What comes after the secret formula?

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Valen

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What comes after the secret formula?

PostSat Jan 31, 2015 6:31 am

Been some great strategy threads over the years. J-Pav has started and contributed to more than his share.
Sometimes you can get to feeling no matter what you say it has probably been said before. As Solomon wrote there is nothing new under the sun. Is there more?

A manager has read all the recommendations. He has the magic spending balance between pitching and hitting right. He has learned to manipulate the autodraft to get mostly what he wants. Or he has been in enough live drafts he pretty much knows who should be drafted in what rounds, etc. Yet his teams still come up short. What is left he should pay attention to? What is left for us to analyze?

How about this for an idea. The autodraft is over. Waivers have run. Preseason has passed the seasons is 35 games in. A manager looks at his team and he is right at breakeven. A little too early to throw in the towel and too early to start printing playoff tickets. In real life the season is approaching that point where the decision to be buyers or sellers is approaching. What is the strat equivalent? How does a manager tell the difference between an 18-18 team that is poised to take off and one that is treading water just waiting for a fly to light and that little extra weight sink the ship.

What could it be that veteran managers do differently that allows them to begin a playoff charge even though they are currently only in 3rd place? What fatal mistake are novice managers committing that turn their teams south? Been a lot of discussions about how too many drops at this point can doom a team. In every one of those discussions there are beacons of light point to teams who have used add/drops to turn a team around.

In this call for discussions I am not hoping to settle the question of who is right. We could all agree that 80 % of managers would harm their teams by dropping players and taking cap hits. But even then that means there are 20% of managers who have significant reason to expect they are the exception to the rule.
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visick

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSat Jan 31, 2015 9:53 am

By this time, you have played games within your division, and then some.

I take a look at my splits, both pitching and hitting.

Maybe I missed something before the season started. Are my hitters seeing a high # of RH's or LH's?
How about my pitchers? (Righty to lefty bats?)

Maybe I need another lefty bat that hits RH's better or visaversa?
Do I need a hard RHSP or LHSP? Do I need a reverse SP?

I also evaluate my lineups. Maybe I move a player around or 2.
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keyzick

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSat Jan 31, 2015 10:43 am

visick wrote:By this time, you have played games within your division, and then some.

I take a look at my splits, both pitching and hitting.

Maybe I missed something before the season started. Are my hitters seeing a high # of RH's or LH's?
How about my pitchers? (Righty to lefty bats?)

Maybe I need another lefty bat that hits RH's better or visaversa?
Do I need a hard RHSP or LHSP? Do I need a reverse SP?

I also evaluate my lineups. Maybe I move a player around or 2.


Ditto
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coyote303

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSat Jan 31, 2015 12:00 pm

I stand pat and hope other managers in my division make add/drops to "improve" their teams!
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l.strether

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSat Jan 31, 2015 12:35 pm

Valen wrote:We could all agree that 80 % of managers would harm their teams by dropping players and taking cap hits. But even then that means there are 20% of managers who have significant reason to expect they are the exception to the rule.

We should avoid the phrase "we could all agree," except in definite statements. It's a way of saying "my statement is right" and precluding any disagreement with it. We have no idea how many teams successfully or unsuccessfully make roster changes. I do agree many teams successfully turn their teams around through roster changes. Sometimes a better cheaper player is available, sometimes a team's mix needs changing, sometimes--as Visick noted--a manager poorly evaluated match-ups and needs to re-tool.

However, we can't say without study what % of managers harm their team by dropping players. A losing team dropping salary doesn't mean those drops caused its losing record. It could make smart roster moves and still end up with a losing record. Also, if a bad team makes poor roster moves, those roster moves still may not be the cause of its failure. They could have just made a losing team worse. We also need to actually determine how much dropped salary constitutes "too much." That is still undetermined.

Finally, a lower percentage of an activity does not constitute an exception to the rule of the higher one. Only anomalies do. We don't know managers who drop players succeed less than those who don't. But, If they do, they're not the exception to the rule; they're just the lower percentage.
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Valen

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSun Feb 01, 2015 1:46 am

What about other tools/reports?
Are there reports/tools that you believe are underutilized by many?
Which ones are the most underutilized?

I know for myself I have tended to be a bit lazy. Perhaps partly because some of what we have now was not available when I started. And like a lot once I get in a habit/pattern hard to break.

For example on my current team I am taking a closer look at the misc stats screen. I am a little hesitant to tweak too much early because for the most part my experiment has been successful. So looks like for the most part got the right cards for accomplishing my primary goal. But am I giving them the max chance to succeed? I had the stolen base settings on aggressive and was looking at the misc screen and noticed I was 0-3 in home steal attempts.
Changed the team settings down to conservative. It has been stuck on 0-3 since. So a minor mission accomplished.
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Valen

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSun Feb 01, 2015 2:27 am

Some good advice vsick. That is exactly the sort of discussion I was hoping to generate. If we can get more discussion like that this could be very useful. Perhaps if we could get in to detailed discussions on some of these type points.

I take a look at my splits, both pitching and hitting.

This is a good example. I am selecting it for the moment for more detailed discussion.

