SLB 2017 Undeniably Way Too Early Keeper Predictions

2017 keepers.png

It’s become a January tradition, so I’m back here today to unveil the undeniably way too early keeper predictions for the 2017 season.

In looking at the keeper options, it appears as though most teams fall into one of three categories. They either have some slam dunk, super-easy keeper decisions decisions, a wealth of enticing options, or a butt-ton of very meh options.

I won’t pretend to know who everyone is going to keep so my formula for making these decisions is based on a combination of my gut choice, the owner’s keeper track record, and – in some instances – the flipping of a coin or rolling of a die to make the decision for me.

Obviously, a lot can change between now and the keeper deadline in March, but these are merely my current predictions and some dark horse options in case of injury or indecision.

So, without any further ado…here are the way-way-way too early keeper predictions.

Mr. Magoo, co-created by animation legend John Hubley. Mr. Magoomoney grubbers

Keeper Prediction:
Nolan Arenado (COL–3B)
Carlos Correa (HOU–SS)
Chris Sale (BOS–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Kenley Jansen (LAD–RP) & Whit Merrifield (KC–2B)
Draft Priority: 1


Keeper Prediction:
Miguel Cabrera (DET–1B)
Charlie Blackmon (COL–OF)
Johnny Cueto (SF–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Jake Arrieta (CHC–SP) & Evan Longoria (TB–3B)
Draft Priority: 2

seabass001Sea Bass v12.0

Keeper Prediction:
Kris Bryant (CHC–3B/OF)
Yoenis Cespedes (NYM–OF)
Noah Syndergaard (NYM–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Kyle Schwarber (CHC–C/OF)
Draft Priority: 3

38mph00138 MPH Heaters

Keeper Prediction:
Francisco Lindor (CLE–SS)
Jose Altuve (HOU–2B)
Madison Bumgarner (SF–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Chris Davis (BAL–1B) & AJ Pollock (ARI–OF)
Draft Priority: 4


Keeper Prediction:
Josh Donaldson (TOR–3B)
George Springer (HOU–OF)
Clayton Kershaw (LAD–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Andrew Benintendi (BOS–OF) & Trevor Story (COL–SS)
Draft Priority: 5

dome_dog_logoDome Dog

Keeper Prediction:
Andrew McCutchen (PIT–OF)
Corey Seager (LAD–SS)
Jacob deGrom (NYM–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Matt Carpenter (STL–1B/2B/3B), Dee Gordon (MIA–2B), & Andrew Miller (CLE–RP)
Draft Priority: 6

SLDSL Disappointments

Keeper Prediction:
Miguel Sano (MIN–3B/OF)
Brian Dozier (MIN–2B)
Chris Archer (TB–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Jose Bautista (FA–OF), Justin Turner (LAD–3B), & Cole Hamels (TEX–SP)
Draft Priority: 7

cheese-high-final001High Cheese

Keeper Prediction:
Freddie Freeman (ATL–1B)
Anthony Rizzo (CHC–1B)
Danny Salazar (CLE–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Giancarlo Stanton (MIA–OF), Felix Hernandez (SEA–SP), Rich Hill (LAD–SP) & Jason Kipnis (CLE–2B)
Draft Priority: 8

Jack Sparow Flag-01Captain Jack

Keeper Prediction:
Bryce Harper (WAS–OF)
Rougned Odor (TEX–2B)
David Price (BOS–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Justin Upton (DET–OF), J.D. Martinez (WAS–OF), & Justin Verlander (DET–SP)
Draft Priority: 9

radioactiverush001Radioactive Rush

Keeper Prediction:
Paul Goldschmidt (ARI–1B)
Edwin Encarnación (CLE–1B)
Carlos Carrasco (CLE–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Matt Harvey (NYM–SP), Stephen Strasburg (WAS–SP), & Starling Marte (PIT–OF)
Draft Priority: 10

Genies in a Bottlegenies2016

Keeper Prediction:
Mookie Betts (BOS–OF)
Lew Ford (VEN-OF)
Corey Kluber (CLE–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Xander Bogaerts (BOS– SS), Trea Turner (WAS–2B/SS/OF), & Masahiro Tanaka (NYY–SP)
Draft Priority: 11

cracker jackcrackerjack-alternate003

Keeper Prediction:
Manny Machado (BAL–SS/3B)
Alex Bregman (HOU–3B)
Max Scherzer (WAS–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Yoan Moncada (CWS–2B/3B), Joey Votto (CIN–1B), Jon Lester (CHC–SP), & Dellin Betances (NYY–RP)
Draft Priority: 12

