Thursday, February 17, 2011


Top RP

  1. Alfredo Miranda
    While Miranda doesn't have the ideal stamina/durability combination, he has averaged 104IP/season. He dominates RHB and is solid against LHB. He throws fire. He has great control. He has a great pitch, a good pitch, and 2 below average pitches.
  2. Spud Clarke
    Again, he lacks ideal stamina/durability, but he still manages to pitch a lot. He's slightly better when facing RHB than he is when he faces LHB. He throws hard and keeps the ball on the ground. He has good control. He has a great pitch and 4 average to above average pitches.
  3. Ignacio Maranon
    This rookie could be the next great thing out of the bullpen. He has great control. He's good against LHB and RHB. He throws hard. He does an alright job of keeping the ball on the ground. He really shines when you get to his pitches. He has a great pitch, a very good pitch and an above average pitch. If he comes close to his projections, he's going to be dominant for a long, long time.

Top SP

  1. Alex Vizcaino
    2-time AS saw his S3 end when he tore his labrum for the second straight season. He's got great durability that combines with good stamina. He's a dominant pitcher when it comes to keeping the ball out of the hitting zone. He doesn't have great velocity and is only above average at forcing GBs. He's got 2 very good pitches and 3 average or worse pitches. He has good control.
  2. Kenshin Ogawa
    A 3-time AS, Ogawa is absolutely dominating against RHB, while he is merely good against LHB. He's got good durability and good stamina for a starter. He does a good job at keeping the ball on the ground. He has 2 very good pitches, 2 above average pitches, and one average pitch. He has very good control too.
  3. Willie Oliva
    2-time Cy Young award winner, Oliva has 3 good pitches, and 2 average pitches. He's got good control. He's dominant against LHB while being very good against RHB. He's got great durability and good stamina. He is a pure flyball, strikeout flamethrower.

Top RF

  1. Brian Malloy
    Malloy has decent range, but a poor glove. He's durable. He's fast. He makes good contact. Has good power. Solid against LHP. Dominant against RHP. Good eye.
  2. Matty Bailey
    Bailey is a tremendous defensive RF. He's got good durability. He makes great contact. Has great speed. Good power. He's better against RHP than LHP. He's got a great eye.
  3. Javier Lucano
    A mediocre defender, he is very durable with decent speed. Makes good contact with good power. He's dominant against RHP, but will struggle with LHP. Has a tremdous eye. A very strong armed RF.

Top CF

  1. Clarence Canseco
    A great defensive CF, Canseco has the range to cover the area and the glove to catch nearly everything he gets to. He's durable and speedy. He makes good contact, with good power. He's slightly better against RHP than LHP. He's got a good eye.
  2. Jaime Pierre
    He's got average range, but a great glove. He's durable and fast. He hits for power, while not striking out too much. He is better against LHP than RHP. He's got a great eye.
  3. Dummy Merrick
    The prized FA this season, Merrick has good range, but a slightly below average glove. He hits for power, but is mediocre at making contact. He dominates RHP while he's average against LHP. He's got a good eye to go along with his good speed. He's durable.

Top LF

  1. Livan Bocachica
    Not much of a defender, Livan possesses good power that combines with the ability to make consistent contact. He fares better against LHP than he does RHP, but that difference is from dominating to good. He's got a very good eye. Good speed too. He would probably be better off as a first baseman.
  2. Bud Sobolewski
    Bud is an aging superstar, but he does still possess some talent. He's got a great ability to make contact and drive the ball. He's got some power to go along with that ability. He's got a very good eye. He's as slow as you would expect from a LF, although he does play solid defense.
  3. Jamey Petkovsek
    Jamey has a good eye. He's pretty good against RHP while being above average against LHP. He makes solid contact and has good power. He's got great range, but struggles with the glove. He's got a stronger arm than one would expect from LF. Good durability and average speed.

