Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Handcuff: Good Play Or Bad?

I continue to post "massive fail" results on FSL. 0 for 13 last night. Losers on 10 of my last 11 nights.

Fortunately, I don't have anytime to play for the rest of this week. This means I'll close out the month a slight winner.

The most interesting nugget from last night's games came from Kasieroll13. He handcuffed his starting pitchers in our contests. It's the first time I've ever seen him do this.

The concept of the handcuff is simple: Pick both starting pitchers from the same game. In theory, one pitcher will prevail - and there is a slight chance both pitchers will put up decent numbers.

However, in baseball it is also possible for both starting pitchers to miss out on the win.

I have seen this strategy used in hockey quite a bit. When two premier goalies face off, it's a solid play, because one of the goalies is guaranteed the win (barring injury).

In snapdraft hockey, where you pick two goalies, I have seen players handcuff quite a bit. (But there is a shutout bonus included there.)

In snapdraft baseball, you pick 2 pitchers. Handcuffing your pitchers is a poor play, because you need a huge score to win.

Back to FSL - by the numbers, it seems that the only way handcuffing really works is when there are enough multis to cover the cost of splitting the buy-ins. I'm really surprised that players like Kaiseroll13 and PrimeTime420 are hedging so much lately.

IMO, all that hedging is reducing the amount you can win. But maybe the strategy is changing as the offerings change.

I still believe that handcuffing on FSL baseball is a poor choice. Thoughts?

1 comment:

Kaiseroll13 said...

Normally, I would definitely agree with your assessment on hedging (as you well know from my history of picks). However, yesterday, those two pitchers seemed to be the solid choices of the day. I picked Hamels because he allowed me great cap flexibility to pick the offensive players I coveted. But, in the No Cap leagues I didn't like anybody outright, so choosing Haren seemed like the best option. It also had to do with my assessment of the potential risk in choosing Hamels, because he has done poorly on the road but may be putting it together finally. I went 22-3 yesterday because so few people chose Hamels. 2 of the 3 losses were the No Caps, but not because the opponents chose better pitchers than Haren (2 of the 3 opponents still chose him), but because I was outpicked on offense. It was a bit of an experiment, but I'm happy how it turned out :). Keep up the good work with your blog; I like how you give insight into your reasons as to how you finish, without giving away the Fantasy secrets, haha.