I am looking at this team 39 games in or about a fourth the way through. Probably should have took a closer look a few days ago and made some plans and acted before the cap penalty goes up. But been busy and if completely honest a bit lazy lately.

http://onlinegames.strat-o-matic.com/team/353865

I note I have faced 27.8% lefty pitchers so far. Fairly typical ratio.
My slash line is farily even. vs LH : .294 .385 .501 vs RH .290 .367 .488

Preason was a little concerned had too many LH bats so picked up Matt Williams and added Otis late thinking he would also help some with late inning defense. I did not think with Hamilton as a table setter and Bonds/Gehrig/Mathews comprising heart of lineup righties would be much concern. Also made a last minute switch from the 2R Ichiro to the 3L Ichiro. Record against lefty and righty though suggests my concerns were misplaced. I am 9-4 vs leftys and 10-16 vs righties. Just made the change back to the 2R Ichiro to try giving lineup a little extra help against RH pitching.

My overall run differential is +13.

So what reports or specific sections of reports might a person want to zero in on to determine if this is small sample anamoly or season long problem point that needs addressed?

Now to be clear this thread is not about helping this team. I am presenting this team as an example of this point made by vsick. Using the reports to show my initial thinking could be wrong and making in season adjustments. It happens this team could be a good example of needing this type analysis.

Disclaimer up front. Theme on this team was maximizing ratio of pitcher double plays verses hitter double plays. To that goal team has been very successful. 58/16 is 3.625 to 1 ratio I am very happy with. I had to go with more power hitters than preferred for the park to get the low gb(A) hitters. So realize some hitters not a perfect fit for park but they are perfect fit for the experiment. :D
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Valen

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSun Feb 01, 2015 2:45 am

Also, hoping to get more discussion going on what changes people make to settings and other internal tweaks during a season. What types of changes do you sometimes make and better yet upon what do you base your decision those decisions need to be made. Perhaps some of us might even be willing to offer up some examples of such tweaks they make and why they were made. What reports or tools did you use to determine the change needed to be made?
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keyzick

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSun Feb 01, 2015 8:02 am

I'd say performance determines which tools/screens I look at:

Which player(s) are underperforming? Look at their splits v L and v R...does anything look off (eg, a 5R who's got a .100/.120/.120 split). If so, I know it's probably just the luck of the dice and I should wait it out, but check the misc. tab which may confirm a lopsided number of rolls from the pitchers card instead of the hitters card.

Similarly, are players overperforming? Do I have a real life .250 hitter batting .380? Do the same analysis as above. Remember you can't just question bad results, but have to monitor overperforming teams/players as well.

Some impact areas to examine: pitcher/hitter splits of dice rolls, splits facing lefties or righties, opponent ballparks (ie, is your team poorly suited for a majority of parks you've played in?)

If everything checks out ok (ie. Balanced dice rolls, no unusual or unexpected quantities of facing lefties or righties, ballpark mix neutral or favorable...assuming you're not consciously taking a contrarian team into the season)...then I'll typically stand pat and assume the dice rolls will start to normalize.

I'll make changes if I notice The league happens to be heavier weighted to righties or lefties than I originally noticed (in either hitting or pitching)...so I'll revise my roster to strengthen the appropriate hitting or pitching needs (usually through FA add/drop).

ill make changes if I notice I'm not getting enough men on base for my power hitters, so may swap out for some higher OBP guys...or conversely, I may be have a decent OBP, but may not be scoring enough because i don't have enough high SLG and/or AVG guys to move them around the bases.

I'll occasionally move a player or two around in my lineups to hopefully create more difficult match ups for opponents (eg., lefty/righty mix) but that's something that should have been addressed preseason, so most of my lineup tweaking is probBly more a result of over managing thinking I can squeeze even more production out of my team.

I almost never adjust may player or team strategy settings after the start of the season, and almost always use the same team settings for all my teams anyway.

Summary (in no particular order cause it's usually all done together): righty/lefty analysis for both hitting and pitching, pitcher/hitter dice roll balance, ballpark analysis, run production analysis.

Any screens beyond those I view solely for entertainment purposes.
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ScumbyJr

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Re: What comes after the secret formula?

PostSun Feb 01, 2015 12:20 pm

Valen wrote:Also, hoping to get more discussion going on what changes people make to settings and other internal tweaks during a season. What types of changes do you sometimes make and better yet upon what do you base your decision those decisions need to be made. Perhaps some of us might even be willing to offer up some examples of such tweaks they make and why they were made. What reports or tools did you use to determine the change needed to be made?


I don't usually tweak the settings because I will almost always forget to reset them. I may tweak my roster right before the freeze depending on my division. Here I have a Petco team facing Progressive, PNC & Marlins BPs. Lots of LH hitters and pitchers.

My changes were to drop AJ Griffin for LHP (Cingrani/Kazmir). A big reason was neutralize lefties like Crash Davis and Papi. I switched from a 4 man rotation to manually entering my SP for the rest of the season Also, I dropped Russell Martin's arm, 0 errors and his putrid .245 OBP to get a little more offense out of my catcher. Ruiz is now my starting C with Mesoraco backup..

http://onlinegames.strat-o-matic.com/team/1390675
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