Top SS

  1. Corey Byrd
    Byrd is a very good defensive SS with good range, a good glove, and a strong, accurate arm. He's durable and young. He makes good contact with good power. He dominates LHP while he really really struggles against RHP. He's got a good eye that helps him out a lot.
  2. Jorge Marichal
    A below average defender, Marichal doesn't have the range or glove that one looks for in a true SS, but he has an exceptionally strong arm. He's durable. He makes good contact with some power. He drives the ball well against RHP while not too bad against LHP. He's got a great eye and decent speed.
  3. Eddie Lloyd
    A below average defensive SS at this point in his career, there is still a slight chance he could become an average SS. He does an average job at making contact, but does possess good power. He's better against LHP than RHP, although he's no slouch against RHP. He's got an above average eye and really good speed.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Top 3B

  1. Philip Chase
    Chase is consistently going to be at the top of the league in batting average and has good power as well. He's good against LHP and RHP. His eye is below average. He's very durable. He's got good range, a great glove, and a great arm. He's got decent speed.
  2. Glen Theriot
    Theriot has average range to go along with a good glove. His arm is adequate, but the accuracy is what sets him apart. He's good at putting the ball in play and has above average power. He's above average when it comes to driving the ball. He's got an above average eye. Decent speed.
  3. Steven Griffin
    A good glove combines with a ridiculous arm to make up for his average range. He's not great at putting the ball in play but makes up for that a little bit with decent power. He's good against LHP and above average against RHP. He's got an average eye. Good speed. Good durability.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Top 2B

  1. Brian Ma
    Blessed with an excellent bat and a lot of power, Ma is a true star at his position. He's dominant against RHP while doing well enough against LHP to avoid a platoon situation. He's got a good eye. He's durable and has good speed. He's got decent range that is paired with a decent glove. His arm is below average.
  2. Glen Monroe
    Monroe has a great eye to go along with the ability to just dominate LHP. He's got good power, and is good at making contact. He's not bad against RHP. He's got decent speed and is durable. He's got good range and a good glove, but is lacking in the arm category.
  3. Heath Harris
    He'll hit for a high average while putting a few balls into the seats. He's dominant against RHP and above average against LHP. He has a good eye. His arm is weak, but somewhat accurate. He's got decent range. Decent glove. Great speed. Good durability.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Top 1B

  1. William Randall
    The defending Silver Slugger, Randall has tremendous power and doesn't strike out much. He drives the ball really well. He can work the count and reach base more than most. He's got decent speed. He's a DH first, but can definitely get by at 1B. Lacks the durability to be a consistent MVP threat.
  2. Manny Raben
    A true slugger, Raben spends most of his time at DH. He makes good contact with great power. He dominates LHP. He's good against RHP. He's got a great eye. He lacks ideal durability. He's got the arm to play C, although he needs his hand held to call the game.
  3. Harry Darwin
    He can hit for power and average, while working the count and reaching base a lot. He's better against LHP than RHP, but is no slouch against either. He's decently durable. He plays solid D at 1B. He's slow.

Top C

  1. Malachi Wakefield
    From a pure talent standpoint, Wakefield has it all. He can hit for power and average, reach base, and really sees the ball well when he's at bat. He can throw runners out as he has a good arm. He knows the ins and outs of calling a game. His biggest weakness is his extreme lack of durability.
  2. Rafael Guerrero
    Guerrero really hangs his hat on his defense. He's got a great arm, and really knows both his pitchers and the batters in the league. He has some good power and is above average at making contact. He is dominant against LHP while also doing well against RHP. He's got an above average eye.
  3. Mel Mays
    Just a horrible defensive C, he's got a weak arm and is only above average at calling a game. He's durable. He makes above average contact to go with great power. It doesn't matter who's on the mound, he can really drive the ball well. He's got a good eye as well.