Salmon Kingssalmonkings003

Keeper Prediction:
Mike Trout (LAA–OF)
Addison Russell (CHC–SS)
Carlos Martinez (STL–SP)

Dark Horse(s): Byron Buxton (MIN–OF), Carlos Gonzalez (COL–OF), Wil Myers (SD–1B), Julio Urias (LAD–SP), Aaron Sanchez (TOR–SP) & Kevin Gausman (BAL–SP)
Draft Priority: 13

The Groundhogsgroundhog003

Keeper Prediction:
Ryan Braun (MIL–OF)
Jose Abreu (CWS–1B)
Aroldis Chapman (NYY–RP)

Dark Horse(s): Robinson Cano (SEA–2B) & Gerrit Cole (PIT–SP)
Draft Priority: 14

Grant’s 2016 Season Review

Minnesota at Texas

Original Story + Graphs by: Grant Morfitt

Another season in the books for the Salmon League and it was a tight one. 7 teams over 500 ball yet only 6 get in. With some new knowledge on how everyone would do against everyone else any given week and a true SOS shown, things got heated for some down the stretch.

First off, let’s go all the way back to the beginning of the year and revisit our draft. Once the draft is over it’s a mad fight for who did good, who did bad, who picked the most sleepers, and overall just who was paying attention. Well now that we have a full season in the books, how was everyone’s draft in reality? I took everyone’s teams they drafted and compiled their stats through the last day of our regular season, no moves, just the team you drafted, including your keepers. This is what the stats look like:


One note is that for OBP, ERA, and WHIP, I was unable to weight that to AB and IP, so a great reliever could bring down ERA and WHIP, but also the opposite is true for a pitcher who had only 1 start who got hurt (Tyson Ross).

I took the liberty of ranking each category 1-14 and then giving everyone a sum, more is good, to get a final rank of everyone’s draft. I have also included my initial rankings after the draft took place:

Actual Rank                                                                        Initial Rank

In looking at the actual ranking we see that all the playoff teams were in the top of the league, ZIMA and money grubbers were way up but missed the playoffs.

Next we look at each category and who was the winner and the loser in each, and also what the difference would be per week from top to bottom, get a sense of how close each category was, except the average stats:


So let’s take a look at the actual statistics from each team this year, this will be real simple, I’ve got a table that has each team and what they got for each category followed again by a ranking of those stats the same was as always, each category 1-14, with more being better.


009As you can see from the table to the left, roto rankings do not translate exactly into H2H rankings, this is just a ranking on team stats all year, doesn’t account for real greats weeks when you blow someone out, or also real bad weeks when you don’t get much in each category. So to make up for that I have my next section.

So because we are a H2H league, let’s take a look at a team’s statistical finish each week then average them to see where they placed on average within the league. As most people should know each week I publish the rankings giving 1-14 points to each category, and then the next week that would reset to be all equal again. Using all 22 weeks we can see where each team finished on average.

010So basically to read this, Genies finished on average as a little better than the 5th best team each week, which was the top. This also gives us a clearer picture on the playoffs, the only outliers really are ZIMA and Rush. This then also leads into the next section of being lucky.

With H2H, there is always going to be that luck factor, on any given week how well does the team you play perform, as well as your own team, and how would you have done against about anyone else in the league. I have tried to capture this in a number using my own method.

For any given week I calculated what was your best possible outcome, be that 14-0, or maybe 9-5. Then I also calculated the worse possible outcome. Taking your actual record we can see how much closer you are to your best record or worst record and take the difference to get the “luck factor.” Here is everyone’s luck factor.

011The bigger the positive number means that you are closer to your best overall record than your worse overall record.

Below are the same graphs I had for mid-year but for the whole year, again here is a little explanation.

First there is a graph showing your weekly statistical rank. This is based on a point system where the best you can get is 14 and the worse is 1, no matter how much ahead or behind you are (left axis).

Secondly over that is a graph showing your actual winning % for the week (right axis). In an ideal world those graphs would follow each other pretty closely, but they don’t always.

I have also included what I call the “Luck Factor.”

