In a roto league, you hope to finish near the top in five categories for pitchers and hitters. How well you do in those categories will be largely determined by your draft strategy. If you target SB’s early then you might find yourself weak in HR’s and RBI’s later, for instance. In a past post, you learned that SB’s have the lowest correlation to success in other roto categories but that only answers part of the question about how to approach your roto categories in a draft. The other part of the process is knowing when each stat is available in drafts.
At the beginning of a draft, you can pick your proverbial poison by taking a great power hitter or a well-rounded player. As you make each draft pick, the player pool shrinks a bit more and your options become limited. Let’s visually look at how each stat breaks down during a 2012:
If you want a closer look, go ahead and click on the image above. But, basically, what we see is the projected trend for each stat throughout the draft. The flatter the line is in the middle, the less variability there is throughout the draft for that stat. For example, the Stolen Base line is very flat which shows that there are nearly just enough SB’s to be found in Round 1 as Round 26. Meanwhile, the Runs line has a very steep drop in comparison to the other stats which means that it’s a top-heavy stat being that you can mostly find strong run producers in the early rounds but not the late rounds.
Here’s a closer visual of each trend. The two flattest lines are AVG (blue) and SB (orange) which means that you shouldn’t necessarily have to overpay for those stats early as you can still find them later in the draft. The least flat lines would then be HR, Runs and RBI’s. These stats all go hand-in-hand so it’s especially important to target them together in the early rounds.
Basically, what all of these pretty charts show us is that you need to work on finding power early and then you can focus on AVG and SB in the later rounds. If you work on getting a great AVG and SB players on your team in the first few rounds, you’ll find yourself without any options for power in the later rounds. If you want to dominate in all five categories, don’t overly focus on drafting speed in the early rounds.