Friday, February 11, 2011


  1. Florida - Hard to not be the one to lose the most when you lose the top 2 Free Agents. Lost a total 8 players, including the #1 SP, Eduardo Bonilla, the #1 CF Dummy Merrick, and the #1 LF Bud Sobolewski.
  2. Louisville - Lost 7 players to free agency including the top C, Ryan Laxton, and 2 of the top 5 SP in Kevin Kohlmeier and Clay Beamon (since re-signed).
  3. Seattle - Said goodbye to 6 free agents, including the #2 LF Ross Anderson and the #2 C Stretch Lloyd. Also lost #2 RP Geraldo Morales and #3 1B/DH Keith Sparks.
  4. Richmond - Lost 5 FA, including #2 1B/DH Hunter Sizemore, #4 2B Earl Donatello, and #4 LF Arthur Boyd.
  5. Montgomery - Lost #2 SP Dave Bellhorn as well as #6 RP Kevin Li. Lost a total of 5 players.
  1. Louisville - Added 7 players, including the #1 SP Eduardo Bonilla, #3 C Alex Machado, and #3 RP Joseph Lee.
  2. Los Angeles - Added 6 players, including #2 3B Ben Walcutt. Didn't add anybody else in the top 3 of their position group.
  3. Charleston - Charleston went to town, signing 5 FAs, including #2 1B Hunter Sizemore, #3 CF Albert Martinez, #3 SP Kevin Kohlmeier, and #3 LF Wendell Matusz.
  4. Cleveland - Signed 4 players, including #1 LF Bud Sobolewski, #1 RF Mitch Harris, and #2 CF Quentin Metcalfe.
  5. Montgomery - The Mavericks made 4 signings, including #2 LF Ross Anderson. They didn't anybody else within the top 3 of their positional group.
  1. Jackson (+192)
  2. Los Angeles (+129)
  3. Arizona (+117)
  4. Cleveland (+81)
  5. Ottawa (+74)
  1. Florida (-547)
  2. Jacksonville (-255)
  3. Colorado Springs (-205)
  4. Richmond (-195)
  5. New Britain (-191)
  • Louisville signed the most players by signing 7.
  • 1B/DH Keith Smart (#3 1B/#6 OVR) is the top-rated FA available.
  • Other notable available FAs are SS Desi Puente, CF Ron Hafner, and SS Jerry Reichert.
  • CF Dummy Merrick was the #1 FA available.
  • Florida lost the #1 CF, LF, and SP.
  • Seattle signed the most #1 players with 2.
  • Charleston signed the most top 3 players with 4.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


  1. Willie Cela (signed w/Richmond; 2 years/$9.0M)
    A very quality reliever, Cela is durable and has decent stamina that will allow him to rack up the innings. He's not going to walk many guys, but he also won't strike out many either. He sometimes struggles with keeping the ball out of the hitting zone, but should induce a lot of grounders to help him out. He's got a great pitch to go along with 2 above average pitches and should perform very well.
  2. Geraldo Morales (signed w/Los Angeles; 1 year/$4.2M)
    His stamina isn't quite strong enough to be a starter, but he is good enough to be a major part of a championship bullpen. He has great control that'll prevent walks, but lacks the velocity to be a strikeout machine. His splits are above average, but he is definitely a groundball machine. He has a great pitch, 2 above average pitches, a below average pitch, and a horrible pitch, but that should work coming out of the 'pen. His health is a bit of a concern.
  3. Joseph Lee (signed w/Louisville; 1 year/$6.0M)
    While he only has 2 pitches, one is great and the other is good, and they should combine with his good velocity to produce a lot of strikeouts. He does a good enough job at keeping the batters guessing. He is adept at inducing groundballs for those rare times where he walks a man. His durability and stamina complement each other really well.


