Fantasy Baseball

Out with the old: A 2015 preview

This is it, the final day of the 2014 fantasy baseball season.  There isn’t really much else to say at this point.  Some of you are (or on the verge of) celebrating your championship (Congratulations), a good number of you have already turned your attention to fantasy football (Traitors), and then there are the die-hard baseball fans.  The season isn’t even over and you’re looking ahead already to 2015.  We can’t blame you as the Fantasy Assembly crew has already begun assembling our rankings for the new year because baseball, as we all know, is a year round sport.  Just because there are no games going on doesn’t mean that there isn’t work to do. 

The off-season is full of activity.  Once the World Series is over, free agency begins.  This years class is somewhat lacking compared to past years, but it is still important none the less.  Winter meeting are always fun as you never know who will be traded where, and those trades can affect multiple players so you’ll need to be on top of that.  People in keeper and dynasty leagues will begin to prepare their final rosters and possibly make some off-season trades.  Then there is the general review of players, what they have done and what they can do for you in 2015.  You could wait until January to do some or all of these things, but that will only make you as good as the rest of the players in your league.  You should want more than that.  You should be striving for excellence, and putting in that extra work in the off-season is what we are all about here.  So how are we going to help you this off-season?  Let us tell you by laying out what we have in store for the remainder of the year and beyond.

Starting this Monday (29th) and every Monday the Fantasy Assembly crew will be rolling out our rankings for keeper/dynasty leagues.  We will start with the catcher position and work our way around the diamond so you can gauge who you should be looking at long-term (and who you may want to avoid).  Tommy Landseadel draws the thankless job of consolidating all those rankings  and putting everything together, so while his name may be absent from the readers for several months, he’s right here with his nose to the grindstone.

On Fridays (starting October 3rd) Jim Finch will be bringing you his way too early rankings for the 2015 season.  The big difference between this year and last is that he enlisted the help of several other “Experts” from various websites so the readers can get an idea of where other sites may be ranking a specific player.  Who are the participants for this celebrity “Experts” panel?  We’re keeping that a surprise for now, but we are sure you won’t be disappointed.

Sandwiched between the rankings will be daily articles covering the position of that week.  Paul Hartman, Kevin Jebens, Will Emerson and our newest addition Ron Vackar (from VicariousSports) will cover topics like comeback players, potential busts, draft strategies, prospects, specific player write-ups and much more.  We can’t forget our part-time staff consisting of Rob Adams, Joseph Mangano and Peter Waterman who will be making contributions from time to time, that means more content for you our valued readers.  Don’t worry if you don’t see a specific player covered because in January we will start the process all over again, except this time we will bring you 2015 rankings from the Fantasy Assembly Crew as well as Prospect Rankings for 2015.

If there is a specific player you would like to see profiled here, you can send us an e-mail ( or submit your request using the form under the Ask The Assembly tab.  We will do our best to cover your submission either this fall or during the next round of rankings come January.  Also, if you have any questions regarding your keeper or dynasty league, we are more than happy to help with that.  Just click on the Ask the Assembly tab and submit your question along with as much information as possible so we can give you the best possible advice.  Just like last year, the best question each week will be featured in our Weekly Assembly section and will be answered by not one, but every member of our team giving you multiple view points to choose from.

So that’s what you have to look forward to in the coming months.  We would like to thank all of the visitors who frequent our beloved site, without you we wouldn’t be where we are today.  It was one year ago today that this journey of ours officially started (Happy Anniversary to us) and we hope to be around for years to come.  Please continue to visit daily and spread the word if you like what you see here.

If our rankings and articles are not enough for you and you just need more, like a junkie needing a fix, head on over to Fantasy Rundown.  Goose supplies his readers with the best daily links for fantasy articles along with rankings collected from the top sites for 2015 and prospects.  It’s your basic one stop shopping center for fantasy articles and rankings.  He does a great job and while we can’t say it enough on twitter, he has our deepest appreciation for posting our links (a sentiment shared by many of the regulars featured on his site).

That’s it for 2014 (well the 2014 season anyway).  See you tomorrow as we begin our look at the season ahead.

By Jim Finch

The self proclaimed Grand High Exhausted Mystic Ruler of Fantasy Baseball. While I am not related to Jennie or Sidd Finch, I will attempt to uphold the integrity of the Finch family name as it relates to baseball.

7 replies on “Out with the old: A 2015 preview”

Thanks for the all the good reads during the season, guys.

In my keeper league, I can keep 11 players for next season (no restrictions on how many years they can be kept). Who do you like from the following candidates?

Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Abreu, Ian Kinsler, Kris Bryant, Carlos Gonzalez, Cory Dickerson, Ryan Braun, Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma, Michael Wacha, Gerrit Cole, Greg Holland.

I also have Carlos Correa, Charlie Blackmon, Jean Segura, Mark Trumbo, Brett Lawrie, Ken Giles, Mike Fiers, James Paxton & Matt Shoemaker, but I can’t see any of them making the final cut, and I consider this group to be potential trade bait.

Of the 11 players you mentioned, I would definitely keep Encarnacion, Abreu, Kinsler, Bryant, Dickerson, Fernandez & Cole. Cargo, Braun, Iwakuma & Wacha would be the next 4 with Holland on the outside looking in.

You’ve also got some interesting players that you will be throwing back, so what I would try (if you have off-season trading) is packaging one of your final 4 keepers with some of your best players you’re not going to keep and see if you can improve your keepers. Some of the lower teams may not have 11 quality keepers and might like a 2-1 or even a 3-1 deal. A package of Cargo & Trumbo could get you a younger or more dependable outfielder. Mix and match players based upon your opponents needs and see what you can get. If you’re going to lose players like Blackmon, Correa, Holland, etc.., packaging one or more of them with one of your potential keepers isn’t overpaying, it using your excess to your advantage. Might as well get something for them instead of tossing them back.

Hi Jim, thanks for your feedback. My once concern with your suggested 11 would be Kinsler. He’s 33 next season, and I am reminded of the old baseball adage about it being better to cut a player loose a year too early than a year too late. Normally, I would never even consider keeping a closer, but Holland is probably as surefire as any closer, and I have gotten mediocre results out of my bullpen(s) the past few seasons by not paying a premium for closers, while the winning team(s) have fared much better.

I agree with that old adage, but to a point. You keep 11 players so the way I see it, at least 6 of those players should be your core players, guys you can see on your team not just next year but in 2016 as well. The other 5 are flex keepers, guys that are good, but you wouldn’t mind moving if something better came along or releasing the following year. Kinsler will be 33, but he is also an elite 2nd baseman with a much higher trade value than Holland.

If you are worried about him, maybe package him with one of those other players for some like Altuve. I would even package him with a Braun or Cargo for someone like Rendon (who may move to third but you can worry about that later). Even if you can’t move him in the off-season, you still have a player who can help you next year. You can trade Kinsler for Holland during the season, but you can’t trade Holland for Kinsler as nobody would accept that. See my point. He’s old, yes, but he is still worth more to someone else than Holland is.

You still have some trading to do and who knows, you may trade 2 of those 11 for 1 better upgrade and be able to keep Holland anyway. Plenty of time before the season starts.

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