Well so here we go–

38 MPH Heaters:


Captain Jack Sparrow:


cracker jack:


Dome Dog:


Genies in a Bottle:


The Groundhogs:


High Cheese:




money grubbers:


Radioactive Rush:


Salmon Kings:


Sea Bass v11.0:


SL Disappointments:




SLB Amendment Voting Results


We only had one amendment proposal that received enough support to be up for vote this offseason and in damn-near an hour enough of the votes were cast to make a determination on the outcome of that amendment.

I’ve waited to post until all of the votes were officially in, but this one was over pretty quickly last night with a landslide victory for Mike’s draft time limit proposal.

Amusingly enough, there are a number of people who apparently didn’t actually read the proposal before voting on it and/or lack basic comprehension skills as they didn’t understand it or assumed it meant something else.

So yeah, the education system is doing great work. I’m sure the Trump administration will only further these efforts.

Anyway, without any further ado, let’s look at the final breakdown of votes:

Amendment #1 – Draft  Time Limit

Proposal: Establish a five minute time allotment for each pick. If a team has not made a pick within that five minute window, the next team can pick as soon as the clock hits zero. At that time the five minute allotment begins again. If the team fails to make a selection in that five minutes the next team can make their selection. This continues until the original team has made a selection.

Proposed: Big Magoo

Endorsed: Phteven, Justinger, and TCB


Grant’s Mid-Season Review


Original Story + Graphs by: Grant Morfitt | Edits + Formatting by: Jeremiah Graves

The temperatures have warmed up and June is about to give way to July. This means that we are now at the halfway mark of the 2016 SLB season and, thus far, things are tight.

We have eight teams with a .500 or better record and only four games currently separate the top five teams in the standings.

Despite that, we still have a lot of season left to play and we’ve seen many major shakeups in the second-half in recent years.

In order to look at what has happened and what could happen in the second-half, I took a dive into the overall numbers.

Below I have included some information on each of the teams in the league. First, there is a graph showing each club’s weekly statistical rank. This is based on a point system where the best you can get in any given category is 14 and the worse is 1, no matter how much ahead or behind you are (left axis). Secondly, over that is a graph showing your actual winning percentage for the week (right axis).

In an ideal world those graphs would follow each other pretty closely, but they don’t always. I have also included what I call the “Luck Factor,” this is the percent based on how much closer you are to your best possible overall record to your worst, this is based on how you would do in match-ups against everyone else in the league in any given week.

In layman’s terms: bigger positive equals lucky and bigger negative equals unlucky.

Without any further ado, here are the graphs:

38 MPH Heaters:


Captain Jack Sparrow:


Cracker Jack:


Dome Dog:


Genies in a Bottle:


The Groundhogs:


High Cheese:




money grubbers:


Radioactive Rush:


Salmon Kings:


Sea Bass v11.0:


SL Disappointments:




Finally, I thought it would be fun to see what records would look like if everyone had zero luck, or exactly half-way between best and worst possible. In that scenario the standings would look like this:





This afternoon a handful of us were chatting about Collin’s foray into home brewing and we were pumped about the prospect of sampling some of the Brand’s Brew creations he might cook up.

It got us thinking that he should create a commemorative batch of home brew for the next SLB Draft.

This initially led to us thinking up a slew of awesome SLB-themed beer names including: Salmon League Lager, Round Six Segura Stout, Grant-is-Garbage Gose, Dome Dog Double IPA, SeaBass Saison, Hold-Up, There’s a Problem with the Draft Tool Session Ale (note: this one will need to be a session ale or you’ll die drinking one every time the namesake situation arises), SL Disappointments Dark, Four Kunkel Dunkel, maibock grubbers, InSaNeAppLeJuIcE, SLB Golden Fishy (note: this is like Michelob Golden, but aged in a bucket with all of the pre-modern era championship trophies), 38MPH Hefeweizen, Genies in a Bock-le, SeaBass Smoked Stout, SalmonKings 4 Fishy Flemish, Big Magoo Maibock, etc.

The list really could go on.

Morgan suggested (perhaps jokingly?) that we could all try our hand at brewing for the next draft.

Given that all I’ve ingested today is sparkling water and multiple pots of coffee, I ran with the idea and figured we could each be tasked with brewing our own beer and then we’d have an official BREW-OFF at the draft where we’d each bring our sample and do a tasting to determine the best SLBrewer!