  1. Eduardo Bonilla (signed w/Louisville; 4 years/$21.2M)
    Despite his inability to go deep into games, Bonilla is #1 based on his effectiveness while in the game, as he can retire RHB and LHB with equal ability. Most seasons, he would not crack the top 10 FA, but this is a unique class. He is alright with inducing groundballs and is medicore with his velocity. He's got a great pitch, 2 good pitches, an average pitch, and one below average pitch. His health is a concern.
  2. Dave Bellhorn
    He can go deep into games and won't walk many. He's got great velocity that'll get him about 150-170 Ks a season. He's not a GB pitcher by any stretch of the imagination. He has 2 good pitches, 1 above average pitch, 1 average pitch, and 1 below average pitch. The main concerns with him is he doesn't always do a good job at keeping the ball out of the hitting zone.
  3. Kevin Kohlmeier (signed w/Charleston; 3 years/$16.8M)
    The main concern here is his control, as he is merely average. He is above average at keeping the ball out of the hitting zone, while he doesn't induce many groundballs. His velocity isn't top notch, but his pitches sure are as he boasts 2 great pitches, an above average pitch, and an average pitch. He's got decent stamina, but he isn't going to get deep into games on a consistent basis.


  1. Mitch Harris
    Not much to look at here, Harris is going to strike out a lot. He struggles against LHP while being downright lethal against RHP. He's got a great eye. He doesn't have the power to justify his inability to make contact, although he might just hit enough out to justify playing against RHP. He's below average defensively.
  2. Yusmeiro Olivares
    Olivares doesn't excel at anything, but is pretty solid across the board. He's got some power, he hits RHP better than LHP. He makes decent contact while also doing a decent job of working the count. He's got good speed, and will steal a few bases. He's terrible defensively.
  3. Moises Canseco (signed w/New York; 2 years/$12.0M)
    Canseco is solid enough defensively that it wouldn't be a stretch for him to find his way to the infield. He makes decent contact with above average power. He's not fooled by any pitcher. He's got a decent eye. He's very durable. He's very slow too. Canseco would rank #2 at 3B.
**Ed. Note - During the 4 seasons that Billy Beane has been around, this is the first time that I have thought of completely scrapping my calculations for a position. I feel that Canseco is the better player of these 3, but since RF is primarily an offensive position, I decided not to redo the rankings or scrap my calculations to rank them. I felt that would set a bad precedent and wanted to avoid that. That said, Canseco is more useful than the 2 players ranked above him.**


  1. Dummy Merrick (signed w/Seattle; 4 years/$47.0M)
    The crown jewel of a very weak free agent class, Merrick is a very good player. He hits for power but will strike out some. He crushes RHP while not doing so hot against LHP. He knows the strike zone and will reach base quite a bit via walk. His defense is good, with his above average range canceling out his slightly below average glove. He's durable, and he's fast.
  2. Quentin Metcalfe (signed w/Cleveland; 3 years/$15.6M)
    Although he is a tremendous dropoff from Merrick, he isn't a bad player by any stretch of the imagination. He's going to strike out quite a bit while not hitting for much power. He will hit RHP and struggle with LHP. He doesn't have the greatest eye in the world. He can run like a deer and should steal a lot of bases. He's got good range and a slightly below average glove. He's durable.
  3. Albert Martinez (signed w/Charleston; 1 year/$3.8M)
    Martinez is not going to strike out a lot, which, when given enough at-bats and combined with his speed, will result in a lot of infield hits. He hits LHP decently, but will really struggle with RHP. He's also going to struggle with his command and understanding of the strike zone. His best attribute is his defense, which is above average and if given the chance will allow him to compete for a gold glove.

Monday, February 7, 2011


  1. Bud Sobolewski (signed w/Cleveland; 3 years/$15.0M)
    While clearly being in the twilight of his career, Bud sure can play. He's going to put the ball in play consistently while hitting it hard. He's got some power. He's got a great eye. He's slow and not the greatest defender, but it is easy to forgive that weakness when he puts up .304/.394/.472. He's going to be a tremendous signing for whoever gets him.
  2. Ross Anderson (signed w/Montgomery; 3 years/$15.6M)
    He sees the ball really well against both LHP and RHP, while not striking out much either. He's got some power. He's got a great eye and he's an excellent baserunner. His defense is definitely below average. He's slow, but durable. He's a good hitter, putting up .325/.397/.524 for his career.
  3. Wendell Matusz (signed w/Charleston; 1 year/$1.6M)
    Absolutely horrendous on defense, he's lucky he plays LF. He is definitely not going to strike out much. He's got some power, to go along with a decent eye. He hits RHP better than LHP, although not that much better. He' s got above average speed. He's not all that durable, so he will need some rest.


