPS as a sure fire indicator of offensive performance. If I had to choose between these stats, I would have to say RC/27. If you look at the top performers in the RC/27 category from last season, you'll find some of the best power hitters in the game; A-rod, Wright, Holliday, David Ortiz, Fielder. In terms of finding that gem fantasy player, RC/27 has a slight edge.
R.J.: In the latter rounds of a fantasy draft is it better to draft with upside in mind or attempt and pluck a player from the ranks of a good team who will benefit from the surrounding talent?
GOTOS: For me, I like to take a risk on a younger, unproven prospect as opposed to a veteran on a contending team who may benefit from being protected in a solid lineup. With younger prospects, like Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Adam Jones, Gio Gonzalez, Colby Rasmus, etc, it is hard to believe at least 2 of these guys NOT having very good years. I'm a fan of upside potential, and if I have to choose between a rookie in the later rounds or an aging veteran who is over 33, I will 99.9% of the time go with youth.
R.J.: Are there any inning increase plateaus that send out red flags concerning younger pitchers?
GOTOS: Stress and over use of a pitchers arm can be the beginning of the end or pitchers. If you want to see some great info on pitchers who have overused their arms the last few seasons, check out The 3500 Club. This list focuses on pitchers who have been in the Bigs for a number of seasons. You will notice that there are some young pitchers in this club, which should certainly raise a red flag or two. Even though I am a huge fan, Scott Kazmir throws a huge amount of pitches, and I would monitor his progress this year. I am not saying avoid him, but knowing when to trade him at max value can win you a league. Another young arm I would watch for do to over use in 2007 is Dan Haren. Trade high candidates!
R.J.: Any injury concerns for Brett Myers moving back to the rotation?
GOTOS: There are always concerns when pitchers have past injuries. When 100% Myers is hugely overrated and undervalued, so when selecting him, or thinking about selecting him, I would make sure he is not relied on to anchor a staff. With a pitcher like Myers, having him as a No. 3 starter, is a great play. If he is relied on as a staff Ace, then I would be looking to make a deal.
R.J.: What stat do people not give enough credit to when looking at potential draftees?
GOTOS: For me, it has to be runs. You can find a .300 hitter late, a 25+ home run hitter late, even a 30+ steals guy late. Who you will rarely ever find late in drafts is a guy who can score 100+ runs. Last season, the only NON-Fantasy stars in the top 25 in the runs category were David DeJesus, Placido Polanco, and Orlando Cabrera. Of the top 10 leaders in runs, at the very least 6 are sure fire 1st round draft picks. The 10 leaders in 2007 were A-Rod, Rollins, Hanley, Abreu, Granderson, Holliday, Reyes, Sizemore, Magglio and David Ortiz. If you want to contend in the R's category, you should hope for at least 1 of these run producing machines.
Again I'd like to thank both Jason Sarney and Brett Greenfield for the offer and quick replies. Check them out for a mix of sabermetrics and fantasy baseball.