Twelve years. That’s how long I’ve been publishing fancy Excel spreadsheets that help fantasy baseball owners like yourself. The wonderful part of doing this has been listening to your ideas each year about enhancing the power of these sheets for your drafts. There are times when the ideas seem impossible to implement because of the limitations of the Excel, but I get a real thrill out of trying to use my skills to make the cheatsheets better and better.
The changes made this year are ones that I’m the most proud of from my twelve years of doing this. You’ve likely had success in your fantasy baseball leagues with these sheets in the past but this year’s version will make you even more able to dominate your draft.
If you’ve used the sheets before, I’ll talk about the cool changes for this year first and then I’ll explain the basics of the cheatsheets for any newbies who are finding these for the first time too.
Let’s win some fantasy leagues, y’all.
What’s New In 2021?
You may have noticed that these cheatsheets came out later than usual this year. That is because I took on one of my bigger challenges ever with the sheets. The changes may seem minor on the surface but it basically involved rethinking the entire foundation of the sheet and how it works behind the scenes.
Quite honestly, I could release the same exact version of the cheatsheets each year and everyone would be happy, but I like to make these better every year so that you all have great draft experiences with it. That’s why I try to tackle big changes like this every year or two.
This year’s big change? The sheets now can automatically handle multi-position eligibility for all players. You can input your league requirements for position eligibility and then players will now be eligible at all of the positions they should be. From there, as you draft players, the sheets will automatically determine where to put players on each roster based on prioritizing filling the weakest positions with the best players first.
You no longer have to try to manually change player positions to make rosters work. It’s finally all handled automatically. I’m so very excited about this as this literally took weeks of drawing out the process on paper before trying it out. From there, it took more weeks of getting it implemented in the sheets. Then, I sadly had to change it all after I forgot that the sheets need to be compatible with older versions of Excel so I needed to alter formulas to work in all versions of Excel without issues. With the help of volunteer beta testers from Twitter, it all got ironed out. What a relief it is.
In addition to that, due to the increase in size of the sheets, I made a bunch of alterations behind-the-scenes to hopefully keep them from running too slow.
Outside of that, I put in a way to handle a two-way player like Shohei Ohtani. This initial version of the cheatsheet allows you to say whether he counts as a pitcher, hitter, or both in your league. In the next update this year, I plan to add a way to split him into two separate players as well.
Outside of that, the changes this year are mostly behind-the-scenes functionality but the multi-position eligibility and addition of The Ohtani Rules should hopefully be big enough for y’all.
What Makes These Cheatsheets Special?
Fantasy baseball is the most complex fantasy sport. There are rotisserie leagues and points-based leagues and every one is different. There are auctions. There are drafts. There are keeper leagues of all forms.
Basically, there is not one type of fantasy baseball league. These cheatsheets are special because they handle nearly any type of league you throw at it.
From there, the sheet allows you to completely run your draft from within it and see estimations for how valuable each player is in your league type. It also will keep you updated on how each of the owners in your league is doing in their drafts so you know how to alter your strategy as you go.
What Info Is In The Sheet?
Once you open up the sheet, you get the choice of which data you want to use at any given time. I will provide more information about these options in later posts this preseason but you can use info from any of these sources in your sheet:
- Projections Sources: Steamer, The BAT, ZiPS, Clay Davenport, Mr. Cheatsheet’s Special Blend
- Average Draft Position Sources: FantasyPros, ESPN, CBS, Fantrax, NFBC
- Auction Values Sources: FantasyPros, CBS, ESPN, Yahoo, RotoChamp
- Expert Rankings Sources: FantasyPros, Yahoo, ESPN, RotoChamp
What are WERTH Values?
If you’re playing in a roto league, you may notice that these cheatsheets have a WERTH value for each player. These are essentially z-scores in each roto category based on your league setting, which shows you how far above or below average each player is in comparison to the replacement level for your league. A positive WERTH value in a category for a player means that they will perform better than the replacement level in that category for you. This is all dependent on your league settings but that is where the cheatsheets show their power by doing all of the calculations for you.
Download Your 2021 Cheatsheet
I know that you’re just reading this post because you want to get to the good Excel spreadsheet goodness. Heck, you may have immediately scrolled past everything else to get to the downloads. I get it. I do it too. Let’s get to it…
If you play in a rotisserie league or a H2H categories league, you’ll want to download one of the roto cheatsheets below. You can choose the draft version if you have a typical fantasy draft for your league and that is found by clicking on the button below.
If your roto league conducts an auction instead of a straight draft, you can download the auction version below.
If you don’t play in a rotisserie league, you likely play in a points-based H2H league that scores a bit like fantasy football where players are awarded points for each stat they accrue based on your scoring system. If you are in a Points league, you likely will be downloading the Points Draft sheet below.
However, you might be in an auction-based draft for your points league and, if so, this fourth option below is the sheet for you.
The instructions within the cheatsheet should help answer most questions. I also added a button to push on the Instructions page of the sheet this year if you are experiencing an issue where data isn’t updating.
An issue that I’ve encountered in my own testing on very rare occasions involves buttons disappearing in the sheets. If that happens to you, just save the sheet then close it and re-open it. I’ve found that resolves it.
If you encounter any issues or have ideas for how to make the sheets better this year or in the future, hit this button below to fill out a form and submit an official request:
Outside of that, there will likely be minor bugs and fixes I do during the month ahead. You can keep track of the spreadsheet updates by following me on Twitter where I will post about any minor updates that may happen.
As new cheatsheet updates are released, you’ll want to utilize the “Save Or Load” page in the cheatsheet to copy and paste that data into new updates.
Why Are These Free???
There are many talented people who offer fantasy draft sources for a fee. You could argue that I put too much work into these cheatsheets to keep them free after twelve years of doing this, and you’re not wrong.
Look, everyone has different circumstances in life. Some people can barely pay their rent but they get joy out of playing in their small fantasy league. I’ve been there. I get it. They should still have the ability to use my cheatsheets to do well in that league that brings them joy. Other people are extremely well-off and play in big money leagues. In their case, maybe they use my sheets and give me a little tip for my work.
I like doing that sort of system because I approach this all from a point of love and care for my fellow fantasy baseball friends. Have fun. Enjoy the sheets for free if that is where you are at in life. If you enjoy the sheets and are comfortable doing so, I do appreciate donations so much as they help pay for the site and motivate me to keep this going year after year.
Demos and Drafts on Twitch?
I bring that up because I’ve grown to love Twitch and I think it would be cool to run through the cheatsheets with you all on there and maybe do a few of my drafts live on Twitch this month.
Let me know in the comments if you’d have any interest in that! This is a link to my Twitch channel.
Before COVID-19 rocked our worlds last year, I had said “we made it to 2020, y’all!” in my cheatsheet post at the time. It seems almost ominous to read that now. I’ll just say I’m happy that year is over and that we can enjoy a full season of baseball this year.
Enjoy the cheatsheets and let me know your thoughts about them in the comments!