  1. Eric Carp
    A good defensive SS, Carp would make any defense instantly better. He's not great with the bat, but he's not a black hole on offense. Anybody who consistently produces .270/.328/.407 at the bottom of the lineup is a pretty solid thing to have. He struggles to hit RHP and struggles with the strike zone. He has decent power and is good against LHP. He's not going to strike out a lot.
  2. Marty Little
    Another player who immediately improves the defense, Little has no idea of the strike zone. He's durable, and he can hit LHP pretty well. He's got below average power, and above average contact ability. He is average against righties. He can hold down the fort for a team and shouldn't have any problems performing at a decent level.
  3. Charley Coleridge (signed w/New York Highlanders; 4 years/$20.8M)
    This guy is a true black hole on offense. He's an excellent defender who has plus range, glove, and a plus plus arm. He should definitely be in contention for the GG award every season. He's got good durability and good speed. He has below average power, a innate inability to consistently put the bat to the ball, and he struggles against even mediocre pitching. He does have an above average eye.

Top FA 3B

  1. Otto Sorrento
    Sorrento has horrible range at the "hot corner", but he makes the plays on the balls he can get to. Slow as molasses, he's not going to beat out many IF hits. He's got solid power (79 career HR) and a solid ability to make contact (.272 career hitter). He's got an average eye. Where he really shines is the ability to drive the ball well as evidenced by 149 extra-base hits in 3 seasons.
  2. Ben Walcutt
    Another guy with horrible range, he isn't nearly as good defensively as Sorrento. Walcutt really should be in a COF spot. He's slow. Decent durability. He does a solid job of making contact, while he doesn't have much power. He's got a good eye, and does see the ball well.
  3. Eric Castillo (Signed w/Arizona; 2 years, $10.4M)
    By far the best defender of the group, Castillo has solid range, glove, and arm strength to combine with great accuracy. He's durable. His knowledge and recognition of the strike zone leaves a lot to be desired, while he does a solid job of making contact and hitting with some power. He's better against LHP than RHP. He's got average speed. He's a career .284 hitter with 92 2B, 7 3B, and 45 HR in his career.

Top FA 2B

  1. Louis Taylor
    Taylor is a very good defender, averaging 14 good plays the past 2 seasons, and should have been right up near the top in terms of gold glove finalists. He's no slouch with the bat either, having hit 94 home runs in his career. He's got good power to go along with the ability to avoid a lot of strikeouts. He's dominant against LHP while holding his own against RHP. His weakness is his relatively weak eye, which prevents him from really being great. He was an all-star in season 1 and won a WS Ring last season.
  2. Pablo Encarnacion
    He's got a good glove, below average range, and a weak arm. He's a very durable player. He's going to avoid the strikeout while hitting for a little bit of power. He's better against LHP than he is RHP, but not by much. He's got average speed, to go along with an average eye. Nothing too great here, but he could hold down 2B for a season or 2.
  3. Scott Phillips
    Averaging nearly 20 HRs a season, Phillips has a decent bat. Has above average power, a good eye. He does an above average job of making contact. He sees the ball equally well against RHP and LHP. He's got a little bit of speed. He's not really a 2B though, as his defense is atrocious. He's got horrible range, and a very weak arm. He'd be better off as a LF.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Top FA 1B/DH

