Of course, that was a bit of hyperbole, as it is not the worst offer I have ever seen. Then the owner responded “…but Andrus is ranked better on our site’s player rater and you should account for future seasons” (this is a keeper league).
The owner then asked all of Twitter who they would have taken and it came back as 4 out of 6 other experts choosing team Andrus. After that, I felt compelled to dispel his misguided logic in trying to get me to take this trade. Where he went wrong:
- Player rater is not king.
- Don’t always error on planning for the future in keeper leagues
First, let’s dissect the player rater. The player is a great tool, however it is not the Bible, or some magic eight ball.
The player rater tells you how value a play has been, not how valuable they will be going forward. At the end of the season a player rater is a great way to see who were the best players over the course of the season. While during the season they also can be a very good tool to see just how well they are doing. However, when it comes down to a late season push you have no idea if guys will maintain their pace. In fact, it is wiser to trust the old saying, “trust the numbers on the back of the baseball card.”
The reality is that guys more often than not will level off. Look at Josh Hamilton. After his torrid start people were talking about him hitting 55-60 home runs. Now he is projected to finish with 45, which is still a great season but not out of the world like if he had kept up his pace. Likewise, players like Jose Reyes, Albert Pujols and Adrian Gonzalez will typically come through and get close to their projections, barring injury. So to take the RED HOT Elvis Andrus for the then average Jose Reyes would have been counter productive in making a late season push.
Second, the argument that Elvis is the better long term option is great and probably accurate if you are thinking beyond just next year. But a team that is competing this year should not be thinking about sacrificing this year for a better shot next year. A bird in the hand is better than 2 in the bush, my grammy always said. There is no better time to win than your current season, my friends!
Luckily, since I declined this trade Andrus has leveled off a bit. His line since the offer: 111 ABs 13-0-10-3-.297-.350 OBP
Whereas Reyes has picked up the pace: 21-4-15-7-.345-.397 OBP in 116 at bats.
Just remember, the player rater is based on what players have done, not a ranking of how they will continue to produce and if you have a chance to win this season, then focus on this season!