Here is how I figured it’d go down for every team:

Morgan hasn’t slept for eight days before the draft and certainly hasn’t thought about brewing his own beer. He shows up with six-kinds of chip dip, four crock pots, and no beer. No one complains.

Adam gets caught up in creating perfect labels and he forgets to brew any beer.

John is annoyed at how long brewing takes and brings a case of Keystone he grabbed at the gas station just before pulling up to the draft.

Mike pays someone else to brew for him, but won’t drink or touch any beer himself. He doesn’t like beer (perhaps you’ve heard?). He sips some fancy wine and later switches to a fine whiskey for a nightcap.

Craiggers just pours whiskey into some mismatched empty beer bottles and doesn’t fuck around with brewing at all. He doesn’t even change the labels or re-cap the beer. Craiggers gonna Craiggers.

G-Doggy buys some Johnny Appleseed or whatever on the way up and duct tapes over the label and then scrawls out “InSaNeAppLeJuIcE” in his serial killer handwriting with a Sharpie.

Jay pretends he doesn’t care and we have no idea if he’s even participating in the brew-off. Meanwhile, he secretly opens a fully-functioning brewery without ever alerting anyone. He shows up on draft day with some good beer, but plays coy about the entire thing.

Graves drinks all of his beer before his flight leaves Boston. He purchases a bunch of beer when he gets to the Midwest, but he drinks all of that too. He does not win (or, quite likely, even remember) the brew-off.

Levi doesn’t have time for this lowbrow beer brewing bullshit. He hires a personal bartender to make cocktails for the evening. He is most certainly wearing a jacket with tails and a monocle.

Travis and Grant didn’t know it was happening. They blame the lack of updates and web-presence. They would like to propose amendments about us “starting a website” and adding “quality starts” to the scoring, but they have no idea how/where one might do such a thing. They are the worst.

Steven overthinks the entire process and spends all winter trying to be smarter than everyone else and brews a disappointing, mediocre beer; clearly crumbling under the pressure of heightened expectations.

Justin borrows Steven’s recipe, but tweaks it and brews a way better beer…but he trades the beer to Travis on brew-off day for FAAB dollars and Hanley Ramirez, thus Travis has the better beer.

Collin shows up with legit beer, serves everyone a refreshing Salmon League Lager, and wins the whole fucking thing.


Draft Review and Rankings 2016

2016 draft review rankings

At long last, it’s time for the 2016 edition of the Draft Review and Rankings.

As always, I want to make it very clear that there is no science or metrics (or legitimacy) to these rankings. It is completely subjective and based on my opinions toward players, their value, their abilities, and where/when you drafted them in relation to my perceived views of value elsewhere in the draft.

Just because I ranked you near the bottom doesn’t mean you won’t/can’t win this thing.

I’ve had a lot of people take these things personally over the years and that’s just silly pants, don’t be silly pants. These are no more accurate or telling about potential success than if any one of you were to randomly write a ranking yourself. It’s all opinion.

That having been said, there are a few rules I tried to stick to when doing the rankings.

I tried to avoid using any players you’ve acquired since the draft and – aside from occasional mentions – I tried to avoid factoring your keepers into your team strength. I really wanted to focus on JUST the draft itself. Obviously, as I re-read this, I screwed up given that this was written over a course of many days. Some of your rankings will include more references to keepers than others. This is an imperfect science.

Additionally, I tried to avoid giving anyone credit for a “best pick” within the first three rounds, because it’s really hard to give anyone tons of praise for an early pick as we’re still talking about All-Star caliber players and most of those should be gimmie picks. At the same time, I also tried to avoid ragging on anyone with a “worst pick” in the final three picks of the draft as it’s often scrap heap time for a lot of teams who are stockpiling NA or DL-stashes or grabbing your holds guy.

That doesn’t, however, mean that some of you didn’t have your “best pick” in the final three or your “worst pick” in the first three. It happened, a couple of times actually.

Also, just so y’all have an idea of how this works, I generally rank the teams immediately after the draft based on “gut feel.” After that I take some time to dig through the rosters and look at some stats, but I generally go with my “gut feel” for the final rankings. Some teams will move up or down the more I look at them, but for the most part the ranking is reflective of how I felt on draft day after round 17.

As always, I’d love some feedback – love it, hate it, wish I’d die in a chemical fire – hit me with it.

Alrighty, enough of me rambling, let’s do this thing, without any further ado; here is the 2016 Draft Review and Rankings…

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