  1. Torey Acosta
    Not the big banger you expect from a 1B, Acosta is still a solid hitter nonetheless. His lack of durability is always going to keep from being the hitter that he can be. He's a .272 career hitter who is going to knock some balls out of the park and hit for a good average. He is good at seeing the ball no matter who is on the mound. He's got a great eye as evidenced by his .389 career OBP. If he could hold up and get 500+ ABs, he'd be a force...for now he's a DH/1B player who is going to need lots of rest.
  2. Hunter Sizemore (Signed w/Charleston; 1 year/$3.0M)
    In a free agent class lacking that prototypical 1B, Sizemore is as close as they come. A .287/.367/.518 career slash line is hurt by the fact that even though he crushes LHP while being average against RHP. He's got a good eye, and isn't going to strike out much at all. He doesn't have the greatest durability, but can give you 450+ ABs. Might be better off as a platoon player and the top PH off the bench.
  3. Keith Sparks
    A career .429 OBP, tells you everything you need to know about this guy. He knows the strike zone and works it to his full advantage. He doesn't have a lot of power, but will regularly get to double-digit HRs. He's got average speed, and he sees the ball well enough to be able to consistently drive it on pitchers. Isn't the greatest at making contact, but definitely will make it more often than not.

Top FA Catchers

  1. Ryan Laxton (signed w/Seattle; 3 years/$23.2M)
    Laxton is a very good offensive-minded catcher. He's got great power, dominates lefties, and can work the count. He struggles with RHP, but his power helps to offset that some. He's not going to hit .320+, but .280 is to be expected. He's mediocre defensively, and isn't all that durable, but still has the talent to really help a team out. He hit 40 HRs in just 451 ABs last season (1HR every 11.28 ABs) so he still has the power.
  2. Stretch Lloyd (signed w/Rochester; 3 years/$9.6M)
    Is power not your style, then look no further than here. Lloyd is a gold glover with a ring. He isn't going to strike out much, has a good eye. He sees the ball consistently against LHP and RHP. He doesn't have a lot of power (27 career HRs), and he lacks the durability to put up 500+ ABs. He's a good defender who knows how to call a game. He is a career .320 hitter.
  3. Alex Machado
    The best of the rest, Machado is a mediocre offensive player who really shines against LHP. He's purely average at everything else...given enough ABs he's got the power to hit 20 HRs, and generate a .275/.325/.425 line. Would be a very good platoon player when allowed to take advantage of his ability against LHP. He lacks the durability to be a full-time starter. He's above average defensively, but isn't outstanding in any aspect of the game.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Getting to know...TheJester74

Who is TheJester74?
Todd - Network Engineer that is married with two kids near Cincinnati.

How did you get into HBD?
Started with simleagues, but got tired of playing against teams with pitchers nobody had heard of from 1894 that had pitched 308 IPs with a 2.14 ERA. Got into some college dynasty games, and again thought WifS built games that were essentially "try to figure out what the developers think is the ideal way to build a team, closest ones wins." HBD is the game I think is the game they have done the best with about having options to build a successful team in many different ways, and the trading aspect gives owners a legit reason to interact with each other.

Interests and Hobbies?
Travel, sports and Family life. I also like really good food, wine, Bourbon and Scotch and find it's best to leave the creation of all of these to real experts.

Favorite team(s)?
Reds and Bengals.

Suggestion/tip for HBD?
My "Neo in the matrix" moment came when I realized that once you ignore the potential part of player ratings and just concentrate on current rating development the game becomes clear. Watching how fast a player progresses in his first full season, you can tell where a player is going to end up.

Important individual rating for performance?
For both batters and pitchers I always start with vR. But other than that I usually use opposite ways to evaluate position players and pitchers. For batters I look for what, even it's a single area, that they excel in. For pitchers I look for weaknesses.

Best move you’ve ever made in HBD?
I was able to grab a reclamation project of team that had been stripped of talent at all levels and turn them into a championship team in 3 seasons. The championship was a bit of luck, but I learned you can at least make a team competitive in 3 seasons.

Worst move you’ve ever made in HBD?
A couple of times I've let a FA go and for some reason expected that the Type A compensation would in some way makeup for the talent loss and have virtually always been disappointed. Yet somehow when I give up a draft pick to get a player the other guy always drafts some future all-star.

Favorite HBD player?
Vitas Sobkowiak, as one of the rare HBD 300 game winners. Rusty Jones was my favorite position player, career .356 hitter that was my only player to hit over .400 in a season.

Billy Beane prospect that you are most excited to call up?
The prospect that lands me a solid ML'er is my favorite.