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Target 5000: Grand Theft Roto

Main Event fantasy owners are striving for consistent strong performances. But what level of consistent performance would get you into the overall top 20 in the Main Event? It turns out that achieving stats 77.5% of the way up the ladder of all fantasy teams in all ten categories will do the job. For the Main Event, that means reaching 500 points (out of a possible 645) in all 10 categories – so as a result we have established Target 5000. If a team can total 5000 points in the overall competition, as this will place the team on the overall top 20 leaderboard


So with that in mind let’s take a look at the stolen base category this week and determine the total that yields 500 points. In 2021, base stealers have stolen 630 bases or 27.6% of the 2019 total of 2280 – since MLB has played about 28% of the season so far, this is the same pace as two years ago.


In the Main Event for the full season of 2019, 124 stolen bases produced 500 points. And you’d expect the 500-point plateau to require 35 steals since that’s 28% of 2019. Indeed, this lines up perfectly with actual production in this category.


2019 Full Season: 77.5% level in Main Event = 124 stolen bases

2021 thru May 21st: 77.5% (Target 5000) level = 35 stolen bases


Who are the biggest stolen base contributors and how high were they drafted in the Main Event? There are 26 players with 6 or more steals as of May 22nd. They are listed below - but these 26 players are likely supporting the fantasy rosters doing well in the steals category. Most of these players were drafted in the first few rounds, but there have been exceptions. Garrett Hampson, Isiah Kiner-Falefa, and Jazz Chisholm, Niko Goodrum, and Robbie Grossman have all provided 7 or more steals to date. Relying on non-established players for steals is a little risky though. If they lose their playing time, the stolen bases go with them. Dylan Moore is the cautionary tale this year. He’s provided 8 steals but is currently injured and his playing time is questionable on his return since he’s hitting .168.

Through Sunday, there have been 53 days of baseball since the Major League Baseball opened on April 1st - that’s about 28% of the season (there are 186 days of baseball in the regular season). Main Event fantasy owners are balancing the original $1000 of FAAB they were given while bearing in mind that only 33% of FAAB periods have been completed (9 of the 27 FAAB periods). Here are the Main Event FAAB totals across 645 teams including the winning bids from the May 23rd FAAB run:

For all nine FAAB runs thus far, the average Main Event team has won 16.5 bids this season (roughly 2 per week) and spent $520. This is higher than $1000 FAAB dollars divided by 27 FAAB periods ($37 per week – so 9 FAAB periods times $37 indicates that $333 is the proper spending on a straight-line basis). Actual spending, however, leaves the average team with $480 of FAAB which drops their average weekly budget for the remaining 18 periods from $37 to just under $27.


In the ninth FAAB period of the season held on May 23rd, 11 players were picked up in 24 or more leagues (see below) with Danny Santana targeted in all 43 leagues as he has a chance to contribute power and speed if he gets playing time in Boston (so far he is 2-for-10 with 2 HR and 1 SB). Taylor Walls, who is the presumptive starting shortstop for TB, was added in 39 leagues, and Ji-Man Choi, who might get more starts in TB, was added in 36 leagues.

The Wow Bid of the Week


The Main Event Wow Bid of the Week – going to the largest bid of each FAAB period – is awarded to a $341 bid for Milwaukee second baseman Keston Hiura, who was available in just 3 Main Event Leagues. This winning bid beat a runner-up amount of $77, so it was a little higher than needed. However, Hiura could get back on track and recalled soon, providing a power/speed threat for this fantasy owner.


The Century Club has 22 Members This Week


There were 34 SUCCESSFUL bids over $100 of FAAB during this FAAB run – lower than last week (37) and of course significantly lower than the first five weeks. There were 5 $200+ free agents with 6 successful bids of over $200. Even so, it is clear that most Main Event fantasy owners are ratcheting down their bids as they show concern for their remaining FAAB dollars.

Instead of showing the players dropped the most – you can see below some of the most INTERESTING drops. These are the players dropped who were most likely difficult decisions – either prompted by a run of injuries to a fantasy team or driven by a need for a replacement at a particular position. These players might draw bids next week from other league members, and many of these players were bid on aggressively a couple of weeks back (such as Taylor Ward).

Where Are They Now? Four Players from Three Weeks Ago…


We’ll keep tabs on the 4 most added players from 3 weeks ago to see how some of the biggest free-agent acquisitions have been doing for their fantasy owners. These are the players acquired in the most leagues on 5/2:

· Shane McClanahan – 18.1 IP; 1 Win; 3.93 ERA; 21/7 K:BB ratio – good not great add so far

· Mike Tauchman – .183 with 1 HR and 1 SB

· Harrison Bader – .230 with 3 HR and 2 SB

· Mychal Givens – 5.2 IP; 6.35 ERA; 0 Wins; 0 Saves

So we’ll say no thumbs up for this week; with two thumbs down (Tauchman and Givens) and two in the middle for the biggest acquisitions from May 2nd – making it 5 good adds; 6 poor adds; and 5 moderate adds so far this year.


Funding the Roth


Congratulations to Douglas Roth, as he is leading the 2021 Main Event with his only Main Event entry – with a margin of just 50.0 by earning 5485 points. His Contest-Leading roster was built from the #6 draft position as he selected Gerrit Cole in the 1st round. He followed that by leaning on pitching even more with Clayton Kershaw in round two and then got some steals with Whit Merrifield and Randy Arozarena in the next two rounds. He stayed with hitters from rounds 3-7 before getting another starter in Chris Paddack and then was able to cover saves with Craig Kimbrel in round 11. Other fine picks were Ryan McMahon in the 13th; Mark Canha in the 17th; Cedric Mullins in the 23rd; and Yimi Garcia in the 30th and final round. When responding to my question of why he knew Kimbrel and Garcia would be lock-down closers, he replied “To contribute to a Roth IRA in tax year 2021, single filers must have a Modified Adjusted Gross Income under $140,000 and joint filers must be under 208,000.” OK…um… thanks Douglas – very helpful…


Let’s check in on our previous leaders – are they still in the top 20?